It should be noted that much of the information contained in the following was pieced together by Jeff and Doug Talbot using recollections from childhood and investigative questioning of our mother and aunts thru the years. This, for those that know, was not easy. Our mother was never interested in us learning about our roots—flat out discouraged it. I, Jeff, did my best to elicit info from our Aunt Bea and Aunt Gerri (married Uncle Howard “Howie” Becker in 1961 after our Aunt Helen died in 1957). We did get much help from our cousins Patricia Mann Hill and Nancy Becker Marcantonio. I take full responsibility for any errors in this pictorial & narrative compilation. I did the best I could and realize there is much missing and some information possibly questionable. Some of the information on documents has different or conflicting spellings/dates/locations. The reasons for that may be simple errors or because of accents & language barriers. Other reasons for slightly incorrect information might have been for some type of conceived protective mechanism, noting that our ancestors were recent immigrants and also borders in Europe at the time they left there were constantly changing.  Some information might be redundant (from a number of sources) but I felt it was better to include all rather than possibly miss something. This was a learning process for me---would have been totally enjoyable if I was doing just the research instead of constantly hassling with “computer errors” at every step! I even bought a new computer and scanner for this project but still had/have troubles. Included will be some history on the towns that our grandparents are believed to have come from (Ott side of the family since that is all we have).
My friend George Mihal has basically done all the scanning and placed everything on the discs you now have since I was never able to get this accomplished without frustrating problems. I ran into George because of film related items I had for sale----he is a collector and film historian and, most of all, a wonderful person. I am so thankful for his help and friendship.


The Talbot History:

The Talbot name is clouded in somewhat of a mystery.  Jeffrey & Douglas Talbot know their Dad, Michael P. Talbot, changed his name from Michael Ptasznik prior to his marriage to our Mom, Martha Ann Ott. The P. most likely represents the (P) in Ptasznik? Just recently thru the 1940 New York, New York census records I  discovered  that Michael’s first name was actually “Nichle” which fits with his Russian heritage that was also documented on the same census records.
When my brother Doug and I were very young we noticed that the name plate on our Grandma’s apartment in New York City was Ptasznik. Our Uncle John (who lived there at the time) also went by that name. We always asked a lot of questions, especially me (always the investigator)----still gets me in trouble, and the answer we got then was; dad changed his name prior to entering WWII for the basic purpose of making it easier to deal with getting along (records, no discrimination possibly by having a more “Americanized” name)? That would have been a plausible explanation except that dad entered the army in Feb. 1943 (discharged Jan. 1946) and he and Martha Ott got married on September 21, 1940. On the marriage notice in the paper it stated that Michael’s parents were Theodore and Anna Talbot--------that was not true. On their burial stones in Gate Of Heaven Cemetery in Valhalla, NY their names are listed as Ptasznik. All this was pieced together as Doug and I became older, and now, just plain old! We brought up many more questions that were never received well----especially with mom, she would throw fits if we attempted to delve into family history. Speaking with cousin Nancy Becker Marcantonio, her recollection of conversations within her immediate family when she was young (before Doug and I were born), brought up the fact that our mom, Martha Ott, would not marry our dad, Michael (Nichle) Ptasznik, unless he changed his name to a more “Americanized” one. Who knows, he might have gone by Michael, Mike (as he was known to the men on his plane during the war) or Mickey earlier but not Talbot? Nancy explained that the story she remembered was; one of our mom’s former bosses, who she liked, was named Talbot and that name was suggested----so there is one explanation that sounds reasonable, maybe? Our Aunt Geraldine (who married our Uncle Howie in 1961 after our Aunt Helen (mom’s sister) died on Thanksgiving Day 1957), said our dad mentioned to her that his parents were from the Ukraine, Russia. Gerri’s heritage was Czechoslovakian and she used to speak “Czech” with her parents, she said Polish was similar but dad spoke Russian which was definitely different. Again, borders were not well defined at the time and some ethnic origins were looked upon more favorably and treated better than others. Dad at one time when I asked about the language spoken said it was Czech, so that appears not to be true---“The Russian Red” fear in this country at the time?

