Date   

Possible help with lookups at National Archives, New York, this summer? #general

srhlsr@...
 

The IAJGS Conference in New York City is approaching very soon...

I won't be able to attend;

I'm wondering if anybody, who is planning to attend the conference,
would not mind doing a few "lookups" and a mailing of copies for me ?

I'm looking for naturalization papers; according to www.italiangen.org,
" Copies of the naturalization papers can be obtained >from the National
Archives by using the form you can download. The cost of copies via
the mail is $10.00 for each name.
Copies can also be made at the National Archives, 201 Varick Street,
New York, NY 10014 and are much cheaper since you only pay for
photocopying charges. "

I assume moderators would prefer replies be sent to me privately.

Please e-mail me at: SrhLsr@netscape.net

I'll provide details to whoever will be able to go on my behalf.

Thank you!!!

Sarah Lasry
Israel


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Possible help with lookups at National Archives, New York, this summer? #general

srhlsr@...
 

The IAJGS Conference in New York City is approaching very soon...

I won't be able to attend;

I'm wondering if anybody, who is planning to attend the conference,
would not mind doing a few "lookups" and a mailing of copies for me ?

I'm looking for naturalization papers; according to www.italiangen.org,
" Copies of the naturalization papers can be obtained >from the National
Archives by using the form you can download. The cost of copies via
the mail is $10.00 for each name.
Copies can also be made at the National Archives, 201 Varick Street,
New York, NY 10014 and are much cheaper since you only pay for
photocopying charges. "

I assume moderators would prefer replies be sent to me privately.

Please e-mail me at: SrhLsr@netscape.net

I'll provide details to whoever will be able to go on my behalf.

Thank you!!!

Sarah Lasry
Israel


Sharsheret Hadorot, the Journal of the Israel Genealogical Society #general

Klausner
 

Shalom,
The May 2006 issue of Sharsheret Hadorot, the journal of the Israel
Genealogical Society just appeared.
Below is the Table of Contents of the Journal.
Thank you and best wishes, Yocheved

Yocheved Klausner, Editor
Sharsheret Hadorot (bilingual: Hebrew and English)
Israel Genealogical Society (IGS)

Visit our Website: www.isragen.org.il

Sharsheret Hadorot, May 2006 Vol. 20, No. 2
Contents

The Family of Rabbi Yehuda Ashkenazi, by Jona Schellekens, Ben Noach and
Moshe Mossel
On the Rapaport Family Name, by Chanan Rapaport.
A Good Name is Like Good Oil - Origins of the Name Kam, by Michael Kam
Shemesh Tzedakah, by Shalom Bronstein
A Family Quest in Istanbul, by Daniel Kazez.
The Wimple that came home 60 years later, by Carl Alpert
The Fulfilled Blessing of a Tzadik, by Yehuda Klausner


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Sharsheret Hadorot, the Journal of the Israel Genealogical Society #general

Klausner
 

Shalom,
The May 2006 issue of Sharsheret Hadorot, the journal of the Israel
Genealogical Society just appeared.
Below is the Table of Contents of the Journal.
Thank you and best wishes, Yocheved

Yocheved Klausner, Editor
Sharsheret Hadorot (bilingual: Hebrew and English)
Israel Genealogical Society (IGS)

Visit our Website: www.isragen.org.il

Sharsheret Hadorot, May 2006 Vol. 20, No. 2
Contents

The Family of Rabbi Yehuda Ashkenazi, by Jona Schellekens, Ben Noach and
Moshe Mossel
On the Rapaport Family Name, by Chanan Rapaport.
A Good Name is Like Good Oil - Origins of the Name Kam, by Michael Kam
Shemesh Tzedakah, by Shalom Bronstein
A Family Quest in Istanbul, by Daniel Kazez.
The Wimple that came home 60 years later, by Carl Alpert
The Fulfilled Blessing of a Tzadik, by Yehuda Klausner


Re: SHMARYAHU family #general

MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 6/5/2006 12:45:52 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
bernieavi@aol.com writes:

