SIEDLECKI, REV. STANISLAUS

Copyright © 2011-2017 John N. Lupia III
 Fig. 1. Father Stanislaus Siedlecki (1854-1910), photograph published in The Wilkes-Barre Record, Thursday, July 9, 1903, page 5.

                Father Stanislaus Siedlecki (1854-1910), was born in November, 1854 in Austria-Poland, of Polish parents of the nobility.
            In 1878 he was ordained a priest for the missions in the Diocese of Przemysl, Poland, where he first served as an army chaplain 1878-1887. In 1888, he immigrated to America from the Diocese of Przemysl, Poland, 
and was assigned to the Polish-speaking mission church of  Saint Stanislaus in the Diocese of St. Cloud, Swan River, Morrison County, Minnesota. While there he established a park. In 1892, he filed a lawsuit against John Kukla
 who led a faction to establish a rival parish church at Fensburg, which he won. Unfortunately, the faction that lost the case began to spread rumors against the priest causing scandal. About 1892, he was transferred by Bishop Zardetti to the 
Scranton Diocese where Bishop O'Hara sent him to St. Mary's Polish Church at Blossburg, Tioga County, Pennsylvania, where he served as pastor for five years. In September of 1898, he was sent temporarily to Nanticoke, 
Pennsylvania to take charge of a mission church. In 1899 he was sent to nearby Glen Lyon, a coal mining village in Pennsylvania to St. Adalbert Church. He succeeded Monsignor Zychowicz, and was appointed the new pastor St. Mary's, 
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in  Mocanaqua, Pennsylvania, a mission parish church of St. Adalbert. However, Father Siedlecki remained at St. Adalbert Church, Glen Lyon, since
 the new mission parish burned after a spark from a passing train set fire to the wooden structure.  He attended the consecration of Bishop Garvey in September 1901.
Fig. 2. St. Adalbert's Church robbed of silver and gold religious objects. Scranton Republic, Thursday, February 4, 1904, page 7
Fig. 3. Correspondence sent by Father Siedlecki to Henry Chapman, Jr., postmarked Glen Lyon, Pennsylvania, January 30, 1908, 6 P.M. The envelope is of St. Adalbert Rectory and is very rare. Note the faint coin stain 
about the name Henry, a frequent find among the many thousands of envelopes in the Chapman Archive. This one letter alone Chapman sold Fr. Siedlecki $400 in coins, or nearly 44 percent of what the entire collection realized in 1911.  
Courtesy Lupia Numismatic Library, Special Collection, The Chapman Family Correspondence Archive.

        In November 1908 the 18 year old building of St. Adalbert Church burned down, but the Glen Lyon firemen were able to save the rectory. He was transferred to Plymouth on March 17, 1909. He died at the rectory of St. Mary's 
Church of the Nativity,  at 78 Willow Street of uremia caused by nephritis at the age of 56 years, on December 10, 1910, at Plymouth, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania. He is buried at the local Saint Michael's Cemetery, Glen Lyon. 
        In January 1911, Henry Chapman, Jr., announced the coin auction sale of the late Rev. Stanislaus Siedlecki of Plymouth, Pennsylvania. His collection of United States silver dollars lacked only the 
1804 specimen. He also had an extensive collection of foreign coins including the 100 ducat struck in 1621 by the Polish King, Sigismund III Vasa. Also, in his cabinet he had an Alexander the Great stater, a U. S. Colonial 1783 gold cent 
of Washington, an 1851 gold octagon piece, and the rare 1907 Gold Eagle. The auction only realized $920.
Fig. 4. CATALOGUE OF THE VALUABLE COLLECTION OF FOREIGN AND UNITED STATES GOLD COINS, PARTICULARLY RICH IN ANCIENT ROMAN GOLD COINS, POLISH GOLD COINS, 
INCLUDING A 100 DUCATS, 1621, SET OF THE SILVER DOLLARS OF THE UNITED STATES, 1794 TO 1904, 1804 ALONE EXCEPTED. 1851 OCTAGONAL $50 PIECE. FINE DECORATIONS, 
INCLUDING THE ORDER OF THE CINCINNATI. MAGNIFICENT CENTS OF 1794, 1796, 1797, 1802, 1803, OF THE LATE REV. STANISLAUS SIEDLECKI, PLYMOUTH, PA., TO WHICH IS ADDED 
THE CANADIAN COLLECTIONS OF R.O. MONTAMBAULT, J. BONNER, E.M. TURNER. (Philadelphia: Messrs. Davis & Harvey, Auctioneers, April 22, 1911). 
Chapman held the auction on Saturday, April 22, 1911 at Davis & Harvey, Philadelphia. The Kolbe Numismatic Books, New York sale January 10, 2010, sold a plated copy of the Siedlecki sale for $5,750.


Bibliography :

Sadlier's Catholic Directory, Almanac and Ordo For the Year of Our Lord 1890 (New York, 1890)  : 372
Little Falls Transcript, Friday, July 31, 1891, page 3, telegram of condolence on death of S. Stoll, county treasurer
Little Falls Transcript, Friday, August 7, 1891, page 3, mentions the park he established at Swan River, Minnesota.
Little Falls Transcript, Friday, September 16, 1892, page 3, mentions the lawsuit against Kukla.
Little Falls Transcript, Friday, September 23, 1892, page 3, announced he won the lawsuit.
St. Paul Globe, Friday, September 22, 1892, page 3, explains the case.
Little Falls Transcript, Friday, February 3, 1893, page 5
Wellsboro Gazette, Wednesday, September 28, 1898, page 3
1900 U. S. Census
"Priest's Silver Jubilee," The Wilkes-Barre Record, Thursday, July 9, 1903, page 5.
1910 U. S. Census
"The Evening News Portrait Gallery," The Evening News, Wednesday, October 19, 1910, page 16 (Stock Photo)
Death Certificate, December 10, 1910
"Popular Priest Died at Plymouth," The Evening News, Monday, December 12, 1910, page 16
The Numismatist, February (1911) : 61
The Numismatist, March (1912) : Back Cover ad for printed priced catalogue.
John Weston Adams, United States Numismatic Literature, Volume 1 : 83, 95
James S. Pula, and Wacaw Kruszka, Poles In Central and Western States (2001) : 129
Congressional Record, Volume 150, Number 130 (Monday, October 11, 2004)


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