My hope is that all of you eventually find this information interesting and valuable. This history is literally a part of you, both physically and most likely in many of your deep thought processes---for better or for worse. The one exception is Reuben Koontz who I helped raise for about ten years. He hasn’t received any Talbot/Ptasznik genetic material but sometimes might have benefitted from my way of thinking and teachings, but at other times probably was frustrated by them.  Thinking is the best way to travel, so seeing and reading some of this information might help you travel back to a past time---a time that is partially yours----take the trip!  I also hope you fill in your own information so that it will not be lost to your families and theirs-----Jeff



Overview of the Ptasznik name & spelling variations

Family names like Ptasznik transform in spelling and pronunciation as they traveled across tribes, family branches, boundaries and languages over the years and centuries. In early history when few people could write, names such as Ptasznik were transcribed based on how they sounded when people's names were recorded in public records. This could have given rise to misspellings of Ptasznik. Understanding spelling variations and alternate spellings of the Ptasznik family name, and names in general, are important to understanding the etymology (meanings/derivations) of the name.  Once in a while surnames like Ptasznik might have changed into different surnames when they migrated into different countries, crossed language barriers or split into different family lines as a result of historic reasons. The nationality of Ptasznik is often difficult to determine in cases where country boundaries change over time, leaving the nation of origin a mystery. The original ethnicity of Ptasznik may be in dispute depending on whether the family name came about organically and independently in different locales; e.g. in the case of names that are based on a profession, which can appear in multiple regions independently (such as the surname "Archer" which was given to people who were bowmen). The history of last names split and recombine as time passes and don't necessarily relate to parental lines because not all last names are passed down by parents. Often, names like Ptasznik are adopted for reasons completely unrelated to bloodlines. The Ptasznik last name has a complex history which reaches many generations. The origin of Ptasznik dates back to antiquity, making the details of the name challenging to trace completely. The meaning of Ptasznik may come from a trade----“bird catcher” has been connected to the name. A lot of these profession-based family names may be a profession in a different language. Because of this, it is essential to understand the ethnicity of a name, and the languages used by its family members. Many western names like Ptasznik originate from religious texts such as the Bhagavadgītā, the Quran, the Bible, and other related texts. In many cases these family names relate to a religious expression such as "Favored of God". The evolution of Ptasznik begins with the origins of the surname, when the name was first taken. Even in the early generations of a name there are changes in that name purely because surnames were infrequently written down back when few people could write. Ptasznik families have travelled across various regions all throughout history. It was common for a last name to change as it entered a new country or language. As families, tribes, and clans emigrated between countries and languages, the Ptasznik name may have changed with them. It certainly changed to Talbot along the line---made things a little easier possibly! But, no documentation about that change has been found-----not uncommon that a name change was undocumented at the time. For much of American history, & other countries too, name changes were accomplished with no paperwork---ah the simple days. There you have ---The Talbot Name !
(Nichle Ptasznik) Michael P. Talbot
Born May 12, 1917  in Brooklyn, N.Y. SS # 088-03-7851 (note later, very close to his brother John’s SS #). Died October 1, 1989 at home 719 Munro Ave. (where he had lived since 1957) Mamaroneck, N.Y. 10543.  He is buried in Greenwood Union Cemetery in Rye, NY with Otts and  Beckers. Michael Talbot worked various jobs when young, including on cruise ships in the mid ‘30s for Furness Lines on the RMS (royal mail ship), SS (steam ship) Nerissa & the Queen Of Bermuda. He possibly worked for U.S. Lines, for which our Uncle John worked for many years in the NY office. Michael saw much of the Caribbean (West Indies) & possibly some of South America. He married Martha Ann (spelling seen both as Ann & Anne on different documents but Ann is on her SS card---Anne is of German spelling and because of her German heritage this seems plausible) Ott whom he met at work (Reynolds Metal Co. of N.Y. City) she a secretary, he doing printing & foil embossing (also stated on the 1940 Census, along with his birth name Nichle) on September 21, 1940.
Dad was a radio operator and tail-gunner on a B-25 in the Army Air Corps during WWII (Feb. 1943—Jan. 1946) while Mom continued doing secretarial work. After the war Dad returned to work in the same field for his entire career, commuting many years to long island, NY (Foil Craft). In early years he was a “rolling stone”, seeing many parts of the world and experiencing many adventures. Mom went back to work part time at Quinlivan Coal in Mamaroneck, NY after both sons reached high school age.


Michael Talbot's Family
Father,  Theodore Ptasznik  (1886 to 2-8-1947). He was a truck driver for a milk/dairy in the Bronx, NY possibly. This “might” have been for the Sheffield Farms Milk Plant at 1075 Webster Ave. Bronx, NY during the New York Milk Wars. There is not much else known about him. Both parents are listed on the 1940 census as being born in the Ukraine, Russia. This was also mentioned by Geraldine Becker as being stated by Michael Talbot.

