Re: Origin of Latvian Jews #latvia

Lisa Newman <lisa.newman.a@...>

In the family tree which the Latvian Historical archives in Riga
prepared for my Samuel family 20 years ago, it is clear that our
family was in Latvia as early as 1750 and continued to be there over
many many generations. At the IAJGS conference in London at that time
I met with the very helpful archivist who did the research; she was
one of the very few Jews employed then in the state historical
archives in Riga and took a particular interest in documenting
histories of Jewish families in Latvia.

Interestingly, the name "Samuel Samuel" recurs very often over many
generations in our tree and was even the name of my great grandfather
(born in Latvia) and of my first cousin (born in the U.S. in 1936). I
have been told that this name is particularly characteristic of
sephardic families.

As well, the shidduch of my own grandfather (doubtless arranged by his
father, Samuel Samuel, a very wealthy industrialist in Libau (now
Liepaja)) was with Golda, a daughter of a Pines family >from Ruzhany,
now in Belarus. They married around 1890. While the families
certainly had wealth in common, I believe they likely also had
sephardic ancestry in common.

Would love to hear >from others who could more light on this.


Lisa Newman, Toronto, Canada

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