Today we continue in our pursuit of the life story of one Czech immigrant couple from the pages of the fabulous Czech-American journal, Amerikán Národní Kalendář as found in it’s 1951 edition!
We have brought you the first three installments already and now we bring you Installment #4! The story just keeps getting better and better and today our Czech immigrant actually takes his leave of the ‘Old Country’ and heads west.
Amerikán Národní Kalendář
Year: 1951, Volume: LXXIII, Pages: 117-144
“Old Settlers’ Memories”
Translated from the original Czech by Dr. Mila Saskova-Pierce and Layne Pierce
©Onward To Our Past®
THE LIFE EXPERIENCES OF SPOUSES CHARLES AND ANNA LUX – from Sayville, New York
Charles and Anna Lux during their celebration of the 35th anniversary of their shared life. On the day of the 22nd of August, 1949.
“On the way the young men and women started to sing to vent their emotions about the departure and I joined them. Before evening we got to Antwerp where we spent the night. The next day we boarded the ship Zeeland.
During the voyage a young man who had already gone to America several times warned me not to take the lower bunk, which advice I understood completely, only once I was on the ship. During the loading I lost our group and so I entered a compartment by chance, and I was already crawling onto the upper bunk, when somebody grabbed me by my legs and pulled me down. It was a Hungarian whom I actually kicked, but he immediately pulled out a knife. The young men, however, who noticed my absence went to look for me and they came just in time. I don’t know whether I would have been able to defend myself against the angry Hungarian. This one received his deserved due from the young men, and they took me to a section where I already had one upper berth reserved for me.
After 17 days we arrived in New York and we were released after going through an exam. It was only that my dear cousin collected his future sister-in-law and he forgot about me. Then we were led by an employee of the Austrian House on 81th Street where I spent the night with other people, and on the second day he led me to my cousin on 94th Street. I was in New York until July, when, having lost work in a restaurant because of the arrival of the boss’s wife’s sister, I stepped into a neighboring shop to look at offers of employment in the newspaper. There was an offer for workers in Canada and an office where they were hiring was located on 8th Street downtown. I took a car there. I accepted the offer. I went home to collect my things and when the New York whistles were blowing at noon we were leaving the New York Central Railroad station for further experiences.
They were transporting us day and night to Montmagny in Canada where didn’t arrive until evening. We were about 60 people of different nationalities, mostly Poles. On the second day a small cart pulled by a small horse came and they loaded our suitcases onto it. The road from Montmagny to Notre Dame Du Rosaire, where our last stop was, went over steep hills and those who were supposed to be carried had to push the cart, and because of this the company took off five dollars per person. We arrived at the camp around five in the evening. They placed us in a big building that was serving both as dining room and kitchen. In the attic there was a rows of beds, in fact they were wooden partitions made into beds with straw and a blanket. This was our new residence.”
Tomorrow we continue our wonderful story from the pages of the 1951 edition of the great Czech-American annual journal, Amerikán Národní Kalendář! Will our Czech stay in Canada? What does his future hold?
Onward To Our Past®