Thursday, 11 April 2013

April A to Z Challenge - J is for Janeczek

CORRECTIONS TO THE BELOW INFORMATION, ADDED 15 APRIL 2013, are indicated by strikethrough, with the correct information in bold.

There was no competition as to what to write about for “J” – my Janeczek ancestors continue to intrigue and challenge me as a genealogist and family historian.

My third great grandmother, Catherine Janeczek, was born on 24 November 1854 in Babimost in Poland (then known as Bomst in German and part of Prussia). She was a Catholic, and ethnic Pole (rather than a Lutheran German). She was the eldest daughter of Vincent Janeczek and Maria Kluska, who had married on 8 February 1854. More children quickly followed, but very few survived infancy: Anton Vincent (8 June 1857 – 3 July 1857); Andreas (30 October 1859 – 24 July 1918); Paulina (1 June 1862 – 21 June 1863); Johannes (22 March 1864 – 10 January 1866); a stillborn male (3 November 1866); Johannes (12 October 1867 – 25 October 1937); and Anna Catharina (30 April 1871 – unknown).

Vincent Janeczek, the son of Jacob Janeczek and Barbara Ziermann, was born about 1827. He died on 16 March 1872, leaving Maria with their three or four surviving children – Catherine (aged 17), Andreas (aged 12), Johannes (aged nearly 8), and possibly Anna Catharina (10 months). Maria, who was born about 1829, was the daughter of Nepomucen Kluska and Marie Bursztyn.

It was Andreas who made the first move to find a better life for the family, when he immigrated to Australia aboard the Papa from Hamburg on 1 May 1877, arriving in Adelaide on 25 July 1877.


1877 'ARRIVAL OF THE PAPA.', South Australian Chronicle and Weekly Mail (Adelaide, SA : 1868 - 1881), 28 July, p. 9, viewed 12 April, 2013, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article90942596

He quickly settled in to his new home, becoming a naturalised British Subject on 25 September 1882. Andreas is worthy of a post of his own for his extensive achievements in Australia, so I will cover him in a separate post.

Catherine and her blacksmith husband (Herman Robert) Ferdinand Riebe, and their young son Carl Ferdinand Robert (my second great grandfather), followed in 1883, departing Hamburg on the Amalfi on 5 June, arriving in Adelaide on 3 August.

1883 'SHIPPING.', South Australian Register (Adelaide, SA : 1839 - 1900), 15 August, p. 2 Supplement: Supplement to the South Australian Register., viewed 12 April, 2013, http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article43463117

Catherine and Ferdinand went on to have four three more children: Maria Catherina Emilie (1 December 1883); twins Andreas Johan Carl, and who changed his name to Charles Joseph (16 January 1886); and Matilda (Bet. May-July 1888).

Catherine died on 3 July 1888 from tuberculosis, and her young daughter Matilda died 12 October 1888 from meningitis. possibly from complications after giving birth to Matilda, who died on 12 October 1888. Ferdinand remarried Rebecca Blumenstein in 1898 in Victoria, his second wife predeceasing him as well, dying on 1 March 1929 in South Australia. Ferdinand died on 22 April 1940 in South Australia.

Johann Janeczek, who remained a bachelor, arrived in Sydney with his mother Maria on the Kaiser Wilhelm II on 25 November 1889. claimed to have arrived on the Kaiser Wilhelm II in November 1889. However, I have only been able to access the list for those passengers who disembarked in Sydney, so one must assume that if he (and presumably his mother) were on board, they disembarked in Adelaide.

Johann, or Uncle John, was a hairdresser and tobacconist, ultimately settled in Sydney and become naturalised on 2 September 1914. He took his young nephew Carl Ferdinand Robert in and trained him.

Robert Riebe (Carl Ferdinand Robert Riebe), Maria Janeczek (nee Kluska), Johann Janeczek (Uncle John), and Mary Riebe (Maria Catharina Emilie Riebe)


The matriarch of the family, Maria, died in Parramatta Mental Hospital on 30 June 1917. She was an inmate because of her senility.

Johann, who died on 25 October 1937, and his mother are both buried in the Roman Catholic Cemetery at Rookwood.


This is a post for the April A-Z Challenge. This Challenge will cover each letter of the alphabet, one per day (except Sundays) for the month of April. I didn't register my blog with the organisers, but I'm going to follow along anyway. You can too! See www.a-zchallenge.com for more information.