This Kowalke married into the South Chicago Rzasa family. Initial information was provided by Ron Kowalke, professor emeritus of Art in University of Hawaii system. Additional research by Jay Orbik with additional information from Judy (Wagner) Eckert from Joliet Illinois.
Leo Kawalke married Estella Rzasa in Immaculate Conception parish in South Chicago.
Leo was the son of Leo Kowalke and Ida Fromm from Holland, Michigan. This Leo Kowalke was born in 1889 in Chicago from the parents Leopold Kowalke and Adeline Wagner. Their marriage occurred on 1 Jan 1887 in First St. John's Luther Church , then on Superior avenue in Chicago. Leopold was listed as coming from Zemmen, Hinter Pommern (Pomerania) now the village of Ciemno, in Pomorski, county of Bytow, township of Tuchomie. This area was a mixture of Germans, Poles, Jews, and Kashubans. According to Polish records, the Lutheran church for this village was in Gross Tuchow now Tuchomie. This church was a branch of nearby Niezabyszewo. There are records from these churches in the Polish State Archives branch in Szczeczin.
Kowalke records from St. John's Lutheran parish:
Marriage on 28 May 1882 of Johann Kowalke, born 5 May 1856 in Zemmen, Hinter Pommern, and Friederike Knaak, born 11 July 1861 in Passow, Vor Pommern. Carl Kowalke was a witness.
Marriage on 1 January 1887 of Leopold Kowalke, born 8 December 1864 in Zemmen, Hinter Pommern, and Adaline Wegner, born 21 January 1867 in Retkewitz, Hinter Pommern. Carl Kowalke was a witness.
Birth in 1885 of Arthur Rheinhold Heinrich Kowalke, son of Johann Kowalke and Friederike Knaak born 25 March 1885, christened on 25 April 1885 in Chicago.
Birth in 1888 of Leopold Emil Johann Gustav Kowalke, son of Leopold Kowalke and Adaline Wegner, born 13 August 1888, christened on 23 Sept 1888 in Chicago.
Birth in 1890 of Ida Alma Hulda Kowalke, daughter of Leopold Kowalke and Adaline Wegner, born 15 January 1890, christened on 22 February 1890 in Chicago
Death in 1901 of widow Henriette Kowalke nee Katrowski (sic) born May 1836, died 2 December 1901 in Chicago.
Marriage 11 May 1911 of Leo Kowalke, born in Chicago to Ida Frahm
Kowalke Family records from Zemmen, Hinterpommern, now Ciemno in Poland. From the state archive in Szczeczin, from the register book of the village of Zemmen. (z ksiag metrykalnych miejscowosci Zemmen).
After reviewing records from St. John's church in Chicago (German Protestant), I confirmed the location of the this families origin. My researcher in Poland informed me that church records from the parish of Tuchomie (Groß Tuchen) were in the state archives in Szczeczin. I wote to the archives and received confirmation and Xerox records of these events:
Marriage in April 1855 of Carl Kowalke from Zemmen, 28 and Henriette Kedrowsky, 19, daughter of Friedrich Kedrowsky from Groß Massowitz.
Birth on 5 May 1856 in Zemmen of Johann Julius, son of Carl Kowalke, einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky. Godmother was Christine Kowalke.
Birth on 24 Dec 1859 in Zemmen of Hulda Hermine, daughter of Carl Kowalke einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky. Godparents were Hermann Kowalke, Martin Herich and Carolina Henrich nee Kowalke.
Birth on 7 February 1862 in Zemmen of Carl Friedrick, son of Carl Kowalke einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky. Godparents were Hermann Kowalke, Martin Herich and Carolina Henrich nee Kowalke.
Birth on 8 December 1862 in Zemmen of Gottleib Leopold, son of Carl Kowalke einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky.
Birth on 8 December 1867 in Zemmen of Luisa Marie Albertina daughter of Carl Kowalke einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky.
Birth in 23 Sep 1869 in Zemmen of Albert Richard, son of Carl Kowalke einwohner (inhabitant) and Henrietta Kedrowsky.
The 1890 Chicago Voter's registration shows Leopold Kowalke living at 170 Jane street, living in the state for 7 years, and naturalizing in October 16th, 1888 in Criminal Court of Cook County. He did not vote.
