Bio: Wisnewski, Anton (1849 - 1931)

Contact: Stan

Surnames: Wisnewski, Witucki, Trawicki, Nowicki, Platta, Senski, Lukowicz, Literski, Myszka, Schaetzl, Socha, Kudisba

----Source: 1880 - 1980 Rietbrock, Marathon Co., Wis. Centennial, pg. 52 - 53

Family Notes

Wisnewski Families

Mankind yearns for peace and will go almost anywhere in search of it. It was this yearning that caused immigrants to leave their homelands. Now it was mandatory in Poland that as boys became of age they had to serve their country for a certain amount of time. Having a son age 13, Anton decided to abandon his native land in search of a free country. In 1889 he and a few other settlers set out on a sail-boat for America. They traveled for almost two months, as whenever, the winds blew in the wrong direction, they ended up farther from their destination -America. As Anton arrived in Poniatowski, months later, he found the area to his liking. Two years later he wrote his wife Maryanna to pack up her belongings and come with their seven children to this country. They came on the first steamship to cross the Atlantic to this country in seven days.

Anton (deceased 1931) and Maryanna (deceased 1933) had 12 children. The first seven of them were born in Poland. They are as follows: Theodore, Johanna (died on ship and dropped into the Ocean), Julia (Martin Trawicki), Frances (John Nowicki), Josephine (Leo Platta), John J. (Mary), Caroline (Stan Senski), Frank born in U.S.A. (Mary), Joseph (Regina), Leo, Alex (Helen), and Thomas. Their homestead is where Florian Witucki now lives.

As the children were getting older, they all helped with the clearing of the lands; and some went out to work. Anton hauled mail from Poniatowski to Edgar and later handed that job to his oldest daughter, Julia. She held the job until her marriage in 1898 to Martin Trawicki. Her sister Frances continued to haul mail until her marriage to John Nowicki in 1906. After this time the rural carriers took over.

In 1910, Anton and Maryanna bought the Lukowicz property, Section 14, located across the road from the Literski's, where they spent their remaining years. Raising a family of seven boys and four girls meant a lot of mouths to feed. They raised geese so that the feathers could be used for pillows and featherbeds. The sheep were raised not only for meat, but the wool was sheared from them, washed, and carded, to be spun into yam, and put onto skeins for knitting stockings, caps and mittens. However, their main meat was pork. In the fall of the year, 7 porkers was the usual number to be butchered. Their grandson Art Nowicki recalls that when he attended the Holy Family School at Poniatowski, he usually stayed with them; and his job, at this time, was to turn the meat grinder by hand and stuff about 1-1/2 to 2 washtubfuls of sausage meat into the casings. These were long tedious hours.

As more clearing was made to grow more feed for the animals, Anton started to buy up more land in the surrounding area of Poniatowski. He purchased land that is now operated by Richard Schroeder (the former Mleczek farm). His son Joseph recalls how they chased the cows three miles every morning to this pasture land. For convenience sake, they later sold this tract of land.

When the sons grew up, some helped at home; others went out to work. Theodore the oldest, went out west to the Dakotas to harvest grain, then on to Iowa to pick corn. Joseph farmed with his brother Leo on the homestead and with lands joining across the road and the John Myszka land south of Poniatowski. As Theodore came home, his father handed down the home place (Lukowicz's); later it was transferred to Thomas, another son. Frank, who married Mary Laska, was given the Jacob Murkowski land by his father. It is now owned and operated by James Witucki. Theodore, Joseph, and Thomas each also owned land along the Black Creek.

Besides farming, Joseph succeeded M.M. Schaetzl as a cheesemaker at Poniatowski. He made cheese for seven years, until the factory was closed in 1945. Joseph and Regina (Myszka) who married in July of 1928 had six children, namely: Donald, who was the treasurer for the Town of Rietbrock from 1965-1977 until his resignation, Edmund, Ervin (deceased), Norbert, Lorraine (Nowicki), and Marvin.

