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November 11, 2014

The Miscy / Misey Family
of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

By Neil A. Boyer

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          John Miscy was born in 1888 in Zubak, in the section of Austria-Hungary that in time became the Republic of Slovakia, about 600 miles from Prague. He moved to the United States in 1905, at the age of 17, and took up residence in Milwaukee. He met and married Pauline Fojut, whose parents had been born in Poland. Although John spoke Slovak, the family spoke Polish at home, and they lived in what became known as Polish Town on the west side of Milwaukee, near the Milwaukee River. Most members of the family in time changed the family name spelling from Miscy to Misey.

          This section recounts the life of John Miscy (1888-1978) and Pauline Fojut Misey (1890-1971) and their family of eight children, a family that included two priests, two nuns, two lawyers and a physicist.  The section is linked to other pages on this website through the marriage of one of their children, Edward Gabriel Misey (1918-2009), to Rachel Louise Long Misey (1924-2004). The daughter of Edward and Rachel Long Misey, Johanna Misey Boyer (born 1961), married Neil A. Boyer, creator of these pages. The section here details what is known of the Misey family, going back to Zubak, through their life in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and recounting the lives of their descendants. 

          This section includes:

History of Zubak

        The village of Zubak was located in the Slovak county of Trencin and the district of Povazska Bystrica in Hungary of the Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary (1867-1918).  The village was founded in 1471 and known initially by the name Zwbaky.  It had a population of about 1,348 in the early 1990s.

        In 1918, with the dissolution of Austria-Hungary following World War I, the Slovaks, Moravians and Czechs united to form the first Czechoslovak Republic ((1918-1938).  Slovakia was severed from Hungary to become part of the Czechoslovak Republic.  In 1939, Slovakia became an independent state under German domination (1939-1945).  After World War II, Slovakia again became a part of a reconstituted Czechoslovakia (1945-1993).  On January 1, 1993, Czechoslovakia split to form two separate independent states, the Czech Republic and the Republic of Slovakia.  In 2007, Zubak is located in Slovakia, about 600 miles from Prague.

Michael Miscy (1859-1914)

        It is understood that Michael Miscy was born in 1859 and that he died in Zubak, Austria-Hungary, in 1914 at the age of 55. His name is also written "Misci."  Michael was married to Maria Michalec, as written on John's baptismal certificate.  Elsewhere, her name was written as "Mary."  They had four children:

John Miscy (1888-1978)
Sophie Miscy (born 1891), who married Casimir Dzurko
Paul Miscy (February 14, 1894-March 29, 1969)
Peter Miscy (1896-1896)

        All four were born in Zubak. In addition to the four children listed here, Michael and Mary Miscy reportedly had three children who died in infancy.  Names and dates are unknown. Of the four children that Mary had with Michael Miscy, Sophia and Peter remained near home while John and Paul went to America. John’s brother, Paul Miscy, lived in Milwaukee but boarded with a different family.  He worked for a railroad, and he was not married.  When he died, John arranged for Paul to be buried in the plot that John had purchased for his family at Holy Cross Cemetery In Milwaukee. Paul died in 1969.

        According to family history, Mary Michalec's father was Stephen Michalec.  Mary was married to a "Vrabec" before her marriage to Michael Miscy.  The Vrabecs had two sons, Andrew and Gabriel.  It was said that Andrew Vrabec ran away to Budapest, became a soldier, married, and never returned.  Gabriel Vrabec was born in 1879, married, had seven or eight daughters and a son, named Rudolph.  Gabriel lived and died in Zubak.  It is believed that Maria Michalec died about 1925.

John Miscy (1888-1978)

        John was born on March 21, 1888.  A baptismal certificate in Latin showed the baptism of "Joannes," son of "Michael Misci" and "Maria Michalac" of Zubak on the day after his birth.  Although the baptism took place on March 22, 1888,  the certificate was signed in Zubak on November 2, 1912, possibly because it was required for John's naturalization in America.

        John's daughter, Genevieve Miscy, said that when her father was young, he served mass at a local parish church in Zubak.  As Genevieve wrote in 1997, John told her that the parish priest wanted him to live in the Rectory, where the priest would teach him.  The priest asked John's father for permission for John to do this, but his father refused because he needed John to work on the farm.  But when John was 17, his father realized that John could not advance if he remained living in Zubak, and he borrowed money to send his son to America.

        John immigrated to the United States at the age of 17. He sailed on the Friedrich der Grosse (Frederick the Great), departing from Bremen, Germany, on May 27, 1905, and arriving at Ellis Island, New York, on June 7, 1905.  John told Genevieve that he had traveled in steerage class, which must not have been very comfortable. When it was time for meals, John said, the passengers took tin buckets to the galleys to have them filled with food.  An excellent discussion of steerage class includes a photo taken on a German ship from the same company as the Friedriech der Gross, traveling from New York to Bremen just two years later, in 1907. The photograph reveals the appalling circumstances facing the passengers. John Misey's voyage took 11 days.

        According to notes in the website for Ellis Island, the ship Friedrich der Grosse was built in 1896 in Stettin, Germany, for the North German Lloyd Company, to sail under the German flag.It was built for service to Suez, Australia and New York. It was seized by the U.S. Government in 1917, during World Friedrich der GrosseWar I, and renamed the USS Huron. It was sold to the Los Angeles Steamship Company in 1922 and renamed the City of Honolulu. Later that year, it caught fire and was abandoned, and it was sunk by the U.S. Navy warship in 1922. More information about the ship is provided by "Ship's List." (In 1911, the German government built a battleship by the same name, SMS Friedrich der Grosse. It was used in World War I and then scuttled by its crew in 1919.)

        The passenger ship Friedrich der Grosse (photo at left) weighed 10,531 tons and had two masts and two funnels. It was capable of holding 2,423 passengers, including 216 in first class, 243 in second class, and 1,964 in third class, or "steerage." For the trip from Bremen to New York that arrived at Ellis Island on June 7, 1905, the ship manifest included 30 passengers on each page. There were 89 pages, for a possible total of about 2,670 passengers. However, the Ellis Island official ship list said the passengers on that voyage numbered 2,204. 
A perusal of the passenger list indicates that John may have been the only passenger from Zubak. There were many passengers from Hungary, and he was grouped with them on the passenger list. Most of the passengers appeared to be Polish, identified as from Galacy or Galicia. Galicia was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and in 2009 is found in southern Poland. One writer said that many people from Galicia were listed as Austrian, even though they were Polish.

        It is difficult to find John Misci on the ship manifest because his name had been misspelled. On page 474 of the manifest, in line 19, is "Hiscsy, Janos," age 17. A close examination of the handwritten
manifest, reveals a surname that clearly was intended to be "Miscsy," the "M" was scrawled in a manner that made it appear to a transcriber as an "H." The Ellis Island Foundation has provided a certificate for the arrival. The handwritten text from the manifest can be seen on line 19. (If this link does not work, a new visitor to the Ellis Island site can simply enter the name "Janos Hiscsy" and the birth year 1888 to see the record.) The manifest showed that Janos Hiscsy, 17, could read and write, that he came from Zubak and his destination was Milwaukee. He was intending to see an uncle. The writing on the manifest is not clear, but the uncle's name appears to be "Karlisa Kastrick." The name is not familiar to current family members. The family understood that immediately upon his arrival in America, John departed for Milwaukee, where he had contacts, arriving there on June 11, 1905. 

        John told his children that he traveled on a train to Milwaukee, and apparently stayed first with an uncle, whose name he did not provide.  He told Genevieve that that first night, he slept in a real bed for the first time, because previously he had slept in a barn.  Genevieve wrote, "the next morning when he came down to breakfast, he had a big cup of coffee, and a big roll with butter.  He thought he was in heaven."  

        His uncle wanted him to go to school, John recalled, but John thought that teenagers didn't need to go to school, and so he declined. He said that was the biggest mistake he made in his life. Genevieve said "that is why both Mom and Dad were happy and encouraged and assisted financially all of us to be educated. Mom once remarked that if she had used all the money she paid for education, she would have bought the Ford factory." Apparently, this generosity worked. Except for one child who died as an infant, the Misey children included two nuns, two priests, two lawyers and a physicist.

