Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Streich surnames on the Immigrant Wall of Honor, Ellis Island

Looks like I'm holding my finger in a dike to keep the island from being flooded. But no, I'm pointing to the Streich surnames on the Immigrant Wall of Honor on Ellis Island. When I visited the Wall in 1997, there were about 500,000 or about half a million former immigrants inscribed. I remember the number being about 10 times higher than the inscriptions on the Vietnam War Memorial Wall in Washington, DC. There were only 4 Streich surnames, but no Kramp, Gailliot, or Gutgsell surnames from my other family branches whose names are rather unique. Inside the restored immigrant processing station, there were computers on which you could look up your surnames of interest and also find the panel number on the Wall where you could find your name inscribed.

One could donate $100 to the Ellis Island Foundation to put a surname on the Wall, but at the time, I thought it would be a better use of my money to further research my genealogy. Birth certificates and other legal documents are not free for the asking. I'm still looking for that rich, new-found cousin to help financially with some of the research. However, genealogy is not everybody's cup of tea. Furthermore, we could use some of that money to inscribe our Gailliot surname on the corner stone of the townhall (Rathaus) in Wesel, Germany, which is currently being restored to its original splendor.

I obtained the donors and their addresses of some of the Streich surnames on the Wall. I then traced one of those persons to a Streich medical doctor someplace in Pennsylvania. I telephoned the individual's office; talked to the receptionist; and later dropped the side trail. That particular Streich individual was not immediately known to be a member of our family line.

Incidentally, when our Streich ancestors came to America in the early 1880s, they were processed at Castle Garden on the mainland of Manhatten, rather than Ellis Island- which wasn't opened until 1892.

A few days ago, a lady stumbled onto my web site, and being descended from a Streich family line, asked me if I had any connection to her family. The surname is rather unique and I have found a few nests of people bearing the Streich surname. I even started a separate database to keep up with these unrelated families. But in this case, there didn't SEEM to be a connection. Nevertheless, I promised her I would post here a photo of the Streich names which I found on the Immigrant Wall of Honor:

P.S. Thought I better write down the names of the immigrants so that search engines could find the text and hopefully a descendent might get in touch with me:

Kaspar Streich

Margaret Cewe Striech

Maria Isabel Pozo Streich

Reinhold Streich


Martha Beckmann Harpel said...

My grandfather was Reinhold Streich. My mother is Eleanor Martha (Streich) Beckmann who currently lives in Olympia, WA. My uncle was also Reinhold Streich who passed away in 1991. His wife, my Aunt Bernie, just passed away on June 25, 2009.

Bob Kramp said...

Hello Martha B. Harpel, Could you tell me if your g'father and uncle at one time lived in Pennsylvania, and if one of them was a Medical Doctor. It seems that I traced a Reinhold Streich to PA, in the 1990s. Thanks, Bob

Ron Sreich said...

Reinhold Streich was my father. He Passed away in 1986. My father, grandparents, aunts & uncles immigrated through Ellis Island in the early 1920's. They settled in College Point Queens, NY. My grandparents names were Johanne & Ida. My parents moved to NJ in 1963 which is where I still reside.

Bob Kramp said...

I mentioned the uniqueness of the Streich surname. How unique? I went to the SS Death Index at Rootsweb (currently 84 million individuals) and found 270 Strike, 585 Streicher, and 750 Streich individuals, deceased. Recently, I came across 10 tombstones inscribed with Streich at Newton Cem, Emporium, Cameron Co, PA. Earliest born was Joseph Streich, Sr, 1849-1928. Wife: Lena, 1869-1898.