Litz Family History:
From Russia to Winnipeg

Most Current Family Tree

You can view my most current family tree here    Litz and Kroening Families


 Click here for Info for DNA Relatives  


MT DNA T1a1  Contributor Hulda Kroening and mother Louise Zabel

Y DNA J1e (New Names J1c3  and J P58)  Contributor  Robert Litz (mother's surname) Father Unknown (FTDNA also shows male line carries Cohan Modal Haplotype)



The background of our family has been a several year adventure for me. It started in 1972 when I was in the Military, waiting for my security clearance.  I was held back from the rest of the class when the security portion of training commenced.  Weeks later, my School Sergeant Major informed me I was on the next course.  He commented that being a White Russian was acceptable.  I asked a few questions at that time of dad and a couple of uncles and didn’t get much info.  They all said we were German, and left it at that, except Richard, he said we were Polish from the Warsaw area (turns out he was right.)


Now that I’m older, and have some time on my hands having retired, I decided to start my quest.  Thankfully technology has made things a “little” easier, however, family history research, especially in Eastern Europe is a labour intensive task. 


 I have spent countless hours scouring microfilm, writing letters for government documents, and countless hours waiting for my dial up connection to produce an image on my computer of a record, only to find it is the wrong family.  I have contacted our parents few living cousins and cousins of those cousins that although not related by blood had some knowledge of the family past.


In all of this there have been some successes, and some failures.  I am most pleased that I have located Grandfather Robert Litz’s (Opa’s) birth record.  This feat only took about a month of microfilm hunting, a quick lesson in Russian Cyrillic, and the help of a wonderful man in the Ukraine on a genealogy list I belong to, to translate the document.


Most of the stories I’ve heard of Opa are from his time here in Canada.  The uncles filled me in on what they believed to have been his past.  Most of it cannot be proven, and a lot of it, is quite probable.


Grandmother Hulda Kroening’s (Oma’s) history, although more of her family immigrated here, is vague, but her some of her brothers’ information is available.  I have had to do considerable research and speculating to find the documentation to put together a history of her family and background.


The stories I heard about Robert Litz's past and history came from Uncle Albert and Uncle Gordon, Cousin Ben Kraning, Ben’s cousins Agatha Tolack (Gessie), Pat Gessie, Kurt Guttman, Ben’s niece Nellie Fliegerts daughter Doreen, Maureen Hamilton, Mary Wasylenko Ferdinand's daughter and his great grand daughter Susan Izzard.  Since I began this search, many of these informants have passed away, and I will miss the opportunity to converse with them further, but am eternally grateful that I was able to speak with them, hear their stories, and connect with the past..

The following pages are part of the history of the Litz Family that came to Canada from Russia in 1904, some of their ancestors and their descendants.




litz family photos

      Click on Image to view albums



Litz Siblings





Info for DNA Relaltives


Y DNA J1e (New Names J1c3  and J P58)


 Although I have only been able to find my great grandparents names, there are several names in various records that match with our Kroening/Litz/Zabel families from the same places.  I cannot prove if they are related yet, but if you find that these names and places are part of your ancestry, and we are DNA cousins, there's a good probability that that is the connection.

These names are:


Kroening St Petersburg records Kroening EWZ Records  
Arndt, Wilhelmine   Pawlinowka Bibrich Nedbajewka
Donart, Pauline  Toruvu Fliegert Pommern
Gottschalk, Christian  Shitomir  Hinz Ostrone 
Grass, Susanna  Gnadenthal  Pautz Tscherwonoarmejsk/Pulin
Hartmann, Luise Prussia/Heimthal  Rosner Nowa Rudnja
Kalbe, Elise Dubno Witzke Ostrosa/Ostrona?
Kujat, Emilie  Uwarowka Zismann  
Masch?, Susanna Zhitomir    
Stockmann, Julianne Karolinchen aka Karlufka    
Ziesmann, Pauline   Annette/Dombrowka    
Zink, Louise   Shitomir    
Litz St Petersburg Records Litz EWZ Records  
Aichele Friedenstal Adam Blumenthal
Ammon Grossliebental Berreth Hoffnungstal, Akkerman
Anders Eigenfeld/Neuburg  Beutelspacher Neuburg 
Anderst Grossliebental Biwol Tschiligider  
David Marzelindorf Bretter Peterstal
Dragner Arzis Deifel Peterstal
Eichelkraut Solodyrie Dietz Neuburg, Odessa 
Fischer Friedenstal Drefs Neu-Arzis, Akkerman
Gaugel Grossliebental Dreschler Kloestitz, Akkerman 
Grenz Lichtenfeld/Guldendorf Engelhardt Neuburg, Odessa
Hafer Marzelindorf Fetzer Neuburg, Odessa
Handel Friedenstal Fleig Leipzig, Akkerman
Heer Friedenstal Grosshans Friedenstal
Hirsch Neu Arzis Gruen Tschepentowka
Hissing  Benkendorf Hasenfuss Gnadental, Akkerman
Hoeger Friedenstal Hergert Eigenfeld, Gebiet Krasnodar
Hofer Chotinka Hiesohn Peterstal
Juengling Friedenstal Just Steinbach, Rostow 
Klein Grossliebental Kallis Friedenstal, Akkerman
Koth Arzis Kiebau Neuburg, Odessa
Kraemer Friedenstal Klause Leipzig, Akkerman
Maier Friedenstal Klein Neuburg, Odessa
Nikkel Fere Champenoise Klein Neuburg, Odessa
Radke Zhitomir Kuehbauch Neuburg, Odessa
Reis Grossliebental Lang Brienne, Akkerman
Reiser Neuburg/Kiskir, Hungary  Lehr Alexanderhilf
Revinius Grossliebental Maier Friedenstal, Akkerman 
Schamon Lessapol Mueller Hoffnungstal
Schuler Berlin/Neuburg Nagel Hoffnungstal
Spracher  Berlin/Neuburg Oster Neuburg 
Stadel Arzis Otto Neuburg, Geb. Odessa
Wagner Friedenstal Pertsch Friedenstal, Akkerman 
Walz Lichtenfeld/Guldendorf Reese Stenbach
Welk Danielsfeld Rohrer Neuburg, Odessa
Welz Tarutino Roth Alexanderhilf, Odessa
Wildemann Zhitomir Schott Hoffnungstal
Zilsny Odessa Schott Hoffnungstal, Bessarabia
Zoller Kostopol Schuler Hoffnungstal
    Schulz Pjatigorsk
    Speidelspacher Neuburg 
    Stiefel Friedenstal, Akkerman 
    Streibel Maraslienfeld, Akkerman 
    Teufel Peterstal
    Traub Saimenin 
    Wagner Neuburg, Odessa
    Wahl Friedenstal
    Warben Poland
    Wiederrich Hoffnungstal, Bessarabia
Zabel St Petersburg Records Zabel EWZ Records  
Baecker Shitomir Hopp  
Betke Widerno Janzen Warschau 
Dersk Miroslawow  Mazevne Blogga
Hamann Franzdorf Nastarowsky Kamenka
Kahn Wjasowez Ortlieb  Boleslaf/Rockbach  
Meede or Mude Liski Schadrow Mitau  
Muenz Kischinew/Blumenthal/ Schmidt Tschernjachow
Pinno Mathildow/Rogaze, Posen  Selin  
Rahm   Zwirner, Wileika, Wilna
Ratz Wiasawitz    
Rode Chotinka/Telicino    
Rohr Soloderie    
Rudolph Rozyszcze/Bromberg    
Schmidt Heimtal    
Schulz Wissowitz (Wjasowez ?)    
Sielke Nicolajefka    
Tolbrecht heimtal    
Wudel Lezachow    