        Genevieve said that after John got a job, possibly with Allis Chalmers, he sent money back to his father in Zubak so that he could repay the neighbor who had loaned him money for the trip to America. John said he also sent money so that his brother Gabriel (apparently this was his half-brother, Gabriel Vrabek) could go to America, but when Gabriel arrived at Ellis Island, he was rejected because of an eye ailment.

        Genevieve recalled that when she was 9 or 10 (probably about 1925), John received a sad letter saying that his mother had died.  She also remembered that "Ma and Pa sent packages to Zubak.  They were wrapped around in flour bags so that the recipients could use the material.  They were very poor.  Pa said that when he worked in the fields [before coming to America], when they became hungry, they dug the potatoes and ate them raw."  

Wedding of John and Pauline Miscy, 1913 25th Anniversary 1938, John and Pauline Miscy 50th Anniversary, 1963, John and Pauline Miscy
John and Pauline Fojut Misey on their wedding day in 1913,
on their 25th anniversary in 1938, and on their 50th anniversary in 1963.

Marrying Pauline Fojut

        On January 29, 1913, John married
Pauline Catherine Fojut, whom he had met in Milwaukee.  See the separate section on the Fojut family.  John later told his daughter Genevieve that he and Pauline had become engaged on New Year's Eve. "He paid for all of the wedding costs," Genevieve wrote. "His opponent [for Pauline's affections] threatened to kill him for she preferred John." They had eight childrenJohn was naturalized as a United States citizen before the Circuit Court of Milwaukee County on September 14, 1915, Certificate of Naturalization No. 523126.  The certificate said he was 5 feet 11 inches, with fair complexion, gray eyes and brown hair.  He was 25, married to Paulina, 23, and they lived at 1105 North Water Street in Milwaukee.  This was the home of Pauline's mother, who had recently died. At the time, John and Pauline had one child, Sylvester [later called Roderick], age 1. The certificate said John was formerly a subject of Austria-Hungary.     

         Family notes suggest that Pauline was a formidible force in the family. She not only had eight children, raising seven of them to adulthood, but she apparently acted as spokesperson for the family, appealling for tuition support for her children, assigning them chores, and ensuring that they all spoke Polish at home. Her daughter Genevieve said that her father realized, too late for himself, that education was very important. "That is why both Mom and Dad were happy to encourage and assist us financially so that all of us could be educated," she wrote. "Ma once remarked that if she used all the money she paid for education, she could buy the Ford factory." Genevieve also wrote this example of Pauline's attitude toward her children:

We lived on the North side, as the area around St. Casimir's was called, and we attended St. Hedwig's on the East side. It was quite a distance but my brother [Sylvester] and I walked, also coming home for noon lunch when weather permitted. We had to cross quite a few train tracks, over two bridges. I'm sure no modern mother would allow her children to do what my brother and I did. When my mother heard that the Humboldt Avenue bridge over the Milwaukee River would collapse, she had to come for us for she feared we would not know of another way to come home. The attendant at the bridge would not permit my mother to cross. Despite his protests, my mother dared and walked over the bridge. She recalls that she got over the bridge up the hill, heard a crash, and saw that the bridge collapsed.

Early Years in Milwaukee     

        It is difficult to learn what John Misey did in the first years after he arrived in 1905.  John told family members that he was going to Milwaukee to live with an uncle, but it is not known who that might have been.  The story was that the uncle later became disenchanted with America and returned to Poland.  Five years after John arrived in America, in the 1910 census for Milwaukee, there were two individuals of similar name, both of them boarding with other families.
        One option was “John Mess,” age 21 (thus born about 1889), who lived at 905 Vliet Street in Milwaukee’s Ward 2.  John was one of five men boarding with the Latzel family, all of them street laborers.

        The other option, and the most likely person, was “John Misce,” listed in the 1910 census as 23 (thus born about 1887).  He lived with members of the Paneke family at 426 Fourth Street, also in Milwaukee’s Ward 2.  The head of household was Peter Paneke, 25, who was married to Carrie, 22.  Also in the household were two brothers of Peter, a six-month-old son, and John Misce.  All the residents of the Paneke household told the census taker they had immigrated in 1906 and were of Hungarian/Slovak origin.  Carrie and the two brothers were bottlers in a brewery.  Since Pauline Fojut was also working in a brewery at this time, there is a possibility that the Paneke brothers introduced John Miscy to Pauline, one of their co-workers.  John Misce was identified as a dyer of leather.  

        The only negative factor in this identification is that John Misce was identified in the census as a “brother-in-law” of the head of the household, Peter Paneke, suggesting that John was a brother of Carrie Paneke, 22.  There is nothing in family history that supports that conclusion, which could be the result of a misunderstanding by the census taker.  On the other hand, carries a family file that shows that the father of “Peter Panek,” born about 1885 (apparently the one who lived in Milwaukee), was Jan Panek, and that Jan was married to “Jazefa Misey,” born in Poland.  This name does not match any information known in the Misey family, but it suggests that, if this is the correct John Misey, he went to Milwaukee to live with someone (Peter Paneke) who had connections to the Misey family of Poland or Slovakia.

Living in Milwaukee

          The Misey and Fojut families lived near the Milwaukee River in a section that in time was called "Polish Town." A fascinating history of the community is included in the book Riverwest: A Community History, by Tom Tolan. When the Misey family was growing, the children were sent to St. Hedwig's church and school, but in 1894, a new church was dedicated on the corner of Weil and Clark Streets, a combination church and school for St. Casimir's Parish. In the chapter on Polish Town, the Tolan book says this:

Until the dedication of the St. Casimir's, the Polish settlement west of the river was really a part of St. Hedwig's Parish, and the German section of the area was linked to the larger north side. With the building of St. Carimir's, the Poles west of the river had a center of their own, and that center made their neighborhood a separate settlement. . . . Some residents of the Kepa remembered calling it Zagora, which is Polish for "beyong the hill." . . . Many residents referred to it simply as the north side, but they meant specifically the Polish north side, as opposed to the Polish south side and the Polish east side. To the Germans who lived west of the new settlement, the neighborhood had a simpler name: Polish Town."

          Most of the Misey children attended St. Hedwig's school at first but then later they transferred to St. Casimir.

        Family members understood that John Miscy worked all his life in Milwaukee for Pfister & Vogel Leather Co., which was reorganized after 1930 onto the Pfister and Vogel Tanning Co.  In the 1920 census, after John and Pauline were married, John Miscy was identified as a leathermaker in a tannery, suggesting that he was the same person as the dyer of leather who lived with the Panekes in 1910.  In 1930, however, he said he was a “setter” in a foundry.  The Pfister & Vogel company was located at 1531 North Water Street in Milwaukee, just about four blocks from where the Fojut family, and then the Miseys, lived, at 1101 North Water.  Family members recalled that John had learned leather tanning and shoe making while in lived in Zubak, and he employed those skills after he moved to America.  At Pfister & Vogel, he was primarily engaged in tanning, but at home he had the lasts for shoes and in his spare time he repaired shoes. He also gave haircuts to his children.

John and Pauline in DC, 1949 John Miscy, 1950 John Misey, 1959 John Miscy, About 1973
John and Pauline Misey in 1949, and John in 1950, 1959, and 1977

        The Pfister & Vogel plant was a six-story building occupying seven acres of what was called in 2000 “prime riverfront property.”  In February 2000, United States Leather Inc., the owner at the time, closed the plant, released about 500 workers, and then filed for bankruptcy.  In early 2006, plans were announced for a new development, to be known as The North End, overlooking the river on the site of the former tannery.  Demolition of the tannery building was to begin in June 2006 and the project was expected to take six to eight years to complete, at a cost of $175 million.

         When John and Pauline were first married in 1913, they apparently moved into the apartment of Pauline's mother on North Water Street in Milwaukee's 18th ward. When John Miscy was naturalized on September 20, 1915, he gave his address as 1105 Water Street, which is where Catherine Fojut died. (See note below concerning this address.) Both of Pauline's parents had died, John Fojut in 1906 and Catherine Fojut in 1912.

          It is not known when John and Pauline Miscy moved away from Water Street, but apparently between 1918 and 1920, the family (along with Pauline's Uncle Max) moved to 850 North Weil Street in Milwaukee's 13th ward.
The house was renumbered about 1930 as 2364 North Weil Street. They were there until at least 1948, when Max died in that house. In the early 1950s, the family moved to 1241 East Burleigh Street, about six blocks north of their Weil Street home. Family photos showed the outside and inside of the house in 1952. In 2009, the Burleigh Street house, built in 1926, was for sale for $179,000.  Later, John and Pauline moved to an apartment on South 92nd Street in West Allis, in the western part of Milwaukee.