Mother,  Anna (possible maiden name Levit or Levits) Ptasznik (1887 to 1-15-1968. There was a listing for an Anna of 2810 Bailey Ave. Bronx, N.Y. in 1947. Both his parents are buried in Gate Of Heaven Cemetery 10 West Stevens Ave. Hawthorne/Valhalla N.Y. 10532 914-769-3672. The cemetery plot is listed as 3 deep and was bought the same day Theodore was interred (2-8-47—died & buried the same day?). Anna was possibly living in Vermont at the time of her death in a nursing home and is also listed as being buried the same day she died? Cemetery records indicate that the funeral home listed for her was Rhode & Dauley (nothing has been found about them). Not much else is known & not much was ever shared. Cemetery plot map is in these records----Plot # 47-22-14. Doug & I vaguely remember going with our dad, taking his mom to visit another cemetery somewhere possibly in the Bronx, NY. There was never any recalled mention of his grandparents. There was not any immigration records found of Michael’s parents even though I searched off & on for a couple years. There are lots of Ptaszniks in NY and I have tried to contact a few with negative results.
An older brother John (possible middle initial I.) Ptasznik (January 18, 1910—Feb. 1986), possibly died in Union County, New Jersey. SS# 088-03-7850---last listed address was Linden, NJ 07036. He married Lois N. (for Norma) in the early ‘60s. This was the record found--Lois N Ptasznik (1926 - 2004) born on September 16, 1926. Lois died on May 7, 2004 at 78 years old. Lois N Ptasznik's last known residence was in Freeport, Walton County, Florida 32439.  Uncle John was the recipient of a few of dad’s letters from overseas that were saved and are very interesting---scanned and included in dad’s military records. Doug and I remember some heated political discussions between he and dad. Uncle John was a hunchback and our Aunt Lois had a bad limp. Uncle John offered me (Jeff) a free trip to Australia if I did not go in the army. Cemetery locations unknown.
An older sister Alga or Olga There are 1930 census records that list Alga as being 17 and being born in NY, NY in 1913---to---unknown.  She is connected to the above Ptasznik family by records described. She married a Joseph Hertelendy (as per mom & or dad), records indicate; Hertelendy, Joseph  born 19 March 1905; received Social Security number 086-05-5000, which corresponds to New York; died July 1960. They possibly had 2 children (I, Jeff, think I remember a funeral being talked about at the time for Joe that my parents went to). There’s a possibility that John and or Alga were ½ brother and sister to our dad Michael? There is some indication (letter to John from overseas) that for a time dad and his sister did not get along well---possibly because dad had changed his name and this caused some friction---this is a guess? Doug and I feel that much information was hidden or misrepresented to us. We remember going to visit their (Hertelendy) family in Brooklyn (we think) when we were about 9 & 7? Lots of questions here!
Overview of the Ott Name & Variations
English and German: from a Middle English personal name, Ode, in which personal names of several different origins have coalesced: principally Old English Od(d)a, Old Norse Od(d)a and Continental Germanic  Odo, Otto. The first two are short forms of names with the first element Old English ord, Old Norse odd ‘point of a weapon’. The Continental Germanic names are from a short form of compound names with the first element od- ‘possessions’, ‘riches’. The situation is further confused by the fact that all of these names were Latinized as Odo. Odo was the name of the half-brother of the Conqueror, archbishop of Bayeux, who accompanied the Norman expedition to England and was rewarded with 439 confiscated manors. The German name Odo or Otto was a hereditary name in the Saxon ruling house, as well as being borne by Otto von Wittelsbach, who founded the Bavarian ruling dynasty in the 11th century, and the 12th-century Otto of Bamberg, apostle of Pomerania.  Catherine the Great of Russia was actually German and once she was declared Empress of Russia she invited immigrants from many countries to settle in Russia to help in elevating both the Russian economy and society---Germans (mostly all Lutheran) were a part of this migration.  By 1897 there were 1,790,439 Germans in Russia. Seventy-six percent of these were Lutherans, the church of choice. The church was the center of their village life, and largely because of this, the Germans retained their own language, morals, and ethnic culture. The German-Russian communities were what has been characterized as "folk communities", and were in reality large tightly knit family groups, much like the Amish communities in the United States today. Because of this, the Germans were looked down upon by the Russians, and subjected to ridicule and torment by them. When Tsar Alexander II took the throne in Russia many German-Russians began to emigrate out of Europe to the Americas. The main threat was the fear of military conscription, plus there was a great shortage of land and many other problems. Many Volga Germans stayed on in Russia and had to endure severe drought in the 1890's and many economic difficulties. By the early 1900's, many more Germans were looking to the Americas for an opportunity to settle in a new land and possibly prosper. At this time, the world was on the verge of war---this was a constant in Europe for centuries. It is obvious from documents that the Ott Family was in the Lipno, Russia/Poland boundary area during this time of extreme turmoil. The Ott Family has a more detailed and documented history than the Ptaszniks although mystery is very common here too. What we believe to be correct documents are included either within this, a separate disc or both. Pat (Mann) Hill has added quite a bit of information to the Ott history from recollections of direct conversations with her mom, Beatrice Mann, her Aunt Martha Talbot and other family members. She found a number of ship manifests that are referred to. A short history of Lipno, Russia (Christian Ott origin) and Tarutino, Russia (Paulina “Winter” Ott origin) may be viewed within.
Martha Ann OTT  Born December 11, 1911  Mamaroneck, NY  (in home near Mamaroneck High school). Died  February 23, 2007 Redding, CA  SS # 078-09-0104. Ashes buried in Greenwood Union Cemetery, Rye, NY.
Martha Ott was born in Mamaroneck and basically lived there her entire life---much of it at 315 Fenimore Rd. until 1957 and then at 719 Munro Ave. from 1957 till 2006 in a house built by Michael & her on a lot they bought from her parents Christian & Pauline Ott). She lived for a brief period with our dad in the Bronx just after their marriage on 9-21-40, and prior to dad entering the service in Feb. of 1943.  She also lived for a year in Redding, CA in the assisted living facility Sierra Oaks near Jeff prior to her death. She graduated from Mamaroneck High School in 1929 and worked as a secretary in New York City for Reynolds Metals Co. getting paid $18/wk. and paying her parents $8/wk. room and board. She worked there many years but not after her sons were born. She also worked in Mamaroneck, NY for Quinlivan Coal after sons Jeff and Doug were in high school.



