Monday, March 29, 2010

Is the Surname "Rubis" or "Rubisz"...

...or even something else? My great-grandmother, Mary Kijak's maiden name, that is!

When I first began my genealogy research, the spelling most frequently associated with Mary's maiden name was "Rubis". Earliest records, though, such as her marriage license showed the spelling as "Rubisz". Census records from 1900, 1910 showed varying spellings as did the spellings for her two brother's names. I was leaning toward going with the earliest spellings, thinking they would be more apt to be correct, and that would be "Rubisz".

Jasia has given me some more clues, though, today. She graciously offered to look up the "Rubisz" surname in her Polish surnames book by Fred Hoffman and sent me what she had discovered:

Rub is from the Ukrainian and Russian root, rub meaning to chop, fell, hack. Derivations of the surname include Rubaszewski (398), Rubczak (55), Rubczynski (74), Rubel (92), Rubik (496), Rubis (262) and Rubisz (97) with the numbers in parentheses indicating the number of people with that surname living in Poland in 1992. The numbers were gleaned from a different book by an author named Rymut. From this it is obvious that Rubis was more common than Rubisz yet still pronounced the same.

The surname distribution for Rubisz shows nobody in the Gniezno/Poznan area which is the area of my research. However, a similar surname distribution for Rubis does show that name appearing quite a few times in the Gniezno/Poznan area.

I will definitely have to keep this in mind when viewing the films from Dziekanowice.

Speaking of which - viewing these records will be a challenge due to the fact that I learned today that my local Family History library has reduced their hours which were pretty reduced to begin with. Now they are only open Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m. They require an appointment and on several occasions in the past when I arrived at the appointed time, the doors were locked (no volunteers that day). On other occasions, there would be more people wanting microfilm readers than available readers and even with an appointment it seemed to be either first come, first serve or members of their own church had priority. This will definitely be a challenge.

Thanks, again, to Jasia for motivating me with this research.