Re: Jewish death notices in the early 20th century #general


There appears to be a mis-understanding about the purpose of
published death notices. In the U.S., this is a legal requirement
as claims on property, inheritance, and debt will need to be resolved.

Local law determines in which newspapers the names of the deceased
must appear. The requirements have varied over time. The announcement
of a person's death might be as simple as a list released by the
Department of Health or in a list of burial permits issued. It may also
take the form of paid notices to indicate when and where the funeral
will take place, and may include the names of heirs - the immediate

Keep in mind that many Jewish community newspapers are published
weekly, not daily. Death announcements might appear in the Jewish
press well after the actual event. For that reason, it is always a good
idea to check both the major daily newspaper of the town as well as the
Jewish community newspapers.

I don't know which towns Mr. Zonder has in mind, but many U.S. cities
in the late 19th and early 20th century had vibrant Jewish communities
numbering in the thousands. The community might be a mix of Reform,
Orthodox, or Hasidic >from many nationalities - each with their own
newspapers. All of these are great resources for the family history

Pat Weinthal
Boston, MA

Lenn Zonder wrote:

<<Published death notices in the early 20th century

from time to time, Genners seeking information on
obituaries >from the late 19th and early 20th centuries
query us about what newspaper Jewish obituaries might
have been listed in. It is just a thought on my part,
but I doubt if any American papers did list them. Jewish
communities of that time were small, rarely
more than a few square blocks. >>

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