Home Town of Harry Dorf #ukraine #galicia #austria-czech

Brucce Wexler

I have been researching family information for fifty years. I have never been able to find the home town of my grandfather, Harry (Chiam) DORF. He came to America in October 1907 from Czernowitz, which was then in the province of Bukovina, Austria-Hungary.  It is now in the southwest of Ukraine.
He was born in  July, 1882, as far as I know. 
I have been told by his cousin, now deceased, that he grew up on a farm. 
In 1915 he prepared a paper called Intention to Become a Citizen. On that paper it was stated that he was born in Galicia.  His older brother, Aaron DORF, may have been  born in Zaleszczyki, Galicia. Aaron is buried  in a plot for that town. However, Aaron was 16 years older then my grandfather, so there is no guaranty that my grandfather was born there.
Any help in finding the birthplace of Harry (Chiam) DORF, would be greatly appreciated.

Brucce Wexler     <AJS1PRES@...>

Emily Garber

Fifty years is certainly a long time, but it does not really tell us how intensive and extensive your research has been.

If you have not done so already, you must follow genealogy orthodoxy and search backwards through time for all likely relevant records for both Harry and Aaron. If, as I suspect, Aaron DORF is the one who died in 1935, then his father (as shown on his indexed death certificate on FamilySearch) was Benjamin. Get an actual copy of the death cert. (It may be downloaded from FamilySearch.org at a Family History Center). I suggest you get a photo of Aaron's gravestone to learn what his father's Hebrew/Yiddish name was. Then, confirm it was the same (or similar) for Harry.

If Harry and/or Aaron naturalized, acquire all their paperwork. If Harry filed a declaration of intention, he may have complete the process. His papers may tell you the port, date and ship on which he arrived in the United States. The same for Aaron. Passenger manifests from 1907 on often provide information on last residence and place of birth.

I have one side of my family from Zaleszczyki, Galicia and Bukovina (mostly Radautz, but also Czernowitz). Vital records from Zaleszczyki have not been found. However, vital records from Czernowitz and Radautz have been indexed and may be found at GeneaSearch - https://czernowitz.geneasearch.net/index.php  I noted a marriage record for an Aron Dorf and Gitel Zwick in Radautz in 1901. Without doing research for you, I cannot tell if this is your relative. No birth records for Chaim Dorf were noted in that database.

If your people were from Galicia, then searches on JRI-Poland may be useful. I have found that although I cannot find 19th century records from Zaleszczyki, that many relatives moved on from Zaleszczyki in the 1880s and 1890s to other Galician and Bukovinan communities and, sometimes, Vienna.

Best of luck with your research!

Emily Garber,   Phoenix, AZ   <emilyhgarber@...>

Brucce Wexler

Thank you for your note, having to do with my DORF ancestors. I have a picture of Aaron's gravestone which confirms his father was Benjamin. My grandfather's (Harry) headstone says his father was Aaron. I believe this was a mistake on the part of my Uncles and Aunts who ordered the headstone.  Aaron was definitely Harry's brother. Older by 16 years.
I have both my  grandfather's intention to be naturalized, and his Naturalization papers. I know the port, date and ship that my grandfather arrived on. It was the SS Zeeland, New York, October 7, 1907. (My father told me that he and my grandfather used to joke that they arrived the same week. My father being born in New York city on October 4, 1907). I actually have a copy of the report of the ship's landing from the NY Times, the following day. I also have the Passenger listing, showing my grandfathers name. It shows he arrived from Czernowitz, leaving my pregnant grandmother,and my two eldest uncles. The passenger ship listing shows the last residence as Czernowitz, but not a date or place of birth.
Aaron was married to a Gital Zwick. They had seven daughters, the first one born 1885, the last one, 1901. I doubt they were married in 1901.
It very  well may be that my grandfather was born in Zaleszczyki, but of course I would like to have proof. 
Thanks again for your note and information. I really appreciate it.
Bruce Wexler

Sally Bruckheimer <sallybruc@...>

Thank you for your note, having to do with my DORF ancestors."
If you are replying to Emily, reply to Emily, not the group. If you look at the bottom of the posting (at least in Yahoo Mail), you see both options. "Reply to sender" and "Reply to group".
This has been mentioned before, but apparently not everyone saw it.
Sally Bruckheimer
Princeton, NJ