From Domostawa to Dunkirk
Louie: from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoley, this program will be entitled from the halls of Domostawa to the Shores of Dearborn. I am very pleased and highly honored to be interviewing a gentleman today who is called Anthony Pietraniec I am sitting at his residence at 7424 Mead in the city of Dearborn which is about 4500 miles away from his home town of Domostawa. We will begin our interview with... With a glass of champagne since this is...
Louie: sshh.. Since this is April the 2nd, 1978. Anthony Pietraniec arrived in Dearborn in the early 1900's. He arrived on this day in 1907 in the city of New York where he saw the statue of liberty for the first time. He arrived on April 2nd 1978 exactly 71 years ago today. Well Tony, I'd like to ask you a couple of questions. How old were you when you left Poland?
Louie: 19 years old, what year was that?
Anthony: 19 - 7
Louie: And what day was it
Anthony: (unint) April
Louie: You arrived in New York city on April second.
Louie: And how long did it take you to get to New York City?
Anthony: How long did it take to cross the ocean?
Anthony: 14 days
Louie: Ok, uh, upon leaving Domostawa what did you... uh, who was there to see you off? Who said goodbye to you in Domostawa?
Anthony: My daddy
Louie: How old was he then?
Anthony: Oh, I don't know, about 50
Louie: 50, and was your mother living at the time?
Louie: Was she there too
Louie: How do you say good luck in Polish? Is that was your father told you? Your father must have said good luck to you when you left. How do you say that in polish
Anthony: (speaks polish)
Louie: How did you leave Domostawa by train? or airplane or what?
Anthony: On the roads! (speaks polish?)
Louie: (polish?) How many horses were there?
Louie: Who was on the wagon with you?
Anthony: Oh, there was about, I think 6 people
Louie: 6 people? And then what, where did the horses take you? From Domostawa to Nisko?
Anthony: To Nisko
Louie: To Nisko, and then what did you do in Nisko?
Anthony: We get out there from there from the (unint) and we go to the (unint) It goes by so slowly for (unint).
Louie: Oh, what did you
Anthony: We got one hour time over there. so we went to rest and we have cooked salted pork and bread. breakfast
Louie: (lauging) That was breakfast?
Louie: No bacon and eggs?
Anthony: No, No, they got no bacon (Louie lauging) salted pork. At that time the train come
Louie: where did the, where did you catch the train? In Nisko?
Anthony: Three car on it! Three car and engine
Louie: Ok, and then that train
Anthony: (laughing) (smokey?) engine
Louie: Lauging (unint)
Anthony: It's in the train you know (smells like smoke?) (louie lauging)
Louie: And that train took you from Nisko to where?
Anthony: To Krakow
Louie: What did you do in Krakow? Did you have to get off the train?
Anthony: Well, we get off there, and we stay there, then we catch a train to Vienna
Louie: To Vienna?
Louie: And uh
Anthony: (unint) and we go all night. 4 o'clock in the morning we was in Vienna
Louie: Uh huh, and how long were you in Vienna?
Anthony: All day
Louie: And then what did you do?
Anthony: Then we take the train to Germany
Louie: Where... What cities did you go through in Germany?
Anthony: Oh (?) chekoslovakia, Germany, that was Tescan (mispronounces dresden)
Anthony: From Tescan we go to - oh, Dresden. From Dresden we go to Leipzig. from Leipzig we go to Halle (Saale) from Saale we go to Magdeburg. from Magdeburg we go to Hanover. From Hanover, we go to the... Bremen, to the ocean
Louie: Now all this was in 1907
Louie: Uh, when you got to Bremen, Germany, in 1907, what did you do? How long did you stay in Bremen?
Anthony: Two weeks, wait for the boat.
Louie: Oh, did you stay in a nice hotel?
Anthony: No, there - sleep on the floor
Anthony: On - on the big hall, everybody sleep on the floor. Got mattress, you know, mattress holds right against the wall, and everybody sleep there.
Louie: Where there a lot of people in that hall?
Anthony: Oh, about 300
Louie: Uh huh, and then what-a.. was the name of the boat that you came on
Louie: Alright, and..
Anthony: German boat
Louie: Uh huh, and how long did it take you to cross the atlantic ocean?
Anthony: 14 days
Louie: Then you arrived in New York City on uh, april 2nd, 1907
Louie: which is 71 years ago today
Louie: Did - What was the first thing you saw when you got off the boat?
Anthony: The old lady selling donuts. 10 cents for the dozen. I go to give her ten cents...