< Someone in the last week was posting a request for information about the
SHMARYAHU family >

==Shmaryahu Levin (1867-1935) was an early Zionist leader, and Hebrew and
Yiddish author. The Russians appointed him a Rav Mita`am (Official Rabbi who
represented the community in negotiations with the authority, served as BMD
registrar, and was expected to exhort his coreligionists in devotion to the Czar
and nation. He served in the Russian Duma as representative for Vilna

==Shmaryahu Zuckerman was a wealthy businessman and bibliophile from
Moghilev (19th century)

==Kfar Shmaryahu is an expensive garden suburb north of Tel Aviv, founded in
1937 by middle-class immigrants >from Germany as a farming moshav; it was
named after Shmaryahu Levin.

==I was unable to find Shmaryahu as a surname in Lars Menk's Dictionary of
German Jewish Surnames; I checked variations Sch. . . . and Shemar . . . etc,
but found none.

Michael Bernet, New York


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: SHMARYAHU family #general

MBernet@...
 

In a message dated 6/5/2006 12:45:52 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
bernieavi@aol.com writes:

< Someone in the last week was posting a request for information about the
SHMARYAHU family >

==Shmaryahu Levin (1867-1935) was an early Zionist leader, and Hebrew and
Yiddish author. The Russians appointed him a Rav Mita`am (Official Rabbi who
represented the community in negotiations with the authority, served as BMD
registrar, and was expected to exhort his coreligionists in devotion to the Czar
and nation. He served in the Russian Duma as representative for Vilna

==Shmaryahu Zuckerman was a wealthy businessman and bibliophile from
Moghilev (19th century)

==Kfar Shmaryahu is an expensive garden suburb north of Tel Aviv, founded in
1937 by middle-class immigrants >from Germany as a farming moshav; it was
named after Shmaryahu Levin.

==I was unable to find Shmaryahu as a surname in Lars Menk's Dictionary of
German Jewish Surnames; I checked variations Sch. . . . and Shemar . . . etc,
but found none.

Michael Bernet, New York


WEIL/ GUGGENHEIM #germany

Ron James <rejames@...>
 

My question is in relation to the first part of the query posted by Marilyn
Jaffe , (Researching VALFER; June 01, 2006), in which she has
traced her maternal ancestors GEISMAR, WEIL and BRAUNSCHWEIG. >from the family list
given to me by Peter Stein, I am trying to trace the children of my
g.g. grandparents, Baruch Albrecht WEIL and Sara Mengo Wolf GUGGENHEIM.

Both Sarah and Baruch were born in 1811. Baruch in Lengnau, Switzerland and
Sarah in Endingen, Germany. They had 13 children, the last one Schanetta
(Jeanetta) born 1853, and >from whom I descend.

Jeanetta WEIL married Emanuel SELIGMANN in 1882.

I am hoping someone could help me with the names of spouses and descendants
of the following siblings.

Elise WEIL, b. 1885
Isak Baruch WEIL, b. 1838 who married Hedwig WYLER and their 4 children
Albert, Pauline, Rosa & Max
Gutel WEIL b. 1842 who married Leopold BRAUNSCHWEIG and had 3 children
Mathilde, Jakob and Jeanette
Rachel WEIL b. 1843
Frederika WEIL b. 1844 who married Wolf GEISMAR in 1872
Babetta WEIL, b. 1846
Amalie WEIL b. 1849 who married Sigmund Selligmann WEIL b. 1850
Philip WEIL b. 1850 who married Babette GUT b. 1857

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Liz James, Melbourne, Australia <rejames@iinet.net.au>


German SIG #Germany WEIL/ GUGGENHEIM #germany

Ron James <rejames@...>
 

My question is in relation to the first part of the query posted by Marilyn
Jaffe , (Researching VALFER; June 01, 2006), in which she has
traced her maternal ancestors GEISMAR, WEIL and BRAUNSCHWEIG. >from the family list
given to me by Peter Stein, I am trying to trace the children of my
g.g. grandparents, Baruch Albrecht WEIL and Sara Mengo Wolf GUGGENHEIM.