       The 1920 census showed that John and Pauline were living at 850 Weil Street.  The census showed this family:

John Misey, Jr., 31, immigrated in 1905, naturalized 1914, leather maker
in a tannery, born in Bohemia, mother tongue Slovak [Note: this is the only indication that he
called himself John Jr., interesting because his father’s name was Michael]
Pauline Misey, 29, wife, born in Wisconsin, parents born in Poland
Sylvester Misey, 6, [later known as Roderick] born in Wisconsin, father in Bohemia, mother in Wisconsin
Genevieve Misey, 4
Edward Misey, 1
Max Fojut, 54, annealer in a machine shop, born in Poland (speaks Polish), [known in the family as “Uncle Max”]

        The 1930 census found the family still at 850 Weil Street, which John owned and was valued at $2,500.  (The house was later renumbered as 2364 Weil Street in 1930 or 1931.) The census showed that the "mother tongue" of virtually everyone on the street was Polish or German, except for one person, John J. Misey. The census taker recorded that John's mother tongue was Slovenian, but it is clear this was an error. The census of 1920 had it correct, that his mother tongue was Slovak, which is different from Slovenian. Nevertheless, it was recalled that all the family members at home spoke Polish.  To the census taker, John said that he and his parents had all been born in Czechoslovakia and that he had immigrated in 1904.  Rather than being involved in the leather business, John said he was a setter in a foundry.  John said he was first married at age 25, Pauline at 23.  

Misey Weil Street House in 1952 Weil Street House As Seen in 2009 1241 East Burleigh, in 1952
The Misey house, right side, at 2364 Weil Street
(formerly 850), as seen in 1952, left, and in 2009.
The Misey house at 1241 East Burleigh Street
as seen in 1952. See house in 2009.

        The household in 1930 still included “Uncle Max” Joseph Fojut, who said that he was 64 (thus born about 1865) and single, that he had immigrated in 1883 and was an annealer. Max was an uncle of Pauline, probably a brother of her father, John Fojut.  The Misey family members remembered him living in their house in a room upstairs and working for National Brake and Electric Company. Max was living with the Misey family at 2364 Weil Street when he died in 1948 at the age of 83. He was buried in Calvary Cemetery with his brother John and John's wife Catherine.

        The household in 1930 consisted of the following:

John J. Miscy, 42
Pauline Miscy, 40
Sylvester Miscy, 16
Genevieve Miscy, 14
Edward Miscy, 11
Marie Miscy, 9
John Miscy, 8
Robert Miscy, 5
Leonard Miscy, almost 2
Max Fojut, 64

Holy Cross Cemetery Entrance, Milwauk Misey Family Grave, Milwaukee John Miscy at Family Grave, 1972 Misey Grave Markings
The entrance to Holy Cross Cemetery
and the Misey gravesite as seen in 2009
John Misey at the family grave in 1972,  after his wife Pauline died

         Pauline Fojut Misey died in Milwaukee on July 25, 1971, at the age of 81. She was stricken on a Sunday at home and was taken to Milwaukee County General Hospital but died before she arrived. In the funeral homily for Pauline, the speaker said that "at the end, God showed his delicate courtesy to her. She was all dressed up and ready to go to Church. But God took her home instead. How fitting that she who loved the Mass and attended every chance she had, should go to God the way she wanted it."

         John Misey died at St. Anne's Home for the Elderly, aat 3800 North 92nd Street in West Allis, in the western part of Milwaukee, on December 27, 1978, at the age of 90.  
He and Pauline  were buried at Holy Cross Cemetery, 7301 West Nash Street in Milwaukee, in a family plot that John had purchased years earlier. The plot was in Block 24, Lot 145, near the main entrance on West Burleigh Street, near West Appleton Avenue (U.S. Route 41). The Misey family plot provided space for eight graves. In mid-2009, those buried there were John and Pauline Misey, their sons Jerome Misey and Edward Gabriel Misey, and John's brother Paul Misey. Their first names and their years of birth and death are inscribed on the horizontal space at the bottom of the cross.

The Fojut Family

        John Miscy’s wife, Pauline Catharine Fojut, had been born in Milwaukee on March 21, 1890.  She died on July 25, 1971, at the age of 81.  Both of Pauline's parents had emigrated to the United States.  Pauline's mother was the former Catharine Borzyszkowska, the child of Jacub and Catharine Sztyler Borzyszkowski.  Catharine Fojut had been born in Zblewo, Prussia, on November 2, 1850 (or 1849, according to her death certificate).  She died in Milwaukee on June 11, 1912, at the age of 62 years, 7 months and 8 days, according to the death certificate, which also said that Catharine had been born in "Poland Germany."

Pauline Fojut and Classmates, About 1905
Pauline Fojut, right, and classmates, July 25, 1910. The photo at right below, taken
on the same day, was on the front of a postcard addressed to Pauline. It was labeled "The Merry Bunch of Sweet 16," although Pauline was actually 20 on that date.

Katarzina Borzyszkowska Fojut, About 1910 Pauline Fojut's First Communion, 1902 Pauline Fojut, front right, with class in 1910
Pauline's mother, Katarzina Borzyszkowska Fojut, About 1910 First communion for Pauline, right, in 1902, at
St. Hedwig's Church
Pauline, front right, and classmates posing for another picture, 1910

Pauline Fojut, about 1913 Pauline Miscy, 1947
Pauline Fojut Misey in 1913 and in 1947

        Pauline’s father, John Joseph Fojut, had been born in Prussia, the son of Joseph Fojut and Eva Sztolpa. A military draft notice in 1866 said he had been born at Alt Paleschken in the district of Danzig.  John Fojut told the census taker in 1900 that he was 58 and had been born in June 1842, but the lottery notice said that the date was February 2, 1842. John's death certificate said that he had been born on January 2, 1837. The lottery and draft notice, dated September 15, 1866, when John was 24, said that he had drawn the number 957 in the lottery for the district of Danzig for tentative assignment by the county draft board. He was 5 feet, 5 inches. It is not known if he served in the military.

        John Fojut emigrated to the United States in August 1872, landing at the port of Milwaukee, according to a court document. His naturalization certificate said that he had sworn before the Municipal Court in Milwaukee, on November 3, 1873, that it was his intention to become a citizen and to renounce all allegiance to any foreign sovereignty, "particularly to William I, German Emperor." John became a U.S. citizen on June 8, 1896. He died in Milwaukee on September 10, 1906. His death certificate said he had been born on January 1, 1837, and that his age at death was 69 years, 8 months and 8 days. But if he had been born in 1842, as he told the census taker and the draft official, he would have been 64 when he died. (John Fojut's grandson, Edward Misey, spent a number of days in Poland in 1985 trying to sort out details of the Fojut family, and much of this information is the result of those efforts.)

        After John moved to Milwaukee, he was joined there by his brother, Max Joseph Fojut, who had been born in 1865. Max lived with his sister Pauline Miscy for many years and was living with the Miscy family at 2364 Weil Street when he died in 1948 at the age of 83. He was buried with his parents at Calvary Cemetery in Milwaukee.

        John was recorded in the Milwaukee City Directory in 1890 as a laborer living at 1101 North Water Street.  He and his family appeared in the 1900 census, also at 1101 North Water Street.  Pauline, who was 10, lived there with her parents and three siblings.  In the 1900 census, in response to the question of where they were born, all six were recorded as born in “Poland (Ger.).”  There were John Fojut, 58, born in June 1842, a stone paver who had been unemployed two months in the past year.  His wife, Catherine, said she was 48, born in May 1852.  She said she had had 12 children, of whom only 7 were living.  

        John and his wife, Catherine, told the census taker in 1900 that they had been married 29 years (since about 1871), and they had immigrated to the United States in 1880.  John said he owned the house where the six Fojuts lived, and apparently he rented space in the house to a widow, Elizabeth Ostverak, 61, also from Poland, and her two sons, Frank, 22, and Paul, 16.  Catherine said she could not speak English but she could read and write.  John Fojut said he could not speak English or write, but he could read.

