Re: Potato Latkes...are you Litvak or Galitizianer? #galicia #lithuania


Salt & pepper was all I needed.  My mothers family was from Ukraine.

Iris Folkson

Europe's Jewish Population Continues to Decline #announcements #general


The Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, not 1951.

Yale Zussman

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general


Well these posts explain a few things....I recently found that someone took a line back on my family tree to the 300's BCE maybe, I don't remember exactly, but it was in that time period anyway. The name eludes me but he began with an E but the town....was Asgard! LIke Thor!

I did some research and cannot locate a real ancient town of Asgard. and now I'm stuck with it, can't verify it nor can I delete any of the garbage from the verified information.

What a waste!

Thank you for presenting this information and listening to me vent!

Connie Carter
Kissimmee. Florida

Re: "Unehelichen"/Illegitimacy: applied to mother or child? #germany

W. Fritzsche

Dear Michael,
the one who decleared the birth probably was the midwife, the mother of the child Regina was the illegitimate Karolina nee Isaak, age 24 years.
Wolfgang Fritzsche

Re: Help with dates from 1800s Russia/Poland #general

Ethan Kent

Reply to Alan Cohen:

I think that "2699" would only be "2nd June 1899" if there was punctuation between the month, day, and year parts of the date... -- and if dates were written as in today's UK (as opposed to today's US -- where the 2nd of June of 1899 would be "June 2, 1899" or "6/2/1899" or  (perhaps -- during the 19th century) "6/2/99".

(It would also be an unusual coincidence (although not nearly impossible) for the (I assume couple) to have died 4 years apart on the asme date of the Gregorian calendar (June 2nd). )

I believe that it would be helpful if Ms. Barch (in the US State of Florida) could at least explain what else (besides the names and the numbers) was on the "piece of paper" where the names of Abram and of Mejta -- and the numbers "2696" and "2699" were found (Was this an official document (if so, from which government, and for what purpose?) ? What other information was in the document other than these 2 persons' names and the 2 numbers? Was anyone else listed on the "piece of paper? Was this a census, or passenger manifest, or some other kind of list?? (Or does/did the "piece of paper" just contain the 2 names and numbers? (If it is possible to know:) Who created the document? Are the names and numbers printed, stamped, or handwritten?) -- to have clues as to the context of the numbers, and (better; if possible) if Ms. Barch could somehow scan (and enable others to view online) the part of the "piece of paper" on which the 2 names and the 2 numbers were found.

I do hope that more information about the "piece of paper" can be shared -- because otherwise, stating what the 2 numbers signified would probably only be guesswork -- I think.

Good Luck to Ms. Barch.

Ethan W. Kent (in New York City)


Nuszbaum and Diosi/Diosy from Oradea, Romania (a.k.a. Nagyvarad) #hungary #romania #holocaust

Steve Stein

My GGGM was Betti Nuszbaum Steiner. She married my GGGF Refael Steiner and lived in Szilagynagyfalu (today Nusfalau, Romania) where she raised several children, among them my GGM Roza. There are extensive records from that region on the JG Hungary Database and I have a pretty good descendant tree for her, two brothers, and a sister.

I have tentatively associated her with the Betti Nuszbaum listed as a child in the 1848 Hungarian Census found on the JG Hungary Database, based on age and location. On that census list, she has brothers who I have subsequently found changed their surname legally to Diosi or Diosy (a translation from German/Yiddish to Hungarian, apparently). At least one appears to have relocated to Budapest. The motivation for the name change appears to have been to integrate or assimilate. At least one Diosy went to medical school in Hungary in the late 1800s.

Records for those brothers and for various Diosy descendants from Nagyvarad appear in the JG Hungary Database from that time period, and assembled on Geni and FTJP. However, the descendant trail appears to grow cold - there are no other researchers listed in JGFF for Diosi in any location. I can find several Diosys from Nagyvarad/Oradea on the Yad Vashem database.

Is this surname familiar to anyone? Did the Diosy surname disappear due to the Holocaust, or perhaps the descendant of the Diosys did not remain Jewish? TIA.

