Date   

Walter MATTHAU; BEROLSKY; Rakishok; Aniksht #general

Tim Baker <tbaker@...>
 

A number of the recent obituaries and accounts of Walter Matthau
refer to the fact that his real name was Walter Matuschanskavasky, the son
of a peddlar >from Kiev named Milton and Rose (Berolsky) >from Lithuania. I
have some question about the elongated surname attributed to Matthau in
these articles, and I would also like to throw a little light on the
subject of Matthau's mother Rose Berolsky.
I became interested in Walter Matthau a few years ago as a result of
an odd circumstance that happened while researching a synagogue in
Bellingham, Washington. The shul here was started around the turn of the
century, in part by Jews >from the towns of Rakishok, Skopishok, and
Ponemunka in NE Lithuania. The connection to Walter Matthau came up
several years ago when someone >from Bellingham told me about an incident
that happened when they were at a trade show in Las Vegas. The sign for
their exhibit had the name Bellingham on it. Someone came up and started
talking to them, and the person indicated that his mother had lived in
Bellingham briefly after coming across Russia through Harbin. He said his
mother even gave birth to a child in Bellingham. Eventually the person
relating this story said he was Walter Matthau's brother. I viewed the
story skeptically at first, but then eventually looked up Matthau in Who's
Who, and what I saw gave some credence to the story. It said Matthau's
mother's maiden name was BEROLSKI, a fairly uncommon surname and the name
of one of the early families here. Lieb Hillel (aka "Louis") Berolski
lived here with his wife Musha Liba (aka "Mary") Gen for many years.
According to Louis' naturalization papers, he and his wife were both born
around 1876 in "Rakes" Russia, which I took to be Rakishok, Lithuania.
Curiously, no one in the Berolski family here had ever heard of a
connection to Matthau. I did some more research and came across a book
entitled _Matthau_ by Allan Hunter. This book had the oft-repeated
statement >from Matthau that his real name was Walter Matuschanskayasky,
and that his father Milton was a Russian Orthodox priest who fled to New
York but then deserted his family when Walter was three. However, the
book _American Jewish Biographies_ (New York: Facts on File, 1982) refers
to the fact that this was a joke that Matthau put over on someone:
"[Matthau] once told an interviewer in jest that his father had been a
Catholic priest in Russia whose name was Melas Matuschanskayasky and who
had had to emigrate because of his role in a theft." It is not clear,
however, if the surname was part of the story that Matthau made up. I
have seen some unusual names used in the old country, but never one quite
as convoluted as Matuschanskayasky. Given Matthau's reputation for
pulling people's leg, it's difficult for me to accept it as a genuine
surname. If anyone has seen this surname in a primary source, I would be
interested to hear of it. Anther researcher visited South Africa several
years ago and contacted Berolsky families there. (They had taken the name
BEROL, or BEROLD.) Those South African Berol families actually acknowledg
ed a connection to Matthau's family, but said the name was originally
something like MALATSKI. That sounds more realistic to me.
I found a web page listing Matthau's agent and wrote a letter to
Matthau asking if he knew of a connection to the Bellingham Berolski
families. I also referred to the "Matuschanskayasky" reference and said
that I realized it was just a joke. After a rather period long time,
Matthau responded with a brief letter. He made no reference to the
"Matuschanskayasky" issue. He said that his mother Rose Berolski had
spoken of a brother in Bellingham, however, but that he never heard the
first name. He also said that he remembered his mother referring to her
town of origin as a "place called Anixt, near Kovno." I contacted him for
further information, but never heard back except for a short note where he
referred again to his mother being >from the "county" of "Aneext" Lithuania.

I think the "Anixt" or "Aneext" that Matthau referred to was
probably what is currently known as Anyksciai (Aniksht in Yiddish). It is
located about 50 miles NE of Kovno, on the road to Rakishok. Nearby is
the narrow gauge train line running that runs the other way between Utian
and Ponevezh. If Matthau's mother was >from Aniksht, and if she was
related to the Louis Berolsky in Bellingham who was born in Rakishok, it
shows a dispersal of this family along a line extending >from Rakishok down
to Aniksht and possibly further. In Vizhon, about 12 miles NE of Akiksht,
we find three Berolskis listed on the 1895 census: Abram-Itsek Beroski
and his wife Khaia-Basha, Khaim-Itsek Berolski and his wife Basha, and the
Beroski sister Geina. The father listed for all three Vizhon Berolskis is
Esel, a nickname for Yosef. And since Yosef was the name of Louis
Beroski's father, the Vizhon Berolskis were probably siblings of Louis
from Rakishok. This is further confirmed because the Vizhon Berolskis all
list Rakishok as their birth place, just like Louis. If Matthau's mother
Rose Berolski was the sister of Louis and the Vizhon Berolskis, as Matthau
implied to me, it is unclear why she does not appear on any family tree in
the Berolski family. Or could the "Geina" Berolski in Vizhon actually be
Rose Beroski, Matthau's mother? There are other people researching
Berolsky families in Abel and Dvinsk, Latvia, but so far we have not been
able to make a connection with the Rakishok families.
If anyone has further information on Matthau or Berolsky I would be
curious to hear it.

