Our publishing house was visited by Kazimierz Łada from Sokolow, who brought with him interesting material concerning the history of his house. Though Lada doesn't belong to the ancient nobility of the district of Podlasie, land Drohick, so called "before the Bug", which earlier included Sokolow and surrounding territory (about those I write in my articles), but present members of the house Łada actually live in Sokolow Podlaski (a few families) as well as in such villages as Lazow and Lubinki.

That's why I didn't object to writing about this subject for "Gazeta Sokolowska", more so because present activities of this marvelous family, such as cultivating house and family traditions, are praiseworthy, as you, dear readers, will see yourselves when you read the text below. Making use of the big amount of historical and genealogical material supplied by Mr. Kazimierz, I chose some of the most interesting descriptions of the beginnings of the House of Łada, which get lost in the darkness of medieval times.

The House Lada has Masovian roots, the first known ancestor is Plicha, coat of arms Jastrzebiec, who, according to the tradition [...] for his formidable victory against the Jadzwings near the village Łada, was given the vast estates Łada by the masovian prince. He was also given the name Łada and coat of arms Łada [...] writes Alojzy Łada, head of the Łada Association, in the 1993 newsletter.

As attentive readers have surely remarked, contemporary members of this House organized themselves in the association of House Łada, which happened almost 15 years ago during a family reunion on December 10, 1988, in Poznan. In 1992 the association was registered by the District Court in Bydgoszcz. Head of the association became the above quoted Alojzy Łada from Poznan. Mr. Kazimierz Łada from Sokolow has been a member of this association for more than 10 years.

The development of the Association of the House of Łada is extraordinarily dynamic, which resulted in further publications following in Inworoclaw 2002, among others a flyer "History of Łada" by Alojzy and Henryk Łada. In this book we find an outline of the history of Łada, coat of arms Łada, much more detailed than in the previous newsletter. Here are extensive fragments:

[...] Accoring to Polish documents the house of Łada comes from Mazowsze. Masovian history of the house of Łada reaches the Dark Ages, beginning in the 13th century. The first ancestor of the whole family was Piotr Plich, maybe Pelko, coat of arms Jastrzebiec - who belonged to a widely known masovian family. He was a castellan in Czersk and a confidant of Prince Konrad. About 1220 for his merits he was given considerable gifts by the prince, among others the village Łada. With the prince's agreement he changed his hitherto existing family name and coat of arms and instead took the name of his new acquired estate - family name Łada and coat of arms Łada. His son Jakub, who was commander of the castle of Leza, following his father's steps, in 1248 took the new name and coat of arms. At that time commander of the masovian army was Wladyslaw Łada, coat of arms Łada - son of Piotr. As an experienced commander, he easily shattered the attack of Jadzwing and Prussians. For his courage and prowess, in 1258 Prince Boleslaw gave him the area of Lomza vast estate which he named Łada. According to Uryski - Jakusz, which means Janusz Łada, brother of Wladyslaw, son of Piotr - castellan of Czerwinsk, in 1248 received for his merits estates lying left and right of Vistula from Prince Boleslaw and (also) called them Łada.

Accoring to Dlugosz - ancestors of the name of Łada had their own coat of arms. He also mentions that they were high officials. One member of the family was "kadron", which means head administrator, jugde and castellan of Zakroczym. His brother Grzegorz Łada was in 1387 chaplain of the princess - wife of Jan, masovian prince.

The family grew strong branches and became a great family tree. With the passing of time this big and considerable house was divided into 34 separate families (still using the coat of arms Łada, but different family names) as: Bienkowski, Bogdanowicz, Borzymowski, Brodowski, Czerniakowski, Dobrzyszewski, Gnatowski, Gradzki, Grodzicki, Glatowski, Klodnicki, Koronowski, Kowalski, Lipski, Łada, Ladzic, Lazowski, Moczarski, Proszkowski, Noskowski, Radonski, Radostowski, Redhzina, Redzinski, Skrzynski, Sluzewski, Sobolewski, Smarzewski, Walicki, Wasowski, Zablocki, Zawistowski and Zarciszewski. Male descendants of the family Łada creating their own families took (also) the names of their wives or the names of villages they inherited: for example Jedrzej Łada - married Barbara Skrzynska, heir to Skrzynno and took the name Łada-Skrzynski. Walerian Łada married Miss Nowkowska and began writing Łada-Noskowski. Another of the Ładas married a girl from Lipie and Krzenienica and took the family name Lipski, coat of arms Łada (and so on).

Of the family tree Łada, coat of arms Łada, only three branches carry the old name Łada. The first - derives from the first member of the family Piotr Łada (earlier calles Plich or Pelko), who settled about 1220 in the estate of Łada - situated on the territory of Castell of Czersk. Even today there is a village Łada in the list of towns, a village inside the boarders of settlement Raszyn belonging to the department city Warsaw. Second branch - family Łada settled 1248 in the area Czerwin, estate Łada. The ancestor of this line was Janusz Łada, son of Piotr, castellan of Czerwin and mayor of Ledzin.

The village Łada is settled in the fork of the rivers Vistula and Bzura, in the area of Ciechanow. The third branch of this family settled 1248 in the area of Lomza in the estate Łada. The first ancestor of this family was Wladyslaw Łada, son of Piotr, commander of masovian army. These Ładas belonged to the farming nobility. Characteristic for them is their great patriotism and love for the homeland. This is documented by historical notices and church epitaphs. They were also bonded to the land. The family estates of the Ładas were since 1248 and are nonstop until today, though very much divided - for 740 years - in the righteous possession of this same family Łada. From the branch of family settled in Lomza, one of the lines separated and settled in 1620 in Red Russia, where a new village Łada emerged in the district Zamojsc. From this line come many land officials, a second one settled in the disctict Wolyn and Podole.

In the newsletter there are detailed genealogical trees of the house of Łada and also a picture of their coat of arms together with a description of such experts as Paprocki, Bielski and Dlugosz. We can also find famous members of the family, among others Kazimierz Łada - living 1820 to 70, musician, violinist, Krystyna Łada - Studnicka (1907 - 99) known painter and artist, Karol Łada - surgeon and doctor of economy Monika Łada - Cieslak.

One hasn't forgotten the "normal" members of this family, of the so called kujavian line, of which ten generations (till today) have been described by Henryk Łada. We also find a list of villages where Ładas have lived or which have been owned by them.

At the end of all those materials I had a sad thought. It's a pity that the local families, amounting to, according to my summary, more than 100 if one counts only houses having their nests in the Sokolow district, and partly in the surrounding territory, as Siedlce, Wegrowo, were not able to organize in such associations, like Łada, mentioned in the text of the today's episode. It would be wonderful if we had in our area the Association of the House of Krasnodebski, Association of the House of Blonski, Association of the House of Kosieradzki, and so on., and if they all were organized in the union of Associations, for example Association of Houses of Nobility. An unfulfilled dream?

One can hope that maybe there are other non-formal unions and associations like the above mentioned, grouping members of the Houses, but I don't know about them.

Dariusz Kosieradzki