Louie: How many dozen did you buy?
Anthony: I didn't buy nothing. I didn't have no money
Louie: (Laughing) How much was your boat fare over from Bremen to New York? how much did you pay for the boat ride?
Anthony: 40 dollars
Louie: 40 dollars? And you were at that time only 19 years old, right?
Louie: You were born in 1888 and this was 1907. Did you find America to be up to your expectations?
Anthony: Vacation? I'm looking for job, not vacation (both laughing)
Louie: What was your feeling when you saw the statue of liberty?
Anthony: well, uh, new world!
Louie: What made you come to America? Why, why didn't you go to Hawaii or Australia? Why, why did you come to America?
Anthony: There was lots of work here, we were looking for work.
Louie: was there any work in Poland?
Anthony: There was no work over there
Louie: Well, what did you do...
Anthony: (unint) I have to go to army, and I don't want to go to army
Louie: What kind of work did you do in Poland? Before you were 19 - Did you work at all in Poland?
Anthony: Work on the farm, yea!
Louie: What did you do on the farm?
Anthony: I work when I was 6 years old already
Louie: Yea, what did you do on the farm?
Anthony: Cut the hay... wheat, rye.. dig up potatoes, (?) potatoes.. Uh, All kind of work
Louie: Uh huh
Anthony: Our own farm
Louie: Yea, and then when you got to New York city and you got off the boat and you saw this woman selling donuts for 10 cents a dozen, you saw the statue of liberty, then what did you do? Did you have a - How many suitcases did you have?
Anthony: No suitcase
Anthony: We got trunk
Louie: One trunk
Anthony: A wooden trunk
Louie: Uh huh, did you have any valuables in there
Anthony: huh? (both laughing) Nothing there
Louie: Nothing in the trunk? You must have had something in there
Anthony: couple shirts, bread,
Louie: (Laughing) why, why did you have bread -
Anthony: cheese, cheese
Louie: Why did you have bread and cheese in the trunk?
Anthony: well, gotta eat (both laughing)
Louie: Then what did you do when you got off the boat and you - where did you go from the boat?
Anthony: Go to take a (casegada?)
Louie: To where?
Anthony: (casegada?) (unint)
Louie: casegadada? What is that?
Anthony: That means uh, uh, you know.. the searching, check - check you.. what you got in the trunk
Louie: Uh huh, and did they -
Anthony: And you go the doctor
Louie: What did they say about your cheese and bread in the trunk when you went through customs, did they say anything about it?
Anthony: Said (my god?) they was about 6 months old (both laughing) but it was good
Louie: Alright, after you went through customs, then were did you go?
Anthony: I take a small boat, go on the (Erie?) station
Louie: And then what - ah, what was at the (Erie?) Station?
Anthony: We stayed there - oh... about hour and then we get the train and get to Dunkirk
Louie: Uh huh
Anthony: Get to Dunkirk
Louie: How come you went to Dunkirk?
Anthony: Because I got my friend over there. He write me a letter to come over to him
Louie: What was his name?
Anthony: He was name (Boziovich?)
Louie: (Boziovich?)? was he from Poland also?
Anthony: Yea, my neighbor
Louie: Ok, so you took the train at the (Erie?) station and you -
Anthony: He come in fall and I uh, 1906, and I come on spring, 19 - 7
Louie: Uh huh
Anthony: Said come over Tony here, you get a job, and we gunna be here, United States. And I got a job, streetcar
Louie: What.. Where? In Dunkirk?
Anthony: In Dunkirk
Louie: What kind, what were you doing on a streetcar?
Anthony: Digging ditch, for the pole. Pole you know, hold that wire.
Louie: Uh huh (A coughs) Was it hard work?
Louie: How much did you get an hour?
Anthony: 15 cents
Louie: 15 cents an hour?
Anthony: yea, that was (unint)
Louie: Was that good money then?
Anthony: (and the shop too?) 15 cents I got
Louie: Uh huh
Anthony: (and you?) want to work on the machine (it costs 15 cents?)
Louie: And how long did you work on the streetcar?
Anthony: Three weeks
Anthony: Then I go and share (unint)
Louie: In Dunkirk, New York?
Louie: And then, uh, how long did you work in the factory?
Louie: What years were they when you worked at uh, in the factory?
Louie: 1907 till when? Till how-three years?
Anthony: 3? 8 years
Louie: 8 years, that's till 1915
Anthony: Oh, you're counting...
Louie: During that time - during that time you got married, didn't you?
Louie: Alright, uh -
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