Re: Fake death record? (Poland - 1891) #general


Strictly speaking, vital records are never fake, unless they are created as
forgery, which does not happen often. The testimony of two witnesses announcing
Haim Josek Goldstein's death may be false, but it's a different story. There were
some 3,000 Jews in Mogielenica and the last name, Goldstejn, is very common. It is
more likely it was a cousin, named after the same ancestor, or even an unrelated
person. Wife's name can be a coincidence as well, unless it is very unusual.
Assuming Haim Josek was born and married in Mogielenica, all relevant records must
be checked. If he was not, it adds to the complexity and scope of research, but
there is no way around it. It's all the matter of finding and analyzing records.

With regard to military service, it is true that many wanted to avoid it and many
did. However, Russia was the nation of laws, however anti-Semitic they might have
been. I remember reading that Jewish kahals were responsible for providing a quote
of conscripts to the state. Whether this law/rule/regulation was enforced in the
ten Russian-Polish provinces, I do not know. It seems unlikely that a person who
had at least two children by 1890 would worry about conscription in 1891; there
were plenty of 17 year olds to fill the quote. But again, I have not studied the
subject. If someone has, please share you knowledge.

Boris Feldblyum
Potomac, MD

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