My Polish Ancestry

Surnames of my known Polish/Russian Ancestors:
Jurski, Gromska, Starogarski, Rabut

Quick-links to Articles:
Origin of Jurski
Staragarski Immigration - part 1
Staragarski Immigration - part 2
Staragarski Censuses
Joseph Staragarski birth

Origins of the Name Jurski/Gurski/Gorski
Taken from

In Polish the name Gorski is spelled with an accent over the O, Go~rski, pronounced roughly "GOOR-skee" -- the accent over the O causes it to be pronounced like Polish U, and that's why you also see it spelled Gurski sometimes, but Go~rski is the standard spelling. As of 1990 there were 41,790 Polish citizens by this name. They lived all over Poland, with no significant concentration in any one area; a Go~rski family could come from practically anywhere.

Polish name expert Prof. Kazimierz Rymut mentions this name in his book Nazwiska Polakow [The Surnames of Poles]. He says it appears in records as early as 1386. The root of the name is go~ra, "mountain, hill." So go~rski is just an adjectival form meaning "of, from, pertaining to, connected with the mountain or hill." Sometimes the name just means "hill-guy, the guy who lives on the hill," and sometimes it refers to any of the jillion villages with names formed from that root go~ra, thus "one from Go~ra, Go~ry, Go~rka, Go~rsko, etc." Or in other words, this name developed among Poles much the same way the surname Hill developed among English-speakers.

Starogarski Immigration Records - Part 2

This is the '2nd' ship record for the Starogarski's. This one includes the wife (Francis) and kids (Jenny and Sara). The first record only contained the husband (Joseph).

Details from this record:
Franciska Starogarska (28yrs) and her daughters Jana (3yrs) and Stefania (a baby) sailed out of Antwerp (Belgium) on September 28, 1899 onboard the S.S. Aragonia. They are listed as 'Russian' and from the town of Rypin. It gives their destination as 126 Mechanic St., in Roxborough Philadelphia. They were also traveling with a woman named Apollonia Piotrowska, who was going to live with them in Philly. The boat pulled in at Philadelphia on October 12, 1899.

This ship record is v-e-r-y w-i-d-e. So, I've posted 2 versions here. Click on the picture to see the whole record at once. Or, click *HERE* for a PowerPoint file with the image broken into 2 pages for easier printing.

Starogarski Immigration Records - Part 1

Here is the first Starogarski ship record I found. Joseph Starogarski came here first, in February 1899, and his family came later, in October. This is his record, and he's on line 8. Interestingly, line 7 lists a man named Wladislaw Hrabut, from the same town, so it's could be his wife's (Frances Rabut's) brother.

Details from the record:
Josef Starogarski, age 32 and a shoemaker, sailed on the ship "Edam" from Rotterdam to NYC (Ellis Island). His former home was in Rypin, Russia, and he was on his way to Manayunk, PA to stay with his brother-in-law (I can't decipher the name yet). His shipmate, W. Hrabut (a potential brother-in-law) was, strangely, going to Passaic, NJ.

(Click on pictures to enlarge)
I've also found a few maps and symbols of Rypin County, Poland, where the Starogarski's are from.

Map Coat of Arms

Starogarski Census Records

I do have several census records for the Starogarski's: 1930, 1920, and maybe 1900. The 1900 one is iffy only because the dates are a little off, the nicknames are wierd, and Sara (Stefania) is listed as a boy named Steve. Of course, 'Steve' and 'Stefania' are really the same name anyway. The census was taken 2 mos. before Grandmom (Birtha) Border was born, so Jenny and Sara would be the only kids yet in the family.

Here's the 1900 Census (line 63):

1920 Census (line 64):

1930 Census (line 28): -->(includes Jurski's!)

Joseph Starogarski Birth Record

We have a Polish document that gives the birth information for Joseph Starogarski (8/30/1867). This is not an original, it's a document they must have sent away for in 1931. The best piece of info we get from this is that he was born in the town of Ugoszcz (? - hard to decipher), in the parish of Ryze, in Rypin County, in the State of Warsaw. Here's the image of the document, and our translation of it.


*This is a correction to what I had written here before.* The Parish of "Ryze" (roses) is probably the modern day town of Ruze (or Roze), which is not on the map below. However, if you find Brzuze (on the blue map), which is due west of Rypin City, Ugoszcz is right under it, and Ruze would be due west on the border of Rypin County. You can also go to , click on 'andere lšnder' (towards the bottom), scroll to Polen, and search for cities that way.

Poland Map ...Rypin Map