Tim Baker
Bellingham WA


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Walter MATTHAU; BEROLSKY; Rakishok; Aniksht #general

Tim Baker <tbaker@...>
 

A number of the recent obituaries and accounts of Walter Matthau
refer to the fact that his real name was Walter Matuschanskavasky, the son
of a peddlar >from Kiev named Milton and Rose (Berolsky) >from Lithuania. I
have some question about the elongated surname attributed to Matthau in
these articles, and I would also like to throw a little light on the
subject of Matthau's mother Rose Berolsky.
I became interested in Walter Matthau a few years ago as a result of
an odd circumstance that happened while researching a synagogue in
Bellingham, Washington. The shul here was started around the turn of the
century, in part by Jews >from the towns of Rakishok, Skopishok, and
Ponemunka in NE Lithuania. The connection to Walter Matthau came up
several years ago when someone >from Bellingham told me about an incident
that happened when they were at a trade show in Las Vegas. The sign for
their exhibit had the name Bellingham on it. Someone came up and started
talking to them, and the person indicated that his mother had lived in
Bellingham briefly after coming across Russia through Harbin. He said his
mother even gave birth to a child in Bellingham. Eventually the person
relating this story said he was Walter Matthau's brother. I viewed the
story skeptically at first, but then eventually looked up Matthau in Who's
Who, and what I saw gave some credence to the story. It said Matthau's
mother's maiden name was BEROLSKI, a fairly uncommon surname and the name
of one of the early families here. Lieb Hillel (aka "Louis") Berolski
lived here with his wife Musha Liba (aka "Mary") Gen for many years.
According to Louis' naturalization papers, he and his wife were both born
around 1876 in "Rakes" Russia, which I took to be Rakishok, Lithuania.
Curiously, no one in the Berolski family here had ever heard of a
connection to Matthau. I did some more research and came across a book
entitled _Matthau_ by Allan Hunter. This book had the oft-repeated
statement >from Matthau that his real name was Walter Matuschanskayasky,
and that his father Milton was a Russian Orthodox priest who fled to New
York but then deserted his family when Walter was three. However, the
book _American Jewish Biographies_ (New York: Facts on File, 1982) refers
to the fact that this was a joke that Matthau put over on someone:
"[Matthau] once told an interviewer in jest that his father had been a
Catholic priest in Russia whose name was Melas Matuschanskayasky and who
had had to emigrate because of his role in a theft." It is not clear,
however, if the surname was part of the story that Matthau made up. I
have seen some unusual names used in the old country, but never one quite
as convoluted as Matuschanskayasky. Given Matthau's reputation for
pulling people's leg, it's difficult for me to accept it as a genuine
surname. If anyone has seen this surname in a primary source, I would be
interested to hear of it. Anther researcher visited South Africa several
years ago and contacted Berolsky families there. (They had taken the name
BEROL, or BEROLD.) Those South African Berol families actually acknowledg
ed a connection to Matthau's family, but said the name was originally
something like MALATSKI. That sounds more realistic to me.
I found a web page listing Matthau's agent and wrote a letter to
Matthau asking if he knew of a connection to the Bellingham Berolski
families. I also referred to the "Matuschanskayasky" reference and said
that I realized it was just a joke. After a rather period long time,
Matthau responded with a brief letter. He made no reference to the
"Matuschanskayasky" issue. He said that his mother Rose Berolski had
spoken of a brother in Bellingham, however, but that he never heard the
first name. He also said that he remembered his mother referring to her
town of origin as a "place called Anixt, near Kovno." I contacted him for
further information, but never heard back except for a short note where he
referred again to his mother being >from the "county" of "Aneext" Lithuania.