Both Sarah and Baruch were born in 1811. Baruch in Lengnau, Switzerland and
Sarah in Endingen, Germany. They had 13 children, the last one Schanetta
(Jeanetta) born 1853, and >from whom I descend.

Jeanetta WEIL married Emanuel SELIGMANN in 1882.

I am hoping someone could help me with the names of spouses and descendants
of the following siblings.

Elise WEIL, b. 1885
Isak Baruch WEIL, b. 1838 who married Hedwig WYLER and their 4 children
Albert, Pauline, Rosa & Max
Gutel WEIL b. 1842 who married Leopold BRAUNSCHWEIG and had 3 children
Mathilde, Jakob and Jeanette
Rachel WEIL b. 1843
Frederika WEIL b. 1844 who married Wolf GEISMAR in 1872
Babetta WEIL, b. 1846
Amalie WEIL b. 1849 who married Sigmund Selligmann WEIL b. 1850
Philip WEIL b. 1850 who married Babette GUT b. 1857

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Liz James, Melbourne, Australia <rejames@iinet.net.au>


Y Chromosome Polier (Kobryn) Descendants #rabbinic

Ch mho <chmho@...>
 

DNA seems to be an new genealogical shortcut to compensate for lack
of documentation (I'm sure this will be is a topic of rabbinical
discussion in its own right). Meanwhile, I am looking for direct
male descendents of the Admorim of Kobryn to find out whether a
connection exists between them, and known PALEVSKY families.

(DNA results for tests taken so far have been put up on:
http://palevsky.myrelatives.net/data/dna.html )

The names of the Admorim of Kobryn and children were: POLIER /
POLIYER (until first half of 1800's), PALEFSKY / PALEVSKY,
RABINOVITZ.

(The last living 'Y' chromosome descendent on the chart that I have
is 'Zaidel who married the daughter of the Rabbi of Kishinev'. The
next Admor of Kobryn, ZHAK, was a brother-in-law, not a son, of the
previous Admur.)

Could anyone please let me know if they have any leads on this
search? Even if it would seem unlikely that the person would submit
DNA, it would still be of great interest to find an extant member of
this line.

Thanks,

Michael Paley
Brooklyn, NY, USA.


Rabbinic Genealogy SIG #Rabbinic Y Chromosome Polier (Kobryn) Descendants #rabbinic

Ch mho <chmho@...>
 

DNA seems to be an new genealogical shortcut to compensate for lack
of documentation (I'm sure this will be is a topic of rabbinical
discussion in its own right). Meanwhile, I am looking for direct
male descendents of the Admorim of Kobryn to find out whether a
connection exists between them, and known PALEVSKY families.

(DNA results for tests taken so far have been put up on:
http://palevsky.myrelatives.net/data/dna.html )

The names of the Admorim of Kobryn and children were: POLIER /
POLIYER (until first half of 1800's), PALEFSKY / PALEVSKY,
RABINOVITZ.

(The last living 'Y' chromosome descendent on the chart that I have
is 'Zaidel who married the daughter of the Rabbi of Kishinev'. The
next Admor of Kobryn, ZHAK, was a brother-in-law, not a son, of the
previous Admur.)

Could anyone please let me know if they have any leads on this
search? Even if it would seem unlikely that the person would submit
DNA, it would still be of great interest to find an extant member of
this line.

Thanks,

Michael Paley
Brooklyn, NY, USA.


Re: What does "Not related" mean? #dna

DonnDevine@...
 

Karen wrote:

What I seem to understand though is that these tests are only
testing a limited range - father's father's father, etc. Isn't
it really saying "not related through that particular ancestor?"
Couldn't they be related through some other ancestor?
Karen, you are quite right. What is meant is "not related" through
the all-male Y-surname line, within a genealogically significant
time-frame--the more recent centuries within which there are records
from which relationships can be determined. By the time you get back
12 generations or so, you'll have common ancestors with lots of
people through various of your 4,096 ancestors in that generation. Y
DNA tests tell us about only one of those lines, and mtDNA about one
other. The rest are still up for grabs, using traditional research
methods.