Jeffrey Theodore   Born  March 29, 1947----
Douglas Christian  Born  May 21, 1949----


Martha Ott's Family

Father,  Christian Ott  Born November 15, 1887 in Lipno, Russia/Poland. There is an immigration document (United States of America Delaration Of Intention) dated 1-7-21 stating Christian Ott was born in Veteno, Poland / Russia. On this same document it lists a “Lena Venta” as his wife and that she’s listed as being born in Lipnol (notice the added l) Poland Russia. Paulina Winter was his wife’s correct name & there seems to be much mixed up on this document. This goes right along with language barriers, misspellings and mistakes made thereof that were very common.  Other documents list Germany as being their places of birth, which we believe to be erroneous. His heritage “was” German and because of that it might have been what his children believed or wanted others to believe is where he came from as well as where wife Pauline (Paulina Winter) Ott came from. Also note, that the later documents were ones possibly filled out by others as well as daughters showing their parents both came from “Germany” ------this has carried thru until recent investigation.
Died January 27, 1961. He had a heart attack while shoveling snow in front of 315 Fenimore Road where he had lived for approx. 40 years. He was a gardener & grounds keeper his whole life.  SS # was 092-22 -9211. He is buried in Greenwood Union Cemetery, Rye, NY.
Christian Ott married Paulina (Lena?) Winter on September 24, 1910 In New Rochelle, NY. He and Pauline owned a number of properties in the Mamaroneck area including their house at 315 Fenimore Road (supposedly bought in 1920), a 719 Munro Ave. lot (where Michael & Martha built their house in 1956-‘57) and a house at 405 Melbourne Ave. where the Beckers lived. These properties were respectively sold/transferred to within the related family structure and remained so until 1987 (Pauline Ott’s death---315 Fenimore Rd.), 2006 (Martha Talbot’s move to California---719 Munro Ave.), 2011 (Geraldine Becker’s move to Florida---405 Melbourne Ave.).
The Ott’s purchased 8 cemetery plots (lot 162, portion B, Midvale Acre) in Greenwood Union Cemetery,  Rye, NY on 8-9-41 for $800. Plot 1 is Pauline Ott (1-23-75), plot 2 is Christian Ott (1-30-61), plot 3 is Helene E. Becker  (11-30-57), plot 4 is Howard Becker CV (2-24-05), plot 5 is Michael Talbot CV (10-4-89), plot 6 is an urn with ashes of Martha Talbot (6-7-07)
Christian Ott’s father was a Christian Ott also, and his Mother’s maiden name was Amelia Granke---both listed as their country of birth being Russia. There is an Ellis Island Manifest record  (line # 0020, pg. # 0156) that lists a Christian Ott who departed on the ship Statendam from Rotterdam, Holland and arrived at Ellis Island on May 29, 1907. Age on arrival 19, ethnicity listed as Russian/German. Last place of residence being Lipno, Russia. There is a lot of information about a “Grenke”  (spelling) family from Lipno Russia/Poland on the Internet. Once again, some slight spelling differences & the borders come into play? Grandfather Ott’s father (Christian Ott) died when his mother was pregnant with him—as per Beatrice (Ott) Mann relating to daughter Pat (Mann) Hill.  Grandfather Ott had a brother Adolf. There is a “Delaration Of Intention” for an Adolf Ott dated 8-4-1922 stating he lived at 210 South Ave. Mt. Vernon, NY, that he arrived at the Port of NY on or about 9-18-13. He was born January 14, 1884 in Lipno Poland--- again, borders. He emigrated from Hamburg, Germany and his last residence listed before emigrating to the U.S. was Lipno, Poland. Adolf had a daughter that lived in Westchester, NY. Grandfather Ott also had a ½ brother Gustave.
We know that Christian Ott traveled back to Europe at least once, possibly twice, in the 1900 teens or 20s. This was possibly because of an illness or funeral and may be where the casket picture originated?

