Re: Austro-Hungarian army records? #galicia #poland #hungary #records #austria-czech

Nancy Siegel

Logan Kleinwak’s “Genealogy Indexer” includes some military records.

My grandfather’s brother, born in Rohatyn (now Ukraine), served in the Austro-Hungarian Army. I found him listed in some military directories by going to Google Books. On the Google Books website I searched on his name and found several listings.

Nancy Siegel
San Francisco, California

Jewish name changing to be subject of JGS of Illinois online talk on July 25, 2021 #names #announcements #jgs-iajgs

Martin Fischer

Kirsten Fermaglich, who has been teaching history and Jewish studies at Michigan State University since 2001, will give a talk on “A History of Jewish Name Changing in America” for the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois online meeting on Sunday, July 25, 2021. Her live streaming presentation will begin at 2 p.m. Central Daylight Time. (A separate JGSI members-only genealogy question-and-answer discussion time will start at 1 p.m. CDT.) 

To register for this free event, go to After you register, you will be sent a link to join the meeting. This webinar will be recorded so that JGSI’s paid members who are unable to view it live will be able to view the recording later.  

In her presentation, Kirsten Fermaglich will offer an overview of her most recent book, “A Rosenberg by Any Other Name” (NYU Press, 2018). “Our thinking about Jewish name changing tends to focus on clichés: ambitious movie stars who adopted glamorous new names or insensitive officials who changed immigrants’ names for them,” she said. But as the speaker will describe, the real story is much more profound. Scratching below the surface, Fermaglich examines previously unexplored name change petitions to upend the clichés, revealing that in 20th-century New York City, Jewish name changing was actually a broad-based and voluntary behavior: thousands of ordinary Jewish men, women, and children legally changed their names in order to respond to an upsurge of antisemitism.  


Rather than trying to escape their heritage or “pass” as non-Jewish, most name-changers remained active members of the Jewish community, she said. While name changing allowed Jewish families to avoid antisemitism and achieve white middle-class status, the practice also created pain within families and became a stigmatized, forgotten aspect of American Jewish culture.  

Using court documents, oral histories, archival records, and contemporary literature, Fermaglich argues that name changing had a lasting impact on American Jewish culture. Ordinary Jews were forced to consider changing their names as they saw their friends, family, classmates, co-workers, and neighbors do so. Jewish communal leaders and civil rights activists needed to consider name changers as part of the Jewish community, making name changing a pivotal part of early civil rights legislation. And Jewish artists created critical portraits of name changers that lasted for decades in American Jewish culture.  


The talk ends with the disturbing realization that the prosperity Jews found by changing their names is not as accessible for the Chinese, Latino, and Muslim immigrants who wish to exercise that right today.  


As a professor in the Department of History at Michigan State University, Kirsten Fermaglich’s interests center around the historical meanings and problematic nature of ethnic identity in the United States: “I am particularly interested in secular Jews as both members of and outsiders to the Jewish community,” she said. “I am also interested in the ways that gender, race, class, and family intersect with ethnic identity.” 

 “A Rosenberg by any Other Name” won the Saul Viener Book Prize from the American Jewish Historical Society for the best book published in American Jewish History over the previous two years.  Her first book, “American Dreams and Nazi Nightmares” (Brandeis University Press, 2006), looked at secular Jewish intellectuals’ uses of the Holocaust in the early 1960s. Fermaglich also co-edited, with Lisa Fine, the Norton Critical Edition of Betty Friedan’s “The Feminine Mystique” (2013). 

She teaches undergraduate classes in American Jewish history and culture, as well as undergraduate and graduate classes in United States history after 1865. 

The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping members collect, preserve, and perpetuate the records and history of their ancestors. JGSI is a resource for the worldwide Jewish community to research their Chicago-area roots. The JGSI motto is “Members Helping Members Since 1981.” The group has more than 300 members and is affiliated with the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies

JGSI members have access to useful and informative online family history research resources, including a members’ forum, more than 65 video recordings of past speakers’ presentations, monthly JGSI E-News, quarterly Morasha JGSI newsletter, and much more. Members as well as non-members can look for their ancestors on the free searchable JGSI Jewish Chicago Database

For more information, see or phone 312-666-0100. 

Martin Fischer
Vice President-Publicity
Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois

JGSI website:

ViewMate translation request - Croatian #translation


I've posted a vital record for which I need a translation. It concerns Karoly Steiner who died in 1900 in 
Pakrac. I think the record is written in Croatian. It is on ViewMate at the following address: Please respond via the form provided on the ViewMate image page. Thank you very much.

