JewishGen News - October Issue #JewishGenUpdates

Nancy Siegel

Don’t miss the October issue of JewishGen News! If you aren’t subscribed to receive a copy by email, you can read it by following this new link:


Articles include:


*Introduction by Avraham Groll

*New Webinar - Translating Russian Documents

*Family Tree of the Jewish People Update

*Emmy-Winning Jewish Documentary

*Yizkor Book Project Update

*Education Report

*Research Division Updates




   **United States

*LitvakSIG Update

*Museum of Jewish Heritage - Oral History Podcasts

*Success! Story - A Hundred Year Journey …




Nancy Siegel
Director of Communications
(San Francisco, California)

Elm Ridge Drive, Toronto #canada


Twenty some years ago, in a talk at the Los Angeles conference, I stressed the importance of reviewing previously acquired material as it may contain important, earlier overlooked, information. "... One man's background noise is another man's great-grandfather..." It is time to put the theory to the test.


In 1922, a young couple by the names Naftali b. Ber Lasutra and his wife Nechama b. Meishe (nee Gluzman), both natives of a small shtetl Pulin near Zhitomir, arrived in Toronto. Within the first ten years, they changed names to Nathan and Annie Lester. They lived on Borden Street for a number of years. By two independent accounts, they did not have children, although Nechama had a sister named Khaya who may have also lived in Toronto.

In the late 1940's, they moved to a new development on Elm Ridge Drive. Annie Lester died in 1956. In a year, Nathan Lester left for Israel where his brother, a photographer and a documentary filmmaker Yaacov Ben-Dov lived since 1907. Nathan died in 1974 and is buried in Holon.

There is evidence suggesting that Nathan Lester and some of his neighbors at Elm Ridge Drive were long time friends. It is therefore logical to assume that he wrote them from Israel.


So, if you research any of the names below, please check your "other stuff" folder. It may contain a never translated letter in Yiddish, or a picture of "uncle Sam with neighbours", or something else.

The names are copied from the 1951 Toronto City Directory The numbers are house numbers. Just in case, the entire page can be viewed at


139         Max Solomon

141         Banjamin Scinberg

142         Morris Rubinoff

143         Ciro Romanin

144         Joseph Steinberg

145         Albert Ciavir

146         Sam Berke

148         Nathan Lester

149         Boris Litman

150         Israel Rotblott

151         Harry H Berman

153         Max Axsmith

155         Samuel Blustein

157         Harry Goodfellow

159         Samuel Samer


Thank you!


Boris Feldblyum
FAST Genealogy Service

Re: Hebrew Translation Request #translation


Buried Here
The Dear Woman and a Good Soul
The Crown of her Husband, the Glory of her Children
Mrs. Cirka daughter of
???? Rabi Yoel Betzalel the Levite
her death is painful for her husband and all her houshold
in the 5 day of the month of AV in the year 1929
her soul shall be bound in the bundle of life

(notice the discrepany in the year of death!)

Meir Razy
researching Rovno & Dubno

Re: Hebrew Translation Request #translation


Here is buried
The beloved woman and good soul
The crown of her husband and glory of her children
Mrs Tzilka daughter of our teacher the rabbi Yoel Betzalel the Levi 
Died to the despair of her husband and all her family
The 5th day of month of Menachem-Av the year 5689
May her soul be bound in the bond of life

-Binyamin Kerman
Baltimore MD

Re: Research advice for ACKERMAN in Hungary or Subcarpathia #hungary #subcarpathia

Mark Friedman

Regarding research in Carpathia , you can contact Mr. Bela ( Baruch) Huber  from Ungvar ( Uzhgorod) . 
His email : huberbelay@...