Mother,  Pauline (Paulina, “Lena”—possible nickname) Winter Ott   Born April 22, 1887  most likely in Tarutino, Bessarabia, Russia. That is listed on one of the manifests that appears to be documentation for her.  Russia is listed on her and Christian Ott’s Affidavit for License to Marry dated 9-22-10 as where they were both born. Tarutino, Russia is on the west side of the Black Sea. The Winter name means one of frosty or gloomy disposition. Also listed on the Affidavit for License to marry are her father Christian Winter and her mother Mary Rode. Paulina supposedly also had another suitor (Eddie Stockman) before deciding to marry Christian Ott. From Pat Mann Hill: Paulina’s father was supposed to have been blind and her mother supposedly died in childbirth, when Paulina was 15, giving birth to Paulina’s sister Bertha. Paulina also supposedly had a brother Michael (not known if younger or older?). There is a ship manifest document that lists a Pauline Winter sailing on the ship Oldenburg from Bremen, Germany on April 10, 1910, arriving at the Port of New York on April 23, 1910. This lists her as being 19 years old and being a housewife (she would have been 23 and single according to other documents). Here again, keep in mind that there were mistakes, misspellings and deliberate misrepresentations for various reasons.  Pauline had a 1st cousin Adele and there was an Adele Winter listed on one of the manifests as coming to NY from Germany. There were a Gus and Adele Mileski that lived on Union Ave. right down the street from the 405 Melbourne Ave. (Becker home) that were related to the Otts in some way and went to St. John’s Lutheran Church on Fenimore Rd. Mamaroneck, NY. Adele at one time was hospitalized with TB. They had a son Raymond (about 4 or 5 years younger than Nancy Beckers age) who supposedly lives in Tampa, Florida & might have been in the lumber business. They lived next to the house given/rented to the presiding pastor for St. John’s Lutheran Church. This church was founded by Christian & Pauline Ott and 2 other local families. Kind of all ties in together? Pat again:  Martha Talbot recalls 2 cousins in the states dying in their ‘40s or in the ‘40s---that needs to be clarified.
Paulina Ott died January 21, 1975 in St. Agnes Hospital, White plains, NY. SS # 111-36-4628. She is buried at Greenwood Union Cemetery, Rye, NY.

Martha’s Younger Sister Helene Ethelind (Esie) Ott   Born August 4, 1913 in Mamaroneck, NY. Died on Thanksgiving Day November 28, 1957 after a long illness.  She married Howard Gilmore Becker (3-10-10 to 2-25-05) in 1934 or 1935. His roots were from the Amish area of Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania Dutch). His sister was a Marion (married Arthur Schrage) whose name was mentioned enough times to be remembered by Jeff & Doug. They lived in New Jersey, they are buried in Greenwood Union Cemetery behind the Ott plots. Something worthy of note is that Howard was one of the jurors on the Julius & Ethel Rosenberg Trial.  He is specifically mentioned in Sam Roberts book The Brother: The Untold Story Of The Rosenberg Case in the chapter “The Gamble” on page 373 (as making a statement as a juror---one of the very few references to a juror in that case). He was the last living juror on that trial. Uncle Howard (Howie) Becker remarried a Geraldine Resler (12-24-22----) in 1961. Her parents came from Czechoslovokia when they were 9 but did not know each other. Joseph & Emily (second marriage for Joseph) had Vlasta and Geraldine. Their parents inherited a button factory. Geraldine (Gerri) lived at 72nd St. & 1st. Ave. in NYC for 35 years before marrying Uncle Howie who she met at a bank in New York where she (they) worked. It is believed Vlasta lived there during that time also. Christian & Pauline Ott are thought to have sold the 2 family 405 Melbourne Ave. house to Geraldine & Vlasta’s parents, they rented to Vlasta and Geraldine & Howard Becker. Vlasta inherited the house when their parents died and Geraldine inherited it after Vlasta died---she sold the house &  moved to Florida in 2011. Geraldine, as of this writing, lives in a semi-assisted living facility in Florida (1099 McMullen Booth Rd. # 503 Clearwater, FL 33759