Ruth Bloomfield

Re: Proving that a man who died in Paris did not have children #france #general


Anyone who has taken a Philosophy course will tell you it is impossible to prove a negative. But then logic has never stopped lawyers before. What is the Israeli court's standard for "due diligence" in attempting this "proof"?  I like Alain's suggestion of contacting City Hall of Paris since if that comes up blank one could argue that none were found.

Robert Roth
Kingston, NY

Re: moving from Family Tree Maker to a program for a Samsung galaxy Tablet #general

Sarah L Meyer

I believe that their app is only for trees not for records.

Sarah L Meyer
Georgetown TX
BIRGARDOVSKY, EDELBERG, HITE (CHAIT), PERCHIK Russia (southern Ukraine) and some Latvia or Lithuania

ViewMate translation request - Russian #translation #poland #russia

Larry Cohen

I've posted a vital record in Russian for which I need a translation.
It is on ViewMate at the following address ...

Please respond via the form provided on the ViewMate image page.

Thank you very much.
- Lawrence Cohen

Re: translation needed - Polish/Yiddish to translate to English #translation


They are both in Yiddish. Unfortunately my Yiddish is basic at best so I can only make out bits about walking in the street and maybe something about glasses.
If nobody replies on this forum then you can post them on viewmate which is designed specifically for translation and similar requests.
There are many people in this group willing to help without any cost, generally the only time payment is expected/appreciated is with very large translation requests or requests for pictures or files that require some amount of travel or effort. 
Binyamin Kerman
Baltimore MD

SPIELER Lodz, Zloczew, Belchatow

Re: Registration with the SS in Netherlands #holocaust #records


In the years after the war many publications and discussions arose about the 'Joodse Raad' (Judenrat). Very impressive is what happened with hundreds of babies which were smuggled out of the babyhome across the street  from where the parents were held. The underground resistence brought them to non-jewish foster parents.
Ron Peeters(NL)

Re: Proving that a man who died in Paris did not have children #france #general


Dear Lea,

The best for you is to contact the City Hall of Paris, They must have the information and can deliver an official document.

Best regards,

Alain Sieliontchik, Belgium.

Proving that a man who died in Paris did not have children #france #general

Lea Haber Gedalia

Dear friends , 
I urge your help with an uncommon question - The Israeli court have asked me to prove that a man who died in Paris did not have any children born to him while residing there.  This person , Mr. Simon Shalit (born 1926 in Tel Aviv to Joseph and Dvora ) resided in 139 Avenue de Malakoff Paris 16eme and died 25.11.1991 . 
Is this even possible to prove  such a request ? Maybe a gravestone can indicate who brought him to his final rest, but I do not have a burial site...
Any suggestions and insights would be greatly appreciated.
Lea Haber Gedalia, Israel

translation needed - Polish/Yiddish to translate to English #translation

Linda Hall

I have 2 photos (my Uncle and Aunty) with Polish or Yiddish (not sure) on the reverse of the photos.  I would like to know if someone in the group can help with translating to English.  Can you please let me know if there is a cost? 
Thank you
Kind regards
Linda Hall
Nairne  South Australia

Re: Searching for Members of Sperber Family in France #france

André Convers

attached dead certificate for Chaim Sperber.

Andre Convers
Lorient, France

"Two barns" - Jedwabne Pogrom documentary (free on Vimeo). #poland #holocaust

Theo Rafael

"Two barns" (2014) is a powerful documentary about the Jedwabne massacre posted online by producer Roy Mandel: It features testimonies from Holocaust survivors, local Christian Poles and interviews with historians Jan Tomasz Gross, Yehuda Bauer, Jan Garbowski and Hava Dreifuss. In stark contrast, the story of Shevach Weiss who survived the Holocaust hidden underground by Polish neighbors and who went on to become Speaker of the Knesset and Israeli Ambassador to Poland is also intertwined in the storyline. 
The documentary points out that tens of thousands of Jews were killed by their local neighbors in villages across Poland, Russia and Ukraine, Jedwabne being the most notorious such event.
A gripping, highly recommended watch.

