Uzelac (Serbian Cyrillic: Узелац) is an old South Slavic surname and it originates from Lika and Krbava, but also from Dalmatia and Bosanska Krajina. It is predominantly used by ethnic Serbs of the Eastern Orthodox Church.
The surname has a root in the verb "ùzēti" which means "to take (away)" in Serbian and refers to the man who married into his wife's household, rather than taking her to his own, i.e. he was "taken (away)" from his family into another one.
In 1696 Bishop Sebastian Glavinić de Glamoć (1630–1697) while visiting Lika and Krbava discovers Serbian Orthodox Priest Nikola Uzelac who was offering his services not only to Serbian Orthodox but also to Roman Catholic people as well.
In (Plemenski rječnik ličko-krbavske županije) R. Grujic notes that in 1915 census Uzelac's were the largest clan in Lika and Krbava with over 319 families. At that time all families who carried the same last name also belonged to the same clan (плеmе, pleme plural: плeмeна, plemena).
In the United States
Many Uzelac's are also found in the United States, mostly in the states of Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan. First Uzelac's in the states are recorded in 1900 Ellis Island Immigration station. The most famous Uzelac's in the United States are Kristal Uzelac, a retired gymnast, and Elliot Uzelac, former head football coach at Navy and Western Michigan University.
- Tomislav Uzelac - Croatian Computer Scientist
- Milojko Uzelac - Taras (1896 - 1946) - Serbian soldier in the Serbian Army (WW1) and the Yugoslav Army in Homeland (WW2)
- Mike Uzelac My Wicked Twin - bass, vocals (2008–present) Canadian Hard Rock Band
- Milan Uzelac (born 1950), Serbian poet, essayist
- Milan Emil Uzelac (1867 - 1954), a Austro-Hungarian Army military commander
- Elliot Uzelac (born 1941), American football coach
- Kristal Dawn Uzelac (born 1986), American female gymnast
- Slobodan Uzelac (born 1947), Serbian politician in Croatia
- Tom Uzelac, (Playing career 1969-70) Hillsdale Chargers Baseball
- Joyce Uzelac, actress
- Plemenski rječnik ličko-krbavske županije. - In Serbo-Croatian
- Karl Kaser - Popis Like i Krbave 1712 - In Serbo-Croatian and German
- O Etnogenezi Stanovnistva Like - In Serbo-Croatian
- Seobe i Naselja u Lici - In Serbian
- Ellis Island/Port of New York Records - Immigrant inspection station from 1892 until 1954
- From the contents: Sv. Sava Gornjokarlovacki no. 6 - in Serbian
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