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Family genealogy and photographs that inspired the novel

This is the 1920 census that knocked me for a loop. Recorded on January 20, 1920, lines 83-90 list Akinfa (John) and Mary Zuravleff and their six children (my father, born in 1931, is their eleventh!). They made it out of the mines to Erie; specifically, 102 Parade Street. John and Mary are listed as 32 and 26, finally their right ages, unlike their marriage license or the 1910 census. Under citizenship, the three questions are: year of immigration; naturalized or alien; and if naturalized, year of naturalization? John Zuravleff immigrated in 1905; under naturalized or alien, it says "1st Pa." or "first papers," which means he declared his intent to become a citizen, as of 1915. On the next line, for Mary Zuravleff there is an X under year of immigration; that makes sense, because you can see under "place of birth," she was born in Pennsylvania. But in the column marked "naturalized or alien," which I would have expected to be blank—again, born in Pennsylvania—she is listed as "Al" for Alien.

Baba Kay's paska recipe

My grandmother Kay Federoff's recipe for paska, the sweet raisin bread especially made for Easter, published in the Erie paper in the 1940s.

Erie church originally built in 1919, rebuilt in 1986


The Church of the Nativity of Christ is a Russian Orthodox Old Rite parish located at 251 East Front Street in Erie, Pennsylvania. Originally built in 1919, the church was rebuilt in 1986.