If you missed the presentation on the Yizkor Books Project, here is the link #JewishGenUpdates #yizkorbooks

Joel Alpert

The presentation by JewishGen called "Yizkor Books as Collective
Memory of a Lost World", was a Zoom on Feb 16th. There were nearly
1000 people watching.

Here is the link:

Joel Alpert, Coordinator of the Yizkor-Books-in-Print Project

Feb 21, 2020 3PM, Minnesota JGS Zoom Program #events #announcements #dna



MNJGS is hosting a Zoom event: A Detective Story Across Continents: Finding a 95-Year-Old Adoptee’s Birth Father on Feb 21, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM CST. Join us for a detective story using DNA and genealogy research to solve a 95 year mystery. The story will be told by presenters from New Zealand, Australia and the US.
Registration is required. Free for members, $5 for non-members. For more information and registration:

Liba Casson-Nudell

Re: help readng arrival document #records

Peter Cohen

Griffins Corner. NY is now known as Fleischmanns, NY. It is 40 miles west of Kingston on Highway 28.  In the first half of the 20th century, the area was a popular summer getaway for residents of New York City.  There is a Jewish Cemetery located in Clovesville, NY (about 2 miles away) that I photographed and posted to about 6 years ago.
Peter Cohen

Re: Jewish Refugee Admissions to the U.S. in 1940 #usa #holocaust


Melanie Godschmid was issued  QIV 14778  i.e,  Quota Immigrant Visa, probably  under the German quota. She was eligible under Section 5 of the Immigration Act of 1924 which defines a Quota Immigrant.  In  March 1940 Germany was not at war with the United States and she would not have been considered an enemy alien.   Admission for refugees who had no visa was not an issue in her case.

David Rosen
Boston, MA

On 2/15/2021 8:38 PM, Scott.leo@... wrote:

Through images of ship records, I've come across my great-grandmother's aunt, Melanie Goldschmid, who arrived on the SS Lancastria in New York on March 21, 1940. The ship is listed as having departed Liverpool, UK (with a stop, I believe, in Halifax).

I know (from the 1940 U.S. census, where she is listed) that Melanie was living in Vienna in 1935 (her family's roots were indeed there for decades prior). On December 14, 1939, she was issued by the UK government a "Female Enemy - Exemption from Internment - Refugee" card. She is listed in that card as having a UK address.

The Lancastria manifest for her arrival in New York lists her as being issued a visa or passport (it's not clear, and I assume this is a U.S. visa...) in London on December 11, 1939.

The SS Lancastria manifest if full of German/Austrian Jews, such as Melanie. My understanding was that the U.S. no longer granted admission to refugees at this time. Does anyone have further background on this particular issue in this time? I cannot seem to reconstruct the series of events that allowed her to sail from the UK to New York and be admitted to the United States in this period.

So appreciative for any thoughts.

Thank you!

Scott Leo
Washington, DC

Re: Divorce records #usa

Lee Hover

My parents were divorced in Brooklyn in the late 1940s.  At that time, and earlier, the only legitimate reason for divorce was  adultery.  As a result, many couples arranged a scenario in a hotel, so as to be caught in flagrante delicto with a willing accomplice.

Lacey, WA

Re: Divorce records #usa


Based on my experience in family court in another state, initial filings before no-fault divorce became common would include the basis of the divorce, such as mental illness, desertion, or alcoholism, the three reasons most typically allowed.  
Barbara Sloan
Conway, SC

Re: Divorce records #usa

Gail H. Marcus

I have a related question that might possibly be relevant for the questioner or for others.  Are all the papers associated with a divorce sealed for 100 years from the actual divorce date, or do papers become available 100 years from when they were filed?

My grandmother first filed for divorce in 1916 in New York (the Bronx).  However, they apparently must have reconciled and the divorce wasn't finalized until 1931.  If the first filing is available 100 years from the date of the filing, I could get it now.  If I have to wait until the divorce was finalized, I have to wait another 10 years.  My thought is that the preliminary filing might contain some useful information.

A related question is whether initial filings have any details, such as reasons for filing for divorce.  (I.e., whether such records really do contain anything useful.)

This may be a longer interval than for most divorces, but if there is any useful information in earlier records, it might help some people.

Gail Marcus

Re: Otto Oppenheimer of San Francisco #usa #general #germany

The Becker's Email

Otto Oppenheimer b. 8 July 1884 Camberg, Hesse, Germany per his naturalization papers (and his German birth record)..  He was a merchant.  He and his wife Irma arrived in the US in 1934 from Mexico.  His parents were Lazarus Oppenheimer and Bettchen Mayer.  Information on him is available on both and Ancestry.  He died June 1958 and his death notice provides no details.  No children. 

Johanna Becker
Newport, Rhode Island

How to research Bialystok archives #records #poland


I found  a reference to a birth index  which could be the one of my great grand mother on data base. How does one get about with Byalistok archives to obtain the actual birth certificate? 
Thank you for any help

Catherine Jurovsky


Jews from Jaslo #galicia #names #poland


My friend Jerzy Michal Rucinski is a collector of vintage photographs and postcards from Jaslo.
He is interested in connecting with descendants of Jewish families from Jaslo.
I will put interested parties in touch with him through me.