Nancy Helene Becker     born August 19, 1937----          Married  Constantino Gus Marcantonio  September 1, 1958
Paul Howard Becker       born August 28, 1941----          Married  Catherine Jablonsky October 22, 1966


Martha’s Youngest Sister Beatrice Emma Ott

Born December 20, 1920----. Married James Gordon Mann  (December 26, 1918 to January 29, 2010) on November 30, 1946.

From Pat Mann Hill (9-10-12): A few years ago--it might have been the same year that my mother first went to Morningside Assisted Living in Raleigh, NC. She uncharacteristically started talking to me about how she met my dad, something on the radio was playing referring to August 8th and mom said that was the date I first met your dad, it was 1942. If she hadn't, I would never have known because everyone else is gone. As it was, she and her friend Evelyn were walking on the boardwalk at Asbury Park when two good looking men in army uniforms came up on either side of them and slipped their arms into theirs and kept walking and talking. They all spent the day together and met a number of times at Asbury Park that fall. My dad was stationed at Fort Monmouth, NJ waiting to go overseas. After that he was stationed in Florida and then South Carolina, sometimes taking the train to New York City to meet mom. He shipped out to North Africa in December of 1943, landing in Tunisia on the 26th, his birthday. One of the few things he said to me about the war was how sick he was on the transport ship on the way over. From there he went to Sicily & on thru Italy, following Patton’s route, then going on to France. During the war my mom worked at Paramount Electrical Supply on 43 Warren St. New York City. She said there were a lot of women working in the office doing accounting and keeping records. She might have traveled by train into the city from Mamaroneck with a friend or sometimes with her sister Martha. After the war my mom wanted to get married early in 1946 but my dad was not so good saving money then and he pushed the wedding date further on. She returned the white dress that she had purchased and wore a suit to be married in, that was November 29, 1946 in Mamaroneck. They then drove south visiting several places before ending up in Raleigh. My dad worked for a furniture company in downtown Raleigh. They rented a room from someone, housing being very tight after the war. In the early 1990s I corresponded with your mom for a short time. She mentioned that my parents had such a wonderful marriage giving how they met.



Patricia Gail Mann   born May 5, 1953----    Married Dale Randolph Hill November 22, 1980.
Cynthia Joy Mann    born July 15, 1955---died April 6, 2007 after a very long illness. She married Thomas Richard Glassford  (also deceased) on July 31, 1976.