Joseph's wife Regina passed away November 1, 1958. The farm is now owned by Norman Witucki, and Joseph lives with his daughter, Lorraine.

Thomas sold his interests to his nephew Ervin and wife Mary Wisnewski in 1962. Ervin lost his life in an accident while unloading the Marathon County caterpillar from the trailer truck, which overturned and pinned him underneath. He died December 2, 1970. Thomas then went to live with another nephew, Norbert, until he took up residency at the Abbotsford Nursing Home, where he now lives. The farm now belongs to Ervin and Mary (Karlen's) four daughters, Pamela, Renee, Wendy and Sherry Wisnewski.

Family Notes

Anton and Mary Wisnewski were members of the Holy Family Catholic Church, Poniatowski, Wis.  They are buried in the church cemetery there.

1895 Wisconsin State Census, Rietbrock Town, Marathon, Wisconsin

Anton Wisnewski
number of white males: 4
number of white females: 4
country of birth: United States: 2;

1905 Wisconsin State Census, Rietbrock, Marathon, Wisconsin, pg. 600, family 65, line 62

Anton Wisnewski, white, married, male
place of birth: parent 1: Poland Germany
place of birth: parent 2: Poland Germany

Household Members
head Anton Wisnewski M 56y Poland Germany
wife Mary Wisnewski F 49y Poland Germany
son Theodore Wisnewski M 28y Poland Germany
daughter Josephine Wisnewski F 20y Poland Germany
son Frank Wisnewski M 12y Wisconsin
son Joseph Wisnewski M 10y Wisconsin
son Leo Wisnewski M 8y Wisconsin
son Alexander Wisnewski M 6y Wisconsin
son Thomas Wisnewski M 4y Wisconsin

1910 Federal Notes, Rietbrock, Marathon, Wisconsin, pg. 10, family 170

Anton Wisnewski, white, married, male
immigration year: 1890
father's birthplace: Germany
mother's birthplace: Germany

Household Members
self Anton Wisnewski M 61y Germany
wife Mary Wisnewski F 54y Germany (1855 - 1933, buried in Poniatowski, Wis.)
son John Wisnewski M 20y Germany
son Frank Wisnewski M 17y Wisconsin
son Josef Wisnewski M 15y Wisconsin (1894 - 1980, buried in Poniatowski, Wis.)
son Leo Wisnewski M 14y Wisconsin (1896 - 1959, buried in Poniatowski, Wis.)
son Alix (Alexander) Wisnewski M 12y Wisconsin
son Tomy (Thomas) Wisnewski M 10y Wisconsin (1899 -  1980, buried in Poniatowski, Wis.)

1920 Federal Census, Marathon, Wisconsin

Anton Winewski, white, married, male
father's birthplace: Germany Poland
mother's birthplace: Germany Poland

Household Members
self Theodore Winewski M 42y Germany Poland
fath Anton Winewski M 72y Germany Poland
moth Maria Winewski F 64y Germany Poland
bro Alix Winewski M 21y Wisconsin
bro Thomas Winewski M 20y Wisconsin

1930 Federal Census, Rietbrock, Marathon, Wisconsin, enumeration district number: 0044, family 203, line 63

Anton Wiesnewski, white, married, male
immigration year: 1890
relationship to head of household: Father
father's birthplace: Germany
mother's birthplace: Germany

Household Members
head Thomas Wiesnewski M 29 Wisconsin
father Anton Wiesnewski M 81 Germany
mother Mary Wiesnewski F 74 Germany

Wisconsin Marriage Records

John Nowicki
bride's name: Francis Wisnewski
marriage date: 09 Nov 1903
marriage place: Marathon, Wisconsin
groom's father's name: Martin Nowicki
groom's mother's name: Anna Socha
bride's father's name: Anton Wisnewski
bride's mother's name: Kudisba



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