February 25, 2012

a remarkable discovery

How strange can things be ! In my previous item about a strange concrete ship in the middle of the fields driving from Omis to Trilj, I was was looking for the proper spelling of the word "stecci". Those ancient grave stones brought via Google to a Slavic forum, full of information about many Slavic countries, among which Croatia/Dalmatia. And much to my surprise I stumbled over an item about Dalmatian soldiers fighting in the American Civil War. Truly amazing stuff, see for yourself (please copy/paste the line):
Even more surprising to me, as I earlier wrote about a "confederate" in Svinisce. He nor me have known the true story behind this coincidental little item I wrote because of the cap Jordan got from his sailor son as just a funny present to him. Some quotes from this amazing discovery:
During the American Civil War, many Croatians served as individuals and in organized Croatian companies. They fought for the South. Their service was not unusual or accidental, as they were a part of the South in numbers since the 1760's. They were in Mobile, Alabama; Pascaguala, Mississippi; Harrison Co., Mississippi; New Orleans, Louisiana; and Plaquemine Parish, Louisiana. A Dalmatian, Juan Matulich, was selling guns and whiskey to the Indians in the 1760's; another, Marco Givanovich, owned a pre-Civil War plantation worth over $400,000. Documents indicate they were known as Slavonians, and the majority came from Dalmatia in Croatia. George Petrovich Gettysburg, July 2, 1863 At 8 a.m. on July 2, 1863, practically the whole of both armies was upon the field at Gettysburg. The Confederate Army lost 28,063 men as killed, wounded and missing; the Federals 23,049. Some were Croatian. Corporal George Petrovich volunteered on July 22, 1861, at Camp Moore, Louisiana, for Company D, 10th Louisiana Infantry. (The New Orleans Business Directory for 1860 lists George Petrovich at 111 Chartres Street, with a fruit store.) His enlistment papers state his residence at New Orleans.
Of course I know many Croats live all over the world, not only in Germany or the Netherlands, but many of them in Australia, America, Canada and elsewhere. Just recently one of them from a neighbor village , Theo Brstilo with wife and kids, flew over the ocean to find himself and his kids a better future. For that is still a big problem over here, with good education and well motivated people, but mainly/only jobs in the tourist season, and that is not only a pity, but a shame as well. Most of the earlier industry in the coastal area has disappeared and much of the initiative is blocked in early stage by an overkill of rules and paperwork. I hope I will live to see the change in the current situation, somehow boosted by the membership of the European Union. So Ikea, Volkswagen, Philips, Unilever, Canon, Suzuki, Caterpillar, Bayer, Beneton and lookalikes, don't only sell your goods here, but start some production units too. People here want to work, not only in the tourist season, but all year round !!! (Still, it's amazing to see that Croats did not only move to find a better life, but even lived to die in the American Civil War).