Plagai, Lithuania - I'm lookin' for it, You got it? #lithuania #poland

Arthur Sissman

I am looking for Plagai, Lithuania.  The nearest I can find is Plunge, Lithuania and Plagai is NOT one of the alternate spellings.  It was supposed to be in the state of Suvalk, Russia or Poland (in the late 1800's).  I have a relative who was born in Shakki (now Sakiai, Lithuania.  I found Suvalk (now Suwalki, Poland) and Shakki.  I found this reference on Lith Births to Plagi vil, Zyple area, Wladyslavow, Suwalki.

Please help me find Plagai, Lithuania.  I have researched JewishGen Town Finder, the Gazetteer, and Google for Plagai.  The family lore says that when the Jews of the area were force to take surnames, my ancestors surname became Plager.  Sorta like Moses ben Chaim Plager!  And the surname Plagar was off and recreating!  So where is my hometown?

Thanks in advance!
Arthur Sissman
Jewish Genealogy SIG of Naples/Collier Co FL



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Charlotte (Lotte) Friedmann from Breslau #germany

rv Kaplan

Lotte (Charlotte) Friedmann from Breslau, Germany (now Wroclaw, Poland) came to Scotland in the 1930s and we know that in 1937, she was employed as an ‘English correspondent’  by a company in Aberdeen. She lived at the time with a Mrs Benson. In February 1940, the Aberdeen Press & Journal reported that Lotte Friedmann was convener of the Aberdeen Refugee Centre.  In 1943, there is an account of Lotte giving a political talk to the Aberdeen Housewives' Association.  But what became of Lotte after the war?  Did she stay in the area? Does anyone have any knowledge of this lady?

In 1999, Charlotte Friedmann of Ramat HaSharon in Israel submitted a Page of Testimony to Yad VaShem about her father-in-law, Louis Friedmann from Breslau.  Perhaps Charlotte or someone who knows her may read this posting.


Harvey Kaplan

Scottish Jewish Archives Centre



Re: Translate two Hebrew words #translation


There is little doubt that the reference on your tombstone is to a word that means monument. It appears in The Book of Malachim II (King 2), Chapter 23.

An adequate English translation would be:

Then he said: 'What monument (Tsiyun) is that which I see' And the men of the city told him: 'It is the sepulcher of the man of G-d, who came from Judah…'

Also note, the word Zion (as in Zionism) is in Hebrew pronounced as Tsi’on (the last syllable ~as “on” in pion), while the Hebrew pronunciation of the word for monument (with the same Hebrew consonants, but different vowels) is pronounced Tsi’un (the last syllable ~as “oon” in saloon).

Seth Jacobson


Re: Why Would Patronyms be Used Well After Formal Last Names Were Required?: Michalowicz vs. Leurie #names

Jill Whitehead

Quite a few members of my family reverted back to patronymic names in the UK after having been given surnames they did not like in the old country. Some who went from UK to US, or direct from old country to USA also did the same. It is not uncommon. I also have examples of both the given surname and the patronymic being used at the same time. 

Jill Whitehead, Surrey, UK

Re: Online listl of emigrants from Germany #germany #records

Andreas Schwab

To find a name or a place in the list, first go the the APERTUS search page:
Enter the name or place or any other search item.
Click on "Landeshauptarchiv Koblenz"
Click on "Auswanderer" 
Most entries will be at Bestand 441 or Bestand 442, but it is worth going through all Bestand numbers and all the other archives.
You can narrow the search by putting several terms into the search box. For example, if you search for "Mayer Chicago", you will get 12 results.
The link I provided recently is for the Hessen archives, which is independend of the Rheinland-Pflalz archives and will give you more results so you should search in both data bases. For Hessen the search page is
"Mayer Chicago" will provide 14 hits. 
Other emigrant data bases are:
Bremerhaven emigrants: (click on "Online")
Migra Base:
Here is a list (in German) of German emigration data bases.

Andreas Schwab

Re: Uncooperative Cemetery Personnel #usa

Dahn Cukier


I had a "due to privacy", about taking photos
of graves. Email was no help but I sent a printed
letter and a reply that matches the British policy.
No movies, stills are fine.

I did NOT include a phone number or email address.

When refusing information is more trouble than supply,
it can work.

