Re: Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech
Ellen Slotoroff Zyroff
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The father of a woman who married into our family claimed that he was of German Jewish descent like his wife. My grandmom and mom perceived right off the bat from his pronunciation of Yiddish that his claim was a pose and that he was a "Galicianer." My research into the documentary evidence all these decades later confirms that my mom was correct. Yes, many German Jews, the group that arrived in the U.S. a generation or two previous to the Jews from further East considered themselves culturally and educationally and behaviorally superior to the Russian/Polish/Ukrainian/Romanian/Galicianer/Bessarabian/Belarus Jews who arrived later and whom they stigmatized. I have not heard that Galician Jews felt superior to Russian Jews, but have inferred that often the opposite was true! Being a Galicianer seems to have have had a stigma attached, with stereotypes abounding! Polish and Ukrainian Jews likewise had choice stereotypes about each other. The Russians mocked the formality, snobbishness, rigidity of mindset of their German Jewish brethren. The ideal of day to day closeness and unity among all Jews seems to have been a theoretical ideal, not the reality.
On Sunday, January 31, 2021, 02:29:57 PM PST, Judy Kaufman <judykaufman7@...> wrote:
Growing up, I was told repeatedly that my mother's family were German Jews and my father's were Russian Jews, with the clear implication always being that German Jews were higher class. In my genealogical research, I have documented that: my mother's father came from Galicia/Austrian Empire - Sokolow Malopolski in current day Poland; my mother's maternal grandfather came from Brest in current day Belarus; I can't determine where her maternal grandmother came from but all census data says she's from Russia ("Russia Poland" in one case).
My grandfather (b. 1884) from Sokolow Malopolski is listed on all the censuses as born in "Austria" - did that somehow mutate into being "German"? Was this common? Did Galician Jews feel superior to "Russian" Jews?
Judy Leiderman Kaufman
ZOLOTOROV (Chernigov, Ukraine; Kiev, Ukraine);
SLOTOROFF (Kiev, Ukraine)
CHARKOVSKY or SHARKOVSKY(Ukraine);
LEVINE (Ukraine and Minsk, Belarus);
LIMON (Berestechko, Volynia, Ukraine)
TESLER (Horochiv, Volynia, Ukraine)
ZYRO (Zabolativ, Ukraine)
TAU (Zalolativ, Ukraine)
ROTH / ROT (Ataki, Bessarabia, Moldova)
BLAUSTEIN (Chernigov, Ukraine or Minsk, Belarus)