Donn Devine, CG, CGI
Administrator
Devine, Baldwin and J2Plus DNA Studies
Wilmington, Delaware, USA

Devine Surname: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/myhomepage/heritage.html
Baldwin Surname: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/Baldwin.html
J2Plus Haplogroup: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/J2GroupTable.htm


DNA Research #DNA Re: What does "Not related" mean? #dna

DonnDevine@...
 

Karen wrote:

What I seem to understand though is that these tests are only
testing a limited range - father's father's father, etc. Isn't
it really saying "not related through that particular ancestor?"
Couldn't they be related through some other ancestor?
Karen, you are quite right. What is meant is "not related" through
the all-male Y-surname line, within a genealogically significant
time-frame--the more recent centuries within which there are records
from which relationships can be determined. By the time you get back
12 generations or so, you'll have common ancestors with lots of
people through various of your 4,096 ancestors in that generation. Y
DNA tests tell us about only one of those lines, and mtDNA about one
other. The rest are still up for grabs, using traditional research
methods.

Donn Devine, CG, CGI
Administrator
Devine, Baldwin and J2Plus DNA Studies
Wilmington, Delaware, USA

Devine Surname: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/myhomepage/heritage.html
Baldwin Surname: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/Baldwin.html
J2Plus Haplogroup: http://hometown.aol.com/donndevine/J2GroupTable.htm


Czech search engine: Could ROZENBERK be a "sound-alike?" #austria-czech

HeyJudy123@...
 

My thanks to Tom Venetianer for the link to the Czech search engine that
provides biographies of prominent Czech citizens, dividing them into groupings
for the years before and after 1918.

Since I read no Czech, of course it was not possible for me to fully explore
the site. Still, as Tom had advised, it is easy to use the search engine
for surnames.

My question is this: ROZENBERG (or, obviously, ROSENBERG) is one of my
family's surnames.

These spellings did not show up on the search engine but, linked to several
different people, ROZEMBERK did appear.

Could ROZEMBERK possibly be a "sound-alike" for ROZENBERG?

Thanks,
Judy SEGAL
New York City, USA


Austria-Czech SIG #Austria-Czech Czech search engine: Could ROZENBERK be a "sound-alike?" #austria-czech

HeyJudy123@...
 

My thanks to Tom Venetianer for the link to the Czech search engine that
provides biographies of prominent Czech citizens, dividing them into groupings
for the years before and after 1918.

Since I read no Czech, of course it was not possible for me to fully explore
the site. Still, as Tom had advised, it is easy to use the search engine
for surnames.

My question is this: ROZENBERG (or, obviously, ROSENBERG) is one of my
family's surnames.

These spellings did not show up on the search engine but, linked to several
different people, ROZEMBERK did appear.

Could ROZEMBERK possibly be a "sound-alike" for ROZENBERG?

Thanks,
Judy SEGAL
New York City, USA


Mimi Katz #general

Israel P
 

The address which has worked for Mimi Katz as recently as a few weeks ago is
now bouncing.

(Mimi, if you are reading this, I have what you wanted me to get for you.
Please give me a valid email address.)

Israel Pickholtz


JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Mimi Katz #general

Israel P
 

The address which has worked for Mimi Katz as recently as a few weeks ago is
now bouncing.

(Mimi, if you are reading this, I have what you wanted me to get for you.
Please give me a valid email address.)

Israel Pickholtz


Traxler family #hungary

Caryl Shapiro <carylksh1@...>
 

I am trying to find the Traxler family in Hungary. My GGrandmother, Fannie
Traxler, was born about 1854 in a town referred to by the family as Nadur
( could this be Nadudvar?) Her parnets were Isaac and Bas Hinde Reis. She
married Jacob Klein, and had seven children. She and her husband and
several children came to the U.S, in 1908 >from Gagy Bator, and settled in
Bridgeport, Conn. Several of the other children had come earlier.

