Sept. 13 Marian Smith Speaking on USCIS Records via Zoom #events

Jessie Klein

The JGS of Greater Boston presents Marian Smith speaking on Researching US Citizenship and Immigration Services(USCIS) Records via Zoom Sept 13. at 1:30PM. Attendance is free for JGS of Greater Boston members and $5.00 for non-members. For information go to

Jessie Klein
Newton MA

Re: Passenger-list name interpretation SOLVED #names #translation

David Brostoff

On Sep 4, 2020, at 2:38 PM, David Brostoff <DAVBRO@...> wrote:

I have posted an image from a passenger list of the S.S. Palatia, arriving in New York on July 20, 1900.

I would be grateful to know the name of the son-in-law Simchon Brostow is going to (line 8).
Thanks to an off-list suggestion and some further research that led me to an earlier passenger list on which Simchon Brostow was listed with a traveling companion from the same small shtetl, Nachman Lewin, I was able to determine that the name of the son-in-law is Moses Lewin.

David Brostoff

Circular (radial) Descendant Family Tree --looking for digital program or website that can create this #general

Chip Rosenfeld <chiprosenfeld@...>


I am creating a descendant family tree, using a previous one from 1970 as a template (see image of "Goldstock-Kolko" family tree  attached). Back in 1970 this was done by hand. Anyone know of a website or app or program that enables a user to create a similar tree digitally, where I can just import the names?
Thank you,

Chip Rosenfeld

Re: What was Ginsburg & Klausner, S Fallsburg, NY (Catskills) not listed as hotel #usa

Ellen Slotoroff Zyroff

For specific hotels, or other information, 

You might try Phil Brown, who turned his own passion, research, and Catskill Hotel memories conferences into a full-fleged institute documenting and archiving an important part of the Jewish experience in the U.S. 

1 - Contact Catskills Institute at Brown University, started and fun by faculty member, Phil Brown.
2 -  There are also lots of books and reminisences with compendia and articles, scholarly and otherwise.  

Two phrases that bring up some books at   Research "Catskill hotels."  search "Borscht Belt."    

These hotels, large and small and in between, outgrowths of the first generation "kuchaleinin," ("cook alone, i.e. book one's own food, kashrut required, aka "rooming houses.") provided fabulous, fun vacations, with sports, amazing food, goo air, safe hiking, boatin, tenniss, evening comediens, singers, jugglers, etc, children's day camps. 

They served as an important, informal, but important institution for marriageable age singles looking for a suitable match.  Most of these singles were first generation Americans.   Even if on any given trip, one didn't "meet someone," one still had a great vacation - whether summer or winter.  

These hotels played a big role in assuring Jewish continuity for several generations of U.S. Jews,  a role known to families along the East Coast and even the Midwest.     

For example:
My parents met at Shawanga Lodge,  My mom from Manhattan/Bronx, my dad from Atlantic City, NJ.
My uncle and aunt also met at Shawanga Lodge.  My aunt from Brooklyn, NY.
My other uncle and aunt met at the Concord.  This aunt from New Rochelle, NY. 

And I'm adding the following set of links for the fun of it - to spark the personal memories many of us treasure and to share with others
"what was." 

On Sunday, September 6, 2020, 11:46:47 AM PDT, Carol Rubin <evans1035@...> wrote:

My husband’s paternal grandmother’s parents had either a boardinghouse or a small  hotel called the Belvedere in S Fallsburg NY around early to mid 1930s. Only info I’ve been able to find based on an address from the NY census of 1930 or 1935 is that it might later have become some kind of yoga retreat. I think I tried writing to a historian for the town but never got a response. Any ideas on where I might find any photos from that time?

Carol Rubin

ZOLOTOROV (Chernigov, Ukraine; Kiev, Ukraine);
SLOTOROFF (Kiev, Ukraine)
LEVINE (Ukraine and Minsk, Belarus);
GLUSKIN (Ukraine)
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)

Re: What was Ginsburg & Klausner, S Fallsburg, NY (Catskills) not listed as hotel #usa


The Belvedere Hotel was on Budd Road in Woodbourne, NY, (several miles from South Fallsburg).
You can google for images of the Belvedere

It later became the Haywire Ranch, (1960’s) where you could rent horses for trail rides. It was owned by the Pepper family.