        The household in the 1900 census consisted of:

John Fojut, 58, born in June 1842, stone paver
Catherine Fojut, 48, born in 1852, wife
Augusta Fojut, 18, born in August 1881, dressmaker
John Fojut, 16, born in April 1884
Anna Fojut, 13, born in June 1887
Pauline Fojut, 10, born in March 1890.

        John Fojut died in 1906. His death certificate gave his address as 1101 North Water Street.  In the 1910 census, Catherine, 59, a widow, was living at 926 Racine Street, with two of her children.  Catherine said she spoke Polish, and the two children spoke English.  Her son, John Fojut, 26, was a laborer in a sand yard.  Her daughter, Pauline Fojut, 20, was listed as forelady in a brewery. The census reports for both 1920 and 1930, after Pauline married John Miscy, showed Pauline as unemployed. But by family recollection, Pauline later supervised maids in a Milwaukee hotel. Her death certificate listed her occupation as "executive housekeeper" in a hotel. Pauline seems to have been enamored of photography, given numerous photographs of her when she was young and the multiple photographs of her many children (some of them shown on this page).
        Catherine Fojut died on June 11, 1912, at the age of 62, just seven months before Pauline, at the age of 22, married John Miscy.  Pauline's wedding was on January 29, 1913.  John was 24.  At the time of her death, Catherine was living at 1105 North Water Street, apparently having moved back from Racine Street. (Note: The records show apparent confusion between 1101 and 1105 North Water Street. The two addresses were next to each other, and there were other Fojuts living on the same street. The death certificate of John Fojut in 1906 said he lived at 1101, and the certificate for Catherine in 1912 said she lived at 1105. It is possible that Catherine moved from 1101 to Racine Street after John died and then later moved back to Water Street but went into a different building, 1105, which is where she died. Pauline and John apparently moved into Catherine's apartment. Possibly Pauline was living with Catherine when Catherine died, and John then moved in with Pauline. John was living in 1105 when he was naturalized in 1915.)

       The Fojut tombstone, apparently designed by Pauline Fojut Miscy, listed the grave occupants as John (father), Catherine (mother), and Max (uncle). The cemetery is located at 5503 West Blue Mound Road, at the intersection with North Hawley Road. The Fojuts are buried in Block 14C, Row 262s. The gravestone is located at the edge of a cemetery road that runs parallel to and very close to Hawley Road on the right side as one enters the cemetery. Block 14C is located next to Block 19C, and the Fojut marker is next to the cemetery road about 50 feet before one reaches the sign for 14C.

Entrance to Calvary Cemetery Milwaukee Fojut Family Marker, Calvary Cemetery
The entrance to Calvary Cemetery in Milwaukee and the grave marker
for Pauline's Uncle Max Fojut (1865-1948), her father John Joseph Fojut (1842-1906)
and her mother Catherine Borzyszkowska Fojut (1850-1912).

The Children of John and Pauline Miscy

        John and Pauline Miscy had eight children, of whom one died as an infant and two became nuns, two priests, two lawyers and one a physicist. The family members grew up speaking Polish, the language that Pauline's family brought from Europe. The spelling “Miscy” appeared on birth certificates and early school records.  However, one member of the family reported that the five boys thought a name pronounced "missy" was a little too feminine for them, and they changed the spelling to "Misey." The two girls retained the family spelling of their surname, "Miscy.To add to the confusion, the birth certificate of their grandfather, John Miscy, used the spelling "Misci." And even though John and Pauline used the name Miscy all their lives, when they bought a family plot in Milwaukee's Holy Cross Cemetery, they had the monument inscribed with the large letters "Misey."  The children were these:

Misey Family in 1940 Misey Family in 1945
Misey family, May 1940, just after Roderick had been ordained in the priesthood. Front: John, Leonard, Pauline and Father Roderick. Rear: Bob, Sr. Mary Pauline, Sr. Genevieve, Edward and John Jr. The family in 1945. From left: Edward, Sr. Mary Pauline, Leonard, John, Bob, Pauline, John Jr., Sr. Genevieve and Father Roderick.

Misey Family, 1950 Misey Family, 1951
Misey Family in 1950. Front: Sr. Genevieve,
Pauline, Sr. Mary Pauline and John Misey. 
Rear: Bob, Leonard, John Jr.
The family in 1951: From left: John, Edward, Bob, Pauline, Father Roderick, John Jr.,
Sr. Mary Pauline, Leonard and Sr. Genevieve.

The children of the Misey siblings, grandchildren of John and Pauline Fojut Misey, numbered eight. Photos and information about them are in the sections below.  

The Misey Cousins (in order of birth):

        Details of the family, the descendants of John and Pauline Fojut Misey of Milwaukee, are as follows:

        1.  Sylvester J. (Father Roderick) Misey.  The first of the Misey children, Sylvester was born on December 20, 1913, in Milwaukee.  He attended the nearby St. Casimir's School and, when he had completed eighth grade, at age 13, he decided he wanted to become a priest. His mother sent an application for his admission to the Passionist Preparatory School in Normandy, Missouri, about eight miles from St. Louis. Her letter said that Sylvester had the consent of his parents to become a member of the Congregation of Passionists, and asked for a reduction in the tuition because her husband's wages were low and they had six children. Later that year, Sylvester was enrolled in the school at Normandy. The history of the Class of 1931 made repeated references to "Sylvester Miscy," who was also known as "Hank" and whose favorite expression was "enough is as good as a feast." The joking class history, reporting on the school's baseball exploits, said that "if you have the good luck of reaching home plate, don't bump into Hank Miscy, the gabby 175 pound prodigy, known as the Milwaukee Moron."  (The school at Normandy, which was later attended by Sylvester's brother Edward, was later relocated and renamed as Mother of Good Counsel Seminary in Warrenton, Missouri.)

Roderick Misey, about 1933 Invitation to Roderick's Ordination, 1940 Roderick, Genevieve, Mary, about 1945
Roderick Misey, soon after completion of school at Normandy, Missouri, 1933 Invitation to Roderick's ordination and first Mass, 1940 Roderick with his sisters Genevieve and Mary Pauline, about 1945

Roderick Misey in 1953 Rod and his parents, 1959 Rod and Leonard with Nephew Rod, 1957 Roderick at St. Gabriel Shrine, 1971
Father Roderick Misey, about 1953 Roderick with his parents, Pauline and John Misey, 1959 Roderick and his brother Leonard, with newborn nephew, Roderick Misey, first child of John Misey, Jr., 1957 Father Roderick at the St. Gabriel Shrine, in Italy, 1971

         Sylvester professed his vows on July 37, 1932, after finishing at Normandy.  As one of his classmates recalled, "Sylvester became Roderick of Mary. That title has been a beacon to many -- Malcolm of May, Conleth of Mary, Melvin of Mary, and many others." Roderick was ordained on May 18, 1940, and
was known as the Rev. Roderick Misey, C.P. (Congregation of the Passionists).  He was ordained in the Cathedral of the Assumption, in Louisville, Kentucky, and eight days later, on May 26, 1940, he invited people to participate in the offering of his first solemn sacrifice of the mass, at his home church, St. Casimir's, in Milwaukee. (Note: The invitation to his ordination spells his name "Roderic," without a "k" on the end, but all other known applications of his name, including his grave marker, use the spelling "Roderick.")  He was a member of the Holy Cross Province of the Congregation of the Passionists.

         In a eulogy after Rod's death, a friend said that the Missions were his first love. For many years, Rod was kept busy with retreats, the friend said, and he gave of himself to people especially in the Confessional. Father Roderick spent 20 years at the Passionist monastery in Detroit and later went to the Passionist community in Louisville, Kentucky. On his 50th anniversary as a priest, in 1990, friends recalled that he had spent many years in providing supply assistance to pastors of parishes, missions and parish retreats in many cities of the country, working with Sisters, priests and the laity, especially preaching in retreats. Among other places, he lived in Des Moines, Louisville, Cincinnati, Sierra Madre, Detroit and Houston.  In 1970-71, he spent several months at the Passionist Generalate in Rome, working as the English-speaking secretary at an International Meeting of Passionists, and he was able to visit the Shrine of St. Gabriel, in Teramo, Italy.

