Roberto Polin Tapia

My grandfather Roberto Polin Tapia lived as a child in the Chapultepec Castle when his uncle Alvaro Obregón was president of Mexico. The story I have heard is that he was in charge of giving the Chinese cook the daily ammount of money for the food. What he did was to exchange the gold coins he received into less valuable coins and that is how he made some money. I don't know how truth is this story and/of how often it happened.
What I am sure of is that the eagle I have now in my home was the national symbol on top of the flag at the Castle. Why he got it or how I don't know.
It ended in the hands of my father Manuel Polin Loustaunau and I saw it my whole life at home. In November 1998 I asked him for the eagle after his death. He said No! But you will be dead- I said. No!- was again his answer.
Six months later he was dead. As we arrived home after his wake the first thing my mother did was to give me the eagle. But he didn't want it that I would have it - I responded. You take it because I want to- she finalized.
So it is now at my home and as I look at it I think of the stories I mentioned, my family , my childhood and my country.
Marisa Polin, The Hague


Response to Tara Mitchell and Karen Saunders on SLO and Zillis

Dear Tara,
I am very happy you found me and we can get in touch. It is really moving the memories you had from our visit to SLO. I can't remember the presents I gave you, but I remember you and your brother. I was then 16 ( it was 1981) and you were probably 13. I hope you can correct me If the relations and my memory are wrong. My father, mother and I stayed at your home. You had a beautiful home, with ditto guest's room, with very white bed covers and big white pillows. I remember everything white and perfect. (Every body has their own selection of memories of course!) I just told my mother about you and she also remembered very well the visit and your parents visit to Mexico, and that you had two Mercedes Benz (I suppose even then she liked cars, something I recently discovered from her). Your father was a tall and big man. Your mother took me to the City Poly of SLO, where she was very much involved and got all kind of information for me. (Then I was studying High School in Arizona). She was very kind to us, as all of you were. I had the idea that you were distant to our visit, and it is very nice to hear your side of the story, and I am very glad to know that it was also of some consequence for you, as it was for me.

Your parents visit to Mexico was soon after and they stayed shortly but it was also an enjoyable stay. My mother reminded me yesterday, that my father took them to a Paco de Lucia concert, I have to admit I was a bit jealous as I was not invited.
I think that you may be mixing memories with another visit from Mexican relatives. My parents always lived in Mexico City. Other family members went to Rosarito and Ensenada but as far as I know only years after. Also the Papas and Beer comes later in the story. The Ampudias and Reynaldo Polin are now there. Maybe my parents said something about Baja California Norte.
At the moment of our visit to SLO even though I was very much interested on the family history it was in a way a little bit embarrassing because we have not met before, but my father insisted to meet the Polin side on the USA. For me then, meeting your grand mother Rose was of big influence in my life. She was so enthusiast about everything, very warm. As I remember her showing me the bibles, they were at least two, and they were very old (1718). They meant not only the confirmation of my father stories' but the physical proof of my past. My European past. She also told me about her trip to Zillis, the name of the canton, she described me the church, the painted ceilings, the bench -that I am photographed next to it-. (Which still keeps me with some kind of doubts about the surname Polin of Pullinn). She also had, if I remember well a little yellowed genealogical book, that later on my aunt Julia in Acapulco also showed me a copy.
Roses home is also in my memory and the living room and a dinner with more members of the family, among them Burt an one of her daughter who was very near to her. The house was at a high place.
Five years later when I went to Europe, because I wanted to travel, to see the castles of the Rhine river, the paintings I have seen only on photographs and because I had to go to Zillis, the conversations with aunt Rose where accompanying me. I travelled for very little money and a back pack. From Chur I took a lift and I was left at Zillis. I went to the post office-hotel, and I tried to made myself understood but I didn't get that far. It was getting late and I couldn't go to the church under the town, but I still see myself staring at the beautiful "calendar" landsapes and listening to the cows' bells and thinking that my ancestors lived here. I started walking to the the next town Andeer as it was getting late. That evening I was already in Italy at a friends' house in a very different world.
It was only in 1997 that I was able to come back without discovering anything new but finally visiting the beautiful St Martin Church, with the oldest painted ceiling.

About "Parade Along the Creek", I think I saw it (a magazine size, white cover, grey letters and a photograph of a parade?) but it makes no logic because you said she wrote it later. I don't have it and I would love to have it in case you still have a copy.
Now a little bit about me:
After the first trip to Europe in 1986 I continued at the Academy in Mexico City and two years later I left again for two years to London where I specialized in ceramics. There I met Hans Hoogervorst a Dutch historian with political ambitions. I had been living in The Hague since 1990. I went again to the academy there and started having exhibitions in The Netherlands. Hans and I got married in 1992 and Gabriel Andreas was born in 1996. Hans became Secretary of Finances and on a second cabinet Secretary of Health. Since 1998 we live in our actual house and for the last two years I had been very happy to have my studio-gallery next to our home. Hans had left politics and he is now the Chairman of the dutch Securities Exchange Commission (AFM). Our son Gabriel speaks Dutch, English and Spanish, so actually he could communicate with all his family.
I would like to see a photo of you and your family, maybe one from the time we met.
Marisa Polin

Dear Karen,
It is very interesting all the letters you have from your grand father, hopefully you could share some of them with us. I am looking forward seeing these information, specially from and about Joe Polin from Mexico, because to tell you the truth, I know very little about him except a couple of anecdotes.
The trip description to Zillis is also quite a story and I think there is a lot to research there. I would like also to see some of the photos you have of the town.
Marisa Polin


Family Tree Wiki

I have taken a lot of the information that has been posted on Los Polin and some additional materials that my family has, and I have started a family tree with pages about each family member and digital copies of old photos. The page is a wiki, which means that many people can add stories and change the information on the pages. If you would also like to be a writer for the wiki, please email me or Marisa and we'll add you to the list.

I hope you enjoy the things I've posted and I look forward to seeing new stories a photos as they are added to the site!

-- Sarah Loos
(Indiana, USA)


News from Zillis

I just received this today and together with the letters of Sarah, Mark, Tara and Karen from the last months this makes it very big news. It means we may have found the link to the family in Switzerland and the book probably will give us even more information.

Dear Marisa,
It is exactly a week ago that a very exciting book concerning the emigration has come out: Peter Michael, "Hier hört man keine Glocken", Verlag Hier+Jetzt"
In that book you can see the following pictures:

I suppose you do know very well both pictures from your ancestors!
In your page you mention some of my ancestors with name Polin and Grischott. I am not sure at this moment if those are yours ancestors too, but the author from the book above could explain this very exactly.
The maiden name from Martin and Peter Polin's wife (born 1831) was Magdalena Liesch. Peter Polin's mother was Ursula Camenisch and Martin's mother was Elsbeth Camenisch. So they were half-brothers.
If you are interested in more informations concerning Zillis or the Polin-Genealogy then please send us a sign.
Peider Grischott

(On the first photo:
Magdalena and Martin Polin with her two older children, and their 5 younger children and ?
The second photo: my great grandfather Joe Polin and I indeed know the photo. Note: Marisa Polin)