I think the "Anixt" or "Aneext" that Matthau referred to was
probably what is currently known as Anyksciai (Aniksht in Yiddish). It is
located about 50 miles NE of Kovno, on the road to Rakishok. Nearby is
the narrow gauge train line running that runs the other way between Utian
and Ponevezh. If Matthau's mother was >from Aniksht, and if she was
related to the Louis Berolsky in Bellingham who was born in Rakishok, it
shows a dispersal of this family along a line extending >from Rakishok down
to Aniksht and possibly further. In Vizhon, about 12 miles NE of Akiksht,
we find three Berolskis listed on the 1895 census: Abram-Itsek Beroski
and his wife Khaia-Basha, Khaim-Itsek Berolski and his wife Basha, and the
Beroski sister Geina. The father listed for all three Vizhon Berolskis is
Esel, a nickname for Yosef. And since Yosef was the name of Louis
Beroski's father, the Vizhon Berolskis were probably siblings of Louis
from Rakishok. This is further confirmed because the Vizhon Berolskis all
list Rakishok as their birth place, just like Louis. If Matthau's mother
Rose Berolski was the sister of Louis and the Vizhon Berolskis, as Matthau
implied to me, it is unclear why she does not appear on any family tree in
the Berolski family. Or could the "Geina" Berolski in Vizhon actually be
Rose Beroski, Matthau's mother? There are other people researching
Berolsky families in Abel and Dvinsk, Latvia, but so far we have not been
able to make a connection with the Rakishok families.
If anyone has further information on Matthau or Berolsky I would be
curious to hear it.

Tim Baker
Bellingham WA


Translation of name Josek #general

Mervin Rosenbaum <mervinr@...>
 

What would the Polish name Josek be in English? Could it possible be Isaac?

Jean Rosenbaum


Yiddish help please #general

Jim Kellogg <jim@...>
 

I collect postal history and have a letter that I believe is in Yiddish
written in 1947 >from Berlin to Brooklyn, NY. It mentions only Palestine
and a address in English. I would like to send a scan to someone who
will translate it for me. Thank you.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Yiddish help please #general

Jim Kellogg <jim@...>
 

I collect postal history and have a letter that I believe is in Yiddish
written in 1947 >from Berlin to Brooklyn, NY. It mentions only Palestine
and a address in English. I would like to send a scan to someone who
will translate it for me. Thank you.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Translation of name Josek #general

Mervin Rosenbaum <mervinr@...>
 

What would the Polish name Josek be in English? Could it possible be Isaac?

Jean Rosenbaum


Warszawa Research Group #Warsaw #Poland Farmlands now part of Warszawa #warsaw #poland

Drexler <asleuth@...>
 

I am trying to trace my father's family in Warszawa. They owned
farmland with several houses in what were the outskirts of Warszawa
pre-WWII. I have found out that it is now part of the city of
Warszawa. The area was called Ochota, the family name was Grabski
(spelling changed to Grabsky in the US). Would I be able to find out
any information about the family in the land records, and if so would it
tell me who owns the property now. I do not think the Grabskis still
own it but the records might tell me how long they had the land. I have
an autobiography written by a grand uncle with street names and house
addresses of where the family lived >from the time he was three years of
age until the family emigrated to the US. His parents owned a pottry
shop for a while. I believe it was his mother's parents who owned the
farm - his father took his mother's surname when he lived with the
family after becoming an orphan.
Anita Drexler
Miami, Florida
GRABSKI
BERNSTEIN
MODEL


Warszawa Research Group #Warsaw #Poland Chidner - Bezboki #warsaw #poland

CoolGram13@...
 

I am researching the Chidner (Tschidner) and Bezboki families of Warsaw and
Rakinoye, Poland. Any information which might be available would be very
much appreciated.

Nadine Kaufman
CoolGram13@...


Farmlands now part of Warszawa #warsaw #poland

Drexler <asleuth@...>
 

I am trying to trace my father's family in Warszawa. They owned
farmland with several houses in what were the outskirts of Warszawa
pre-WWII. I have found out that it is now part of the city of
Warszawa. The area was called Ochota, the family name was Grabski
(spelling changed to Grabsky in the US). Would I be able to find out
any information about the family in the land records, and if so would it
tell me who owns the property now. I do not think the Grabskis still
own it but the records might tell me how long they had the land. I have
an autobiography written by a grand uncle with street names and house
addresses of where the family lived >from the time he was three years of
age until the family emigrated to the US. His parents owned a pottry
shop for a while. I believe it was his mother's parents who owned the
farm - his father took his mother's surname when he lived with the
family after becoming an orphan.
Anita Drexler
Miami, Florida
GRABSKI
BERNSTEIN
MODEL


Chidner - Bezboki #warsaw #poland

CoolGram13@...
 

I am researching the Chidner (Tschidner) and Bezboki families of Warsaw and
Rakinoye, Poland. Any information which might be available would be very
much appreciated.

Nadine Kaufman
CoolGram13@...