Father Roderick Misey, 1990 Marker for Roderick Misey Passionist Plot in Des Plaines, Illinois
Roderick Misey,1990 Marker for Father Misey in the Passionist Community Plot in Des Plaines, Illinois (right)

         At the end of his life, Roderick lived in Chicago, at Daneo Hall, a retirement center for elderly Passionists. He was visited there by his brothers Edward and Robert, and he was stricken with cardiac arrest in a restaurant while they were dining. He went into a coma and died at Resurrection Hospital in Chicago on July 3, 1993, at the age of 79. He had been a priest for 53 years and a Passionist for 61 years. The funeral Mass for Father Roderick was celebrated by his brother, the Reverend Leonard Misey, on July 7, 1993, at Immaculate Conception Church in Chicago. Roderick was buried in the Passionist Community plot at All Saints Cemetery, Des Plaines, Illinois.

        2.  Sister Genevieve Miscy.  The second child of John and Pauline Miscy, Genevieve wrote in a biography that "on a very cold Wednesday evening [October 27, 1915, in Milwaukee] I was born at 8:20 p.m. My Dad said it was so cold that he hung carpets on the windows. When I was in the kindergarten in the public schools, I must have been naughty for I had to sit behind the piano. I have no recollection of any mischief I might have done. . . . Since I was not old enough for first grade, I repeated kindergarten in St. Hedwig's school. . . ." She recalled how the sister there taught her to write and read Polish. Her biography continued:

I recall walking the North Avenue bridge when I met a public school teacher. She asked me if I was a Catholic and to what school I was going, and I answered promptly "I am Protestant." Little did I know what it was all about. One noon, I was watching the team of horses digging the foundation for the Sisters' new convent. I forgot to go home for lunch. My brother brought me a sandwich. I did not have a happy reception when I came home after school. I must have got into mischief so we transferred to St. Casimir school, my brother for the fifth grade and I for the second. . . .

When I was in the third grade, I began to have the desire to be a Sister. This sort of grew on me as I went through the school years aat St. Casimirs. When my mother told Sister Leocadia that I planned to enter the Junioriate, she was disbelieving and told my mother I'd be home in a month. God be praised, I am still here after 58 years.

As a candidate, I was sent to teach kindergarten at St. Anthony's in Milwaukee. When Mother Fidelis, then Sister, came and saw that S. Mary Walter had over 80 first graders and I had a handful of 20 youngsters, a change was made. I received half of her class to teach the first grade, while the kindergarden was dismissed. . . . As newly professed, I was missioned to Hold Angels West Bend. I went by train, my first train ride. I was given a clergy ticket and money to buy my ticket. Since the clergy fare was only 37 cents, the ticket agent said he had to charge me the minimum of 50 cents.

         Genevieve entered the Juniorate at age 14 and her profession was given on August 2, 1935. She was named Novice Mary Anna, School Sisters of Notre Dame (S.S.N.D.)  As a professed sister, she spent 23 years as an elementary school teacher. She received a master's degree in education from Marquette University in 1967.  She was superior and principal at St. Nicholas School in Milwaukee, and then, for ten years, she was eighth grade teacher at St. Aloysius in West Allis. After leaving the classroom in 1974, she undertook office work at Holy Assumption in West Allis and other position at Notre Dame of Elm Grove. Within a 15-year period, she served as switchboard operator, medical ward clerk, cemetery coordinator and pharmacy assistant. She resumed use of her baptismal name, Genevieve, in 1969, and she was known as Sr. Genevieve Miscy, S.S.N.D. 

Sister Genevieve 1950 Sister Genevieve 1980 Genevieve, Rod, Mary, Bob 1980
Sister Genevieve in 1950 and in 1960 Siblings: Sister Genevieve, Father Roderick, Sister Mary Pauline,
and Robert Misey, 1980

Genevieve and Mary Pauline, 1985 Genevieve and Mary Pauline, 2000
Sister Genevieve and Sister Mary Pauline in 1985 and in 2000

         About 1990, Genevieve retired to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Convent at Mount Calvary, near Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, living together with her sister, Mary Pauline, for more than ten years.
In 1995, the School Sisters of Notre Dame at Mount Carmel celebrated the Diamond Jubilee of Sister Genevieve Genevieve Misey Grave, 2002and two colleagues: "We thank our loving God for their 60 years of service. May our Jubilarians continue to grow in the Lord's peace and joy." Although basically in good health, on July 12, 2002, Genevieve suffered a broken femur in a fall at the Greyhound Depot in Minneapolis. She and Mary Pauline had gone there to visit a friend and were about to board the bus back to Milwaukee when she tripped on a curb. After surgery, she was taken to Havenwood Rehabilitation Center in Milwaukee, but she developed pneumonia and died at Havenwood on September 3, 2002. She was 86.  Genevieve's brother Leonard Misey officiated at a burial mass in the Holy Family Chapel at Notre Dame of Elm Grove on September 6. She was buried in the convent cemetery in Elm Grove, Wisconsin.

        3.  Jerome Miscy.  Jerome was born in Milwaukee on July 12, 1917, and died there on March 28, 1918, nine months old. He was buried in Holy Cross Cemetery, Milwaukee.

        4.  Edward Gabriel Misey.  Edward was born in Milwaukee on October 1, 1918, and died in Silver Spring, Maryland, on July 22, 2009. He was 90.  He married Rachel Louise Long and lived in the area of Washington, D. C. More information and photographs are provided below.

Edward Misey, 1946 Ed Misey, 1990 Edward Misey, 2006
Edward Misey in 1946, 1990 and 2006

        5.  Sister Mary Pauline Miscy.  Mary was born in Milwaukee on April 13, 1920.  Like her sister Genevieve, she also became a nun and a teacher, and she received a master's degree in education from Marquette in 1971.  She entered her candidature on September 3, 1934, when she was 14. She entered the novitiate on July 19, 1938, and her profession was on July 20, 1939, when she was 19.  She was a member of the School Sisters of Notre Dame (S.S.N.D.) and was known as Sr. Mary Pauline Miscy or simply Sister Pauline.  She celebrated her 60th Jubilee in 1999.

          Sister Pauline taught third grade at two schools in Chicago and at St. Patrick's School in Chesterton, Indiana. She also taught at St. Cyril's School in Milwaukee and was school principal at St. Hyacinth's. Before she retired, she was school secretary at St. Augustine in Milwaukee. She lived with her sister Genevieve at Mount Calvary, near Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. 

Mary Pauline, 1951
Sister Mary Pauline, 1980 Mary Pauline, 1989 Mary Pauline, 1995, Milwaukee Sentinel
Sister Mary Pauline in 1951, 1980 and 1989. At right, she appears on the front page of the Milwaukee
Journal Sentinel, December 22, 1995, at a practice ringing chimes for the Mount Carmel Christmas Mass

Mary Pauline and Genevieve, 1955 John Miscy Visits Daughters, 1975
Sister Mary Pauline, right, congratulates Sister Genevieve on the 20th
anniversary of her profession, 1955
Genevieve, left, and Mary Pauline, visit their
father, John Miscy, at the St. Anne's Retirement Home, 1975.  The photo appeared in the S.S.N.D.'s
"School Sister" newsletter, with the caption
"Wait'll you hear this one, girls."

          Sister Pauline was a delegate to the Eucharistic Congress in Philadelphia in 1976, and she wrote enthusiastically about the "ten glorious days" she spent there, where, among others, she heards Mother Theresa of Calcutta and Bishop Fulton Sheen. She died in Milwaukee on December 25, 2003, at the age of 83. A wake service was held in the Holy Family Chapel at Notre Dame of Elm Grove, Wisconsin, with her brother, Father Leonard Misey, officiating. She was buried in the Convent Cemetery in Elm Grove.

