27 March 2014

Treasure Chest Thursday: Clara Ett and Chaim (Adolph) Rappaport Marriage Certificate

This is the earliest marriage certificate I've located thus far in my family: 1903. Clara Ett was my grandmother Tillie Liebross Wilson's first cousin. I had no idea she went by the name Clara until I started this research. We always referred to her with her Yiddish name: Khaitza.

City of New York
State of New York 
No. of Certificate: 11947
I hereby certify, that Chajem Rapeport and Klara Ett were joined in Marriage by me in accordance with the laws of the State of New York, in the Borough of ______ City of New York, this 14 day of June 1903.
Signature of person performing the ceremony, Raw Joseph Sussman 

Witnesses to the Marriage, Beny Finkelman
                                         Fischel Nusbaum

Date of Marriage. New York 14 June 1903
Groom's Full Name. Chajem Rapeport
Residence. 212 Grame Aw Brooklyn
Age. 26
Color. White
Single or Widowed. First
Birthplace. Galizie
Father's Name. Chiel Mechl Rapeport
Mother's Maiden Name. Chaje Silberbusch
Number of Groom's Marriage. One
Bride's Full Name. Klara Ett
Residence. 212 Grame Aw Brooklyn
Age. 20
Color. White
Single or Widowed. First
Maiden Name, if a Widow. [blank]
Birthplace. Galizie
Father's Name. Hersch Leib Ett
Mother's Maiden Name. Perl Wenkert
Number of Bride's Marriage. One
Name of Person Performing Ceremony. Joseph Sussman
Official Station. First Zborowerk u Fercin [?]
Residence. 245 Monroe St City
Date of Record. [blank]

It is likely that the correct street address for Klara and Chajem was 212 Graham Avenue, Brooklyn, but I have no other records with this address that might provide confirmation. Nor do I have any earlier records in the United States for this couple. 

I believe they probably knew each other from Skole, Galicia, Austrian Empire. Chaim's Decaration of Intention to naturalize (a process I do not believe he completed) indicates that he was born in Skole and resided there prior to emigration.[1] Clara lived there with her family at least in 1894, when her sister, Jutte, was born, and in 1895 when her mother Perl passed away.

I have not been successful, thus far in tracing Joseph Sussman, the officient or his congregation. I actually do not believe I've transcribed his congregation correctly. If anyone has a better notion, let me know.
  Notes
1. Kings County, New York, Supreme Court, Declaration of Intention no. 34426, volume 26, page 426, Adolph Rappaport, 24 October 1913 ; digital images, Jewish Data (http://www.jewisdata.com : accessed 16 August 1913). Subscription access only.

25 March 2014

Tombstone Tuesday: Benjamin & Fannie Molthman

Benjamin Molthman is one of my family history mysteries. Some genealogy researchers call this kind of problem a brick wall. I prefer to think of him as a floater. He's hovering just beyond reach - he's probably related to me via my Myers family, but I've yet to figure out how. I can't quite grab hold of that string that would tie him securely to them.

MOLTHMAN
Here lies
Feiga daughter of Yisrael
Died 19 Shevat 5733
May her soul be bound in everlasting life 
BELOVED WIFE
MOTHER-GRANDMOTHER
FANNIE
DIED JAN. 21, 1973
AGE 97 YEARS
---------------------
Here lies
Dov Ber son of Yisrael
Died 1 Adar 5706
May his soul be bound in everlasting life
BELOVED HUSBAND
AND DEAR FATHER
BENJAMIN
DIED FEB. 1, 1946
AGE 73 YEARS
Berl Malzmann was a 36 year old joiner (carpenter) when he departed Hamburg on the S.S. Graf Waldersee on 23 November 1906 and arrived in the New York on 7 December 1906.[1] He reported that his last residence was Rowno (today, Rivne, Ukraine) and that his place of birth was the same community as my Malzman, Garber and Mazewitsky families: Lubin (once called Labun, now called Yurovshchina, Ukraine). 