Ott and Winter Family Geographic Origins

Lipno --- A Russian, Polish & German History

Lipno is a city located in the center of Dobrzyn-land, a country in Mazovia called so since the Middle Ages, after the Order of Dobrzyn Brothers settled here by Duke Conrad. The city is surrounded by hills of post glacial origin, 100-117 m. over the sea level, along a small river called Mien.
On April 21, 1349, the Duke Vladislav invested a settlement called earlier Lippe with town rights. Later the Polish kings Vladislav Jagiello and his sons Alexander and Sigismund confirmed or issued new privileges of economic importance to the city. Lipno soon became an important trade and craftsmanship center. Merchants from Lithuania and Prussia cross Lipno on their way to Gniezno and Poznan bringing enormous quantities of fur-coats and cloth, for which they had to pay customs to the city's treasurer. Also the local craftsmen and dealers flourished. Breweries, mills, and bakeries developed. By that time, however, problems of fresh water appeared. The sources of river Mien were insufficient, sewage treatment did not exist. The Lipno population was decimated by epidemics called "Dispensation of Providence" in 1348, 1623, 1626-1629, and 1708-1709.
Most dangerous for the city's existence were wars of the 17th and 18th centuries (Swedish invasions.) The invaders robbed and burned down the city, even Poland's own soldiers robbed and assaulted the people. These disasters broke Poland down. The kingdom was not able to defend itself, selfishness of the nobles and indifference towards their own country have encouraged Russia, Germany and Austria to incorporate parts of Poland during three partitions of 1772, 1793, and 1795. After the second partition, Lipno is incorporated to Germany. In 1618 a kingdom of Germany was established by a union between East Prussia and Brandenburg. The notion, "Prussian" became a synonym of strength and combativeness. King Friedrich II crowned himself to "King of Prussia" with its capital in Berlin. German rulers settled down farmers on captured territories. The king of Prussia ordered in 1804 town planning for Lipno which adjusted the urban development of this city.
Since 1800 the number of population rises. Earlier there were just 480 inhabitants and 224 houses, but continuously immigrating farmers called "colonists," officials, officers, merchants, and craftsmen from Germany who settled down in the city and country, have increased the number of population during the next 15 years up to the double.
Napoleon Bonaparte's war against Prussia and Russia started 1806 liberated Poland for a few years. In 1815 according to the Vienna Congress of European powers a "Kingdom of Poland" was created with the Czar of Russia playing the role of the Polish king. Boundaries were changed. Lipno and Mazovia became part of this kingdom. The new state is since then often called "Congress Poland."
In 1825 Lipno had 3008 inhabitants. A new Lutheran church was built in 1865-1868 after the outlay of the Polish architect Albert Lawrence Bobinski and constructed under the supervision of district chief inspector Louis Gosqlawski.
A trade treaty signed between Prussia and Russia in 1832, gave Lipno a good chance of development.
The first World War brought liberty for Poland and Lipno after 125 years of occupation. On November 11, 1918, Poland was independent, but the revolutionary Soviet Russia tried to expand their ideology "over the dead body of Poland." The genius strategy of Joseph Pilsudski and the allied U.S. and French support, stopped the Bolshevik troops at the Lipno - Plock - Wloclawek line. This victory saved Poland and Europe for the next 20 years on August 15, 1920, and is called "The Miracle on the Vistula."
A special heroic defense of Lipno and Plock was organized by involvement of volunteers among teenagers from secondary schools who fought for their homeland. Lipno was at that time occupied again by the Russians but only for 7 days; soon Mozovia was free and the disbanded Bolshevik soldiers escaped to neutral East Prussia.
In 1937, a railroad was constructed connecting Lipno directly with Warsaw and Torun. The same line goes through Skepe and Sierpc, enables the development in this part of Mazovia and makes Sierpc an important railroad junction. At that time 40% of the city population were Jews. During the Second World War all of them (whole families) were killed by the Nazi - Germans.
Lipno City Population During The Past 200 Years:
1800 - 480 inhabitants
1825 - 3008
1939 - 12,018
1946 - 8,389
1991 - 14,300
Tarutino - 1848 Village History
 1996, Elli Wise

The colony Tarutino was founded in 1814 in the province Bessarabia, district Akkermann, right next to the earlier founded colony Borodino. German emigrants constructed Tarutino in a deep valley close to the Kugelnik river, 90 werst south of the gubernatorial city Kishinew. The landscape, marking the colony, indicated that the entire area may have originally been covered by the ocean. The land, rolling in a wave like fashion from north to west, was indented with more or less deep valleys. In the higher elevations, at the depth of 1-1/2 to 2 Faden, there were layers of clay and layers of fossil rocks. The black soil, mixed here and there with sand and crushed fossil rock, was preferred for cultivating grain. During seasons with lots of rain, the harvests were plentiful. However, during the dry seasons, the heavy alkali condition of the soil became apparent and the harvests were rather meek. Regardless of wet or dry seasons though, the vineyards seemed to produce equally good harvests. There were no woods at the time of settlement and there were no signs of orchards in the early years. Trying to comply with orders of the higher authorities to plant woods proved rather difficult. The condition of the land did not allow the trees, planted in higher elevations, to grow well. The underlying clay and and limestone prevented the trees to reach maturity, causing them to die off early. Trees had a better chance for growth in the low lying areas, where the soil was more fertile. Nevertheless, with eagerness and perseverance, the colonists were able to use the land to its full potential.

At the time of their arrival, the emigrants found the land occupied by 10 Moldavian lessees. They lived there as nomads and were grazing their herds on the grass rich pastures of the steppe. In folklore, the colony is still called 'Anshakrak' or more rightfully 'Chanschakrak'. Etymology seems to be that years before, when the Tartares had lived there, this colony was to have been the estate of the Count Chan. The emigrants used the name 'Elisabeth', liked by the higher authorities, during the early years of settlement. In 1817, the regiment changed the name officially to 'Tarutino', as memorandum to a battle fought on Oct 18, 1812, near Tarutino (against Napoleon).

