Interesting similiarities James. My family never left the Wyandotte (just outside of Detroit area) of Michigan though. And your Joseph is much older than mine (being born sometime in the 1840's). He did come from a large family, though I do not know all of his siblings. It is rumored he could have been one of as many as 13-16 children. Also, I do know that through the family it was stated he was a Cook for Nobility in Germany before coming to America, arriving in the early 1870's. Their firts stop was New York before coming to Michigan. I believe they had friends there already.
As for getting back to Germany or Poland, I too have not had much luck. Too many records are missing!
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