Theo Rafael

Re: moving from Family Tree Maker to a program for a Samsung galaxy Tablet #general

Richard Werbin

If you go to the google play store search for and you will find their app.
It is OK. Not as feature rich as ftm 2019.
You can log in and download your tree to the tablet.
Richard Werbin    New York, New York     JGSNY Membership Vice President

Letter from Poland about our parents needs translation #poland #translation

Sharon E Siegel

There are two pages to this letter, and we are very interested to know what was learned from Poland about our inquiry.  If you can help it would be greatly appreciated.  
Thanks for any help.
Sharon E. Siegel 
Port Jervis, NY USA
MODERATOR NOTE: Please reply privately

Moses and Isaac OPPENHEIMER from Battenberg/Battenfeld/Berghofen #germany

Fred Half

Hello all,

I am trying to find other people who have the subject family in their tree. Moses OPPENHEIMER is my gggrandfather. I know that Moses OPPENHEIMER was born 25 September 1840 supposedly in Battenberg (but could have been anywhere in the small towns of that area) the son of Isaac and Nannie (nee DRUCKER) OPPENHEIMER. Isaac is buried in Pittsburgh, PA, the tombstone having the dates 1801-1890. I don't know anything else about Nannie. Moses supposedly came to the US in about 1860 and by 2 June 1869 was in Pittsburgh, PA because he married Julia FRANK on that date. I have complete data of his three children but am looking for information about his father Isaac, mother Nannie, uncles or aunts (know of one brother K(C)oppel) and especially siblings. From some research a cousin did in Germany, there seems to not be any records in Marburg.

He had seven siblings; three brothers (Ben, Henry, and Saul) and four sisters (Bertha(Bette), Henrietta(Yetta), Setta, Amalia(Mollie)). All the siblings were born outside the US (locations unknown).


Married, is buried in Pittsburgh, PA. Had four children (Daniel W, Jacob, Nora, and Bertha L). Bertha died in infancy in 1870. Daniel (d 1929) and Jacob (d 1937) are buried in Pittsburgh, PA. Do not know anything else. Nora married and descendants are named SPEYER and SUNSTEIN.

Bertha (Bette)

Bertha married Herman SCHEUR and other descendant names are JACOBY, BLUMENTHAL, CUDEN, & AURBACH


Married Amanda ELLINGER from Baltimore, MD. They had four children (Sidney, William, Nan, and Olive). Know nothing about Sidney, William died in 1916 and is buried in Pittsburgh, PA, Nan never married and died in 1929 and is buried in Pittsburgh, PA. Olive married Max OBORNDORF and had descendants named GREENBAUM and SOULE.

Henrietta (Yetta)

Married Meyer AMBERG and also had descendants named KOCH, BERKMAN, BROIDO, CANT, & ROSENTHAL


Married Moses ARNOLD. Buried in Pittsburgh, PA

Amalia (Mollie)

Married Moses HERZOG and had three girls Daisy, Mae, and Nannie. Nannie died in infancy and other descendants are named LEVY, DE ROY, & RASCHBAUM. Buried in Pittsburgh, PA


Know nothing.

This information is being posted to Early American and German Sig. Any information on descendants or ancestors would be appreciated. Please respond privately unless useful to a broader audience. Thanks in advance.


Fred Half
Palo Alto, CA USA

Re: Etymology of the Rudman surname #names

Janet Furba

Hi maybe from Rudermann - the rower, the one at the rudder = paddle-wheel, steering wheel

Translation Request Russian to English #translation


View Mate translation help please, from Russian to English.  I've posted a vital record in Russian for which I need a translation. It is on View Mate at the following address:   View Mate Posting- VM94384 

Translate from Russian to English- Death Record of Chaja Sora Izraelska ATKA 23 Father listed as Abram

Zambrow PSA Births 1883,87,88,90,92-99,1901,3,4 Marriages 1883,87-90,92-98,1901,4,6,7 Deaths 1883,87-90,92-98,1904 Łomża Gubernia
(records in Fond 174 Bialystok Archive Lomza Branch)

Thanks-Jay Filan

moving from Family Tree Maker to a program for a Samsung galaxy Tablet #general


I have used Family Tree Maker for years on my laptop, but that is no longer possible and I am using Samsung's Galaxy A tablet which is android, not windows. FTM does not run on android.  I have my tree on My Heritage and on Ancestry, but my most complete version is on FTM.  I know that I can save data in gedcom, but am not sure how complete that is.  I need a program that will run on android and load all of the .FTMB data.  Are there any suggestions?

Also, can one link the Ancestry tree and/or the My Heritage tree to the FTM information?  It would be so nice to work with only one genealogy program and that that one be the complete one.

Geri Mund

Re: Austro-Hungarian army records? #galicia #poland #hungary #records #austria-czech

Andreas Schwab

JRI Poland has indexed the records for these places.
However, 1932 is too recent, the records are not available online for the general public, and 1857 is too early for Sambor, records start at 1862. Maybe there are marriage records or records for the children. 
Andreas Schwab, Montreal, Canada

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