The earlier lessees of the land cleared out, leaving it to the Germans. Lead by Russian officials, the Germans had emigrated in different groups from the kingdom of Poland, Prussia, Bavaria, and Mecklenberg. They found crude huts made of shrubbery and clay available to them. The huts provided shelter for 100 families. The first mayoral official that settled in Tarutino, was Gottfried Scheucher. The colonists had not all come at once, instead they had arrived here as small parties, and in 1816, the colony was completely filled, counting 136 families.

Exhausted from the long travel, they were in need of rest and the huts were equipped with only the most necessary household items. Most of them were poor and some of them only came with what they wore. The crown provided each family, per person, a pound of flour and an allowance of grits, to support their need for food. To be able to do most necessary farming, each family received a wagon, a team, farming equipment, a cow, 6 Tschetwerik of seed grain and some household items. The Crown had authorized for the colonists to receive the necessary items to start out with. Each family was counted as having received an advance of 819 Rubel and 87-1/2 Kopek. The authorities, however, were not aware that ruthless lower officials shortened the supplies, mostly by lacking delivery of provisions and equipment or delivering bad or spoiled goods.

A noble consideration of the miserable condition of the colonists was the the granting of 20 'free years', before they were to start to repay their advance. The earliest settlers were the poorest but the later ones had brought many possessions and even had a sizable sum of cash.

In the beginning the colonists had to endure several difficulties. Not knowing the language, it was very hard to communicate with the local citizens. Unfamiliar with the characteristics of the soil, they were unsuccessful in the way they farmed. Having come from wooded areas, they endured hardships in the cold of winter by not having enough wood and lacked warm clothing. Many died during the first years and several became discouraged. Mercifully, even by poor farming, the harvests became plentiful, the cattle started to thrive, and there was no lack of food. The development was fairly even from 1815 to 1818. After that they started to prosper but with it came corruption of their customs. They hardly cared for church or schooling, indulging in eating and drinking was spreading like cancer; rowdiness and thefts were a daily dilemma.

Naturally, the children grew up not having decent manners and without the necessary education. The after pains of that time are still with us today, but with God's help and with the higher authorities care, things have enormously turned to the better. The immoral behavior and the lack of Christianity had caused confusion and brought separatism to the community in1841; this behavior was not characteristic of Germans, who had the reputation of being honest, hard working people.

Generally, there were no bad mishaps that could have negatively influenced the colony. There were some earthquakes in 1819, 1828 and 1838; in 1824 and the following years, they experienced locust swarms that kept their crops rather meek. They endured a cattle epidemic in 1825 that seriously reduced their stock. They had been spared the devastating epidemic of 1829, which had claimed many lives in the other villages. However, the cholera epidemic in 1831, claimed 81 casualties, mostly adults.

The year 1833 was the saddest to remember. Immense drought condition prevented any harvest, bringing the cost of wheat to a high of 10 rubel in silver per Tschetwert. The winter of 1840/41, was the harshest the German colonists in Bessarabia remember to have experienced.

Deep snow had covered the grounds for a long 5 months, bringing on such a shortness of feed, that the poorer farmers could not afford the high cost. A bale of straw cost 20 to 30 silver rubels and a bale of hay was double that price. To add to the hardship, the cattle price was so low that a couple of oxen only brought 35 to 40 silver rubel. From 1841, and through the later years, the harvests were only fair. Another epidemic in 1845, caused great losses of cattle and horses, and still causes loss of stock here and there. In spite of all that, the colony spruced up, more gardens, orchards and woods were planted. Every 14 days on a Tuesday, they had a cattle and fruit market, offering the colony a special trade opportunity. But even this reflected the influence of the bad mannerism from before. What they had easily earned, they just as quickly spent, suggesting that being a marketplace was not in the best interest of the colony after all.

The advancing prosperity of this colony is credited to farming, wine making, raising cattle and the diligence of the women, who spin wool and weave throughout the winter, producing almost all the clothing needed. Lately, the increased planting of gardens and trees earned the colony a friendly prestige. One would hope, that through the mercy of the Almighty, and the earnest, well meaning guidance of the authorities, the spiritual and material concerns will be raised more and more. Be it God's will!

Colony Tarutino, 30 April, 1848