What is it like to have a really rare surname? If you are a genealogist, you might think that is a good thing because it narrows the field for you. However, as I have found out with the surname Boniszyn, there can be such a thing as too rare. When you enter that name into Ancestry you currently come back with zero results. If you have spent any time with that database it might be hard to believe that happens, especially if you have gone through page after page of results while looking for that special someone. In the case of Boniszyn, it is more complicated in that the earliest town I can connect it to is Rozwaz, although a town by the name of Boniszyn is close by. Was this family originally from Boniszn itself? My Boniszyns moved to the “big town” of Bialy Kamien, but apparently part of the family later settled in nearby Poczapy.

Prompted by a recent commenter I began to try again to find out about the Boniszyns through Ancestry. When I came up with zero, I decided to employ another tactic: searching for information about the locality, since I knew that this surname was found in Poczapy. Although I have not yet found any Boniszyns I did come across 102 instances of others from Poczapy who emigrated. The vast majority of the records are from the Hamburg passenger lists. Here are the names from A-J that I have found so far. For more information about any of them please visit the Ancestry website. In the meantime I plan on taking my search back to the LDS microfilm readers as soon as possible to see if I can learn more about the Boniszyn family in the late 1800s. I want to solve the Poczapy mystery of this extremely rare surname!

From Boston Passenger lists and Crewman
these 3 traveled together: Irvan Hawrys, Josef Roj, Wladzimierz Tzabatura
arr. 19 Jun 1913 – Boston, Massachusetts

From New York Passenger lists All with the destination of Amsterdam NY

Anastazya Hulik
Huat Hulyh
Roman Kûzma
Basily Pryndejk

From the Hamburg Passenger lists
Departed 11 Jan 1908:Kata. Ambros, Anna Ambros, Mihal Ambros, Adam Ambros traveled together

Departed  30 Sep 1909: Prokop Hulyk,  Michal Kwas, Wladek Szabatura, Helena Baran, Onufry Hulyk traveled together

Departed 25 Feb 1903: Prokop Barau traveled with Josef Smolawski of Usznia,  [illegible] Golab of Usznia, Iwan Hulyk of Poczapy and Bronislaw Bielsk of Bialy Kamien

Departed 16 Feb 1907: Stanislaw Bok  and Miecislaw Obremski traveled together

Departed 17 Aug 1911: Iwan Borenko
Departed 25 Apr 1909: Warwara Burudynska  and Anna Kroasnyca
Departed 9 Jun 1909: Emilian Cwyk
Departed 1 Jul 1909: Justyna Dobak

Departed 3 Jul 1913: Antonina Duch, Jan Duch

Departed 3 Jul 1913: Antonina Duch, Jan Duch

Departed Mai 1908: Pawko Duch  Natalia Duch,  Eliasz Duch: destination Brazil
Departed 7 Jun 1914: Hrynko Duch

Departed 25 Jul 1907: Parania Duda traveled with Pawel Duda of Zloczow
Departed 1 Feb 1913: Teofil Gawrys
Departed 30 Apr 1910: Hania (could be Xenia) Gniewek,  Franciszek Ziemlanski, Jozefa Ziemlanski
Departed 5 March 1898: Berl Goldberg
Departed 25 May 1913: Ivan Gos
Departed 8 Jun 1913: Iwan Hawrys
Departed 21 Sep 1909: Pawlo Hawryszkow
Departed 6 May 1909: Wasyl Hawryszkow
Departed 5 Jun 1913: Piotr Hreczanny
Departed 16 Aug 1906: Aftanasy Hulik
Departed 16 May 1907: Anastazya Hulik
Departed 30 Sep 1909: Prokop Hulyk

Departed 30 Mar 1907: Antoni Hulyk
Departed 3 Mar 1907: Hnat Hulyk
Departed 23 Jan 1913: Onufry Hulyk
Departed 1 Jul 1909: Tekla Hulyk
Departed 30 Jan 1907: Franciszek Jamrosz
Departed 15 Jul 1905: Josef Jurasz