I have never in all the time that I've been working on my family's Genealogy
been able to find the name Traxler on any lists. I'm hoping that someone
will be able to throw some light on this family.



Caryl Shapiro
carylksh1@msn.com


Hungary SIG #Hungary Traxler family #hungary

Caryl Shapiro <carylksh1@...>
 

I am trying to find the Traxler family in Hungary. My GGrandmother, Fannie
Traxler, was born about 1854 in a town referred to by the family as Nadur
( could this be Nadudvar?) Her parnets were Isaac and Bas Hinde Reis. She
married Jacob Klein, and had seven children. She and her husband and
several children came to the U.S, in 1908 >from Gagy Bator, and settled in
Bridgeport, Conn. Several of the other children had come earlier.

I have never in all the time that I've been working on my family's Genealogy
been able to find the name Traxler on any lists. I'm hoping that someone
will be able to throw some light on this family.



Caryl Shapiro
carylksh1@msn.com


Miracle #ukraine

Pam Weston <pweston@...>
 

My family has been blessed with a miracle that may warm the hearts of
anyone looking for their families history.

I received the following message >from Rabbi Foster Kawaler who is
responsible for most of the research on the Kawaler Family.

Pam Weston
Chicago

---------



Dear Friends;

I am most blessed and privileged to present to you what is no
less than a miracle. Great Grandfather Abraham's Torah >from Krasna
has been found by searchers >from the Torah Rescue Foundation in a
monastery just north of Nadworna. The provenance is clear and
unmistakable. Further, the sofer has confirmed that the Torah is
Italian in origin. Please allow me to tell the story.

There is a family legend - and, up until now, only a legend -
that we had origins in Northern Italy. For years, I have been
researching the Cavalieri/Cavaglieri families of Ferrara and Venice.
The family took their name >from the Silk Worm >from which the
legendary Italian silk comes - the Cavalier. The family that tended
them - Cavalieri.

In brief, it would seem that two of the four sons of Davide
Cavalieri, namely Moise and Yakobe had begun a lumber business and
ran a small "tavern" in Udine and points north. Somehow, most likely
thanks to Napoleon, though it could be possible they were looking for
more forest land, they found their way into the Carpathian Mountains
to an area that was then part of the Hapsburg empire known as Galicia
(today in the Ukraine), and settled in Solotwina and Maniawa. Our
early family was in the very same business in those towns. It is
likely that either these two men or their children, operating in the
land of Ashkenaz, changed their name to the Polish Kawal(with a line
through it)er. The Hebrew-script spelling of both families are
spelled the same.

At least one of their children, Aryeh, took his Ashkenazic name
"Leibish" and married a lady named Rebecca. He had 7 children, whose
names match, in the proper generations, those of the Italian family,
with the exception of a few names that likely came in through his
wife's side of the family. My branch of the family comes down >from
Jacob (possibly named after his grandfather) who named his children,
to include two names that also appear in the Italian family, Sholom
Yitzchak, and my great grandfather Abraham (matching Abramo), named,
possibly, after a great uncle. He, in turn, named his boys Efraim
(>from his mother's side of the family since it does not occur in the
Italian family) and Moshe after his Italian great grand uncle or
great grandfather.

Up until now, we had no paperwork to support this - only
conjecture.

We roll the clock ahead to Abraham and his wife, Sarah and
their family in Krasna, just south of Nadworna. Abraham, his wife
and his children were farmers there, with an orchard along a creek
that wound through the property. Because his house was one of the
larger ones in the area, Jews >from the area would gather at his house
in order to "daven." He kept all the accouterments needed for
services in a locked area, including a small Torah. Abraham died in
July of 1939. His wife had died in 1912 and been buried in the
Jewish cemetery in Nadworna (her grave was found by the above
mentioned searchers!) There were several children that did not
survive, and they, too, were buried up there. His daughter Rachel
Menschenfreund had died in childbirth, and was also buried in
Nadworna. His daughter, Esther, still lived in the house, but her
children, Sarah and Clara, had married and moved away. Many of the
Jews that used to pray at Abraham's house also had either died or
moved on. So when the time came to transport Abraham's remains up to
Nadworna, Esther took the little Torah up to the main synagogue in
Nadworna for safe keeping.

