Sunday, September 21, 2014

52 Ancestors #38: Uncle Joe Was Married Before!

Ancestor Name: Joseph GENEVICH (1892-1948)

Joseph Genevich was my husband's by-marriage uncle, who died before my husband was born. Joseph was born on Christmas Day in 1892 somewhere in Lithuania, which at the time was part of Imperial Russia. His father, also named Joseph, had been a farmer. His mother's name was Tilly Shedilis or Tessie Zudellis, depending on which record one chooses to use.

The spelling of Genevich has also been problematic when researching. The source documents include several variations such as Genavage, Genevick, Grevich, Jenevage or Jenevich.

Sometime between 1910 and 1912 Joseph immigrated to the United States and settled in West Hazleton, Pennsylvania. He worked in the anthracite coal mines his entire working life.  On 6 October 1915 he applied for a marriage license and on 3 November 1915 Joseph and Annie Stank were married in Hazleton. Annie was a mill hand and her parents were Michael and Eva (Dogalis) Stank.

On 9 April 1925 Annie (Stank) Genevich died at 203 East Coal Street Shenandoah, Pennsylvania of tuberculosis. She was 36 years old and was buried in St Mary's Lithuanian Cemetery on April 14th. I do not believe Joseph and Annie had children as none were listed on the 1920 census.

Less than a year later, Joseph married again to Anna Dagutis, my husband's aunt. Anna was born on 1 June 1908 in Harwood, Pennsylvania. Her parents were Adam Peter and Cecelia (Klimasansluski) Dagutis. Adam was a coal minter. Anna's parents considered themselves Lithuanian.

Joseph Genevich and Anna Dagutis marriage license application; image
courtesy of

When Joseph and Anna applied for their marriage license just after Christmas, Joseph believed his parents were dead. Anna was a mill hand, like Joseph's first wife, and she lived with her mother at 322 Winters Avenue, West Hazleton, Pennsylvania. Her father, Adam, had died in June 1925. Joseph and Anna married on 2 January 1926, perhaps in Freeland, Pennsylvania.

409 N 4th Street, West Hazleton, Pennsylvania, the last known
residence of Joseph and Anna (Dagutis) Genevich; photograph
courtesy of Google Maps

They had a daughter the following year and a son named Elgert in 1932. When Joseph registered for the World War II draft in 1942 he was working for the Lattimer Coal Corporation in Humbolt, Pennsylvania. The mine employed 226 people and shipped nearly 126,000 tons of coal to market that year. There had also been one fatal accident and three non-fatal injuries that year.

Anna's obituary said Joseph died in 1948. I wish the Pennsylvania death certificates now available on did not stop at 1944! Anna (Dagutis) Genevich died after a long illness on 30 March 1974.

This is my entry for Amy Johnson Crow's 52 ancestors in 52 weeks challenge.

Joseph Genevich was born on 25 December 1892 in Imperial Russia to Joseph Genevich and Tilly Shedilis or Tessie Zudellis. He immigrated to the United States in 1910 and was naturalized the same year, according to his border crossing record at the Peace Bridge in Buffalo New York twenty years later. He settled in West Hazleton, Pennsylvania and worked in the mines. In 1915 he married Anna Stank. The marriage produced no children and Anna died in 9 April 1925 at Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, of tuberculosis of the lungs. On 28 December 1925 Joseph and Anna Dagutis obtained a marriage license and were married on 2 January 1926 by Reverend S. J. Struchus in Freeland, Pennsylvania. They had two children. Joseph Genevich died in 1948.

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