Eugene (Gene) J. Kisluk, 70, an expert and appraiser of rare books and manuscripts, died Nov. 19, 2018, after a debilitating illness.
Born in Poland, Gene came to New Britain in 1961 and graduated from New Britain High School in 1967. He attended Columbia University, where he earned his bachelor’s, master’s, and Ph.D. degrees in history. His dissertation was published in 2005, “Brothers from the North: The Polish Democratic Society and the European Revolutions of 1848-1849.”
Gene was known for his ability with languages and his evaluation of books and autographs as well as the personal papers of important 20th Century literary and political figures.
Among his more celebrated projects was the appraisal of a trove of letters written by Pope John Paul II, which became the subject of a BBC/PBS documentary in 2016.
Many knew him as an erudite man, with a gift for engaging people on countless subjects. He was a devoted husband and father, coaching his son’s soccer team and never missing an event in which his son participated.
He is survived by his wife, Daniëlle Grosheide, his son, Eugene Sylvester, his mother, Scholastyka, brother, Ryszard, and sister-in-law, Boguslawa.
The funeral was held privately. Memorial donations may be sent to the New York Public Library at nypl.org/kisluk.