Rabbi Ben-Zion Saydman
This is fascinating. I have had no success finding my MAIPER family prior to 1840. They were living in Rumshishok (Rumsiskes) and it seems like they just fell out of the sky. There are no other MAIPERS anywhere. So either my ancestor Avraham Naftali ben Lipman MAIPER came alone from somewhere else and left any extended family behind, or he was beamed down by aliens. We have two versions of a well known family legend. One says a French Jewish officer arrived with Napoleon and decided to stay. The other says a French soldier got separated from his unit, approached a stately elder in Rumshishok and said "Excusez moi Mon Pere." Later when Jews were forced to take surnames this stately elder chose MONPERE and it was corrupted to MAIPER. The only thing we know for a fact is that MAIPER is not a typical Russian or Jewish name. All native Russian speakers who have seen the name in original Russian language documents say it sounds French or Portuguese. I recently found a Jewish family from Eastern France and Holland with the surname MAISONPIERRE. This might fill in a lot of holes, validate family lore and enable further connections, if I could prove a link. However, Alexander Beider does not believe either MONPERE or MAISONPIERRE linguistically connect to MAIPER.
So, I am back to looking for MAIPER or patronymics in and around Rumshishok pre 1840. I looked at the original Polish documents via your link. Amazing! Has anyone put together a list of surnames and/or town names associated with these documents? Does anything else exist for Rumshishok prior to 1840 that you are aware of?
Lake Forest, CA
MAYPER (MAIPER), MELTSNER, RAPHAEL, AUG, WERNER, SATINSKY, MARCUS, NEWMAN, RADOFF, NUROCK, NEVIAZSHSKY, SIEGEL, GORDON, BLOCH, IDELSON, BACH, KRULL, LEVIN, BEKER, ZUBACH, ROMM
Rumskiskes, Telsiai, Plunge, Philadelphia, NYC