09 May 2013

Treasure Chest Thursday: Louis Myers' Obituary

New York Times, 9 November 1938
LOUIS MYERS IS DEAD;
EX-THEATRE OWNER
_______________

Was a Fouder and Official
of Anti-Nazi League
_______________

   Louis Myers, a founder and acting treasurer of the Non-Sectarian Anti-Nazi League and former operator of motion-picture theatres, died yesterday at his home at 1,605 Walton Avenue, the Bronx, after  long illness. His age was 82.
   Mr. Myers was a vice president of the Order Sons of Zion and a treasurer of the Independent Theatre Owners Association. Until recently he had been the operator of the Five Boroughs Theatre Circuit.
   A native of Russia, he came to the United States as a child. During the World War period he entered the moving-picture industry, developed his own chain of houses throughout the Bronx, and ten years ago established his own glass manufacturing and importing business.
   Surviving are his widow; a daughter, Miss Renee Myers, and a son, Dr. Bernard Myers.
   Funeral services will be held today at the Park West Memorial Chapel, 115 West Seventy-ninth Street. Burial will be in Montefiore Cemetery, Springfield, L.I.
_______________________

This New York Times  obituary is notable for several reasons. First, its existence is an indication that immigrant Louis Myers, unlike any other member of his family, had been a successful and acknowledged leader in his adopted country. 

The obituary is also notable for more than one mistake in covering Louis' life story. Louis was not a child when he arrived in the United States. His manifest indicates that he was 20 years old when he arrived in 1904.[1]

Louis Myers started, like the rest his family, as a glazier in New York City. I have located city directories, including one as early as 1910, where Louis is identified as a glazier. Even in the 1930 Census, he is listed as in the glass business. It was only much later that he began investing in movie theaters.

Notes:
1."New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 11 January 2012), manifest, Main, Bremen to New York, arriving 25 November 1904, p. 1, Leiser Malzmann; citing National Archives Microfilm Serial T715.

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