All the best , 

Mark Friedman 

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


Hello all, I have been helping my dad with the maternal side of my genealogy, but we both seem to have hit a wall at my great grandfather's side of the family and I am hoping some distant relatives are using this site as well and have some pieces to this puzzle that I am missing.
Thanks in advance for your help, long drawn out context below!
My grandmother's father was Harold BUCHHALTER who married Bessie BLACK. Harold had a brother, Barton, and two sisters, Malkah Ruth (FRIEDMAN) and Faye (LEWIS), all now deceased but with living descendants. Joseph BUCHHALTER and Libby GREINETZ were their parents, Joseph supposedly being the only child of Moses or Moshe BUCHHALTER and Leia Riwka GINSBERG. Leia had a brother, Mendel who moved to Denver with his wife, Frieda in 1911.
Before Harold passed, he told us that the family surname is actually MIODEK or a variation of such, first changed when Moses settled in Denver around 1890. 
Moses is supposedly the first BUCHHALTER after changing his name. He was born c. 1867 and died in Tel Aviv in 1963. According to Harold, his father was Itzrok MIODEK, who married Tzipa/Cipa SHEINBLOOM/SCHONBLUM. Tzipa also made her way to Denver, but not with Itzrok unless he changed his name too. This is where our trail seems to get cold, as none of the information available on ancestry or JewishGen seems to match up with dates of significant events in their lives.

Harold told us that Moses had five siblings: 
  1. Golde Rivka MIODEK (married Max KRIZELMAN/KRISSEL/GINSBERG, their children had these variations of their last name), 
  2. Reuben MAYDECK (married Leah NEIRSTEIN, possibly WEINSTEIN, Leah died in 1902 and Reuben later married Dora ZAKIM/ZAYKIM),
  3. Chaim David MIODECK (married Pia or Pescha RABINOWITZ),
  4. Chana/Anna/Hannah (married Itzrok WEINSTOCK),
  5. Rivka (married Joel/Yosel LERNER).
There are few results for the surname MIODEK on JewishGen, however there are significantly more results for MIODECKI/MIODECKA, and I'm wondering if this is the same surname and the gender suffix was dropped. It also appears in several cases that this surname is used interchangeably with MIODOWNIK as there are a few marriages and births under both surnames that appear to match up.


Thanks again!
Arianne Barton

Re: My grandparents JONUSS and MAZUS from Ezere, Latvia #latvia #lithuania

Arlene Beare


I think you should definitely do a DNA test which will give you your Ethnicity.  There are many Companies to choose from such as,  FTDNA. com (Family Tree DNA). and others. The name Erika Dreznieks sounds Latvian but not Jewish. Matilda Jonuss likewise does not sound Jewish as Matilda is not a common Jewish name. .  Ancestry has the largest database but My heritage has the largest Jewish database.   FTDNA has the advantage that part from autosomal DNA which means you inherit  half from each parent they also do Mitochondrial DNA which is the maternal line and Y DNA which is the paternal line. You just need to test autosomal DNA(called Family Finder) in the first instance.  The Ethnicity results also vary with different testing Companies depending on the pool they have tested.   IF you test with Ancestry as with any of the Companies you  are able to  download your Raw DNA data and upload to other Companies but you cannot upload Raw data from other Companies to Ancestry.  
The name Late Mazus may be Jewish. Jekab Jonuss also cannot be ruled out. as it may be a Jewish Name.
I think you need to have your Ethnicity results and can then pursue the research depending on the results.  We will be happy to help you if you find that you do have Jewish heritage.

Arlene Beare
Co-Director Latvia Research Division

GEDALI Family from Batiz Hungary later Romania #hungary #romania


Is there any JewishGeners whose family name is/was GEDALI or a variant in
the spelling of this name and lived in the mid 19th century and onwards in the
Hungarian town called Batiz (which later became part of Romania). If there is please reply to my personal email address sabaisio@.... Thank you in advance, now y'all stay safe, sound, and very healthy during this pandemic, 
Aizic Sechter from the Lone Magen David Star state of Israel.

Re: How can I research famliy members from the Volyn area (Ratno, Kovel, etc). that emigrated in the late 19th and early 20th Century to the US? #ukraine


Check into the Kovel group on Facebook.

Joel Ackerman
Jerusalem, Israel

Re: Belgium's Kazerne Dossin Online Exhibit #announcements #holocaust #photographs #records

Steven Turner

Very interesting. The transit camp at Mechelen was a place where many of our Galitzianer ancestors who had resettled in Western Europe were then shipped back east to be murdered. The link to the Auschwitz camp exhibit is broken. Please provide a new link.

Thank you.