After that it became and remains a yoga retreat

Amy Cohen 

Re: I Want My Trees To Outlive Me #general


Please remember that computer printers produce paper documents that also are not like printed books using real ink that soak into the paper, rather they are bonded on top of the paper. These "surface bonded" print outs are not very permanent!

James Castellan
Rose Valley, PA

Re: Researching my great-uncle Sergiu Godeanu #romania

Valentin Lupu

Hi Stefan,
I forgot to mention in my first post: Sergiu's spouse was Anna Cogan ( a Slavic variant  for Cohen).
Valentin Lupu

What Does It Mean When Someone "Fails in Examination for 2nd (Naturalization) Papers? #general #usa

Sally Horn

I just received the A-file for my grandfather, who never became a U.S. citizen.  The second page of the A-file says the following:  "...about 20 years ago, I received my first papers but failed in examination for 2nd papers.  have since lost all records."

I am not sure how to interpret this info.  The Petition for Naturalization that I found on Ancestry indicated that he filed a petition to become a naturalized citizen on July 8, 1924 but was denied on February 4, 1926 for failing to appear.  I don't know any more.  Did he have to take a test and failed the test? Does anyone have any insight about circumstances such as these?  

Also, the A-file states that he had "lost all records."  Would the State Superior Court in Connecticut which first accepted his petition or declaration of intention possibly still have the records?  

Sally Horn


Re: What was Ginsburg & Klausner, S Fallsburg, NY (Catskills) not listed as hotel #usa

Carol Rubin

My husband’s paternal grandmother’s parents had either a boardinghouse or a small  hotel called the Belvedere in S Fallsburg NY around early to mid 1930s. Only info I’ve been able to find based on an address from the NY census of 1930 or 1935 is that it might later have become some kind of yoga retreat. I think I tried writing to a historian for the town but never got a response. Any ideas on where I might find any photos from that time?

Carol Rubin

Re: Researching my great-uncle Sergiu Godeanu #romania

Valentin Lupu

Sergiu Godeanu was born in May 15, 1897 in Bucharest to Rita and Nathan Goldenberg (not Goldenzweig). This data is from his criminal file during the communist regime in Romania. Sergiu was a successful lawyer during interwar period (there are many announces in "Monitorul Oficial" regarding his professional activity). In the very anti-Semitic Romania , the change to a Romanian family name was essential for a successful professional career. His internement at Targu Jiu prison was a result of the anti-Jewish laws during WWII, not for any political reasons. Sergiu was arrested In 1952 for the "crime of high treason". His real crime was the fact that he worked as a lawyer at the British Consulate in Bucharest. The sentence from 1954 was 12 years imprisonment in one of the most ferocious communist prisons, Pitesti. In 1962 Sergiu was pardoned and set free.

Valentin Lupu
P.S. I am sending the documents (in Romanian) to your private email .

Re: Locating derivative citizenship record of minor whose parent naturalized in 1905. #records


Hi Elaine,

How fortunate you found that scrap of paper in Izaak's court naturalization records.

Assuming all three children were later issued Certificates of Derivative Citizenship, they would all have C-Files containing records not available in court records (so not available at the National Archives).

Unfortunately, the number on the paper is the application number, not the C-file number, so you would still need to file a USCIS Genealogy index search request to obtain the C-File number, then request the C-File.  The number will be preceded by a letter "A" or "AA."

Derivative C-Files are usually full of information, extra photos, and certified records submitted as evidence (birth records, parents' marriage records, etc.).  

Good luck,

Marian Smith

Re: LOOK-UP? Passaic, NY, USA, GURTMAN, Henry, 1899-1973/Dora, 1899-1958 [POLAND] #usa #poland

Michael McTeer <mcteer@...>

Thanks to all for the quick and loads of information especially Robert Murowchick for articles and Sherri Bobish for the link to the Passiac County site with naturalization papers. WOW. So lot of transcribing. I will post an update for the record. It seems most of the family was in the US before the war.

