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SURNAMES & THEIR ORIGINS
BUCA (Pol) buczeć. Meaning: to hum, drone, buzz, or < buk a beech tree.
KLAAS (Dut) or KLAS (Ger) Niklaus, Klaus.
ROGACKI (Pol) rόg. Meaning: horn, corner. A topographic name for someone who lived on a ‘horn’ of land i.e. outlying projecting edge of a settlement or administrative division.
STRZELKA (Pol) strzelać . Meaning; to shoot or from placename Strzelno
Franciszek Rogacki, a farmer, (b. 1846–d. 1908) was born at Wolental on 04 September 1846, the son of Andrzej Rogacki (b. abt. 1820–d. 1850) and Anna Elzbieta Strzelka (b. abt. 1821–d. 1873). He married on 6 November 1870 at St. Małgorzata in Miłobądz to Paulina Klass (b. 22 July 1850 at Sobowidz), the daughter of Jan Klass (b. 1817–d. 1899) and Apollonia Buca (b. 1821–d. 1889). The family born at Stanisławie was Jozef (b. 1871–d. 1872). They left the village of Stanisławie for Hamburg where they set sail aboard the Palmerston on 29 July 1872, arriving at Port Chalmers near Dunedin on 6 December 1872
Listed aboard were: Franz Rogacki age 26 and Paulina 21. Also on board was Marianna Rogacka of Stanisławie aged 23. The family was sent south to Scroggs Creek on contract work with Brogden and Sons to lay the southern railway through the Taieri. On 30 May 1877, Frank purchased section 13 of Block 12 at Allanton where the main highway passes through today. The family were: John (b. 1873–d. 1873), Francis Joseph (b. 1874–d. 1927), Anthony (b. 1876–d. 1937), Annie Mary (b. 1879–d. 1946), Rosa (b. 1881–d. 1905), Thomas Joseph (b. 1883–d. 1954), Maria (b. 1885) and Minnie May (b. 1887–d. 1963). Francis worked as a labourer and according to the 1882’ Return of Freeholders, Frank owned one acre to the value of £220 in Mosgiel. Towards the end of 1891, Francis received medical relief via the Otago Benevolent Institute (Tall Boys) at Caversham in Dunedin as a cancer sufferer until 1893. Around this time, Francis travelled north to the Polish Settlement at Marshlands in Christchurch. Here he was known to have grown among the best crop of onions in the settlement yielding from 16 to 18 tons per acre on Walter’s Road near the turn of the century. However, It appears that Francis and Pauline were going through some differences.
“Christchurch, Monday, July 23 – Maintenance; An order was made protecting the earnings of Paulina Rogatski against her husband, Frank Rogatski, and giving her the custody of their three children. Mr. Donnelly appeared for the applicant. “ The Press, 24 July 1894
Magisterial, Christchurch – Assault. – Frank Rogetski was charged with Assaulting James Friend on September 8th, in Sydenham. Mr. Donnelly for the plaintiff, Mr. Corr for defendant. On the day named the defendant, with three other men, went to plaintiff’s house, where his wife lived, and made a disturbance, demanding the custody of his children, who, by direction of the Court, were in his wife’s charge. Plaintiff ordered him out whereupon the assault complained of took place. Defendant was now ordered to find one surety in Ł10 to keep the peace towards Friend for six months, and to pay costs.” The Press, 20 September 1894
“THE WEATHER AND THE CROPS. On the rich land in the Marshlands district there are, as usual, some excellent crops of oats, potatoes, onions, and other roots. The oats are generally very heavy, and in many cases have gone down. They are mostly being cut in a green state. Mr Chas. Burgess has a fine even crop of Danish oats that is so far standing up well, and will be cut for winter feed. He has also excellent crops of kidney and Derwent potatoes. There is not much wheat grown in the district, but Mr M. Hamber, Hill’s road, has a paddock of Hunter’s that promises to go well up to 60 bushels to the acre. A noticeable crop is a paddock of beans belonging to Mr J. Borgfeldt, on the some road, that is exceptionally heavy and even, Mrs Jane Dunlop has a remarkably good paddock of oats on the Canal reserve, and Messrs M. Schimanski, sen. and jun., have each heavy crops of carrots. On the Lower Styx road Mr Fox has excellent crops of oats, potatoes and onions. Mr C. H. Walters is a prominent grower of cabbages, and sends a large amount of his produce to the West Coast. The area in onions is much larger than last year, but the anticipated yield is not expected to be so good, as a number of crops are affected with what is commonly called the blight. This is said to be due to the heat of the sun upon the tops of the onions when they are wet with the morning fogs or dews, or with showers during the day, more probably on account of the latter, which have been so frequent lately. Messrs V. Kaisnowski and F. Rogatski have two of the best crops in the district, that are expected to yield from 16 to 13 tons per acre, the latter’s growing upon a piece of new land on Walter’s road.” Press, 26 January 1899, p 6
Francis was naturalised as a New Zealand Citizen on 18 November 1899.
