Sunday, September 14, 2008

Virginia (Rasinowich) Hartselle writes......

June 7, 2008 (in response to the article Polish families hightlighted in talk)
I read the Mining Gazette every day here at my home in Florida, thanks to computers.

I am also a child of a Polish father, born in Calumet. My Dad's father was killed in the Osceola Mine fire on September 1895, his name was Joseph Rasimowicz, because of the difficult name, he was listed as Joseph Rasec, as one of the 30 or so miners killed in the mine fire. They could not put the fire out so they sealed the mine shaft to stop the fire and the men were found on the ladders trying to walk our of the shaft. My Dad was born in January, 1896, after his father 's untimely death in the mine fire, this he never knew his father and I never knew my grandfather. There is a sign up by the old Osceola Mine, and a few poor rocks piles left, which I visit each and every summer when I return to Calumet to visit. My grandmother's maiden name was Polish also, Valeria Kruscka, she was 16yrs old when my Dad was born- she later married again and had 9 more children- she married Andrew Madajewski- they lived in Calumet, actually there were a lot of neighborhoods with different names.
Swedetown was one of them and a lot of Polish people lived in Swedetown, some Polish names I can think of right off hand are , Macynski, Baranowski, Szatkowski, besides the Madajewski's- there were many more Polish miners in Calumet. They had their own Polish Catholic Church and a Polish Catholic School- I don't know the exact name of the church and school but St. Paul's Church in Calumet has that information, just ask Jan in the office. The Polish Church and School burned down in the early 1900s- I do know that my Dad went there until he was thru the 5th grade and in those days you left school and my Dad worked underground from the time he was 13 yrs old into he was in his 60's except when he was in the National Guard (Home Guard) and fought Pancho Villa at 17 yrs of age at the Mexican boarder and then fought in Europe in World War I in France. Upon his return he went back into working in the mines- mainly Ahmeek mine. My maiden name changed a little in spelling from Rasimowicz to Rasinowich.

I have pictures if my grandmother and grandfather Rasimowicz wedding and then when my grandmother remarried to Madajewski (right) they are by the same folks that the picture in the newspaper was made by- if you want any more information please call me. I loved my heritage , love my hometown of Calumet, my brother and I have been delving into our genealogy an d it is hard to get it all when some if it is in Europe but I go up to Calumet every summer, this year it will be for the Air Force Base reunion in August, Calumet Air Force Base where my husband was based, and then I will be up there for my 60th Class Reunion from Calumet High at the Miscowabik Club the following weekend. I still have family up there and loads of friends- although I have lived in Florida for 46 years I am so proud of where I am from and another Yooper and I have a UP picnic each March in Florida.

Virginia (Rasinowich) Hartselle