Then Nazis invaded in 1939 and "captured" Nadworna. The
families in the South were murdered by the men of Einsatzguppe C, and
the city of Nadworna was ghettoized, with its Jewish population sent
to Treblinka and, for the most part, gassed.

The synagogue in Nadworna was of unique construction. Because
it was built in the day when no Jewish structure could be higher than
a Christian structure, the Jews of the day dug down some 15 - 20 feet
and THEN built up, so one would go downstairs to get in, but find
themselves in a lovely sanctuary with appropriately high ceilings.
The Nazis trashed the place and burned it out. We have some Nazi
aerial reconnaissance photos taken in 1940, that show the roof of the
synagogue missing. Unbeknownst to the rest of the population, monks
from the nearby monastery had gone into the synagogue and spirited
away the Torahs, the silver, and everything they could get their
hands on.

Roll the clock forward to May 18th of this year.

I was at my local pistol range. It seems I've become a pretty
good shot, and I've been getting involved in some competition, but
that's another story. My cell phone rang. It was a friend of mine
from Silver Spring, Maryland, Rabbi Menachem Youlas. He and his
father own and operate a Jewish book store. Vivian and I have known
him for close to 30 years. He is also a Sofer and heavily involved
with the Torah Rescue Foundation.

He started off asking me some questions about our family in the
Ukraine - the part that was once known as Galicia - and after I
described some of the situation, he revealed that I had just
confirmed that the stone that they had just found was, indeed, my
great grandmother's stone. And then he dropped his first bomb. "And
I think we found a Torah that belongs to you."

You can imagine my reaction. "No, I don't think so." He said
"Well, it all points to your family. The provenance is here." I
then told him the story about how my great grandfather had conducted
services in his house, so he must have had a Torah, but no one knows
what ever happened to it. "We all thought that the Cossacks or the
Nazis got to it!" He then told me about the monks having emptied the
synagogue, and had protected everything they could get their hands on
from the Nazis and later the Communists. There were a number of
Torah's that were the tall, thin, heavy Ukranian scrolls, but there
was this one Torah that "belonged to a Jewish farm family >from
further South that was apparently being kept for safekeeping. It's
got to be yours."

Then came the second bomb. Menachem continued "It's different
from the other Torah's in several ways." I interrupted him. "Tell
me it's a Sefardi Torah!" I blurted out. Now, understand that he has
no idea of our possible Italian roots and my Cavalieri research. His
answer: "How did you know!" He further describe it as an Italian
Torah. They can tell this by the "ktav" (writing style), the form
(Shulchan Aruch or Ari, etc), and the treatment of the parchment. It
was also on Atzei Chaim (handles) as opposed to being in a case.

At this point, I dropped the phone and had to steady myself. But the
best was still to come.

Menachem continued "Now that you've identified it so well, I
can tell you the best part. The Torah was wrapped in a sheet. When
we took the sheet off, we found the Torah was in really good shape,
and with a few hours of Sofrut work, IT WOULD BE COMPLETELY USABLE.
Furthermore, they found a tag on one of the Atzei Chaim, WITH MY
GREAT GRANDFATHER'S NAME ON IT!

We have recovered the family Torah, which was thought to have
been lost in the Holocaust, AND we have "snapped the link" with the
Italian family.

The Torah is now in Menachem's shop in Silver Spring. He
obtained a stamp >from the Israeli Government identifying and
assigning the Torah to us, and he is completing the sofrut work and
having the scroll dated. The Torah will be gloriously welcomed here
in Shreveport some time in the next three weeks. It is NOT going
into a glass case for people to gawk at! We are going to use it! We
will have the chance to read >from the same Torah that my grandfather
read from, my great grandfather, my great great grandfather, and
perhaps even his father read >from - and we will dance with it on
Simchat Torah! There is no greater honor for a sefer Torah to be
used for the purpose for which it was made.

