Re: "His name was changed at Ellis Island" #names

Bob Bloomberg

Once again, a perfect, flawless system.  I am surprised we haven't copied it in other places. Just think: Any errors occurred before the immigrant arrived.  All immigrants had name tags that corresponded exactly with the manifest, which was clearly legible.  No one was rushed, harried, or bored. I am truly impressed.

Re: Lincoln Brigade and Spanish Civil War #usa


Not sure why Ken Ryesky had trouble getting access to the ALBA Archives. The vast ALBA collections at the Tamiment Library at New York University are, and always have been, open to everybody, but one needs to register and make an appointment in advance and also request the materials wanted in advance.  These materials can be pinpointed by consulting the online guides to the collections (here is a link to a list, although it may not be absolutely conclusive:✓&f%5Brepository_sim%5D%5B%5D=tamwag&op=AND&all_fields=&unittitle_teim=&unitid_teim=ALBA&collection_teim=&f_inclusive%5Brepository_sim%5D%5B%5D=tamwag&sort=score+desc&search_field=advanced&commit=Search , as well as the overall description of the collections ( ) mentioned by Ken.  
The records are very rich and include the files on individuals from the Comintern Archives in Moscow (on microfilm). In addition to the ALBA collections themselves, the Library holds myriad additional related collections and materials, so it’s a good idea to also get in touch with Shannon O’Neill (smo224@...), the current Curator for the Tamiment Library (and also for the Robert F. Wagner Labort Archives), before visiting so that she can help guide you to these materials. 

ALBA the organization (which, confusingly, is not the same as the actual Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives that reside at Tamiment) has a searchable database ( ) of North American volunteers. 

Erika Gottfried
Teaneck, New Jersey

Re: Origin of the name LAJOUS #france


The Hungarian name Lajos never has a 'u' in it, so given that this is in France, I highly doubt that the surname has anything to do with Ludovicus. Since it's in France, I would parse it as La- "the" and -jous (which according to Bernard Flam's post above may have something to do with "below", either literally or figuratively).

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Re: "His name was changed at Ellis Island" #names

Bob Bloomberg

I did not say that anyone wrote a name down.  What I said was that people make mistakes, especially when overwhelmed, over worked  and maybe not paying strict attention.  Name tag or no, manifest or no, questions or no, mistakes were made, and names INADVERTENTLY were changed.  You might want to read Dahn Cukier's response.
What I don't understand is why people blame the discrepancies on points of embarkation, faulty manifests, whatever, but NEVER at Ellis Island.

Hebrew record, is Fani Taub here? #hungary


I am looking for the birth record of Fani Taub, born in Altofen, Budapest in 1812. Please can someone let me know if she is on the record linked below, I can't read Hebrew unfortunately, and I can only see male names on Family Search. Thank you so much for your help!

Re: Two death Dates On Lithuanian Data Base #lithuania #general

Elise Cundiff

In one branch of my family, two names (Itzik and Yehuda) alternated through several generation - so I have 3 of each identical name just in that direct line, plus others from uncles and nephews.    It could be that one of yours is a father or uncle, the other is a son or nephew or cousin 

Slonim Yiskor Book #yizkorbooks

Alan Tapper

Does anyone know where I might purchase the SLONIM yiskor book in English?

Alan Tapper. Sabaalan@...

MENDELOWITZ family in Slonim #belarus

Alan Tapper

My MENDELOWITZ family has lived in and around Slonim for over 200 years.  Am looking for historical pictures of what life was like.  Can you help me?
Sabaalan@.... Alan Tapper

Re: Looking to hire private researcher in Przemyśl (or nearby) #poland #general


I have used Krzysztof Malczewski (krystek@...) mob +48 601 330393 many times with great satisfaction.

Best Regards,

Frank Swartz

Re: #belarus #hungary #holocaust #belarus #hungary #holocaust


I think you are actually referring to Orsha where, according to Avraham Shifrin, there were six labour camps until at least 1967.

Re: Nowe Miasto to Ulanow to Vienna #austria-czech


Thank you for this information. I agree that this seems to be the most likely Ulanow. I will try to investigate further.
Best regards,
Maggie Jacobs

Re: Looking for "State of Rapena" or "Liabin" in Russian Poland #poland


The original place names cannot be definitely determined from these faulty transcriptions of probably verbal reports
I can imagine that the second one may refer to Lublin, a large city, and the first, for example to Rava-Ruska. The two places are not too far apart.

Re: Translation request - Polish to English #translation #poland


Etta Laia (Rud(a)), 18
Dawid Mordka K., 20, lives with parents at house 1101
child born 13 (25) Aug 1865

[It may be very reasonable to post such requests also on ViewMate]

Re: Two death Dates On Lithuanian Data Base #lithuania #general


I do not see why they have to be the same person but it's hard to make final conclusion based on a brief summary of another person.
Examination of the images of the actual documents would give more information.
Do you know any personal details of your relative?