Good hunting

Dahn Zukrowicz

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 Thursday, May 20, 2021, 11:17:54 PM GMT+3, Jx. Gx. <mrme1914@...> wrote:

I contacted the NYC cemetery where my ggf and ggm are buried and asked if they could check the burial file for my ggf and tell me the name of the congregation that he belong to because I'm certain it would be included in the actual original folder. The guy refused to give me that information.  All he kept repeating is that its "against our protocol" to release any information beyond the name of the burial society.  That bit of information is worthless because the society's name is already mounted on the entry gate to the cemetery section where my ggf is buried. It seems to me the guy doesn't want to get up from his comfortable chair and search through dusty old burial folders in storage.  Its easier for him to look at his computer database that has minimal information.  Is there any legal recourse in getting recalcitrant cemetery officials to do their job and help relatives with the information they need? 

Jeffrey Gee

Re: Where can I find Lodz Court records for 1949 #lodz

Dominique MERLET

I am also very interested in how to contact the court of justice in Lodz as I am looking for the reasons for a court decision dating back to 1922.
Thank you for your help.

Best regards
Dominique MERLET

Re: Uncooperative Cemetery Personnel #usa

Kenneth Ryesky

Which cemetery in New York?

There still are some cemeteries which have not yet computerized their card files (including the one near Philadelphia where I have a gm, 2 g-gms, a g-g-gm, and other relatives; fortunately, the office personnel there were quite accommodating when I made a personal visit some years ago).

Ken Ryesky,  Petach Tikva, Israel     kenneth.ryesky@... 

GERTZIG, BRODSKY; Yelizavetgrad, Ukraine
IZRAELSON, ARSHENOV; Yevpatoriya, Ukraine (Crimea)

Re: Birth Records For Leurie Michalowitz #records


On Thu, May 20, 2021 at 09:13 AM, Shelley Mitchell wrote:
Tiraspol in Moldava. ...Dubassary, Russia
Until early 20th century Dubossary was a shtetl in the Tiraspol uezd, Tiraspol being the uezd capital in the Kherson governorate.  These towns, which are 40 mi apart, are now part of Moldova, although technically in the breakaway region of Transnistria.

Mike Vayser

Re: Need Assistance with Genealogy Databases - Not finding names #names #ukraine


In addition to Renee's comment about "Kevguberna" being a broken phone version of Kiev gubernia (governorate, province, etc), I'd like to add that the last name Coopersmith is likely not the original name.  Perhaps, it was changed in the US from something like Kupershmid/Kupershmit/Kupershmidt.  Zaslovsky was likely Zaslavsky.
The town, you refer to as Tative and Teteve, sounds like Tetiev, which was part of Tarashcha uezd in Kiev governorate from 1795 until 1922.  Belaya Tserkov is about half way between Tetiev and Kiev, 45-50 mi each direction.

Also, Odessa doesn't have an Ostrova suburb.

Mike Vayser

"From Bourbon to Blue Jeans: Bavarian Jews and Their Influence on American Culture," Sunday, May 23, 1 P.M. (PDT) #germany #usa #events

Emily Garber

This coming Sunday, May 23, 2021, the Phoenix Jewish Genealogy Group will present Suzanne Kelting Myers and her talk: "From Bourbon to Blue Jeans: Bavarian Jews and Their Influence on American Culture."
This virtual presentation is free of charge and open to all. To register, go to:
"From Bourbon to Blues Jeans: Bavarian Jews and Their Influence on American Culture” will begin with an overview of Jewish immigration to the United States: Sephardic Jews prior to 1800; the German-speaking Jews in the 19th century (post-1813 and post-1848); and the Eastern European wave between 1880 and 1920. Pressures from cultural and legal events in Bavaria, especially those relating to the Napoleonic Era, and to a lesser extent those relating to the German revolutions of 1848-1849, and how they affected the status of Jews in the region will be discussed.  The patterns of immigration, the conditions required to travel, and the ports of arrival in the United States by individuals and families will be reviewed. Jewish men who settled in the United States were identified by the state not by their religious affiliation but by their race (white) and therefore had all the rights that other white males in society held: citizenship, voting rights, and land-owning.  How this distinction supported their ability to flourish economically and to fully participate in civic life was significant.

Suzanne Kelting Myers, D.O. is fascinated by the immigration of Jewish immigrants during the 19th century and how they became involved in various vocations, especially those in the American West.  She uses her anthropology perspective as an approach to genealogy, her teaching background to communicate and educate, and her medical training to integrate science (including DNA) into her research.  She is the editor of Tidbits, the newsletter for the West Valley Genealogical Society in Youngtown, and has been involved with the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society’s project to transcribe all Jewish burial records in the Bay Area.


Taking up genealogy seriously about 15 years ago, she has traveled to four European countries and more than a dozen states to pursue her family’s history. She has completed Boston University’s certificate program and is an alumnus of the ProGen study group. Her educational opportunities to genealogical institutes have been facilitated by a ProGenealogist scholarship in 2020 and the Donn Devine scholarship in 2021.