Nina Talbot
Brooklyn, NY

NEGER, SPINRAD (Dynow, Poland)
TOLPEN (Suchostaw, Poland/Sukhostav, Ukraine)
DISTENFELD, ADLER, WILDER (Kamionka Strumilowa, Poland/Kamianka-Buzka, Ukraine)

Searching for Ritevsky/Rits origins in Lithuania #belarus #lithuania


I am searching for the origins of the Ritevsky/Rits genealogical line in Lithuania. I have information indicating that it may have started in the village/town of Vilkaviskis, in south-east Suwalki Gubernia in the 1700's. Later, Ritevskys are found in Minsk in the 1870's and 1880's owning a chain of shops that specialized in selling collars, cuffs, etc. They immigrated to the U.S. in the early 1890's and changed their surname to Rits. I would welcome any help in learning more about their origins/early ancestors or their businesses in the Minsk region.
Thank You,
George Mason

Researching MOZESON in Lithuania, Poland, and Latvia,
NATHANSON in Lithuania and Latvia, and ORABENA/ARABENA in Spain.

Re: Are children named for living or dead relatives if one parent is Ashkenazi and one is Sephardic? #names


My children's Jewish/Hebrew are named after one deceased relative (I'm Ashkenazim) and one living relative (husband is Sephardi) though we definitely had quite a conversation during the first pregnancy.
Barbara Cohen
Glenview IL

Re: Yale Hungarian Collections #hungary


  There are several items I would like searched. They are in Hungarian and/or Hebrew or Yiddish. Does anyone know how this could be arranged? Is there someone of you who are willing to go there and search? I would be willing to pay. (For this I am interested in Albert-Irsa and Szeged.) I imagine there are other siggers who would want searches done too.
Larry Bassist

Re: Are children named for living or dead relatives if one parent is Ashkenazi and one is Sephardic? #names

Billie Stein

For "mixed" families, there is no hard and fast rule, but most likely if the naming is for a Sephardic relative, it may be of a live one, whereas if naming for an Ashkenazi relative, it would be for someone no longer living.

Billie Stein
Givatayim, Israel

Re: Translation needed of record from hebrew #translation


I think it is a ballot for electing officials to the vaad ha'ir (like city council) of Jerusalem. The nominated people have to have lived in the city at least 3 years. A line would be written next to a name to signify a vote. 
I don't see the the name you are looking for on the list. It could be further down on the page since they are listed alphabetically and Yitzchak would be a bit below where the page cuts off. I do see a Shabsi ben Reb Yitzchak Yaakov (leftmost column 4th down). There is no surname but Shabsi's father was named Yitzchak Yaakov. This could be relevant or totally unrelated to your search.
Binyamin Kerman
Baltimore MD

Probate in Toronto #records

David Lewin

How can I obtain a copy of the probate of a person who dies in
Scarborough, Toronto after 1971
I do not have a death date. He had owned and was living at 84
Torrance Road, 701 Scarborough

David Lewin

Re: Jewish Heritage Annual Report

Steven Turner

Thank you so much Jan for sharing this report. Glad to see the Tempel Synagogue of Ivano-Frankivsk made the report. The foundation is providing us with much advice. All those interested in the synagogue and/or Rabbi Kolesnik please contact me.

Re: Where are these records #lithuania #records

Russ Maurer

Hello Herman,
The standard archival designation is organized as archive/fond/inventory/file. Thus the example you gave works out to
KRA - the Kaunas regional archive (other archival abbreviations frequently encountered in Lithuanian records are LVIA, the state historical archive, and LCVA, the central state archive, both located in Vilnius)
I-210 - the number of the fond at KRA
1 - the number of the inventory (ie, a section) within that fond
439 - the number of the file within that inventory

Many Lithuanian records are online at, but not this specific file as yet. You would have to purchase a copy of your records from KRA (kaunas@...). The records would be in Russian as the area in question (Rokiskis) was part of the Russian Empire at that time.

Russ Maurer
Records Acquisition & Translation coordinator, LitvakSIG

Re: Jewish Refugee Admissions to the U.S. in 1940 #usa #holocaust

Jill Whitehead

My mother's family in Edinburgh,Scotland and another person in Kent, UK took in one brother and his two sisters from Berlin during the war as Kindertransports. Their mother escaped the Nazis via the Iberian peninsula, but could not get into the USA. She went onto Cuba (with other women in a similar situation), and entered Florida "unofficially", marrying a Polish Jew with US citizenship (her German husband had died of natural causes pre war). The marriage did not last, but she obtained visas for her three children in 1942 and they joined her in respectively 1943, 1944 and 1945. 

Jill Whitehead, Surrey, UK

Re: Are children named for living or dead relatives if one parent is Ashkenazi and one is Sephardic? #names

David Harrison <djh_119@...>

From a series of trails of ancestors in The Netherlands, I have found that the given names of the firstborn alternate through the ages.  This means that most firstborn first cousins have not only the same given name but also the same family name.  But luckily in that country because the wife has not changed her family name and their system whereby there is no Census on a specific day , but a "house-book' for each ten-year period which cross-references all movements in and out over that period, there is a significant amount of other material to help sorting out which is which.  In my family a young person spent several years with a relative and was therefore crossed out on leaving and a new entry on return, whilst another listed for a period of time the employment of a "Wet-Nurse"; there are some advantages of a semi-police-state!
David Harrison, Birmingham, GB

From: main@... <main@...> on behalf of Mark Stone <markstone@...>
Sent: 17 February 2021 10:14
To: main@... <main@...>
Subject: Re: [] Are children named for living or dead relatives if one parent is Ashkenazi and one is Sephardic? #names

I come from a family of Ashkenazi on my father's side and from Sephardic origins from my mother’s family.


I once asked a learned man “where does it leave me?”.


The answer  “absolutely nowhere!”


Thank G-d for the State of Israel, because it no longer matters!


Mark Paul Stone   Lichtenstein/Morpurgo

P. S. Anyway I was named after my grandfather who passed away. However surely they are named ref: Dutch side, with the fathers name in the middle . Shall we say "ben", but it is not used

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