A great story on how old films, now uploaded to YouTube and elsewhere can hold genealogical resources for those researching families or general history. Also, just a great example of how to approach any research project. — Douglas
In this video I discuss how I was able to identify people in the film 1911 A Trip Through New York City. In one scene of the video there is a well to do looking family being driven around by a chauffeur. The license plate on the car can be clearly seen as 65465, so I wondered if I could identify them through this little piece of information.
I learned through the Federal Highway Administration that there were 81,370 auto-mobiles registered in NY by 1911. I also learned registration was published publicly and quickly found a listing for license plate 65465 in the Brooklyn Life Magazine showing a June 12th, 1911 registration E.M.F. – Mrs. Lochwicz 548 Eighth Street. The car in the video definitely looked like a 1911 E.M.F. Model 30 Touring Car, so I tried to find the family in the 1910 census and was able to find them living at 548 Eighth Street. The household consisted of six people; Head of house Florian Lochowicz, his wife Antoinette Lochowicz (listed as Antonie in the census), their children Francis, Emily, and Elsie, and a servant named Mary Moriarty.
Florian Lochowicz was born in Posen in 1871 and immigrated to America in 1890. His wife Antoinette was a distant cousin of his and she was the daughter of Konstantyn Cornelius Lochowicz and Julia Hectus. Konstantyn had immigrated in 1864, possibly due to the January Uprising in Poland. Florian worked as a barber and became very prominent because J.P. Morgan was patron of Florian’s. Florian died unexpectedly in 1918 but was worth $70,000 at the time of his death. His wife continued running the Barbershops into the 1950s and still lived at their Brownstone home in NYC at 548 Eighth Street.