JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: SZNAJDER Bialystok Poland #general

Mark Halpern <willie46@...>

Dear Alan:

Based on the information you provide, your research will take
many directions. My advice will be directed toward research in
Poland. First, we need to make a distinction about which Polish
records are available. Records over 100 years old (up to 1902)
are available to the public through the Polish State Archives.
Many of these records have been microfilmed by the LDS Church --
those up through the 1870s. All of these Bialystok vital records
have been indexed by Jewish Records Indexing - Poland The JRI-Poland database is
hosted by JewishGen and can be searched by clicking on "search
database" >from the JRI-Poland homepage. A search for SZNAJDER
(which is pronounced in Polish just like SHNIDER) using
Daitch-Mokotoff Soundex in Bialystok results in over 200 indices
including the 1897 birth of Sender son of Jankel.

Vital records less than 100 years old are housed at the Bialystok
Urzad Stanu Cywilnego (USC) office, the local civil records
office and these records are protected by Polish privacy law. You
can request an official extract of a record, but the USC office
will not provide a copy of the original record or perform any
research on your behalf. This will make research of your father's
immediate family difficult. For more information on record in
Poland, consult the JewishGen Infofile written by Warren Blatt at Also, ask others
who have been successful with research at the Bialystok USC.

A number of Bialystok researchers are forming a Bialystok Area
Research Group. A meeting is scheduled for the upcoming
International Jewish Genealogy Conference in Washington to
organize this effort. This group may be helpful in your research.

In general, the place in which researchers will get the most
knowledgeable responses to questions about JRI-Poland and Polish
records will be the JRI-Poland Discussion Group. Joining the
Group is easily done at

I wish you success in your search.

Mark Halpern
Bialystok Archive Coordinator

----- Original Message -----
Dear Sir/Madam,

For some time now I have been trying to search for details,
relating to my
late father and his family who came >from Bialystok. I have had
success and may be I am searching incorrectly. My father was
born we
believe on or about 1st June 1924 in Bialystok. His name was
Max or he
was also know as Mottel. He was the second child of Alexander
and Chava
SZNAJDER and he had an older sibling know as Guta . Chava I
believe died
in or about October 1934 between Yom kippur and Succoth. my
father was
about nine or ten.

My father was sent >from Bialystok by his father on the day of
Purim in
either 1937 or 1938 t0 an orphanage in New Zealand run by Max
and Annie
DECKSTON who were a distant relative . His stay in the
orphanage was short
as he didn't like the place misbehaved and was sent back by the
to Poland only to be taken off the boat in London by the then
shelter and sent back to New Zealand where he stayed with

It appears that on his Polish passport his surname was spelt
was changed we believe at the time of entry to New Zealand to

My father spoke like many others very little of his child hood
and it was
only recently that my mother and brothers meta man now living
in Los
Angeles who actually travelled on that day of Purim by train
Bialystok to the port and then by boat to New Zealand and
finally to the
Deckston orphanage.
This man although >from Bialystok didn't know my father in
Bialystok and
only met on the train as they left.

I am interested to try and piece together some information
about my father
and his family. as far as my late father knew who passed away
on 31st
January 1981 his father and sister perished. There is some
suggestion that
his father may have remarried.

Any assistance you can give me or any advice that you can give
me on how to
continue my searching I would be very grateful. A number of my
friends have
successfully searched and found information although some of
them still
have parents who can at least provide some background

I look forward to hearing >from you at your convenience

Alan Shnider

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