This is the information that has eluded me and I am still looking for:

Great Grandmother Wilhelmina Litz born abt 1855 poss Lomza, who are her people?

Great Grandparents Christian Kroening and Louise Zabel, where did they come from and who are their people?

Great Aunt ? Kroening married to Rudolph Yessie, what is her name and where did she die?

Great Aunts and Uncles Kroening Family that stayed in the "old country", who are they and what was their fate?


Nov 2013:  Info for DNA Relatives....names and places of possible connections

Aug 2013:  HUGE!!!  DNA tested by 23andMe results are in... See LITZ NAME AND IT'S PEOPLE


Jan 2011:  New Photo Albums added


Aug 7, 2010: Merged pages Welcome and Updates. Combined pages now Home page


July 23, 2010: the Whats with the Radons page has been rewritten for an easier read, with individual bio's and facts.

Jun 5, 2010..Ship and arrival information for Lydia Radons Yessie, Gerhard Yessie and Zelma Yessie.  Info entered on Yessie Family Page.

Oct 27, 2009,  New photo album R Litz and Sons from the early years, shown in both Photos and under Robert.


Jun 27, 2009 New Pages added on my other branches.

My Swedish side, Hanson's and Wahlgren's

My husband Gary's Scottish Family, Simpson, Cowie, Lawson

and his Polish Family, Powroznik, Dukacz, Woytas, Sopel, Kobialko


Jan 18, 2009 Robert Litz, Christian Kroening and Ferdinand Kroening 1916 Census info with links.

July 19, 2008 Photo album moved to Welcome page, photos added 

July 3, 2008, updates on Kroening, Yessie and Radons.

Surnames and places


Litz, Kroening, Kraning, Yeske, Jeske,Yessie, Gessie, Radons,Radunz, Raduns

It would be good to note here that Litz and Lic are variations of the same (in Polish c is pronounced at tz) as are Litzki and Litzka (son of Litz, daughter of Litz)

Russia/Ukraine:  Zhitomir, Pulin, Volhynia

Poland: Lomza, Warsaw, Sulimin, Richtoff, Bremberg

Canada: Winnipeg, Beausejour


An interesting site  that shows the Litz's name distribution in Poland

Type Litz in the box  Mapa nazwisk and then click  szukaj (search) (congrats, you've just passed your first Polish lesson).  If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, you will also see flags of Switzerland, Germany, and if you click on those, it will also show the distribution of our last name in those countries....Isn't Genealogy fun!! I had a great time on this site, searching other names from my tree in these countries.


and just as a curiosity, here is the distribution of our name in the USA. Who are all these Litz's?


Name Popularity

Litz listings in the USA:

My Other Family sites

If you are a visitor and think you are related check out the family tree

There is also an extensive tree on, it is private but if you contact me, I can grant you access to it.This tree also carries the census information, immigration info etc.

or my other site with links to the non Russian families from my other side.

Swedish Ancestors, Hansson and Wahlgren

The Hansson Family is from the North Eastern part of Sweden, now Gastrickland, Hofors, Gavle. and the Wahlgren family (other names Nilsdotter, Modig) from Höör, Langstorp, Skane. 

Powroznik in Poland

The Powrozniks from Lukawiec, Poland also the families Woytas, Sopel, Dukacz and many more.

Simpson Scotland

New Machar, Aberdeenshire being the prime area for this Simpson Family, other names Cowie from Premnay, Lawson from Peterhead and Foveran, Davie from New Deer.