Warszawa Research Group #Warsaw #Poland Warszawa Property Archives #warsaw #poland

Hadassah Lipsius <kesher@...>
 

On Sun, 09 July 2000, "Daniel Wagner" wrote:


Dear Hadassah:

Your answer regarding Franciszkanska Street is indeed very interesting. I
was wondering if you could share with us what the "Property Archives" is,
where it is, how to contact and interact with them etc.
Thank you for any help about this.
Daniel Wagner

Originally, I sent a friend into the Property Archives (which I believe is called the Hipoteka) and I gave him one of the lot numbers that I was looking for and asked him to check the file. He reported back that the file for that property was over 500 pages thick and consisted of two volumes. He did not go thru the files much, as there were many items in Russian legalize which he claimed gave him goose bumps trying to figure out. Then on my recent visit to Warszawa, I went to check it out myself. The file contained family wills and vital records providing proof of relationship. There were also several legal judgement documents because portions of the property were sold off (to an in-law) and the buyer allegedly owed money to a kehilla in a town in Lublin Gubernia. I was not able to get copies of any of the documents but instead wrote notes. I was told that you are not allowed.

I was not able to document everything that I needed and I have other lots numbers >from other sides of my family. I am investigating hiring someone to go in and do the extracts for these other lots. I will let you know my progress as it comes along.

Hadassah Lipsius
Kew Gardens Hills, Ny


Warszawa Property Archives #warsaw #poland

Hadassah Lipsius <kesher@...>
 

On Sun, 09 July 2000, "Daniel Wagner" wrote:


Dear Hadassah:

Your answer regarding Franciszkanska Street is indeed very interesting. I
was wondering if you could share with us what the "Property Archives" is,
where it is, how to contact and interact with them etc.
Thank you for any help about this.
Daniel Wagner

Originally, I sent a friend into the Property Archives (which I believe is called the Hipoteka) and I gave him one of the lot numbers that I was looking for and asked him to check the file. He reported back that the file for that property was over 500 pages thick and consisted of two volumes. He did not go thru the files much, as there were many items in Russian legalize which he claimed gave him goose bumps trying to figure out. Then on my recent visit to Warszawa, I went to check it out myself. The file contained family wills and vital records providing proof of relationship. There were also several legal judgement documents because portions of the property were sold off (to an in-law) and the buyer allegedly owed money to a kehilla in a town in Lublin Gubernia. I was not able to get copies of any of the documents but instead wrote notes. I was told that you are not allowed.

I was not able to document everything that I needed and I have other lots numbers >from other sides of my family. I am investigating hiring someone to go in and do the extracts for these other lots. I will let you know my progress as it comes along.

Hadassah Lipsius
Kew Gardens Hills, Ny


Warszawa Research Group #Warsaw #Poland Re: Restaurant in Warsaw ca 1920s-1930s #poland #warsaw

Rivka Schiller <rivkaschiller@...>
 

Dear Dr. Orenstein,

I wish I had more useful info. w/ which to provide you, but it sounds like
you are on the right track. I would certainly take any of the advice
offered to you by Hadassah Lipsius, as she is totally involved with the
Warsaw list serve group. My own family--both sides of my grandmother's and
great-aunt's family--owned lucrative businesses prior to the War (although
times got bad in the early 30's/late 20's--as was the case throughout the
world), and quite frankly, I don't have the necessary details, phone
listings, etc. for either of these businesses, so I definitely empathize w/
you. The only other thing besides the phones directories might be to
contact the Jewish Institute in Warsaw (funded, I believe, by the Ron Lauder
Foundation). Perhaps they may be of help.

As for the info. that I have uncovered, it is perhaps most meaninful to
me--not necessarily of any use to other people. But one thing that I found
most interesting is that my maternal great great grandparents--surname
Pinkel--lived in the very same building complex as did Isaac Bashevis
Singer, at Krochmalna 12. At this same address were also study houses for
various Chasidic groups: Radzyminer, Minsker, and perhaps the Alexander
Chasidim. In any event, my great grandfather (surname Pszenica) became an
adherent of the Radzyminer Rebbe. Singer vividly describes this locale in
his autobiographical work, "In My Father's Court." I highly recommend it if
you are trying to get a sense of pre-WWII Warsaw.

Otherwise, there is not a great deal to tell, right now. I hope to visit
Warsaw--especially the Jewish Cemetery--sometime in the near future. That
may be the only way, ultimately, to uncover some of these missing pieces.

