Great-grandfather's Watch

In Attire
Great-grandfather's Watch
Great-grandfather's Watch

My object is my great-grandfather’s wristwatch. My father and I found it at the bottom of one of the many boxes that were given to him by his father. The watch is at least ninety years old. It has a worn black leather strap with a black clock face. As the story was told to me, my great-grandfather immigrated to America from Poland. He came through Ellis Island with this watch on his wrist. He arrived in America as Józef Kuczera. He was concerned that his first name sounded too Polish, so he changed it based on the English version of his first name, which is Joseph. The watch represents his immigration, which is an important event in my family history. He was an inventor and I identify with him in that I enjoy seeing how things work. For example, I completely deconstructed one of my grandfather’s camcorders, which seemed obsolete to me, for no other reason than to understand how each of its parts functioned. This watch reminds my family to stay humble and to remember the journey that brought us to where we are today.

Place(s): Poland, Ellis Island, New York
Year: 1912

– John Kuczera

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more