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Compare this very old photo to Metzenseifen today, in the photographs below.*
Source: Hungary's Towns and Cities - Apollo Literature and Printing Company, 1896.
             Metzenseifen (also called Nizný Medzev and Vyšný Medzev) is a little town nestled at the feet of the beautiful Carpathian Mountains in what is now present day Slovakia. The town was settled by Germans centuries ago, and the German surnames of its residents is evidence of these 'roots' today.
             Metzenseifen was part of Austria-Hungary at the time my grandparents left Europe and came to America to begin a new life. Like most of the immigrants who came to America from Metzenseifen during the late 1800's and early 1900's, they settled in Cleveland, Ohio. They came to work for Theodor Kundtz, a fellow Metzenseifener who had arrived in America a pauper and became a millionaire with several wood-working factories in Cleveland.
            Kundtz was most prominently known for the intricately carved wood cabinets he produced for White Sewing Machines. He helped fund ship's passage for many fellow Metzenseifeners to come to America and work for him. My grandfather, Joseph Gedeon, was one of many woodworkers who came over to work for Kundtz.
            Surnames common to Metzenseifen are Gedeon (Gedeohn), Antl, Schmiedt, Tischler, Kundtz, Ballasch (Balasch), Gobl (Gobel), Orient, Eiben, Muller, Schuster, Tomasch, Pimzner, Friedl (Friedel), to name a few. There is still a sizable number of these surnames in Cleveland and it's surrounding areas today.
            An interesting and informative book about the life of Theodor Kundtz and the Metzenseifen immigrants to Ohio is "Tori in Amerika" by Christopher Eiben. I highly recommend it to anyone researching ancestors from Metzenseifen to Cleveland.
            The photographs below were taken May, 2000. The church in the second photo (steeple is visible in first photo also) has been a landmark of the town for more than a hundred years.

* Click on each photo to view enlargement
Photographs Copyright© 2000 K. Flachbart

Click photo to enlarge
view direction east
(Jasov, Kosice)
Click photo to enlarge
Mary Queen of Angels
Catholic Church
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View from the cemetary,
direction Grund
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One of the few older
houses in Metzenseifen

 Click to view
Map of Metzenseifen

Dr. Valeria Flachbart,
Mayor of Metzenseifen
(Also my cousin :)


If you know a Metzenseifen site that I can add to my list, or if you have a genealogy website with ancestors originating from this town, please email me.

Updated April 2010
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