Besides Henry and Dora and son, "Michael" who survived the war, another sister, Brandla GURTMAN, b. abt 1877/1885, survived the war but then sorta disappeared post war in Hanover, Germany with her husband, Szmul Icyk HOLANDER, b.1869 on petition filed by a Morti HOLLANDER of Israel:
To the German Office in Berlin-Wittenau. Applicants: Morti HOLLANER, Tel Aviv, David Bloch 25, z. Currently Hanover Hotel am Steintor, Georgetr. 15; District Court, Dept. 88 -88 II 134-135 / 56- Hanover, February 15, 1957, Volger 1 - Postfach Fernruf: 1 61 71 Decision. In the proceedings for the purpose of the death declaration of;
a) Businessman Samuel HOLLANDER, b. on May 1, 1869 in Jaslo / Poland,
b) Wife Breindla HOLLANDER b. Haber, b. on March 16, 1877 in Pilznow / Poland,
Both have been residing in Hanover Klagesmarkt 7, the district court of Hanover decided;
The missing Samuel and Breindla HOLLANDER are declared dead with the restriction sus 12 para. 2 Versch, Ges. The time of the death of the missing is determined to be December 31, 1945 at midnight.

Another sister, Nacha. b1879, Kiev was married to Awner DANCYGIER, b. 1872, Szczekociny. Arolsen formally reported no info, but they had a son, Dawid Mendel DANCYGIER, 14 Dec 1900 who moved to France. He married as her second husband, Blima CYMBAL, b. 1893, Lodz. She first married Maurice ALTMANN (two "NN") having a son Herbert ALTMANN. In 1972, Herbert ALTMANN of ### West End Ave., New York, NY made an informal trace request for his stepfather, Awner. Now as then Arolsen reported "transfer of DANCYGIER David, born 1st September 1900 Szczikociny, from Camp Drancy to Concentration Camp Lublin-Majdanek on 6th March 1943." Arolsen, ltr, 12 Mar 1973
One last brother, Izrael GURTMAN, b. 1901, Szczekociny, filed a number of Pages of Testimony at Yad Vashem in 1956.

Thank again, Michael McTeer, Crowley, TX USA


Re: LOOK-UP? Passaic, NY, USA, GURTMAN, Henry, 1899-1973/Dora, 1899-1958 [POLAND] #usa #poland

The Becker's Email

Herald-News, Passaic, NJ 17 Jan. 1958, p. 24
Gurtman, Dora of 242 Sherman St., Passiac,...beloved wife of Henry Gurtman, beloved mother of Mark and Michael and sister-in-law of Max  Gurtman.

Herald-News 17 Jan. 1958, p. 24
Dora Gurtman, 58, of 242 Sherman St., Passaic, died yesterday of an apparent heart attack while riding a public service bus from Clifton to Passaic....Born in Poland, Mrs. Gurtman settled in Passaic 9 years ago...Surviving her are her husband Henry, associated in the Passaic Metal Company, and two sons, Mark of Clifton, and Michael of Lincoln Park.

Herald-News, 12 Dec. 1975, p. 4  (note: findagrave has transcribed the year of death as 1973 which is incorrect)
Henry C. Gurtman,,,Born in Russia, he came to the US 27 years ago....survived by his wife Martha, two sons, Mark of Clifton, Michael of Wayne, two brothers, a sister and four grandchildren.

My source:

Johanna Becker

Re: Where did "Katya" come from? #ukraine #yiddish #russia #names

David Goldman

Hi, Gary. Katya was probably the Russian nickname, referring to the name Yekaterina, while her Jewish name was Gittel and in the US would be Gussie. Jews often had a Russian name in addition to their Jewish name. My grandfather was Yitzchak Yosef, but had the nickname of Yonya.  Similarly someone named Moshe would generically be known by the nickname of Misha. I had a great grandfather named Zvi Hirsh. His Russian nickname was Grisha. His wife was Bella, but her Russian nickname was Betya or Betochka,
David Goldman

Re: The ancestry of Sarah nee MENDES (b 1791) wife of David JUDA RODRIGUES #unitedkingdom #germany #sephardic

You should write to Prof. Shalom Sabar:


Shalom Sabar shaloms@...



Prof. Isak Gath MD, DIC, DSc

Faculty of Biomedical Engineering             Tel. Office #972-4-8294115

Technion Israel Institute of Technology             Home #972-4-9835704

32000 Haifa, Israel


Re: What was Ginsburg & Klausner, S Fallsburg, NY (Catskills) not listed as hotel #usa

Diane Jacobs

In 1901 my great grandfather owned a farm in Corinth NY , just outside Saratoga Springs, and in 1910 he had a farm in Noxamixon Township in Bucks County PA.