Praise G-d, who lives, and watches over his people, Israel.

Foster E. Kawaler

MODERATOR'S NOTE: Although our concentration is only ** pre-WWI Ukraine **, this
story was so delightful & inspirational, that I decided to approve it.


Ukraine SIG #Ukraine Miracle #ukraine

Pam Weston <pweston@...>
 

My family has been blessed with a miracle that may warm the hearts of
anyone looking for their families history.

I received the following message >from Rabbi Foster Kawaler who is
responsible for most of the research on the Kawaler Family.

Pam Weston
Chicago

---------



Dear Friends;

I am most blessed and privileged to present to you what is no
less than a miracle. Great Grandfather Abraham's Torah >from Krasna
has been found by searchers >from the Torah Rescue Foundation in a
monastery just north of Nadworna. The provenance is clear and
unmistakable. Further, the sofer has confirmed that the Torah is
Italian in origin. Please allow me to tell the story.

There is a family legend - and, up until now, only a legend -
that we had origins in Northern Italy. For years, I have been
researching the Cavalieri/Cavaglieri families of Ferrara and Venice.
The family took their name >from the Silk Worm >from which the
legendary Italian silk comes - the Cavalier. The family that tended
them - Cavalieri.

In brief, it would seem that two of the four sons of Davide
Cavalieri, namely Moise and Yakobe had begun a lumber business and
ran a small "tavern" in Udine and points north. Somehow, most likely
thanks to Napoleon, though it could be possible they were looking for
more forest land, they found their way into the Carpathian Mountains
to an area that was then part of the Hapsburg empire known as Galicia
(today in the Ukraine), and settled in Solotwina and Maniawa. Our
early family was in the very same business in those towns. It is
likely that either these two men or their children, operating in the
land of Ashkenaz, changed their name to the Polish Kawal(with a line
through it)er. The Hebrew-script spelling of both families are
spelled the same.

At least one of their children, Aryeh, took his Ashkenazic name
"Leibish" and married a lady named Rebecca. He had 7 children, whose
names match, in the proper generations, those of the Italian family,
with the exception of a few names that likely came in through his
wife's side of the family. My branch of the family comes down >from
Jacob (possibly named after his grandfather) who named his children,
to include two names that also appear in the Italian family, Sholom
Yitzchak, and my great grandfather Abraham (matching Abramo), named,
possibly, after a great uncle. He, in turn, named his boys Efraim
(>from his mother's side of the family since it does not occur in the
Italian family) and Moshe after his Italian great grand uncle or
great grandfather.

Up until now, we had no paperwork to support this - only
conjecture.

We roll the clock ahead to Abraham and his wife, Sarah and
their family in Krasna, just south of Nadworna. Abraham, his wife
and his children were farmers there, with an orchard along a creek
that wound through the property. Because his house was one of the
larger ones in the area, Jews >from the area would gather at his house
in order to "daven." He kept all the accouterments needed for
services in a locked area, including a small Torah. Abraham died in
July of 1939. His wife had died in 1912 and been buried in the
Jewish cemetery in Nadworna (her grave was found by the above
mentioned searchers!) There were several children that did not
survive, and they, too, were buried up there. His daughter Rachel
Menschenfreund had died in childbirth, and was also buried in
Nadworna. His daughter, Esther, still lived in the house, but her
children, Sarah and Clara, had married and moved away. Many of the
Jews that used to pray at Abraham's house also had either died or
moved on. So when the time came to transport Abraham's remains up to
Nadworna, Esther took the little Torah up to the main synagogue in
Nadworna for safe keeping.

