Davis Family History
Zweitina or Zuwaytini is a small Greek Orthodox Christian village located in Western Syria cloe to the Lebanese borders and admistratively belonging to the Homs Governorate. It's location is the midst of a coniferous mountain makes it a popular and favored summer destination. It's altitude ranges between 400 and 450 meters. Nearby localities include Marmarita to the north, al-Huwash to the east, al-Husn to the southeast, al-Zarah to the south, Naarah and Tell Hawsh to the southwest, al-Mitras to the west and al-Bariqiyah to the northwest. Zweitina is perhaps most famous for its al-Fawwar spring, which is named so because it flows sporadically. Zweitina is home to the historic Saint George Monastery, one of the oldest in Syria. It is also very close to the Krac des Chevaliers, or Qal'at al-Hisn. According to the Syria Central Bureau of Statistics (CNS), Zweitina had a population of 1540 in the 2011 census. Its inhabitants are predominantly Greek Orthodox Christians.
The name Zweitina is derived from the word zeitoun which is Arabic for olive. Zweitina is Arabic for a single olive fruit. Olive trees dominate the forests of Zweitina and are considered the most important crops in the village which produces large amounts of olive product, thus justifying the name. Others argue that the name was derived from the Aramaic language and means "the land where silkworms grow" and refers to the silkworms which live and grow on berry trees found in the village's forests.
Due to changing weather conditions, Zweitina has a changing population, reaching approximately 5,000 inhabitants in summer. It is a village where Christianity dominates. Almost 75% of the original population live outside the village. Pennsylvania, USA, which has the highest number of immigrants from the village, is home to approximately 500 families. Zweitina is also very close to the neighboring village of Marmarita, another Christian village.
My great grandfather Mike Davis, son of Dayoub Davis of Zuwaytini Syria immigrated to the United States in 1912. His route was Tripoli Syria, to Havre France, to Liverpool England, to Philadelphia. My great grandmother Minnie, daughter of Aboud Achey and Helen Albert came to the United States in 1913 through Ellis Island. Both landing in Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania. They met and got married on 23 January 1914 in Wilkes-Barre. Michael is one of three children, George and Sonya remained in Syria. Minnie is one of three children, Sophia and Zakie also remained in Syria. Michael was the owner and founder of Davis and Sons scrapyard.