Steven S. Turner
President, Gesher Galicia

Re: research the Volyn area (Ratno, Kovel, etc). #ukraine

Family and DNA

Some of these records are freely available online here:Архіви/ДАЖО/118/14
Hope this helps!
Juliana Berland

On 10/20/2020 18:31, Bruce Drake wrote:

As another researcher mentioned, records are sparse for Kovel. A
reesearcher named Alex Dunai (aidunai@...) did find records for
my ancesters from there here:
List of the documents studied in the state archive of Zhytomyr oblast :
1.Revision list 1858 for the town of Kovel ( fond 118, opys 14, file 122)
2.Supplementary revision list 1862 for the town of Kovel ( fond 118,
opys 14, file 319
3. Supplementary revision list 1865 for the town of Kovel ( fond 118,
opys 14, file 79)
4.Payment book of  volatile taxes* arrears for Kovel county 1904-1915
( fond 118, opys 21, file 402)
(Source: state archive of Zhytomyr oblast.Fond 118, opys 21, file 402,
page 61 )
You also might see if my Kovel Kehilalinks page is any help:

Bruce Drake
Silver Spring MD

Juliana Berland (France)

/// Russia/Ukraine: BENIN / BERLAND Czernigow; Romny, Poltava > (Paris>) Chicago AMBURG / BERKOWITZ / EPSTEIN Odessa, Kherson, Poltava > (Paris >) Buffalo NY; Chicago GELBURD / GAYLBURD / GOLDBERG / GILBERT Vinnitsya; Nemyriv; Priluki Staraya; Podolia gub. > Philadelphia; Atlantic City; Milwaukee /// Galicia/Poland/Ukraine: BADER Felsztyn (Skelivka) > Philadelphia BADIAN Komarno? FELDMA(N)N Wolanka / Boryslaw > Philadelphia FREIDENHEIM Stryj, Drohobycz, etc. GERTLER Komarno, Wolanka, Stryj, Drohobycz, etc. WEINER/WIENER ? /// Germany: ADELSDORFER  BÄR / BAER Buttenhausen > mid-W US, esp. near Vandenburgh Co, IN. EPSTEI(N)N Röhrenfurth/Melsungen, Sachsenhausen, Guxhagen > Luxembourg; Amsterdam; MW US, esp. near Vandenburgh Co, IN HAUSSMAN Heidenheim? ISAAK Fellheim? MEYER Hannover > Aurora, IN. MOSES Gotte(rs?n?)heim, Sachsenhausen, Röhrenfurth. ROSENSTEIN Stuttgart; Elberfeld? > Philadelphia, Lancaster, PA.


Hebrew Translation Request #translation

John Lowin <hans-@...>

Please translate the Hebrew on this headstone of my grandparents in Munich.
Thank You.
Best Regards,
John Lowin
Researching Lowin in Radziechow, Vienna and Munich.


My grandparents JONUSS and MAZUS from Ezere, Latvia #latvia #lithuania

Ingrid Anna Jansons <jansons.ingrid@...>


I am researching my father's family from Latvia. My grandparents were Displaced People (officially non-Jewish) and came to Australia after World War 2. 

Here are my family:

My grandmother, Erika Deznieks (1924 - 2018). Born in Ezere, Latvia. Lived in Priekule, Latvia. 
My great grandmother, MATILDA JONUSA/JONAS (1897 - 1977). Born in Nigrande, Latvia. Lived in St Petersburg during World War 1 (reason unknown).
My great-great grandparents, LATE MAZUS (1870 - 1952) and JEKABS JONUSS (1858 - 1941). From Lithuania.

My first question is, do I have Jewish heritage? There is confusion in my family and we have spent many years researching. Any insight would be helpful. 

My second question is, can DNA testing officially trace Jewish heritage?

Kind regards
Ingrid Anna Jansons

Orange County California JGS Upcoming Meetings #events

Michelle Sandler

The Orange County California JGS has these upcoming meetings
scheduled. Registration is necessary to attend a meeting. You can
register on our website at New lectures will be on the
website in the next week or two. All times are Pacific TIme Zone.