Steve Stein
Highland Park, NJ USA

Re: Potato Latkes...are you Litvak or Galitizianer? #galicia #lithuania

Judith Singer

There is such a thing as the "Gefilte Fish Line" (referred to above) which roughly divides Galitzianers (who generally preferred their foods, such as gefilte fish, sweet) from Litvaks (who preferred their gefilte fish and other foods savory). The line corresponds also to the the boundary between the two main Yiddish dialects — the central Polish/Galician (Poylish/Galitzianer), and the more northern Lithuanian (Litvak). There are articles about this; one is at . 

Someone above also asked whether ancestors from Minsk rendered her as a Litvak or a Galitzianer. I didn't see an answer, so I'll add that, roughtly speaking, ancestors from Lithuania and most of Belarus (historically part of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania) were Litvaks. 

Judith Singer 


Re: Potato Latkes...are you Litvak or Galitizianer? #galicia #lithuania

Jill Whitehead

All my family were Litvaks from NE Poland. When my mother made potato latkes they had nothing on them. We ate them as they came. My family would never put anything sweet on meals that were main course. Sweet things were reserved for puddings/desserts. 

This is rather like what you do with porridge. My mother as a Scot put salt on her porridge. English people put sugar on their porridge.  I do not like porridge, so never have it!

It surely depends on your taste what you do - and taste is genetically defined. I lack the gene for alcohol -  I do not enjoy its taste. But counter to that I love the taste of vinegar and also things like sprouts - which are also genetically defined. 23andme have these traits to test. 

Jill Whitehead, Surrey, UK

Re: Jewish Actors (Cohen) in England ca 1916 #unitedkingdom

Diane Jacobs

Have you tried to access The Jewish Chronicle ?  You might referes to your family from this London paper.

Diane Jacobs

Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone

-------- Original message --------
From: Dave Smith <daves@...>
Date: 10/26/20 10:05 AM (GMT-05:00)
To: main@...
Subject: [] Jewish Actors (Cohen) in England ca 1916 #unitedkingdom


I am seeking any information available on Hyman Cohen (b 1866) and his
son Julius Cohen (1889-1947) who I understand were both actors. In
particular I am trying to trace their movements around England in the
period ca 1916. Any help or ideas will be most gratefully received. I
have not been able to identify them clearly in the 1901 & 1911 census
and I am not even sure when Hyman died.

Thanks You and Best Wishes
Dave Smith (01892 835974 / 07896 310693)
Diane Jacobs, Somerset, New Jersey

Re: "Unehelichen"/Illegitimacy: applied to mother or child? #germany

David Lewin

True - but the child is an uneheliches Kind

At 10:27 27/10/2020, Rodney Eisfelder wrote:

In this context, I think unehelichen means unmarried, and refers to the mother. Ehe means a marriage, Eheleute means a married couple.
Caveat: I am not a qualified translator, and my German is definitely not fluent.

I hope this helps,
Rodney Eisfelder
Melbourne, Australia

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general

Max Heffler

IMHO, the whole point of genealogy is to create the most accurate record of our ancestry. Collaborative sites, like geni, provide the best possibility of progressive correctness for this record. When mistakes are found, they are corrected. There is no way I would have the accuracy I do have without this collaboration, i.e. if my tree remained in a silo of isolated privacy. I have reconnected so many formerly-lost lines using a combination of geni, MyHeritage, Ancestry and DNA testing.


Full disclosure: I am a geni curator


Max Heffler

Houston, TX


Web sites I manage - Personal home page, Greater Houston Jewish Genealogical Society, Woodside Civic Club, Skala, Ukraine KehilalLink, Joniskelis, Lithuania KehilaLink, and pet volunteer project - Yizkor book project:

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general

Jeffrey Herrmann

Thanks, Bill, for that lengthy description of your experience with Geni.  If I am not mistaken, FamilySearch also takes the position that once you post a tree, they own it.  
The problem you describe is especially poignant because it is so personal, but it is part of the broader problem that the online genealogical websites are vast digital garbage heaps of misinformation, with here and there just enough true data to keep drawing us back to them.  I have lost count of the number of rabbit holes I descended into in pursuit of the sources for entries regarding my ancestors.  I almost always come away with nothing substantiated but a mounting resentment toward careless amateur genealogists who post nonsense.  My own opinion is that it is best to restrict your usage to digitized records and completely ignore online trees.  You may miss out on something helpful, and fear of missing out is a powerful psychological motivator, but you will enjoy many hours of life otherwise wasted.
Jeffrey Herrmann

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general

Joyaa Antares

On Mon, Oct 26, 2020 at 10:23 PM, Bill Katz wrote:

He also told me his goal was to "memorialize" Holocaust victims. 

This is a term used by the Mormon church to designate a ceremony in which Jewish victims of the Holocaust are baptized by the Mormon church.

Bill - thanks for your informative post. 

The word "memorialize" is used by others than the LDS, and whilst personally I agree with many if not all of the points you have made, I hope that you are not incorrectly casting aspersions against the LDS, amongst which I have a number of both work and family history colleagues.  

Take Facebook, for example. It includes advice about how to memorialize a person's page (  I don't think that they are an LDS organisation.

My own family website includes the words, "The site's purpose is to honour the memory of our forebears without whom, of course, we would not be here, and to provide a photographic archive and historical record of our families at large." but I could so easily have used a word like memorialise - and no, I'm not LDS.

Are you 100% certain that the person who is the object of your ire is a member of the LDS and is doing what you suggest?

Best wishes

Joyaa ANTARES,  Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

Re: Jewish Actors (Cohen) in England ca 1916 #unitedkingdom

Dexter Moseley

have you tried the actors union called Equity?
Dexter Moseley

Re: Looking for information on relatives who emigrated from Brest-Litovsk to Denver, Colorado in the late 1800's #names #russia #usa


My great grandfather, Benjamin Hyam Wonder, left Brest Litovsk for London  in the 1890s. He married Esther Levinson. Together, they had 3 children, Theobald, Robert and Fanny. Benjamin may have changed his surname from Wander to Wonder.

Bernard Wonder (Australia)

Re: "Unehelichen"/Illegitimacy: applied to mother or child? #germany

Rodney Eisfelder

In this context, I think unehelichen means unmarried, and refers to the mother. Ehe means a marriage, Eheleute means a married couple.
Caveat: I am not a qualified translator, and my German is definitely not fluent.

I hope this helps,
Rodney Eisfelder
Melbourne, Australia

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general

David Ziants

First, I want to put myself into perspective:-

1) I am an avid Geni user.
2) The genealogy site that I refrain from becoming subscribed to is the "church" website. As a religious (at least try to be) and culturally aware Jew, I feel very uncomfortable in becoming a member of their site, and this means I do not have easy access to their resources unless the information is elsewhere. (I, though, tend to turn a blind eye if someone else finds family information for me from there ... maybe this is a principle I still need to work on <smile> .)
3) Although I don't remember having explicit contact with the poster here, it could quite easily be me, that responds the same way that he received response, although I try to be very careful if I make a change to the wider family tree, that there is a source for the information. I see nothing wrong with documenting on Geni our family who were killed in the holocaust, and also from extracting information that others have submitted on Pages of Testimony at Yad Vashem, etc. - and this documentation should be a further memorial.

Now, a couple of general words. Like it or not, many of us can trace our relationship to each other, sometimes through one or two marriages and sometimes also a divorce in between (then can say that the relationship is through the children of the divorced couple, if there were). So, if one uses Geni, one needs to understand that this might be the consequence. I agree that MyHeritage is better for private family trees with less collaboration, but there I do not appreciate the person who gave me a third great-grandparent on my ancestry, that is probably not mine, and I have no way to change this.

Wide traceable families  is especially true for those of us who have Dutch ancestors (whether Sephardi or Ashkenazi) as their records go back quite a number of centuries, and Jews were pretty consistent with their family names (especially the sephardim, although I have also found anomalies in my ancestry). 

