Let's introduce ourselves #bessarabia

Merle Kastner <merlek@...>

My name is Merle Kastner and I live in Montreal, Canada.
I began researching my family 19 years ago, following the
sudden death of my mother.

I have attended all IAJGS conferences, with the exception
of 2, since 2000. For 15 years, I have been program chairman
for the JGS of Montreal and work on a number of
our Society's projects.

Within the past few years, I have photographed all the stones in 5
of Montreal's Jewish cemeteries, one of which is the oldest existing
cemetery in the city. Another of these cemeteries includes burials of
Quebec province's earliest Jewish settlers, some of whom greatly
distinguished themselves in high government posts. I also a contributer
to several of the Czernowitz Discussion group website projects ("Ehpes",

My family branch that came >from Bessarabia is my great-grandmother's
KUSSNER/KUSHNIR/KUSHNER family - primarily >from Bendery.
Her parents, Simon & Sarah (née Goldman) took their family
of 7 children and emigrated to Philadelphia in 1890. In 1909,
the entire family (including spouses and grandchildren) emigrated
to Montreal. I left this branch to the last in my research.

My sincere thanks to Yefim and all those who are involved with the
new Bessarabia SIG, for their excellent work. And to Cassio Tolpolar
for his exciting initiative, which is greatly appreciated.

Merle Kastner
Montreal, Canada
Researching: KASTNER, OSTFELD (Bukovina), NATHANSON,
MENDELSSOHN (Piatra Neamt & Negulesti, Romania),
(Lida, Belarus, Vilna & Eishishok, Lithuania), GARBARSKI &
DENENBERG/DYNABURSKI (Sejny, Suwalki gubernia, Poland)

henry <sigmundtrav@...>

My name is Henry A. Seigel and the Bessarabian connection is through my paternal
grandmother. He maiden name was Ida Romer and she and most of her siblings
emigrated >from Lipcani in either 1885 or 85 to New York. Her parents names were
Max Romer and Annie Romer (don't have maiden name, but on grave her father's
name is listed as Joshua). She had a much older sister (about 14 1/2 years) named
Runya(Rose) Romer Feinman who came with her husband Nathan and several
children to NYC in 1890, older brother Samuel (who eventually moved to Philadelphia
and then Huntington, WV), Charles (who eventually moved to Philadelphia and then
in 1923 to Los Angeles due to health reasons) and a sister Tuette of whom nothing
really is known save that she was to marry my grandfather but when he came to ask
for her had of his father-in-law, my grandmother answered the door, he was struck
by "the lightening bolt", and when refused her hand, he got her pregnant and they
eloped to Philadelphia to live. Also, according to the 1900 census, Annie had another
child living, but no name given or even if that child was in the USA or Lipcani. I've made
contact with offspring >from all branches, but am still looking for more, especially of
Tuette and unknown other sibling. If anyone has any information, please drop me an e-mail.



Hello Group!

My name is Alex Volkov, my maternal grandfather Saul (Shael) Falicoff
so spelled as Falikov and variations) was born in Tarutino (Tarutine, Anchok
rak), Bessarabia, in 1912.

Few of Saul's paternal line relatives, Falicoffs, lived in Tarutino, but
they mostly arrived >from Kylia, with a possible brief stop in Vilkovo
(possibly for just one generation before Saul). At least three Falicoffs
lived in Tarutino at the time of WW II (besides my grandfather), >from where
two of them went to WW II as soldiers to fight and survived, although
severely wounded.

Saul's maternal line had last name Genesin (or Ghinessin) and they lived in
Tarutino for several generations, arrived there >from Dombroveni. Ghinessins
came to settle in Dombroveni early in 19th century (revisions list says they
bought a license) and stood there for at least 50 years.

Genessins and Falicoffs had several inter-family marriages, I know of at least
two. By a funny coincidence Itzhok Genesin (my great-great-grandfather) had
several daughters, while Usher-Meyer Falicoff had mostly sons.

His father, Moses Falicoff immigrated to USA in 1913, when Saul was still
baby. Moses arrived to NY, to his father, Asher-Meyer Falicoff, who immigrated
earlier. Asher-Meyer had 2 or 3 wives during his life, and arrived to USA
approximately in 1905, with his youngest son on his hands (born during the
trip). Asher-Meyer had many sons, to descendants of at least two of those
I as able to connect. He later took a trip on a steamship >from NY to England
and that ship was sank by Germans, during WW I. It could be Lucitania, but
there are no facts confirming it.

Saul Falicoff, with his mother Rosa Genessin and his sister Dvoira Falicoff,
came to USA in 1920s, according to ship's papers with a permanent residence
permission. But, something didn't work out, all three returned back to
Tarutino, and consequentially Rosa and Dvoira were shot to death by Nazis,
when WW II started. Also, first wife of Saul and a baby (either Saul's
or Dvoira)were shot. It happened in town called Mineralnue Vodi, where family
was found on their escape migration trip away >from the frontline. Saul himself
survived, because he happened to be away at the time of execution, he went to
look for a job.

He later joined Soviet Red Army as a doctor (he graduated >from Iasi University
as surgeon in 1937) and fought Nazis through the war, also met there a nurse,
my future grandmother, my mother was born right after the war's end, and
that's how I eventually was born.

During my research, I found that a big branch of Falicoffs >from Kylia
immigrated to Argentina, some still remain there, and some branches later
re-immigrated to USA. >from what we found, it appears that Falicoffs was a huge
family in Kylia at the eve of 19th century, plenty of cousins and children.

Alex Volkoff


My wife was born in Briceva, Bessarabia (Ukraine at the time) right at the end
of WWII. Her parents, Shmuel LERNER (1917-2009) and Lea GANDELMAN (1920-2009),
were also born in Briceva. As a young able bodied couple they were evacuated
by the retreating Soviet army to Grozny, Chechnya at the beginning of the war.
All of their parents and siblings who were left behind perished in the
holocaust. Shmuel's parents were Tzvi Dov (Hersh Ber) Lerner and Gitl
SHECHTMAN. Lea's parents were Yechiel Michel Gandelman and Sara Shechtman.
The two Shechtman grandmothers were not directly related to each other.

All we know about my wife's ancestors is based on the memories of her late
parents. We have not found any vital records to help us build her family
tree further back. Does anyone know of vital records for Briceva?

Rumor is that the local records were lost in a fire in the 1950s or 60s.
One of the Shechtman branches of ancestors was >from Mogilev-Podolsk, Ukraine.
Are there any records >from there?

Elan Caspi
El Cerrito, CA