        6.  John Jerome Misey.  John, who was called "Junior" by his family, was born in Milwaukee on December 11, 1921.  John received a B.S. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1949, and an M.S. degree in physics from the same school in 1950.  He served in the U.S. Army during World War II, from October 14, 1942, to March 3, 1946. He was a physicist with the U.S. Department of the Army, working in the Ballistic Research Laboratory at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds, in Aberdeen, Maryland.  As An example of his work is the 1977 publication of an article entitled "Analysis of Long Rod Penetration at Hypervelocity Impact" in the journal of the The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA)   

John Misey Jr., 1951 Misey Sons in 1951 Ed, Bob, Rod and John Misey, 1959 John Misey, Jr., 1959
Junior gets a degree, 1951 Ed, Bob and John with their dad, 1951 Ed, Bob, Roderick and John Jr.,
on Bob's wedding day, 1959
John Junior, 1959
        Junior and his family lived in Baltimore.  He was very active in the Knights of Columbus.  He served as Past Grand Knight (P.G.K.) of the Bishop Sebastian Council No. 5068, 1971-72, and Past Faithful Navigator (P.F.N.) of Archbishop Francis P. Keough Assembly, Knights of Columbus, 1977-78.  He earned the Fourth Degree in the Knights of Columbus, 1973, the highest degree in the Knights of Columbus, entitling the recipient to be called "Sir Knight." John died in Baltimore on January 7, 1983, at the age of 61. He was buried in Parkwood Cemetery, Baltimore.

John Misey Jr. and Harriet, 1956 John Misey Jr. Wedding Party, 1956 John Misey Jr. Wedding Participants
Newlyweds Harriet and John, 1956 The bride and groom with their parents. Pauline is on the left, John Sr. on the right. The wedding party, including
John's brothers Bob and Edward Misey

Ed, Harriet, John Misey, Sylvia Long, 1961 Harriet and Son Rod, 1957
John Misey Jr. and son Rod, 1957
Ed, Harriet and John Misey
with Sylvia Long, 1961
Harriet and John Misey with
their first child, Rod, 1957

Harriet Misey, 1997 Harriet Dick Misey, 1992
Harriet Dick Misey in 1997 and 1992

        John was married in Milwaukee on April 14, 1956, to Harriet Dick.  Harriet had been born on November 13, 1931.  She died in Baltimore on February 21, 2006, at the age of 74.   John and Harriet had five children:

Baltimore Misey Children, 1997
The children of John and Harriet Misey, in chronological order
from left:  Rod, Janet, Maggie, Phil and Paul, 1997

A.  John Roderick (Rod) Misey was born in Baltimore on March 24, 1957.  In 1980, he received a B.S. degree from Towson State University in Mass Communications and Philosophy.  In 2009, he was living in north Baltimore.

Phil and Rod Misey, 1989
Roderick Misey, 19923 Rod Misey, 2004 Siblings Rod, Maggie and Janet, 2008
Brothers Phil and Rod ready for Paul's wedding, 1989 Rod Misey in 1992 Rod Misey in 2004 Siblings Rod Misey, Maggie Price,
Janet Plunkett, in 2008

B.  Janet Marie Misey was born in Baltimore on March 24, 1959.  She married Wayne Crawford, born on September 25, 1957, in 1976, and they had two children, Wayne Christopher Crawford, and Kimberly Jean Crawford.  Janet and Wayne were divorced in 1985.  On November 21, 2000, she married Baron Plunkett, who had been born on June 5, 1961, and in 2009 they lived in Baltimore.  

Baron and Janet Misey Plunkett, 2005 Janet Plunkett and Janice Misey, 2004 Edward Misey and Janet Plunkett, 2008
Baron and Janet Plunkett, 2005
Janet Misey Plunkett
and Janice Misey, 2004
Janet Misey Plunkett with her
uncle Edward Misey, 2008

Janet Misey Plunkett, 2004 Janet Misey Plunkett, 2009
Janet Misey Plunkett, in 2004 and 2009

(1) Wayne Christopher (Chris) Crawford was born on December 18, 1976.  He was married to Jessica (Jesse) Manning Elterman, daughter of Dane and Judith Elterman, of Stewartstown, Pennsylvania.  They were married at 9105 Covered Bridge Road in Baltimore. They were later divorced. In 2009, Chris lived in Parkville, north of Baltimore. Chris and Jesse had two children:

-- Cameron Manning Crawford was born on March 20, 2004, in Baltimore.

-- Breslin Crawford was born in January 2006.

Kim and David Peitz, 2005 Jesse and Chris Crawford, 2005
Kim and David Peitz,
Wedding Day 2005
Jesse and
Chris Crawford,

(2) Kimberly Jean Crawford was born on December 3, 1978, in Baltimore.  On May 7, 2005, she married David Peitz, son of Jean and Timothy Price and J. Bart and Mary Peitz.  The wedding was at St. Ursula’s Church in Baltimore. In 2009, Kim was working as a "vet tech" for a veterinarian near her home in north Baltimore. Kim and David had two children:

-- Travis Joseph Peitz was born on May 6, 2007, in Baltimore.

-- Ashley Marie Peitz was born on April 16, 2009, also in Baltimore.

Breslin Crawford 2009 Travis Joseph Peitz 2009 Kim Crawford Peitz and Ashley Peitz, 2009
June 2009: From left, Cameron Crawford, Breslin Crawford,
Travis Joseph Speitz, and Ashley Peitz with mother, Kim Crawford Peitz

C.  Margaret (Maggie) Lynn Misey was born in Baltimore on February 16, 1961.  She received a B. S. degree in occupational therapy from Towson State University in 1985.  She was married to Lawrence E. Price.  In 2006, Maggie and Larry were divorced. In 2009, she was living in Parkville, Maryland. They had one daughter.

(1) Nicole Elizabeth Price was born at St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Towson, Maryland, on October 21, 1998.  

Larry and Maggie Price, 1998 Ed Misey and Maggie Misey Price, 2005 Maggie Price, 2009
Maggie and Larry Price, 1998 Maggie Misey Price
with Uncle Edward Misey, 2004
Maggie, 2009

Maggie and Nicole Price in 2008 Nicole Price, 2008 Nicole Price, 2008 Nicole Price, 2009
Maggie with Nicole Price in 2008 and (at right) 2009

D.  Philip James Misey, the fourth child of John and Harriet Misey, was born in Baltimore on March 28, 1962.  He was married to Janice Witczak Hoffert on October 16, 1998, on the Mount Pleasant Golf Course in Baltimore, with the ceremony preceded by a round of golf.  Janice coordinated financing for an automobile dealer.  In 2009, Phil owned and operated a business installing cables for internet and related activities.  They lived in a suburb of Baltimore. Phil’s son, Nicholas Foster and Angie had a son, Landyn Foster at the end of 2006.       

Phil Misey, 2004 Phil and Janice Misey, 2005 Nick Misey and Friend, 2005 Phil Misey, 2009
Phil Misey, 2004 Phil and Janice Misey, 2005 Nick Foster and Friend, 2006 Phil Misey, 2009

Phil's Wedding to Janice, 1998 Phil's Wedding Party, 1998
Phil and Janice are married at
the Mount Pleasant Golf Course, 1998
Misey family members and others participating in Phil's wedding, 1998. Harriet is at front center.

E.  Paul Anthony Misey
was born on June 14, 1963, in Baltimore.  He was married on July 1, 1989, to Susan Jane Anderson, who was born on November 23, 1959.  In 2006, Susan was a teacher and Paul drove a delivery truck for a baking company. They lived in Bel Air, Maryland, north of Baltimore, and they had three children:

(1) John Gordon Misey was born on July 25, 1991.

(2) Kristopher Erik Misey was born on May 7, 1996.

(3) Jakob Paul Misey was born on April 6, 2000.

Susan and Paul at wedding, 1989 Wedding Party for Paul and Susan, 1989
Wedding of Paul and Susan Misey, 1989.
Brother Phil Misey is at right.
Misey family members at the wedding: From left, Maggie, Janet, Harriet, Paul, Rod, Chris and Kim Crawford, Johanna, Phil and Edward Misey, 1989

Susan Misey, 19923 Susan and Paul Misey, 1998 Susan and Paul Misey, 2005 Kristopher and John Misey, 2005
Susan Misey, 1992   Susan and Paul Misey, 1998 Susan and Paul Misey, 2005 Kristopher and
John Misey, 2005

        7.  Robert Jerome Misey.  Bob was born in Milwaukee on April 5, 1924.  He received a B. A. degree from Dartmouth in 1949 and a law degree from Harvard Law School in 1952.  During World War II, he served in the U. S. Marines from April 13, 1943, to May 24, 1946.  He was an attorney in private practice before retiring and moving to Delray Beach, Florida.  About 2005, he returned north. In 2009, he and his wife were living in Illinois, and Bob was involved in private practice. On April 25, 1959, Bob married Catherine C. (Kay) Kastner.  They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 2009.