Diane Jacobs 

Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone

-------- Original message --------
From: indsnw@...
Date: 9/6/20 11:24 AM (GMT-05:00)
To: main@...
Subject: Re: [] What was Ginsburg & Klausner, S Fallsburg, NY (Catskills) not listed as hotel #usa


At the end of the nineteenth century and very early twentieth century, there was an effort to settle Jewish farmers in various places, including the Catskills. As supplements to their income, they opened their homes as boarding houses. That became the germ for the later start of the Borscht Belt. Here is a link describing this early time in South Fallsburg.

There is a book, “Jewish Farmers of the Catskills” by Abraham Lavender and Clarence B Steinberg, for further reading.

There were already trains running back and forth to NYC from this area during this time, so the population was not static, rather fluid going back and forth to Lower East Side, Brooklyn, etc.

Amy Cohen
Diane Jacobs, Somerset, New Jersey

Re: Ancestry's Drastic Changes Dash Hopes of Finding Connections #dna

Phil Karlin

If you want to get nerdy about it, here's a link to an Ancestry support document supposedly explaining it:
They call their algorithm "Timber," and they've been using it for years. Essentially, certain segments, usually smaller but sometimes quite substantial, are not included in your match because they believe they are not indicative of a relationship match between the two people, merely of (in our cases) being Jewish. 

I can see pros and cons to its use. My bigger issue is the opacity of the Ancestry user interface. It could use a chromosome browser. More importantly it doesn't tell you the strength of the other person to the common match. For example, if person X and shows as match through my aunt, it tells me 1800 cM with my aunt (duh), but nothing on the match between aunt and person X. If they share 100 cM, that's interesting. If they share 20, that's something else. 

If they gave you as much information as any of the others you could work with it. But they don't, so we're left Kremlin watching. Ancestry has the biggest number of users, so you need to use it. But it is the inferior product. 

Phil Karlin

Re: Looking for info about Russian emigres who returned to fight for the Bolsheviks in 1917 #records #russia #canada #usa


On Sat, Sep 5, 2020 at 07:07 PM, <erikagottfried53@...> wrote:
You might reach out to Daniel Soyer, an historian who’s written extensively on American Jewish history and Jewish immigration and also did a study on American Jews who visited the Soviet Union in the 20s and 30s ("Back to the Future: American Jews Visit the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 1930s."Jewish Social Studies. Volume 6, Number 3, Spring/Summer 2000, pp. 124-159) to see if he has any suggestions. 
I would love to read this article, since my grandfather returned to Russia in the 1920s (but went back to the U.S. after less than a year).  Does anyone have institutional access to it?  Thanks.

Ellen Morosoff Pemrick
Saratoga County, NY

DATZ and SATZ Families from Mogilev-Podol'sk #ukraine

Janis and Joe Datz

I am trying to figure out the connection between DATZ and SATZ.  Satz continues to match DNA with the Datz family.  All stories told by elders insist that Datz was always spelled this way.  The families are from Mogilev-Podol'sk Ukraine.   Many thanks for any information that would connection the families as well as purpose of name change.  Somewhere in this puzzle is, I believe, surnames of Shatz or the like.

Janis Friedenberg Datz

Re: Photo for language identification #photographs #translation

JONES Etienne H.L.F.

For information purpose only . .  very expensive fish ?
If the photo is taken after 1946 (and it's assumed given the colour photo), it's undoubtless  2000 HUF (Hungarian forints), reintroduced in Aug 1946. At that time 1Ft approx. = 0.08 USD of 1946, and this conversion factor remained fairly stable for a little over 20 years, then the forint began to depreciate dramatically.
With this conversion factor, a trout would have been priced in the '50s at 2000 * 0.08 / 3 or 4 (3 or 4 medium-sized trout in 1 kg ?) = 40 / 50 USD at the time . . of course impossible ! 
I think the photo is much more recent, and if it's from the last months, as today 1 Ft = approx. 0.003 USD one trout would then be priced at abt 2000 / 300 / 3 or 4  i.e. 1,7 / 2.2 current USD . .  
I find it then very cheap, in Belgium a quality fresh trout of medium size (250 g), locally farmed, is currently priced approx. 3.5 EUR i.e. +/- 4 USD. 

Am I wrong somewhere ?

Kind regards to All,
Etienne JONES
near to Antwerp, Belgium

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