SEMLER family from Warsaw brick wall #general


Linda Epstein
 

Dear Genners,

I am looking to locate the following SEMLER family >from Warsaw. They
arrived in New York on 22 Dec 1913 aboard the S.S. George Washington.

SEMLER, Rikel: age 30, married
SEMLER, Srul: age 11
SEMLER, Hinke: age 7
SEMLER, Chaje: age 4
SEMLER, Gittel: age 6 months

Their nearest relative in Warsaw was Rikel's brother-in-law, Abram DLEISKY (?).
They were going to their husband/father, Schloime SEMLER on Willetts Street
in New York City.

I can find no mention of the family after their arrival. The children were
all naturalized between 1941-1942. There are naturalization notations on
the manifest next to each name. The naturalizations appear to have taken
place in one of the boroughs of New York. A search by USCIS for Srul
SEMLER's naturalization was fruitless. I tried to find a death certificate
for either Schloime or Rikel on ItalianGen but could not find one. The only
conclusion that I can come to is that the family used a surname other than
SEMLER or SEMMLER. As I don't not know Rikel's maiden name, that is not a
search option at this point.

If you recognize the family, or have any suggestions on how to proceed,
please let me know.

Thank you,
Linda Epstein
Florida

SEMLER/SEMMLER: Rzeszow, Poland; SEMEL/SEMMEL: Pilzno, Poland
OPESKIN/APESKIN, SHUR, KUPER, LAPIDES: Lithuania; CHODOSCH: Myadel, Belarus
FILMUS: Ukraine, Moldova; SINGER, HASS: Husiatyn, Poland


A. E. Jordan
 

linny61@yahoo.com writes:
Their nearest relative in Warsaw was Rikel's brother-in-law, Abram DLEISKY (?).
They were going to their husband/father, Schloime SEMLER on Willetts Street
in New York City. .... I can find no mention of the family after their arrival....
I tried to find a death certificate for either Schloime or Rikel on ItalianGen
but could not find one. The only conclusion that I can come to is that the family
used a surname other than SEMLER or SEMMLER.

Seems like a very safe bet that they changed their name in the USA. Especially
since you found the children naturalizing in the 1940s.

First off since the children chose to naturalize it may well mean that the father
did not. He could have died before he was eligible or just never did it. Minor
children would have naturalized with the father if he had done it shortly after
his own arrival. Its not impossible that the children naturalized even though the
father had too .. I seen it happen especially in the 1940s ... but it maybe be a
clue.

There are a lot of tricks to picking up the people's trail and I am sure other
people will respond too. I assume you have already checked on JewishGen in the
Family Finder and the cemetery files. Also if you look on the ItalianGen indexes
there's a page of Semler names for brides, grooms and deaths which I assume you
have explored.

I would start with the 1915 Census in New York State since they arrived closest to
that Census. Try looking at the address on Willets and see if the people they
were going to were there. You might get lucky and find the family still there.

Try the New York City directory for Semler not Schloime ... he likely was using an
Americanized name. He might have used Sam or Samuel or he might have hated the
name and called himself George .... you never know. Rikel could be Rachael or the
same and she might have had a nickname or .....

Also since you have minors try searching on them. For some reason I find children
easier to find some times. Partially they were less likely to make themselves
younger on the Census.

If you can not find them on the 1915 Census try the 1920 Census as well especially
for the children. The indexing on the paid sites is better for the 1920 Census.

Problem I can see is those names were all likely Americanized and there's no way
of knowing by looking at them what names they chose. Since you found some of the
1940-41 naturalizations you have names to work backwards with. Get them in the
1940 Census and see if you can go back to 1930.

If you are looking for the parents' graves/death try going forward and find the
children's death and graves. Maybe they are all buried together.

Also check things like the military records because if they registered they might
have listed family members as dependents. Drafts are the easiest one to search.

Its a long shot but if you have access to the New York Times digital archives (and
even fultonhistory.org) search for the Semler name and maybe something will show
up in the newspapers.

That's where I would start trying to pick up any lines.

Allan Jordan