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Zivia (Sveya, Sophie) KLAFF FAMILANT #latvia

Scott Familant <familant@...>
 

Hello

I'm trying to do research on my great-grandmother, but have hit a dead
end using JewishGen. She was born some time in the 1860-70's and was
in Philadelphia by 1896 and lived in Pocomoke, MD for a while before
returning to Philadelphia and then ultimately settling in Newport News,
where she died in 1962. Her parents were (Abraham?) Eliezer and Zelda
(Tamara?) KLAFF. She had a number of siblings including Moses Mendel,
Schmuel Zalman, Beneisch, Chana Riva Kirschner, Zlata Shapire, Ida
Butler, Pesach Ornoff, and Hannach, to name a few. Some stayed back
while others also settled in the Mid Atlantic states around the turn of
the century. I understand that Eliezer came >from a family of chazans.
Indeed, Schmuel Zalman ultimately served as a reverend in South Africa
and a relative >from another branch, Moses Claff, served as one in
England. Shavl is consistently identified as the home region for
Zivia's parents and siblings. However, her death certificate says she
was born in Latvia. I don't know if that's a mistake or true. I know
one of Zivia's sisters (Minna Weinberg) apparently lived in Riga and I
understand that Schmuel may have been trained as a cantor in Riga. So
perhaps Latvia isn't so far far-fetched. Plus, Zivia seems to be among
the youngest of her siblings by perhaps a decade or more. So maybe her
parents moved later in life?

If anyone has any thought or leads as to how I can try to solve the
mystery of Zivia's birthplace, I'd be very appreciative.

Scott Familant

Sergey Vlasov <sergey_vlasov@...>
 

Hi Scott,

Shavli (Shyaulyai — modern) was a city in Kovno Governorate of Russia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kovno_Governorate till WW1.
Courland Governorate Courland Governorate was part of Russia till WW1
as well. These two governorates were geographically very close.
Courland Governorate become part of Latvia, which was founded in 1918.
So I don't think there were any significant barriers to move between
these governorates. My grandmother Fanny Zimson was born in Vindava in
1909 (modern Ventspils), which was a city in Courland Governorate, and
now is a city in Latvia. I was able to find much more Zimson's family
records >from Lithuania, than >from Latvia. So I think there was some
movement of people in that region, especially after a railroad was
built around that time, which connected Ukraine grain export with
Baltic Sea, passing over Shavli to Libava and Vindava (major ports in
Russian Baltic region).

Regards,

Sergey Vlasov

---
From: Scott Familant <familant@...>
Date: Thu, 21 Nov 2019 14:18:41 +0000 (UTC)

...
Indeed, Schmuel Zalman ultimately served as a reverend in South Africa
and a relative >from another branch, Moses Claff, served as one in
England. Shavl is consistently identified as the home region for
Zivia's parents and siblings. However, her death certificate says she
was born in Latvia. I don't know if that's a mistake or true. I know
one of Zivia's sisters (Minna Weinberg) apparently lived in Riga and I
understand that Schmuel may have been trained as a cantor in Riga. So
perhaps Latvia isn't so far far-fetched. Plus, Zivia seems to be among
the youngest of her siblings by perhaps a decade or more. So maybe her
parents moved later in life?
...