In the 1900 US Census living in the 14th Ward at 170 Haddorn Avenue, Chicago, Cook, Illinois are:
Leopold Kowalke, a teamster, born in December 1864 in Germany, immigrated 1n 1884, married 13 years (1887),
Adalin, his wife, born in January1867, immigrated in 1868.
Leo, son born 1888
Lizzie, daughter born 1887
Ida, daughter born 1890
Margaret, daughter born 1890
At the same address in Henrietta Wagner, born in 1826. (Fredrick and Henrietta were Adaline Wagner's parents).
In the 1910 US Census they are in the 15th Ward at 1429 North Avenue. Leopold naturalized in 1888. He is a teamster at a "transfer company". He owns his home. Leopold Jr. is listed as an electrician at the telephone company. Henrietta Wagner is 86.
In the 1920 US Census,
they are living in the 27th Ward at 2943 Kedzie Ave. Daughter Margaret and her
husband Fred Klemz are the only family living with them at this point.
Also in the 1920 US Census:Chicago, Cook, Illinois living in the 33rd Ward, 2168 Minard Ave are:
Leo Kowalke born 1889
Ida Kowalke- wife, born in Illinois 1889. Her father was born in Illinois, her mother in Germany.
Howard - son born in Illinois 1913
Leo-son born in 1914
In the 1930 US Census, Leo Sr. and Adeline are still living at 2943 Kedzie Ave, now in the 38th Ward . Daughter Ida and and her husband Andrew Rath and their daughter Dorothy (b.1917) are the only family living with them at this point. Ida and her family were at 2941 Kedzie in 1920.
In the 1930 US Census living in the town of Park, in the county of Ottawa, Mchicagn are:
Leo J Kowalke born 1889 in Illinois - Head
Ida Kowalke born in Park, Ottawa, MI abt 1889 - Wife
Howard Kowalke born in 1913 - Son
Leo Kowalke, born1914 - Son (later moved back to Chicago and married Estella Rzasa).
They must have moved there in the 1920s. This is the same area as Holland, MI
Notes from Judy Wagner Eckert:
Pre-1900 Marriage records in Illinois archive
Groom Bride Date Certificate # County
The 1892 Chicago Voter's Registration shows:
Albert Kowalke living at 40 Samuel Street, living in the state for 12 years, and naturalizing in 1890.
Johann Kowalke living at 40 Samuel Street, living in the state for 12 years, and naturalizing in 1890.
Charles Kowalke living at 34 Newton Street, living in the state for 13 years, and naturalizing in 1890.
In the 1900 US Census living in the 16th Ward at 136 Augusta Street, Chicago, Cook, Illinois are:
Charles Kowalke, a teamster, born in January 1862 in Germany, immigrated in 1880, married 12 years (1888),
Eva, his wife, born in January1866, immigrated in 1871.
Charles, son born 1888
Emma, daughter born 1890
Helen, daughter born 1893
Alina, daughter born 1896
In the 1910 US Census living in the 27th Ward at 3054 N. Kedzie Ave., Chicago, Cook, Illinois are:
John Kowalke, a laborer at city park, 63 (born in 1847) in Germany, immigrated in 1880.
Fredda, his wife, 58, born in1852 in Germany, immigrated in 1882.
Emil, his son, born in 1885 in Chicago.
Alma, daughter, born in 1880 in Chicago.
Mike Rasmussen, Alma's husband, born in Norway.
Raymond Rasmussen, their son.
At 3052 was Arthur Kowalke (probably another son of John), his wife Elain and son Arthur.
In the 1910 US Census living in the 14th Ward at 2503 West Superior Street, Chicago, Cook, Illinois are:
Albert Kowalke, a painter in a bed factory, born 1870 in Germany, married for the first time for 13 years (1897), immigrated in 1880.
Minnie, his wife, born in 1867, second marriage.
Tuchomie village and area - in German and English.
County of Tuchomie including Ciemno- in Polish.
From Wikipedia, a cool multilingual online encyclopedia:
Tuchomie (Groß Tuchen) is the smallest municipality in the Powiat of Bytow. It covers106.3 km and has around 3,800 residents.
The following localities belong to it:
Village in Polish (old German name)
Here is a page from a Polish newspaper, the Bytow Currier, talking about the parish of Niezabyszewo and the families origins, including Kowalke.
Photos of Unknown Kowalke and Rzasa members.