“CASUALTIES. John Rogatski, fifteen months old, was admitted to the Hospital yesterday afternoon, having had his left thigh broken. Mrs Rogatski and her child were thrown out of a trap as they were leaving church, the horse having started before they got properly in.” Press, 12 January 1903, p 6
“CASUALTIES. This morning a man named Frank Ragatski, a resident of Marshland, was cycling towards the Railway Station when a milk-cart ran into him, and the shaft hit him in the abdomen. He was taken to the Hospital. The shaft of the cart was broken, so the blow must have been a fairly severe one.” The Star, 10 September 1908
Francis died on 27 September 1908 aged 62 at his son, Frank’s residence at Prestons Road. He is buried at the Linwood Cemetery in Christchurch.
“ROGATSKl—September 27, 1903. at the residence of his son Frank, Preston’s Road, Marshland, Francis Rogatski; aged sixty-two years. R.1.P.” Lyttleton Times, 28 September 1908, p 1
“BEREAVEMENT. MRS ROGATSKI and Family desire to thank all kind friends who attended the funeral of the late deceased Francis Rogatski, of Marshland, and also those who contributed wreaths and letters of sympathy.” Lyttleton Times, 7 October 1908, p 1
“NEWS OF THE DAY. The monthly meeting of the Marshland School Committee was held on Tuesday, Mr J. FitzPatrick in the chair. A vote of condolence was recorded to Mr Rogatski in his recent bereavement…” Press, 11 November 1908, p 6
Pauline Rogatski had left her husband and some of the children were located in Oamaru attending the catholic school there in 1896/97. She was later recorded residing at 153 Cumberland Street in 1904 and at 790 Cumberland Street, Dunedin in 1912 aged 62. Pauline was naturalised as a New Zealand citizen on 10 February 1912 while residing in Cumberland Street. Her whereabouts after that are unknown.
Marianna Rogacka (1849) of Stanisławie. Her whereabouts are unknown.
Pobόg-Jaworowski, J. W, History of the Polish Settlers in New Zealand, ed. Warsaw; Chz “Ars Polonia.” 1990, pages 23, 155 & 170.
Archives New Zealand, Passenger Lists, 1839-1973, FamilySearch.
Archives New Zealand Te Rua Mahara O Te Kawanatanga; Land Records.
Catholic Diocese of Dunedin, St Mary’s Church, Milton; Baptism Register.
Caversham Tall Boys, Patient Records, Dunedin Hocken Library.
Godziszewo, Lubiszewo Tczewskie, Miłobądz, Pączewo & Trąbki Wielkie Parish Records, Pelplin Diocese, Poland.
New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs Naturalisations, Births, Deaths and Marriages.
New Zealand Otago & Stones Directories & Wises Directories, Dunedin Public Library
New Zealand Government Property Tax Department, from the rates assessment rolls, Return of Freeholders of New Zealand 1882, published 1884.
Compiled by Paul Klemick (2023)
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