Bob Misey and His Dad, 1951 Bob Misey, 2000 Bob Misey in 2003 Bob Misey in 2006
Bob Misey with his dad, John Misey, in 1951, and in 2000, 2003 and 2006


        A.  Robert Jerome (Rob) Misey, Jr., son of Bob and Kay, was born on November 1, 1960, in Milwaukee.  He received a B.A. degree, Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Kentucky in 1983.  He then received a J.D.-M.B.A. degree from Vanderbilt University in 1987 and an M.L.T. degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1991.  Rob worked for a time for the Internal Revenue Service and also taught tax law, living for a time in Brentwood, Tennessee.  About 1999, Rob and his family moved to the house in Whitefish Bay, near Milwaukee, where Rob's parents previously lived. In 2009, Rob was in private practice in Milwaukee.  See this website for more information on Rob and his law practice. 

        On May 25, 1991, in Roanoke, Virginia, Rob married Monica Ann Vaeth, born on September 1, 1964. Rob's uncles, Father Roderick Misey and Father Leonard Misey, officiated at the ceremony. Monica's father, Joseph J. Vaeth, died in Roanoke, Virginia, on September 1, 2011, at the age of 84.

Rob and Monica's Wedding Party, 1991
Monica and Rob Misey, 2009
Miseys at the wedding of Rob Misey and Monica Vaeth, 1991.
Front, from left, Edward, Rachel, Johanna, Mary Pauline,
Genevieve, Monica and Kay Misey. Rear, Rod, Rob and Bob Misey.
Leonard and Roderick Misey were also present.
Monica and Rob Misey in 2009

Monica Misey, 1992 Rob Misey, 1992 Rob Misey, 2007 Monica Misey, 2009
Monica and Rob Misey in 1992 Rob Misey in 2007, Monica in 2009

          Rob and Monica had four children:

(1) Robert Jerome Misey III was born on November 25, 1992.

(2) Anne Marie Misey was born on October 13, 1994.

(3) Margaret Rose Misey was born on February 1, 1996.

(4) John Roderick Misey was born on December 19, 1997.

Rob's Children in Hanibal, Missouri Rob and Family, 2007 Rob Misey Family, 2009
Children of Rob and Monica Misey:
Rose, Robert, John and Anne-Marie Misey in Hannibal, Missouri, 2006
Rob's family, 2007:
John, Anne-Marie, Rob,
Rose, Monica and Robert
The Misey children in 2009: Rose, Anne-Marie, Bob and John

Three Robert Miseys, 2007 Four Children of Rob Misey, 2008
Three Robert Miseys: Bob, Rob and Robert, 2007 John, Bob, Anne-Marie and Rose Misey, 2008


        8.  Father Leonard Sylvester Misey was born on April 22, 1928, in Milwaukee. He received a B. S. degree in economics from Marquette University in 1955, and two master’s degrees from St. Louis University, one in religion and education in 1977, and one in Biblical languages and literature in 1982. He also received crdits in archaeology from Tel Aviv University, where he did work on excavation. He served in the U.S. Army from March 15, 1946, to August 20, 1948.  He was ordained as a Catholic priest on March 30, 1963, at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in the Diocese of Jefferson City, Missouri, and was known as the Rev. Leonard S. Misey. Two weeks after his ordination, on Easter Sunday, 1963, Leonard conducted his first solemn mass at St. Mary of Czestochowa Church in Milwaukee. He held memberships in Phi Kappa Theta, the Catholic Biblical Association, the Society of Biblical Literature, and the Albright Institute of Archaeology (Jerusalem).  In 1990, he was nominated as a Knight of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem.

          From the time of his ordination from Kenrick Seminary, Leonard held the position of pastor or associate pastor at churches in Marshall, Boonville, Columbia, Moberly, Steelville, Wellsville, Palmyra, Brunswick and Indian Grove, all in Missouri. In May 1988, Leonard celebrated the 25th anniversary of his ordination at St. Joseph Church in Palmyra, Missouri. In May 2003, he celebrated the 40th anniversary of his priesthood ordination, as well as his 75th birthday and more than ten years as pastor of St. Boniface Church in Brunswick, 
and St. Raphael Church in nearby Indian Grove.

          Leonard served as de facto family pastor for the Miseys, conducting funeral or burial masses for his siblings and officiating at marriages for several other family members. He made frequent trips from Missouri to visit his siblings in Wisconsin and often undertook what he called the "heritage tour" to see houses, schools and churches where he had been active in Milwaukee.  In 2009, he lived in Brunswick, which one website noted had a population of 925 in the 2000 census.  (Brunswick was also noted as home to the 
world's largest pecan, made of concrete.) Leonard died in Brunswick on September 16, 2011. He was 83. An obituary was published by the Schramka Funeral Home of Milwaukee. Father Misey was buried in the Misey family plot in Holy Family Cemetery, Milwaukee, on September 21, 2011.

Leonard Misey, 1952 Leonard Misey, 198 Father Leonard and Father Roderick, 1990
Father Leonard Misey in 1952 and in 1988,
and with his brother, Father Roderick Misey, in 1990

Father Leonard Misey, 2003 Leonard Misey, 2006
Father Leonard Misey, in 2003 and 2006

Edward Gabriel Misey (1918-2009)

        Edward Gabriel Misey, the fourth child of John and Pauline Miscy, was born in Milwaukee on October 1, 1918, and baptized at St. Hedwig's Church on October 6 of 1918.  The birth certificate showed that "Edward Miscy" was the son of John Miscy, 30, and Pauline Fojut, 28, and that the family lived at 7 Lee Street in the 13th ward of Milwaukee. Later, the  family lived on North Weil Street and then on East Burleigh Street in Milwaukee.  Edward was an attorney specializing in international and administrative law and worked for the U. S. Department of State both in Washington and in missions overseas.  On April 5, 1947, he married Rachel Louise Long (1924-2004) in New York City. They lived in and near Washington, D.C., and they were the parents of Johanna Misey Boyer. More information on the Long family and on other ancestors of Rachel is included in separate sections.

        Edward was raised in Milwaukee.  He attended St. Casimir's School (1924-32) and the Passionist Preparatory School in Normandy, Missouri (1932-35), and he graduated from St. John's Cathedral High School in 1936, completing the classical course.  After high school, Edward worked in the office of the Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Company (later known as the Wisconsin Electric Power Company).  He left in 1938 to attend the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and in 1942 he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and philosophy.

        Edward served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army from June 30, 1942, to September 14, 1943, enlisting in Milwaukee.  Following his service at Fort Dix, New Jersey, he returned to the University of Wisconsin and received a Master of Arts degree in political science in 1945. His master's thesis was entitled "The Envisagement of the Administrative Problem in Alexis de Tocqueville's Democracy in America."  In September of that year, he entered Columbia University in New York to continue graduate studies in political science. During his time in New York, from 1945 to 1947, he taught courses on American government at the College of the City of New York.  

St. Casimir's Class of 1932, Ed Misey in front row St. Casimir Scholarship Winners, 1932, Misey front left
St. Casimir's Class of 1932, Ed Misey, 13,
front row, third male from the left
St. Casimir's Scholarship Winners, 1932,
Edward Misey, 13, front row on the left

Edward Misey, Age 8, 1926 Ed Misey, First Communion, 1929 Ed Misey, 12, 1930 Ed Misey, 18, 1936 Ed Misey, 1944 Ed Misey in the Army, 1944
Ed Misey, 1926 First Communion, 1929 Age 12, 1930 On the River, 1936 Age 26, 1944 In the Army, 1944

Ed Misey, 1946 Ed Misey and Rachel Long, 1946 Ed Misey, Columbia, 1950
Ed Misey in 1946 With Rachel Long
in 1946 
in New York
Ph.D. degree from Columbia, 1950
Wedding Day, 1947 Wedding Day, 1947
Ed and Rachel Misey on their Wedding Day,
April 5, 1947, in New York City
The Wedding Party: Front, Ed, Rachel, Rachel's mother, Odie Long. Rear, Roberto Esquenazi, close friend of Ed, with his wife Carmen; Mildred and Bill Long, brother of Rachel; and Bob Misey, brother of Ed.

        While at Columbia, Edward met Rachel Louise Long, of Tulsa, Oklahoma, a student in the School of Library Science.  Rachel had been born on February 4, 1924, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, one of four children of Clarence and Odie McLaughlin Long.  She had studied at the University of Tulsa and received a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of West Virginia in 1945.  She received her degree in library science from Columbia University in 1946, and on April 5, 1947, Rachel and Edward were married in the Rectory of Notre Dame Church, 405 West 114th Street, New York City.