She is the owner of Expedition Genealogy and is Adjunct Faculty at Midwestern University in the College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Emily Garber, Chair
Phoenix Jewish Genealogy Group
a committee of the Arizona Jewish Historical Society

Re: Online list of emigrants from Germany - translation #germany

Daniella Alyagon

How can this database be accessed?

Daniella Alyagon

OC California JGS Meeting Schedule for the rest of 2021 #announcements #jgs-iajgs

Michelle Sandler

Sunday June 13th 10:00 am Pacific Time, Gill Bardage on DNA

Sunday July 25th 10:00 am Pacific Time, Megan Lewis on Doing Research
in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Sunday August 22nd 10:00 am Pacific Time, Serafima Velkovic on Doing
Research Online at Yad Vashem

Sunday September 19th 10:00 am Pacific Time, Greg Nelson on Procuring
records from Eastern Europe for the Family History Library in Salt
Lake City

Sunday October 24th 10:00 am Pacific Time, Arthur Kurzweil on the
History of Jewish Genealogy

Sunday November 21st 10:00 am Pacific Time, Aaron Ginsburg on Finding
Your Shtetl

Registration is required. Please register at Members
of OCJGS are free and non members are 5$. The 5$ fee can be paid on
our website at

Michelle Sandler
President OCJGS
Westminster California

New On-Demand Virtual Genealogy Research Workshops #general #education

Michael Moritz

Interested in learning more about how to research your family tree, but you would rather learn at your own pace? 

Register today for a virtual on-demand workshop, which you can watch whenever is convenient for you. The workshops are all pre-recorded classes with interactive examples, all of which are accompanied by slides that you will be able to download. Current availabilities include various one-hour on-demand workshops (viewable at your convenience) which are back by popular demand:

• Jewish Research 1: Introduction to the most important databases for Jewish genealogical research and how to make the most out of your searches. Discussion of general commercial databases, specific Jewish databases (with special emphasis on JewishGen), burial databases, Holocaust databases, Jewish newspaper collections and more.

• Jewish Research 2: Introduction to Jewish naming practices and how names changed when coming to English-speaking lands. We will touch on Yiddish and Ashkenazi naming practices, Eastern European surnames, the "Ellis Island myth," and explore how to find an ancestor's "original" name through records research, including naturalization records, name change records, gravestones and ship records.

• Jewish Research 3: Introduction to locating where your ancestors came from in Europe. Background discussion on finding a town of origin, European historical borders and how they have shifted through time. Exploration of the best sources to use in order to locate what town in Europe your family came from, and where to turn next once you have located that information, as well as specific guidance for each country/region.

• US Research 1: Introduction to the primary databases for United States genealogical research. Introduction to federal records research, including federal censuses, federal court naturalization (citizenship) records (including within the FamilySearch catalogue), military records and the Social Security Death Index.

• US Research 2: Introduction to state research, including an overview of vital records access rules in the United States, and an assessment of the different death record regimes. Introduction to state-level census records and state court naturalization (citizenship), as well as state military records (including draft records and veteran records).

• US Research 3: Introduction to local research, including locating the graves of ancestors (plus burial records and cemetery databases), searching newspaper records, and locating individuals in yearbook records and the US Public Records Index.

Part of a genealogical or historical organization? Group discounts are available!

For more information, including registration and fees: see

Michael Moritz (New York)

Note that while I am the Director of the Romania Research Division, this email is not affiliated with JewishGen.

OC California JGS May Meeting is Sunday at 10:00 am Pacific Time with Miriam Weiner #jgs-iajgs #announcements

Michelle Sandler

The Orange County California Jewish Genealogy Society May meeting with
Miriam Weiner is Sunday at 10:00 am Pacific Time. Registration is
required. You can register at Members are free and non
members are $5 payable on our website

Michelle Sandler MLS
President OCJGS

Re: Need Assistance with Genealogy Databases - Not finding names #names #ukraine

Renee Steinig

Glenn Mantel <glennmantel@...> asked his Coopersmith, Nierenberg, Zaslovsky, Greenfield, Birnbaum, Satz and Mantel relatives.

It's important to learn what you can about immigrants from their U.S. records before attempting to search in Europe. There are so many sources to turn to for more information -- vital and cemetery records, immigration and naturalization records, censuses, draft records, etc. etc.  

