Coleman - Steil
History and Heritage

Murray and Kay and their Ancestors

by Thomas F. Coleman


For several months in 2010 I found myself on a quest to learn all that I could about the histories of Murray Frear Coleman and Kathleen Jeanette Coleman. 

When I started my journey into the past, I only knew bits and pieces of the family history of my parents.  I knew the names of my maternal and paternal grandparents.  Although I had some information about some of my great grandparents, I had more questions than answers about who they were, where and how they lived, what their religious affiliations were, and what their countries of origin were. 

When I was growing up, I had personal experiences of three of my grandparents.  My mother's parents, Frank and Catherine Steil, had been a major part of my life.  Since my mother was an only child, her parents were able to devote much of their time and attention to the Coleman grandchildren.

My father's dad, Arthur Roy Coleman, died when my father was 11 years old, so I never had the opportunity to meet him.  My father's mom, Margaret Coleman, split her time between her daugther Betty's family and her son Murray's family, so the Coleman grandkids saw "Grandma Finney" less often than we did "Grandma and Grandpa Steil." 

As my brothers and sisters and I were growing up, we would occasionally hear our grandparents mention "the old country."  But we really knew little about what that meant.  We heard them talk about Canada, Scotland, and Germany.  There were also occasional references to Ireland.  But other than these vague generalities, we knew very little about our Coleman-Steil heritage.  We also knew next to nothing about "Grandpa Coleman" who was known to his friends and family members as Roy.

Through this website, I intend to share what I have learned about the ancestors of Murray F. Coleman and Kathleen J. Steil.  I have traced the roots of their parents and grandparents back as far as I could.  The Coleman line has roots in Ireland, while the Paterson line originates in Scotland.  The Steil ancestors lived in Germany while the Lukaschewski forebearers were citizens of what today is called Poland.  So my eight siblings and I are Irish-Scotish-German-Polish Americans.

The nine of us can thank the Irish for our playfulness, the Scotts for our thriftiness, the Germans for our creativity, and the Polish for our perseverance.  Most of all, we can thank our parents for giving us life and raising us. 

This website is dedicated to my brothers and sisters and to my nieces and nephews.  I hope they find our family history and heritage to be as fascinating as I have.  I also hope that they share this family history with their offspring as new branches of our family tree are created by younger generations.  


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