         When Edward and Rachel moved to Washington in 1947, Edward did research for his doctoral dissertation at Columbia and taught courses in American government and politics at the University of Maryland at College Park.  He gave up his teaching appointment to attend the George Washington University Law School, and on May 31, 1950, he received his law degree.  He was admitted to practice in the local and federal courts for the District of Columbia (1950) and in the Supreme Court of the United States (1954).  Concurrently, he completed the writing of his Ph.D. dissertation on public law and government (it was entitled "Management Planning in the National Administration"), and on June 9, 1950, Columbia University conferred on him the doctor of philosophy degree.  

Ed Misey and Parents, 1949 Edward's graduation from Law School, 1950, with Rachel and his Parents
Ed Misey and Parents at the Reflecting Pool in Washington, 1949 Edward Misey's graduation from law school, 1950, with his wife Rachel and his parents
John and Pauline Misey

Working for the Department of State
        Following his admission to the District of Columbia bar, Edward worked briefly in the office of the Solicitor of the U.S. Department of Labor, and in April 1951, he transferred to the U.S. Department of State, where he served as deputy assistant legal advisor in the international claims section of the Office of the Legal Advisor.  The section was responsible for handling international claims of the United States and U.S. nationals against foreign governments, and claims of foreign governments against the United States. 

         For about 15 years following their move to Washington, Rachel was employed as a children’s librarian in the District of Columbia public library system.  After the birth of Johanna, she served as a part-time volunteer in school libraries in the District and Montgomery County.  She was an avid reader and a dog enthusiast who showed her own dog in local competitions.  For many years, she and Edward were active members of square dance clubs in the Washington area, and they had a cabin near Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, which they used frequently in times of good weather.  Rachel and Johanna accompanied Edward on his assignments in Manila and Geneva, and the family was active in the life of the diplomatic community in those cities.  

        In 1967, Edward was assigned to a term at the National War College and then as legal adviser to the U.S. Embassy in Manila, the Philippines, where he provided legal advice to the chief of mission on U.S. activities in the Philippines.  Upon his return to Washington in 1969, he became special assistant to the Legal Advisor of the Department of State, and then in 1971, he was assigned as legal advisor to the U.S. Mission to the European Office of the United Nations and Other International Organizations, in Geneva, Switzerland.  His duties included service on U.S. delegations to international conferences held in Geneva.
Beech Street House, Washington, 1964 Misey House in Manila Berkeley Springs Cabin, 1985 Herkos Court, Bethesda, 1999
Beech Street,
Washington, 1964
House in Manila, 1967
Berkeley Springs Cabin, 1985 Herkos Court, Bethesda,
Moving Out in 1999

Back in Washington

        On November 1, 1972, Edward was designated Chairman of the Board of Appellate Review of the Department of State.  The Board, a quasi-judicial and autonomous body, was established to hear and decide appeals taken by persons from adverse determinations made by the Department in cases involving the loss of U.S. nationality and the denial of U.S. passport facilities.  He served as chairman until his retirement from the Foreign Service in 1980.  He continued to serve part-time as a legal consultant to the Department of State and as a member of the Board until 1992.  He also taught international law at George Washington University in 1980-81 as an adjunct professor of political science.  In addition to his bar affiliations, Edward was a member of the American Bar Association, the American Political Science Association, and the American Society of International Law.  He also was interested in genealogical research relating to Slovakia, and he was a member of the Slovak-American Society of Washington. He was an active member of the Catholic Church.  

        Except for their time abroad, Edward and Rachel lived in Washington, D. C., beginning in 1947. One of their houses was on Beech Street, pictured above.  In 1973, they moved to the Drumaldry section of Bethesda, Maryland, and they lived there for 26 years. In December 1999, they sold their home and moved to an apartment in Rockville, Maryland.  They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in 1997 at a party organized by their daughter in the Henley Park Hotel in Washington.

50th Wedding Anniversary, 1997 50th Anniversary, 1997 Ed at 50th Anniversary, 1997
50th Wedding Anniversary, 1997, at the Henley Park: Ed and Rachel Misey with Johanna and Neil Boyer

        Edward and Rachel had one child, Johanna Louise Misey, born on November 23, 1961, in Washington.  She graduated from Carleton College, in Northfield, Minnesota, in 1983.  Johanna married Neil A. Boyer in 1992, and they lived in Washington and Silver Spring, Maryland.  More information on Johanna is included in the section on the Children of Clarence and Odie Long and in the section on Neil Boyer.

Edward, Johanna and John Misey, 1977 Johanna and Dad, 1977 - tennis lessons
Johanna and her dad in Bethany Beach, 1988 Ed, Rachel and Johanna, 1977 Ed, Johanna, Rachel and Dingo, Bethany, 1987
Ed with his father and daughter, Milwaukee 1977 Johanna and Ed, going for tennis lessons, 1977 Johanna and Ed in Bethany Beach, 1988
Ed, Rachel and Johanna with Willie Schnauzer, 1977 Ed, Johanna and Rachel with Dingo, 1987

         While Edward had a number of advanced degrees, he was known, with some humor, to be unskilled in a number of customary household tasks. His sister Genevieve wrote to Rachel in the year 2000 to explain why. Rachel had been hospitalized for surgery, and Genevieve wrote to Rachel to cheer her up and also to express concern about how her brother was getting along. "I wonder how Edward managed without you," she wrote. "He really must have had to do some cooking for himself. As I recall his childhood, he often offered [Mary Pauline and me] a few pennies if we would do his chores. He just didn't  have what it takes to be domesticated!"        

Carleton Graduation - Rachel, Johanna and Ed, 1983 Johanna, the bride, with parents, 1992 Ed, Rachel and Johanna, 1996
Johanna graduates from
Carleton, 1983, with Rachel
and Edward Misey
Edward and Rachel, 1992, proud parents of the bride, Johanna Misey Boyer Ed, Rachel and Johanna, 1996

         Rachel died on January 3, 2004, at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda of a
cerebral hemorrhage suffered three weeks earlier.  She was 79.  More information about the Long family and other ancestors of Rachel, including the Parker, McClurg, Vanderford and McLaughlin families, is in separate sections.  See more about Rachel here.  

Ed Misey, 1990 Ed Misey, 1995 Edward Misey, 2006 Ed Misey, 2007
Edward Misey in 1990, 1995, 2006 and 2007

        Following Rachel’s death, Edward remained in the Rockville apartment until the fall of 2006, when he moved to the Riderwood Village retirement community in Silver Spring, Maryland. Until five weeks before his death, he remained fit and healthy, going to the gym to work out three times a week and managing his own financial and other personal affairs. In mid-2009, he encountered a series of complications relating to congestive heart failure, and he died at Riderwood on July 22, 2009, at the age of 90. At a funeral mass in the Riderwood Chapel on July 25, his daughter, Johanna, delivered the eulogy. He was buried in the Misey family plot at Holy Cross Cemetery in Milwaukee on July 28. His brother Leonard conducted the commital service at the cemetery. On that same day, a long obituary on Edward's life was published in the Washington Post.

Johanna and Dad at Riderwood, 2007 Edward Misey and Johanna Boyer, 2008
Johanna and Dad at Riderwood, 2007 Edward Misey and Johanna Boyer, 2008

Misey Family Members at Ed's Funeral, 2009
Miseys at Edward Misey's Burial Ceremony in Holy Cross Cemetery, 2009. From left, Kay, Monica, Leonard, Bob, Rob, Rose, Anne-Marie, Robert and John Misey

Cousins Phil Misey, Johanna Boyer, Maggie Price, with Ashley Speitz, 2009 Cousins Maggie Price, Johanna Boyer, Janet Plunkett, 2009
Cousins, 2009: Left, Phil Misey, Johanna Misey Boyer, Maggie Misey Price with Ashley Peitz Right: Maggie Misey Price, Johanna
Misey Boyer, Janet Misey Plunkett


Back to Top of this Section
The Long Family of Tulsa
Clarence Ray Long
Children of Clarence and Odie Long
Genealogical Chart of the Family of Michael Miscy / Misey

Neil Boyer's Family History Page