Re: "His name was changed at Ellis Island" #names

Joel Weintraub

Bob, you are getting hung up on the manifest and any variations of immigrant names on it.  That to me is not what the Ellis Island Name Change Belief is really about. I look at it as: the immigrant comes to Ellis Island with one family name, and because of intentional or unintentional decisions by the authorities at the Immigration Station, including an effort to Americanize immigrant  names or a level of miscommunication or insensitivity by the Inspectors, leaves Ellis Island with a very different (legal) surname which may have no correlation with the original name, and immediately uses that name in the United States.  So we get stories that Leib Nochomovsky is told by inspectors at Ellis Island that Jews in the U.S. are either Levine or Cohen, and he comes out Louis Levine.  Or Walachinsky at Ellis Island is told he is an American now, and his name is halved by the inspector to Wallace.  These sorts of stories imply or state that the U.S. authorities are writing the name down.  Down on what?  So they mispronounce the immigrants name.... does that translate to some official name change document the immigrant gets?   With my New York accent, I must have changed a lot of my students (and others)  names, right?   But let’s take an extreme made-up  hypothetical case and ask who has in the eyes of the law changed the name.   Say one of the Immigration inspectors is a practical joker and changes one immigrant’s name a day.  Nothing is written down.  No paperwork is given the immigrant that his name is changed.  The immigrant  goes into the U.S. and immediately lives for a number of years with the new name.  Most states have laws that state if you use a surname for a period of  time, it’s your name unless you were committing fraud (try to do that today to get a driver’s license!).  So who changed legally the name of this hapless immigrant.... the joker at Ellis Island or the immigrant?  It was the action of the immigrant that legally changed his name, not the inspector who had no legal powers to do so.  The immigrant’s  impressions of what happened at Ellis Island wouldn’t count in a court of law, would it?   It often boils down to how broad a definition you have about what it means to change a name, and just semantics.  I and I think most genealogists (but not all) have a narrow definition of the name change legend, which started decades after the heyday of Ellis Island. 
Joel Weintraub

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Joel Weintraub
Dana Point, CA

Re: USA passport research #usa

Sherri Bobish

Hi Barbara,

United States Passport Applications, 1795-1925


Sherri Bobish
Princeton, NJ

Re: USA passport research #usa

Sherri Bobish

Hi Molly,

This NARA page has detailed info on U.S. passport history and regulations.

From the above site:
  • Passports were recommended, but not required, by President Woodrow Wilson's Executive Order 2285 of December 15, 1915, which stated that all persons leaving the U.S. should have passports.
  • Passports were required from May 22, 1918 (40 Stat. 559), until the formal termination of World War I in 1921 by treaties.
  • Passports have been required since the passage of the act of June 21, 1941 (55 Stat. 252) and subsequent legislation.

Interestingly, there were brief periods in time when someone who was not yet a U.S. citizen, but had declared their intent, could obtain a U.S. passport.

Hope this info helps,

Sherri Bobish
Princeton, NJ

SCHREIBER and BLEYER descendants in Israel #israel #hungary #slovakia


I am looking for descendants in Israel of either of two married couples:
Karl SCHREIBER (d. 1969) and Ilona ("Shifra") nee ROSENTHAL (d. 1986)
Address in 1960: Bicaron Dam - Hamakabim 37/13, Tel-Aviv, Israel
Ilona born in Slovakia
Pavel BLEYER (Bleier) and Margit ("Maca", "Mara") nee ROSENTHAL (1902 - c. 1995), widow of Josef STEINBERG
Address in 1993: 28 Raziel Str., Ramat Chen, Israel
Margit born in Slovakia

Ilona and Margit were both first cousins of my father and I would love to make contact with any of their descendants to exchange family stories.  Thank you for any pointers or ideas.

Martin Tompa
Seattle, Washington, USA

Re: Name Variations (was: "His name was changed at Ellis Island") #names

Sherri Bobish

Hi Jeremy,

I do not know why Davis would have his original surname that he hadn't used in 30 years show up on that manifest, but I can tell you that my husband's ggf who arrived in NYC in the early 1880's and had used the surname SOLON for 60 years, had the original surname SOKOLSKY used on his NYC death certificate.  On his tombstone both surnames were inscribed.

Why would a surname that he hadn't used in 60 years be used at that point in time?  It is a mystery.


Sherri Bobish
Princeton, NJ

Searching: RATOWSKY / CHAIMSON (Ariogala / Ragola, Lith.)
WALTZMAN / WALZMAN (Ustrzyki Dolne / Istryker, Pol.)
LEVY (Tyrawa Woloska, Pol.)
LEFFENFELD / LEFENFELD (Daliowa/ Posada Jasliska, Pol.)
BOJDA (Tarnobrzeg, Pol.)
SOKALSKY / SOLON FINGER(MAN) (Grodek, Bialystok, Pol.)

Settlements in Curaçao and St. Thomas #sephardic


The US "arranged" the independence of Panama from Columbia so it could build the Panama Canal.

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