Happy Birthday, Papa!

Edward Francis Wojtkowiak was born this day in 1908.

I see at least from the 1910 census that he lived at 1257 Hamilton Street on April 26, 1910. He may have been born there on Hamilton Street, but I’m not sure. Says that his father’s name was Peter, mother’s was Rose. Peter & Rose had been married fourteen years. Says Rose (and, one assumes, Peter as well) had eight children, six still living: Michael, John, Roman, Leo-something, Julia, and Edward. Seems like Peter and Rose were born back in the old country, although it just says “Ger Polish O,” whatever that means. The kids all born in Ohio. Says year of immigration for Peter and Rose was 1896, about the same time as their marriage, seems to me.

I’m named after him, clearly, although I was dubbed Edward John rather than Edward Francis. I later took Francis as my confirmation name though.

Papa was a grocer and a butcher. Got his start working at Kroger, is my understanding. Got kidnapped once with the payroll. Later had his own store at 1111 Ketcham, where I knew him best. When I was a kid, though, Papa worked for Spangler, a tobacco and candy distributer. All I knew is that my grandfather worked for the candy store. That’s the ultimate in cool for a kid.

Papa died on August 4, 1994. Happy birthday, Papa. We love you and miss you.