Genealo-J, publication of the Jewish Genealogical Society of France,
Issue 120, Winter 2014 has just been published.
Bernard Lyon-Caen completes (see issue 119) his study of several
interconnected Jewish families famous in the fields of furniture,
advertisement and radio namely Chouchan, Levitan, Bleustein and others.
Among the furniture dealers, Levitan and Galerie Barbes were the most
famous ones. In 2011, Publicis, founded by Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet
(1906-1996) in 1926 was named, the third largest marketing group
worldwide by revenue. Other families are also described in this paper,
namely the Gross and Marcus families
A friend asked Pascal Faustini help to extend his family history. His
ancestor Eva Usiglio died in 1824 in Reggio Emilia in the Italian
province of Emilia-Romagna. Faustini quickly found Eva's birth in
Modena, in the same province. The Jewish archives of Modena are so rich
in all kinds of documents that he was able to reach 1614. Where was the
family before? They came >from Florence (Tuscany) and previously >from
several other places in the same province, under the names of Uzielli
/Uziel/Usigli. Other members of the family are found in Rome and Venice.
It is clear that they have been expelled >from Spain in 1492 : quite a
large number of Usillo/Usiello/Husillo are found in the 13th, 14th, and
15th centuries in Aragon and Castille. Faustini claims that the original
name was Uziel and make the hypothesis that the family came >from Toledo
and previously maybe >from Southern France.
Georges Bizet is the famous composer of the Carmen Opera. He married
Genevieve Halevy but died very young six years later. Genevieve then
married Emile Straus, a successful lawyer. She is well known in France
under the name of Madame Straus: she was active during the Dreyfus
Affair and is a model for some characters in Proust's works. But who
was Emile Straus? Anne-Marie Fribourg was able to find his parents and
siblings. His father Abraham Straus is supposed to be born ca. 1804 in
Obermoschel, a German city of the present Land of Rhineland-Palatinate
and he spent some years in London. According to some documents, he was
related to an American Straus family; including Jesse Isidor Straus,
American ambassador to France. Jesse was the son of a couple deceased
in the sinking of the Titanic and the great-grandson of Isaac Straus
born ca. 1788 in Niederkirchen, also in Rhineland-Palatinate.
A short paper by Mathilde Tagger deals with the Arieh family, a very
rich Sephardic family of Wien and Bulgaria, who was nicknamed "The
Rothschild of Orient" because of their wealth and generosity. Tagger
discusses the origin of this surname Arieh. It means lion in Hebrew, and
the Jewish name Leon/Lehon and so on is well documented in the
pre-expulsion years in Spain. It shows that the family came >from the
Spanish city of Leon. This seems the likeliest explanation.
Georges Graner (Paris-France)