Also, this is true for those of us who have family connections to any of the big Rabbinic families, whose trees are generally well documented (although plenty of holes also exist).

With respect to the "hocus pocus" stuff that is done by this church - I have no idea and it does not really concern me. They could also stand outside Bushey cemetery in London, UK, Har haMenuchot in Jerusalem, Israel or whatever other Jewish cemetery and do their hocus-pocus there - and no one could stop them. Many years ago there were anti-missionary demonstrations in Jerusalem near Har HaZaitim (Mount of Olives) because they received permission to open a college (with church inside I assume) at this place.

I hope, though, that they don't make a bid to dunk the Geni disks and hard drives in a mikva [=natural pool] - because this will void the warranty (to put it lightly) <Joke> - and might be cause to need to examine the halachic [=Jewish Law] issues with such a scenario.

Thinking about it, I could also stand outside one of the cemeteries and say the "mi sheberach" [= Prayer for the Departed] for "the souls of all those who are buried here", but I don't expect that I will be doing this. Or I could stand outside one of the hospitals and say the "mi sheberach" prayer for "all the ill people who are hospitalised here". In the former case, it is up to the family to decide whether they appreciate this, and in the latter case it is (in most cases) up to the person himself.

David Ziants

Ma'aleh Adumim, Israel

Re: Seeking England and Australia Research Help - Michael WEINSTEIN Family / Iron Mountain #unitedkingdom

David Lewin

you did not say "genuine what"

I accept they exist but they sure mis-function

David Lewin
London, UK

At 12:26 26/10/2020, Shulamit wrote:
Iron Mountain is genuine: see

But they seem not to be very efficient!

Shulamit Spain

JGS of Toronto. Free Virtual Meeting. JRI-Poland. Stanley Diamond. Wed 28 Oct 2020 at 7:30 pm ET. #events #announcements

Jerry Scherer


Jewish Genealogical Society of Toronto


Jewish Records Indexing (JRI)–Poland
Speaker: Stanley Diamond M.S.M.
Executive Director, JRI–Poland, Inc.



Wednesday, 28 October 2020, at 7:30 p.m. ET.

There are two ways to attend.

Click below to register in advance for this Zoom meeting: 
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


View this livestream meeting on our YouTube channel:


Please make a voluntary donation at this link in the box titled  $ | Other |

JGS of Toronto is a registered charity so Canadian donors will receive a tax receipt.


Jewish Records Indexing (JRI) - Poland

Part 1
“What's New in JRI-Poland?” and “What's Coming in the Next Few Years?”
Part 2
“Learn and Ask” Workshop
Attendees are invited to submit their questions in advance so that duplicate questions can be combined. Time permitting, additional questions will be allowed during the session.

Send your questions to Les Kelman, lkelman@....
Stanley Diamond has devoted 30 years to Jewish genealogy including establishing Jewish Records Indexing – Poland and the Jewish Genealogical Society of Montreal. He also serves on the executive of the new Documentation of Jewish Records Worldwide project In 2018 he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal of Canada in recognition for his work in documenting Jewish genealogy, and particularly for establishing and directing Jewish Records Indexing – Poland.

Mr. Diamond is a graduate of McGill and received his MBA from Harvard.


Jewish Genealogical Society of Toronto. 2901 Bayview Avenue, PO Box 91006. Toronto, Ontario. M2K 2Y6.   info@...  647-247-6414


 Jerry Scherer

Re: Geni Family Trees - Privacy and Baptism Concerns #general

Dahn Cukier

Always, always read the various links you check when signing up to a site ESPECIALLY one where  you supply information.

Reading a newspaper and registering without a CC, I have no problem checking their boxes.

But when I began uploading to, I read carefully the "terms and conditions" and the "privacy statement". Only then did I register.  Findagrave - then - and maybe today, the photos and information are the users, when the MOD asked me to remove photos, I was able to so so and then checked with a lawyer if the request had merit. The MOD request did not have merit, but now I review the profile of the requester and only upload a photo after getting confirmation the request is from a family member.

