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Posted: 929016000000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1087944898000
Surnames: Cocowitch, Cocovich, Cockowich
I am looking for information on my ancester John Francis Cocowitch (b. 1820 d. 1871). Most documents indicate he was from Austria and was german speaking. He emigrated to South Carolina sometime in the 1850's. Other variations on his name are the surnames listed. He was a seaman by trade. Any help or insights into the name would be greatly appreciated.

Cocowitch and Curovich sound alike

Posted: 941025600000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1098590979000
hi....i am also trying to find an austrian name, mine is CUROVICH. not sure if that is original spelling, but with the luck i am having, i have a feeling that it is not! i think that my name sounds an awful lot like your think there could be any connection? my grreat grandfather is John Curovich...dont know any date of birth or death, but he had a son..Mathew, my grandfather.. anything sound familiar? hope so!

Re: Cocowitch

Posted: 1364219213000
Classification: Lookup
Surnames: Cocowitch, Thomason, Lawes, Smith, White, Toomer
I believe the person you're mentioning (John Cocowitch) might be my Great-Grandmother's father. Her name was Henrietta Cocowitch Thomason , born 11/17/1860, Charleston, SC. Married to John George Thomason ( born 1830 - died 1891), [son of Steven F. Thomason b.1782-d.1849 & Catherine "unknown last name & DOB/DOD"] their children listed as Florence Thomason (b. 1873), Beulah Thomason (b.? Spouse -"unknown" Conlon; married about 1890), Marie Thomason (b. 1875- d.1881), John Andrew Thomason (b.2/28/1879 -d.10/1955; married 1908 to Marie Sophi Smith (b. About 1881), Franklin Herbert Thomason (b. 11/4/1885, SC -d. 10/8/1967) married to Carrie Edith White (b.1895- d.1925) Gilbert James Thomason (b.12/1890) married Pauline Toomer (dob/dod unknown), My Grandfather William Morris Thomason born 7/16/1882, Summerville, SC - married Rhoda May Lawes (b.5/3/1886 Elmira,NY-d.10/12/1960) had 2 sons, 4 daughters; he died 9/25/1961, Elmira, NY

Re: Cocowitch

Posted: 1364233397000
Classification: Query
Edited: 1364233917000
sounds for misspelling of a croatian name. ;)

as example Cukovic at Ellisisland-imigrations-habour:
but also possibility to find under misspelling-variants there. John could have been then Ivan or Jovan. but as emigrated at 1850s not to find at Ellisisland.

also Hungary can be possible with border-changings where are he came from. Croatia and Hungary both were until 1918 part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. because of that stated "austrian". also possible that the person lived before emigration in another crownland of the Empire. but the name is croatian.

Re: Cocowitch

Posted: 1367204476000
Classification: Query
Many Croatians from the Adriatic Coastal region were early immigrants via the Gulf Ports IE New Orleans, Galveston TX and perhaps some other ports. These people were adept seamen. And at that time Austria ruled over the Adriatic region of Croatia.

Adam Eterovich, who is perhaps the first Croatian genealogist in America has written a great deal about those early Croatians

The link below is interesting as it states that John COCOWITCH was from Sweden. Perhaps this is so, but I saw one other family descended from these early Croatians who believed their ancestor was a sailor from Switzerland! And of course he wasn't he was from one of the Croatian islands

The information below comes from a researcher in 2005

Kokovich / Cocowitch - 1858 Charleston, South Carolina

(Lauren Stokes Gray, Leesburg, Florida and John Cocowitch, Dumfries, Virginia) The following information is what I have after nearly 20 years of research. John Francis Cocowitch came to Charleston SC sometime around 1850. He was born in 1820 and the earliest record we have is his marriage entry from a Mariner's Chapel in Charleston in 1858 where his name is entered as "Cocovich" and he stated he was from Austria. The next record we have is from the 1860 federal census for Charleston where he and his wife of two years, Penelope White of South Carolina, are residing in town with the Joekish family and all state they are German speaking. One other record we have states that he was from Italy. Ivan Franjo Cocovic' was the most likely original name.

I am quite certain that Franjo was a mariner by trade and therefore I assume he grew up in a town or region close to the sea. Part of our family lore is that he was a sea captain and may have mastered his own boat and was a gun running for the confederate side during the Civil War. Part of our family thinks he may have come to Charleston via New York and another section of the family believes his ship burned. Franjo had five children between 1860 and 1871. Their names were John Franklin, Mark C., Catherine, Frances Henrietta and Madeline. I don't know if there are any clues in these names.

This is a very interesting genealogical search, as it pre-dates the common period of Croatian immigration to the U.S. I think Cocovich is a Croatian surname. Franjo, definitely is a common Croatian form of Frank. In the period you mention the surname probably was spelt Cocovich, with an H on the end. The version with a W could be a German spelling as they list themselves are German. If they are from western Croatia, it would be common to list themselves as Italian, even if they spoke Croatian at home.

Robert Jerin
Croatian Heritage Museum
Cleveland Ohio
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