At the time of writing this biography, little is known about the life of Michal & Katarzyna Kuta. All I have is a photograph of them and their daughter Soffie Kuta, a photograph probably taken in France and during their daughter’s confirmation thus reflecting their religious beliefs as Roman Catholic. The other known facts are oral history depicting a place of origin. Even this information is somewhat fickle and open to speculation. For some of the older family members believe their home-land is the Ukraine, whilst others have told me Poland..
I had one piece of evidence though suggesting that our Kuta family. Came from a place known as – Karya Zernica, Poland. It appeared on the death certificate of my Grandfather – Jan Kuta, recorded under his place of birth..
Therefore, I searched for this place, and have even communicated with Polish Genealogists. No one has ever heard of it. At first, this did not surprise me because many Polish towns and regions have changed names several times..
Then I began thinking, perhaps “Karya Zernica” is an obvious English mistake. The English are of cause famous for it, so often we write foreign words just how we pronounce them, or vice versa..
Therefore, my search began..
It was some months later that I found a record on the International Genealogy Index, for a marriage relating to a Josepha Kuta and Augusta Louis Gerard. The marriage took place 29 August 1936, in Thezy-Glimont, Somme, Picardy, France. The record was an interesting find, because many descendants of Michal Kuta, now live in the Bethune, Artois, France area – Which although in a neighbouring county is only an hours travel.
Was Josepha a relative of Michal Kuta?.
Well I have no facts to be sure, only an intelligent guess – because Josepha Kuta’ marriage record, records her birth as – 25 April 1909, Katarynice, Lviv, Poland..
I would guess you would pronounce Katarynice, “Karya Nica”..
Whilst researching Katarynice, I found that the region had passed hands many times. However, more interestingly between the years 1918 – 1945 it belonged to the district of Rudecki in the province of Lviv, Poland. .
In September 1939, the Katarynic troops entered The Red Army and this whole area was incorporated into the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic..
Since the outbreak of war the USSR – Third Reich (July 1941) the village was occupied by German troops after being attached to the General Government. It was during this time that many Poles/Ukrainians were forced into slave labour. Which in consequence happened to my Grandfather “Jan Kuta” .
Then in 1944 Katarynic troops r-entered The Red Army opposing The Third Reich and then In the year 1945 in the village began mass deportations of Poles. .
It would be this important date that Michal and his wife Katarzyna Kuta chose to take themselves and their family to France..
Where Josepha Gerard (Nee’ Kuta) was already living..
In laymen’s terms my family originated from the former Polish eastern borderlands and after World War II my relatives had to move out from there. Thus, my Great-Grandparents left Lviv (today in Ukraine) and found their new home in the city of Bethune, France..
It saddens me, to think of so many lives disrupted by war, and the strife, sorrow, loss and anguish in consequence of this will never be known..
I guess I am fortunate, for my family lived on – and because of that I am here today and all our descendants to come are because of them. Because Michal and Katarzyna Kuta did not give up. They are forgotten martyrs in our little tree..
As I reach the end now, of what I know of these two extraordinary people, all I can hope is that perhaps one day many years from now I will discover much more, perhaps a grave, a birth or a marriage or if I’m lucky a forgotten story… of what their life was truly like..