November 22nd 10:00 am Judy Baston - Lithuanian Research
December 20th 10:00 am Lara Diamond - Tracing Ancestors in Eastern Europe
January 24th 10:00 am Alexander Beider - How he does the research to
write his books
February 28th 10:00 am an interview with Gary Mokotoff and Sallann
Amdur Sack Picus
March 21st 10:00 am Todd Knowles - What's New in FamilySearch
April 25th 10:00 am Ellen Kowitt - Ukraine 2020: Updating your Research Plan
May 23rd 10:00 am Aaron Ginsburg - Finding Your Shtetl
June 13th Gil Bardige - DNA
September 19th Greg Nelson - Procuring Records from Eastern Europe for
the Family History Library

Michelle Sandler
Vice President of Programming
Orange County California JGS

Retheir: Contact Burial Society Chevra Chesed Shel Emeth of Brownsville #usa

Ira Leviton

Hi Cousins,

As others have mentioned, the vast majority of landsmanshaften, and burial societies that existed decades ago are defunct.  When this happens in New York State, all their remaining assets are supposed to be given to the Department of State (of New York State).  Usually, the only assets were graves in their cemetery plots and their records.  The graves were often not transferred since their value was not recognized.  Since the records had no monetary value, the Department of State made an arrangement several decades ago to transfer them to YIVO.  (Sometimes records were brought directly to YIVO.)  There's no other repository for these that I know.

I doubt that the Chevra Chesed Shel Emeth of Brownsville is still active - Brownsville used to be a neighborhood with many Jews, but there are few if any left.  However, sometimes an attorney or somebody remains in charge of a society that has no active members, just to issue permits for children of former members. who may have inherited graves and don't have deeds.  I have found that the Montefiore Cemetery office staff to be unhelpful at times, even when I was there in person, but they certainly should be able to tell you whether it's an active society, and even if it's not active, when the last burial took place and who the last contact person was.


Ira Leviton, New York, N.Y.

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

Jerry Scherer



              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


Jewish genealogy online class, October 21 #education

Michael Moritz

I will be teaching (virtually) part 3 of 3 on Jewish Genealogy Basics tomorrow (Oct 21) at 5pm EST, "The Old Country": Introduction to locating where your ancestors came from in Europe. Background discussion on 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.

Registration information for this course is available here (including fee info):

Thanks to those who have participated!

Michael Moritz (info@...)

Note this is not associated with JewishGen

Belgium's Kazerne Dossin Online Exhibit #announcements #holocaust #photographs #records

Jan Meisels Allen




Due to the pandemic opportunities to travel and visit the museum have been reduced, and Kazerne Dossin has opened up more of their collection online.


The most visited temporary exhibit at Kazerne Dossin is their Auschwitz camp exhibit. It may be viewed at:

In addition to English, the exhibit is available in French and Dutch. In Kazerne Dossin (Mechelen, Belgium) the exhibit was presented from 24 October 2019 to 6 September 2020.


If you click on any of the icons they will open with a photograph and more information about that part of the site.


Kazerne Dossin is a memorial, museum and research center on Holocaust and Human Rights. On the site of the museum between 1942 and 1944. the Nazis used the Dossin barracks


in Mechelen as a transit camp from where 26,000 Jews, Roma and Sinti were deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau by means of 28 train-transports. Only about 5 % of the deported survived.  

The Memorial website offers the opportunity to view portraits of deportees and publishes stories on those deported.


To visit the website go to:


The online exhibit is made possible by a generous support from the Claims Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (


Jan Meisels Allen

Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee


Re: Research advice for ACKERMAN in Hungary or Subcarpathia #hungary #subcarpathia

Carole Bass

I perhaps should have mentioned that I have many U.S. records for the family. None of them says where Bernard was born (except for one reference to the nonexistent "Darthmouth, Austria"), which is why it took me ten years to figure out where he came from.

Carole Bass

Re: Looking for a Lower East Side photo. #photographs


Have you checked with the Lower East Side Tenement Museum?  Another possible source is a book about the Lower East Side, but I don't know the name of it. Perhaps a librarian can help you find it.  I perused it in a friend's pied a terre in NYC over 30 years ago but failed to jot down its title. It had a lot of photographs from the early 1900s.  I think the term "lower east side" was in the title of the book. 
Barbara Sloan
Conway, SC