Two of the sources that would be helpful to your search:

1) The online databases that exist for a number of New York area Jewish cemeteries. Searching on these sites will often lead you to additional relatives. It will also show you the societies on whose grounds these relatives are buried -- often clues to place of origin. So, for example...

o Solomon and Golda (Gussie) Coopersmith can be found on the Mount Zion Cemetery site (, on the grounds of Congregation Agudath Achim Misode Lovon.  A number of Nierenbergs are also buried in that section, and a Nurenberg.

According to the JGSNY's Burial Society Database (, this society (or synagogue?) was associated with the town that's now Bila Tserkva, Ukraine -- . This town is about 50 miles from Kiev and was once located within Kiev Gubernia (province) -- hence the references you have found to "Kevguberna" and the like.

o Wellwood Cemetery's site ( lists, in addition to Meyer, these Coopersmiths buried on the grounds of Congregation United Brethren of Sodah Loven: Michael, William, and Louis (his brothers?) and Anna (a sister-in-law?). Also in the section: Rose Rappaport (Meyer's sister?). This organization is also associated with Bila Tserkva.

o Mount Ararat Cemetery's online listings ( include the adjacent graves of Bertha and Michael Birnbaum, who died in 1977 and 2004. They appear to be in a private plot.

o The Mount Hebron Cemetery site ( shows that Julius Greenfield is buried very near Etta -- perhaps his wife. They also are in a private plot, not on society grounds.

2) Also, since I'm JRI-Poland's town leader for Mielec, some comments on Michael Birnbaum....

Indeed, his U.S. WWII draft card says that he was born in Mielec in 1913. 
No Jewish vital records survive for Mielec -- just a relatively small number of civil records that reference vital events. But Jewish Records Indexing - Poland ( has a large collection of army draft registrations for Mielec, including what appears to be Michael's -- Meilech Birnbaum, son of Abraham Chaim Birnbaum and Schifra Thaler. These parents' names match those on Michael's Social Security record on Ancestry.

For information on more recent Mielec records, please contact me directly.


Renee Stern Steinig
Dix Hills NY

Meeting Sunday May 23rd at 10:00 am Pacific With Miriam Weiner #announcements #jgs-iajgs

Michelle Sandler

The Orange County California Jewish Genealogy Society is having their
May meeting on Sunday at 10:00 am on Zoom. The speaker is Miriam
Weiner talking about her updated database.

Michelle Sandler
President OCJGS
Westminster California

JewishGen Education Adds New Youthsite: "Genealogy for Gen X, Y and Z" #announcements #education #general

Nancy Holden

JewishGen Education has added a new Youthsite: "Genealogy for Gen X, Y and Z" for young family historians, their parents and teachers. This new program offers 5-minute videos on building a family tree with special guides for parents and tutors, and includes Lesson Plans for teachers.


We hope that you will take a look and pass the word to the JewishGen community.

Nancy Holden
Director of Education
Alan Raskin

Why Would Patronyms be Used Well After Formal Last Names Were Required?: Michalowicz vs. Leurie #names

Marilyn Robinson

Hi All,
1. My maternal grandmother's sister, Esther TAUFIELD, listed her maiden name as MICHALOWITZ on her daughter's birth certificate (New York, 7/1891; Gussie S.) Esther was 22 yr., making her birth year about 1869.

2. Also, her father Zelman/Solomon used MICHALOWICZ when he married in Tomaszow Mazowiecki, in 1867.

3. My maternal grandmother, Gittel/Gus & her family (Rivke [mother], Marie, Rosa, Josef, Mosi) were listed with the MICHALOWITZ surname, according to the ship's manifest, when immigrating to the US in 7/1891.
Their actual surname was LEURIE (or some alternate spelling), which morphed into LEVINE in the US.
Their paternal grandfather's name was Michal.

4. My grandmother's sister, Rose, was listed on her 8/1896 N.Y. marriage record as "Rosie MICHAELOWITZ".

According to some information in Jewishgen's info files, "In the earliest records (before surnames were in general use, in the mid-1820's), a father's patronymic might be used".

The above data was in the timeframe of 1860's-1890's. Why would they still be using a patronym and not their permanent surname at that time?

Marilyn Robinson

Searching: REICHMAN/REJCHMAN--Tomaszow Mazowiecki, Lodz, LEURIE--Lodz, MICHALOWICZ/MICHALOWITZ--Tomaszow Mazowiecki, Lodz, RUBIN--Tomaszow Mazowiecki, Warsaw, Lodz

Ownership of real estate in Poland in 1937 #poland

חיים סגל

I wanted to ask,
In 1937, could a foreign citizen own a house in Poland?
Haim Segal

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