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Fake death record? (Poland - 1891) #general
I've been searching my family for 15 years and never faced such a puzzle. My
great-great-grandfather Haim Josek Goldstein is supposed to be dead in 1923,
probably in Lodz (according to my grandmother who is a very consistent source of
information). His daugther, my great-grandmother, is supposed to be born in 1897.
The problem is that I've just found his death record in Mogielnica, his hometown,
in 1891! There is no doubt about his identity as the record mentioned his wife.
Also,I found birth records for his 3 sons who were born between 1885 and 1890 in
Mogielnica too. No track of my great-grandmother birth record.
I've just spoken with my grandmother and she is sure that her mother diddn't lose
her father when she was so young (or not even born!).
The only explanation for me is a fake death record. Then maybe they moved to
another place (probably Warka or Lodz), where my great-grandmother could have been
Have you ever met such situation? Possibly to avoid military service?
Thank you very much for your inputs.
MODERATOR NOTE: It would be helpful if Genners could see the death record to which
you refer - if you have a copy, please consider uploading it to ViewMate.
While anything is possible, it is unlikely that the record is fake. There were some
3,000 Jews in Mogielenica; the last name, Goldstejn, is very common. It might have
been a cousin, named after the same ancestor, or even an unrelated person. Wife's
name can be a coincidence as well, unless it is very unusual. If the record listed
surviving children, in addition to wife, that would be an additional proof. In the
absence of corroborating evidence, this may remain a puzzle.
Strictly speaking, vital records are never fake, unless they are created as
forgery, which does not happen often. The testimony of two witnesses announcing
Haim Josek Goldstein's death may be false, but it's a different story. There were
some 3,000 Jews in Mogielenica and the last name, Goldstejn, is very common. It is
more likely it was a cousin, named after the same ancestor, or even an unrelated
person. Wife's name can be a coincidence as well, unless it is very unusual.
Assuming Haim Josek was born and married in Mogielenica, all relevant records must
be checked. If he was not, it adds to the complexity and scope of research, but
there is no way around it. It's all the matter of finding and analyzing records.
With regard to military service, it is true that many wanted to avoid it and many
did. However, Russia was the nation of laws, however anti-Semitic they might have
been. I remember reading that Jewish kahals were responsible for providing a quote
of conscripts to the state. Whether this law/rule/regulation was enforced in the
ten Russian-Polish provinces, I do not know. It seems unlikely that a person who
had at least two children by 1890 would worry about conscription in 1891; there
were plenty of 17 year olds to fill the quote. But again, I have not studied the
subject. If someone has, please share you knowledge.
Hello,toggle quoted message Show quoted text
Following moderator's advice, the record is now on Viewmate:
"Nicolas Trokiner" <trokiner@...> wrote:
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