Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Charles and Elizabeth Guokas

These are my great-grandparents, my mother's paternal grandparents. They are buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Houston, Texas, next to my maternal grandfather, Charles Guokas Jr.

Charles Peter Guokas Sr. was born February 27, 1863, in Lithuania. He arrived in the United States in either 1880 or 1890, and was naturalized in 1910. His first wife was Stephanie Jasielewiewicz, and they married January 10, 1892, at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Bremond, Texas. They had two daughters, Mary "Mamie" (born around 1895) and Annie (born around 1898). I am guessing that Stephanie died soon after that, for on January 21, 1900, Charles married Elizabeth Banavich, also at St. Mary's

Elizabeth Banavich was born December 12, 1875, also in Lithuania, and arrived in the United States in 1900. She and Charles had six children, Elizabeth "Lizzie" (born 1901), Justice (born and died 1902), my grandfather Charles Jr. (born 1903), Agnes "Aggie" (born 1906), Eva (born 1907), and Roy Lee (born 1917). They were living in Houston at least by the time of Justice's birth/death (based on his obituary in the Houston Chronicle), and lived there the rest of their lives.

Charles Sr. was a fireman for the Southern Pacific Railroad lines for 48 years, from 1886 to 1933. He died on April 8, 1939. According to the 1910 census, Elizabeth Banavich Guokas was still speaking primarily Russian then, and could not read or write (at least not in English). By the 1920 census, she could speak English. She died November 6, 1929.

© Amanda Pape - 2010

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