Then Nazis invaded in 1939 and "captured" Nadworna. The
families in the South were murdered by the men of Einsatzguppe C, and
the city of Nadworna was ghettoized, with its Jewish population sent
to Treblinka and, for the most part, gassed.

The synagogue in Nadworna was of unique construction. Because
it was built in the day when no Jewish structure could be higher than
a Christian structure, the Jews of the day dug down some 15 - 20 feet
and THEN built up, so one would go downstairs to get in, but find
themselves in a lovely sanctuary with appropriately high ceilings.
The Nazis trashed the place and burned it out. We have some Nazi
aerial reconnaissance photos taken in 1940, that show the roof of the
synagogue missing. Unbeknownst to the rest of the population, monks
from the nearby monastery had gone into the synagogue and spirited
away the Torahs, the silver, and everything they could get their
hands on.

Roll the clock forward to May 18th of this year.

I was at my local pistol range. It seems I've become a pretty
good shot, and I've been getting involved in some competition, but
that's another story. My cell phone rang. It was a friend of mine
from Silver Spring, Maryland, Rabbi Menachem Youlas. He and his
father own and operate a Jewish book store. Vivian and I have known
him for close to 30 years. He is also a Sofer and heavily involved
with the Torah Rescue Foundation.

He started off asking me some questions about our family in the
Ukraine - the part that was once known as Galicia - and after I
described some of the situation, he revealed that I had just
confirmed that the stone that they had just found was, indeed, my
great grandmother's stone. And then he dropped his first bomb. "And
I think we found a Torah that belongs to you."

You can imagine my reaction. "No, I don't think so." He said
"Well, it all points to your family. The provenance is here." I
then told him the story about how my great grandfather had conducted
services in his house, so he must have had a Torah, but no one knows
what ever happened to it. "We all thought that the Cossacks or the
Nazis got to it!" He then told me about the monks having emptied the
synagogue, and had protected everything they could get their hands on
from the Nazis and later the Communists. There were a number of
Torah's that were the tall, thin, heavy Ukranian scrolls, but there
was this one Torah that "belonged to a Jewish farm family >from
further South that was apparently being kept for safekeeping. It's
got to be yours."

Then came the second bomb. Menachem continued "It's different
from the other Torah's in several ways." I interrupted him. "Tell
me it's a Sefardi Torah!" I blurted out. Now, understand that he has
no idea of our possible Italian roots and my Cavalieri research. His
answer: "How did you know!" He further describe it as an Italian
Torah. They can tell this by the "ktav" (writing style), the form
(Shulchan Aruch or Ari, etc), and the treatment of the parchment. It
was also on Atzei Chaim (handles) as opposed to being in a case.

At this point, I dropped the phone and had to steady myself. But the
best was still to come.

Menachem continued "Now that you've identified it so well, I
can tell you the best part. The Torah was wrapped in a sheet. When
we took the sheet off, we found the Torah was in really good shape,
and with a few hours of Sofrut work, IT WOULD BE COMPLETELY USABLE.
Furthermore, they found a tag on one of the Atzei Chaim, WITH MY
GREAT GRANDFATHER'S NAME ON IT!

We have recovered the family Torah, which was thought to have
been lost in the Holocaust, AND we have "snapped the link" with the
Italian family.

The Torah is now in Menachem's shop in Silver Spring. He
obtained a stamp >from the Israeli Government identifying and
assigning the Torah to us, and he is completing the sofrut work and
having the scroll dated. The Torah will be gloriously welcomed here
in Shreveport some time in the next three weeks. It is NOT going
into a glass case for people to gawk at! We are going to use it! We
will have the chance to read >from the same Torah that my grandfather
read from, my great grandfather, my great great grandfather, and
perhaps even his father read >from - and we will dance with it on
Simchat Torah! There is no greater honor for a sefer Torah to be
used for the purpose for which it was made.

Praise G-d, who lives, and watches over his people, Israel.

Foster E. Kawaler

MODERATOR'S NOTE: Although our concentration is only ** pre-WWI Ukraine **, this
story was so delightful & inspirational, that I decided to approve it.