Tuesday, 17 July 2012
I was just reading letters Ruth Jackson's blog http://www.memoirwritersworld.blogspot.com/ where she posted her father-in-law's letters from World War I, Ruth is very fortunate to have such personal and intimate records of her family members.
My father, Dmetro Bailuk, served in the Austrian Army sometime back at the beginning of the century but I have no records of it other than an old portrait of him in army uniform. (This portrait was damaged in Dauphin's flood of 1975 so not even that it is in the best condition.) Both my Mom and Dad came from the Ukraine at the turn of the century, but never preserved any records.
I was not trying to do extensive records like Ruth. I simply wanted some information for our family tree but such sources of information are difficult to obtain now. I envy Ruth her rich and reliable records. Few of us are that privileged. I tried variations of spelling but was not successful at obtaining information. Even the 1916 census did not have him listed because he must have been away from home and working somewhere. Mom is listed as the head of the household in that census. I even tried contacting Bailuk's on Skype in the Ukraine with no success.
My father went to work on the railroad here in Canada after he married my mom (they married in 1914 and farmed in the Mossey River municipality of Manitoba.) I'm sure he wrote letters home also, but Mom never thought of preserving them. So all I can say is: those of you that have old records like that, cherish them. They are more precious than gold!