Unfortunately, I have not been able to visit cemeteries for 2 years but hope to get back in action one day.

Dahn Cukier

When you start to read readin,
how do you know the fellow that
wrote the readin,
wrote the readin right?

Festus Hagen
Long Branch Saloon
Dodge City, Kansas

On Tuesday, October 27, 2020, 4:23:58 AM GMT+2, Bill Katz <wabillkatz@...> wrote:

I would like to post a caution about the privacy of information on family trees created online with Geni and about the use made of profiles of Holocaust victims by the Mormon church aka Church of Latter Day Saints (LDS) and its members.

I have been researching both sides of my family for nearly twenty years. Much of the information I learned came from Jewish Genealogy. Other details from Yad Vashem. A few years ago I started using the online family tree tool Geni. This week I learned that the details about my ancestors on Geni are neither under my control nor safe from what I consider to be abuse by the zealous Mormons.

About a week ago, while researching a family member, I came across an entry made for him on Geni by a stranger. I emailed this person and asked how he was related and what he knew about my relative. 

He evaded my questions about how he is related to that particular family member and my family in general. Soon afterwards, he started making additions and changes to my Geni family tree. He eventually admitted he is not a relative and sent me a strident note claiming the right to make any changes he wanted to the Geni tree I had created. He also told me his goal was to "memorialize" Holocaust victims. 

This is a term used by the Mormon church to designate a ceremony in which Jewish victims of the Holocaust are baptized by the Mormon church.

I made a complaint to Geni about a stranger changing my tree and tried to delete it. I found that there is no option to delete a tree once it is set up. Frantic to preserve the privacy and respect for the living and deceased family members on my tree, I removed birth and death dates and removed each person's name and photo from my tree.

Today I received the following email from a support person at Geni.

"I'm afraid it's you who have broken the rules, here. There is no prohibition -- legally, or on Geni -- on creating genealogy profiles for persons living or deceased, no matter how distantly related they may be. Geni is a shared family tree and everyone is invited to collaborate. I've undone the vandalism that you initiated three days ago.

Our policy is to honor removal requests for yourself, and for your immediate family members if there are no other users connected to those profiles. If you would like us to remove your profile and the profile of your wife from Geni, we can do that for you."

Not only does Geni not recognize the tree as the property of the person who set it up, but it considers the tree as just a branch of its “global tree”. And the property of Geni. In my case, it told me through matching records, that I am related to 13 million people on Geni. It achieves this astounding number in its unique way – my tree has a distant relative who is married. My relative's wife has a tree with her own family, none of whom I am related to except her husband. And this multiplies exponentially as members of my cousin's wife tree bring in other trees through their spouses. 

When Geni finds a matching record, e.g. my cousin, it links both trees. When I agreed to a Geni prompt that the matching record in his wife's tree and in my tree were the same person, I did not expect Geni to decide we had one family tree. This is an insidiuous way of taking control of a person's family tree. One reason Geni gives for not honouring my request to delete my tree is that other users – my cousin's wife – are connected to my tree. 

There is a page on Jewish Genealogy – The Issue of Mormon Baptism of Jewish Holocaust Dead and Other Jews - that describes an LDS promise in 1995 to desist from this practice, and its subsequent failure to do so. Here is a link to that page -

The article references a database containing the records of Jewish martyrs held by LDS, steps to search this data for your relatives and an address to write to demand removal of your ancestors from it. 

Be aware as well that LDS/Mormon church maintains databases called Vital Records which have data on Holocaust victims by region. There is a Vital Record page for #David-Horodok, the shtetl that my family came from in what was then #Poland and is now in #Belarus. My great-grandfather and several members of his family who were murdered in the Holocaust are listed in these records. It is my understanding that Vital Records lists Jews who have been baptized by the Mormon/LDS church. 

After my Geni experience, I caution others about the implications of maintaining family records on Geni. Be aware that MyHeritage, also used to create family trees, is part of the same company. MyHeritage is supposed to be more private but I read an article that suggests that it may be possible to see MyHeritage records under certain circumstances. 

Bill Katz

Victoria BC, Canada



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