Introduction to my project...

Since 2007, I have been doing genealogy on my four family lines and family history on Jack and Pauline Siulinski.  When I joined the California Genealogical Society in 2008, I immersed myself in seminars and did a lot of research at the library.   Currently, I volunteer at the library in two different tasks.

Here is a summary of where I am at this point:

Genealogy - I have gathered the most information on my paternal grandmother's line (DYKEMAN) and the least information on my paternal grandfather's line (SIULINSKI).    Three of my four lines have origins from two provinces in Canada:  Quebec and New Brunswick.   A trip to Canada will augment the information I already have (mostly census records) on my maternal lines:  the ALBERT's and the GAGNON's.   Many of the Canadian records are online in the Drouin database that was recently uploaded to but in the language of French~!

The Dykeman's were Loyalists from the American Revolution who had homesteaded for many generations in the Harlem area of New York City.  They were members of the Dutch Reformed Church.  A segment of the Dykeman clan moved to Canada in the late 18th century to take advantage of land grants set up by the British government.   My paternal grandmother, Ouida Alfreda Dykeman, was a descendant of the Dykeman clan who re-settled in Canada in the rustic location of Jemseg, New Brunswick.    Here is a picture of Ouida's parents:

                                                                             Joshua Dykeman and Hattie Springer

Taken on their 50th anniversary, Aug. 4, 1947, at the Homestead on Grand Lake, in Jemseg

The Siulinski's were a Polish Catholic family who immigrated from Poland, and settled in Schenectady, NY sometime around the turn of the 20th century.    I have a ship's record from 1901 that could be the manifest listing the parents of Adam Siulinski, my paternal grandfather.   The population in Schenectady in the early 1900's was highly represented by Italians and Poles.   These newly arrived immigrants comprised an industrial workforce.  The main employers were General Electric and American Locomotive.    The spelling of the Siulinski name was probably changed or misspelled in documents many times.   My best guess is that the name got Americanized to SZULINSKI.   I have yet to visit the state archives and county sites in upstate NY which is where I can more easily gather actual records of this family.    The reason for this extreme lack of material on Adam Siulinski's family from NY state is because Adam cut away from his family after his marriage to Ouida in Portland presumably because of discordant religious affiliations.   The only extended family my father got to know growing up was from his mother's side.   Their yearly summer visits to Canada created a close bond with the Dykemans.  This bond was re-established in 2008 when he and his brother traveled to Jemseg, NB for a Dykeman family reunion.  Adam's parent's were named Albert Siulinski and Bessie Padorska as listed on Adam's 1937 Social Security application.   Here are the only pictures I have of the Albert and Bessie:

Adam wrote on the back of these pictures: 

                             Cousin Billy and Father                                                                                Mother and Teddy the Dog

The Albert's
My maternal grandfather, Auguste Albert, came from a family of fishermen from Caraquet, New Brunswick in the far northeast of the province.   His parents, Ferdinand Albert and Georgianna Hebert, were listed in the 1900 US census living in Westbrook, Maine.   Ferdinand was a weaver at the Haskell Silk Mill.  His wife was a housewife who apparently only spoke French fluently.  She died when Auguste was only ten years old.

The Gagnon's
My maternal grandmother named Bernadette Gagnon was born in St. Malo, Quebec near the Vermont border.  Her parents, Pierre Gagnon and Diana St. Pierre,  raised their family in Westbrook, Maine.   Thanks to the efforts of my cousin, Becky Albert, we have a few hours of recorded conversation of Bernadette and her sister, Josephine, talking freely about many family stories.  

Portrait of Pierre and Diana Gagnon