Best wishes,
Rivka


Re: Restaurant in Warsaw ca 1920s-1930s #warsaw #poland

Rivka Schiller <rivkaschiller@...>
 

Dear Dr. Orenstein,

I wish I had more useful info. w/ which to provide you, but it sounds like
you are on the right track. I would certainly take any of the advice
offered to you by Hadassah Lipsius, as she is totally involved with the
Warsaw list serve group. My own family--both sides of my grandmother's and
great-aunt's family--owned lucrative businesses prior to the War (although
times got bad in the early 30's/late 20's--as was the case throughout the
world), and quite frankly, I don't have the necessary details, phone
listings, etc. for either of these businesses, so I definitely empathize w/
you. The only other thing besides the phones directories might be to
contact the Jewish Institute in Warsaw (funded, I believe, by the Ron Lauder
Foundation). Perhaps they may be of help.

As for the info. that I have uncovered, it is perhaps most meaninful to
me--not necessarily of any use to other people. But one thing that I found
most interesting is that my maternal great great grandparents--surname
Pinkel--lived in the very same building complex as did Isaac Bashevis
Singer, at Krochmalna 12. At this same address were also study houses for
various Chasidic groups: Radzyminer, Minsker, and perhaps the Alexander
Chasidim. In any event, my great grandfather (surname Pszenica) became an
adherent of the Radzyminer Rebbe. Singer vividly describes this locale in
his autobiographical work, "In My Father's Court." I highly recommend it if
you are trying to get a sense of pre-WWII Warsaw.

Otherwise, there is not a great deal to tell, right now. I hope to visit
Warsaw--especially the Jewish Cemetery--sometime in the near future. That
may be the only way, ultimately, to uncover some of these missing pieces.

Best wishes,
Rivka


Birmingham, AL #general

Byrnea <byrnea@...>
 

I am hoping that someone can tell me if the Alabama Society for the
Prevention of cruelty to Animals is still located in Birmingham, AL. In
1888, it was located at 216 20th in Birmingham and an ancestor, Nathan
Platshek, was the Secretary and Treasurer of this organization then. Would
appreciate any information including a present address if possible. Please
contact privately at "byrnea@...>. Thanks in advance.

Ann Guthman Byrne
Colorado
byrnea@...


clothing genealogy #general

moshe@...
 

This may have nothing to do with this list but I am at a brick wall trying
to do my family Genealogy so I am trying to answer a question I have all
ways had. What kind of clothes did my ancestors wear? So I am trying to do
a Genealogy of clothes of the Jews through the ages. I am looking for
pictures or stories of different types of dress for Jews if anyone has an
info or matter like that connect me privately at moshe@... . So
that I may be able to get a copy of this documents. Thank you for your help.
Moshe Schaeffer
Searching
BACHMAN, HIRSCHOWITZ, KAUFF, KIRSCHNER, LEVY, ROSENSTEIN, SCHAEFFER,
SCHAFFER, SHUVAL, WEISS


MODERATOR NOTE: Please reply privately.


MOSES #general

Herscu Moses <as670@...>
 

I will start with a lateral question:
How do you write music notes in hebrew: left to right ?

Looking for MOSES -> Odessa - late 1800's

H.Moses
Ottawa,Canada
e-mail to nhmoses@...


MODERATOR NOTE: Please send responses to the music question privately.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen MOSES #general

Herscu Moses <as670@...>
 

I will start with a lateral question:
How do you write music notes in hebrew: left to right ?

Looking for MOSES -> Odessa - late 1800's

H.Moses
Ottawa,Canada
e-mail to nhmoses@...


MODERATOR NOTE: Please send responses to the music question privately.


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Birmingham, AL #general

Byrnea <byrnea@...>
 

I am hoping that someone can tell me if the Alabama Society for the
Prevention of cruelty to Animals is still located in Birmingham, AL. In
1888, it was located at 216 20th in Birmingham and an ancestor, Nathan
Platshek, was the Secretary and Treasurer of this organization then. Would
appreciate any information including a present address if possible. Please
contact privately at "byrnea@...>. Thanks in advance.

Ann Guthman Byrne
Colorado
byrnea@...


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen clothing genealogy #general

moshe@...
 

This may have nothing to do with this list but I am at a brick wall trying
to do my family Genealogy so I am trying to answer a question I have all
ways had. What kind of clothes did my ancestors wear? So I am trying to do
a Genealogy of clothes of the Jews through the ages. I am looking for
pictures or stories of different types of dress for Jews if anyone has an
info or matter like that connect me privately at moshe@... . So
that I may be able to get a copy of this documents. Thank you for your help.
Moshe Schaeffer
Searching
BACHMAN, HIRSCHOWITZ, KAUFF, KIRSCHNER, LEVY, ROSENSTEIN, SCHAEFFER,
SCHAFFER, SHUVAL, WEISS


MODERATOR NOTE: Please reply privately.