Berl's wife, Feiga Bernstein Malzmann (Fannie), and their children, Chusse (Ida), Chaim (Hyman/Herman) and Rochel (Ruth), followed on 4 September 1910 when they landed in New York on the S.S. Cleveland.[2] They all reported residing in and having been born in Labun. Berl, now Benjamin Molthman, took them to his home at 118 W. 3rd Street, New York, New York. 
118 W. 3rd Street was also the location of Morris and Molthman Glass. The "Morris" in that business was my great grandfather Isidore Morris, also from Labun and likely an in-law, since Isidore's wife (my great grandmother) Sarah's maiden name had been Malzmann.[3]
Fannie and Benjamin had their last child on 24 October 1913: Max Molthman (who legally changed his name to Gerald Max Martin on 2 December 1948).[4] 

In 1921, Benjamin and Fannie left New York City to live in the country. They purchased land and a house on Black River Road, Stephentown, Rennselaer County, New York.[5] 

After Benjamin passed away in Rennselaer County in 1946, Fannie moved back to New York City. 

Benjamin's father's name is Yisrael, the same name held by my great great great grandfather (father of David Myers and his brother Zachary Myers). Benjamin is, however, quite  bit younger (b. ca. 1873) than David and Zachary (who were likely born in the 1850s). Benjamin's only known brother was Abram Malzmann, another glazier who also emigrated to New York City and became Abraham Maltman.

Notes:
1. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 8 April 2009), manifest, S.S. Graf Waldersee, Hamburg to New York, arriving 7 December 1906, page 50, line 8, Berl Malzmann, citing National Archives Microfilm Serial: T715; Microfilm Roll: 807.
2. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 7 February 2009), manifest, S.S. Cleveland, Hamburg to New York, arriving 4 January 1910, list 13, line 20, Feiga Malzmann, citing National Archives Microfilm Serial: T715; Microfilm Roll: 1547.
3. "U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 25 March 2014), New York, New York City Directory, 1910, page 1035, entry for Morris & Molthman glass.
4. "Legal Notice," Long Island City Star Journal, 4 December 1948, legal notice of 2 December 1946 court proceeding changing Max Molthman's name to Gerald M. Martin; digital image, Old Fulton, New York Post Cards (http://www.fultonhistory.com : accessed 31 December 2011).
5. Rennsalaer County, New York, Grantee Index, 1920-1947, page 1558, entry for Benjamin Maltman; digital images, "New York Land Records, 1630-1975," Rennsalaer County Grantee Index, FamilySearch.org (https: www. familysearch.org : accessed 11 December 2012).

20 March 2014

Treasure Chest Thursday: Nina Wilson & Max Herman Marriage

Nina Wilson Herman (born Nechame Wilensky) was my maternal grandfather's elder sister. She married Max Herman in New York on 26 May 1910.[1] This was one of the early records that confirmed the village of birth of my grandfather and his siblings: Kasan, Russia (now known as Kozyany, Belarus). Kasan or Kazan was the Yiddish name for the community.



Groom: Max Herman
Groom's Residence: Max Herman
Age: twenty two
Color: white
Single, Widowed or Divorced: single
Occupation: Corset business
Birth Place: Riga, Russia
Father's Name: Mowsha Herman
Mother's Maiden Name: Aster Harif
Number of Groom's Marriage: First

Bride: Mina Wilson
Bride's Residence: Mina Wilson
Age: thirty two
Color: white
Single, Widowed or Divorced: single
Maiden Name, if a Widow: ----------
Birth Place: Kasan Russia
Father's name: Saul Wilson
Mother's Maiden Name: Hoda Epstein
Number of Bride's Marriage: Kosan Russia

I hereby certify that the above-named groom and bride were joined in Marriage by me, in accordance with the Laws of the State of New York, at 184 1/2 E. 7th Street, in the Borough of Manhattan, City of New York, this 26th of May, 1910.
          Signature of person performing the ceremony Chona P [?]
          Official Station: 184 1/2 E. 7th Street
          Residence: 184 1/2 E. 7th Street

Witnesses to the Marriage: M [?] T [?]
                                        Jake Rubin

Sometimes the records clearly indicate that there were immigrants involved in record creation for whom English was not quite grasped. There are several mistakes in this record.

First, Nina's name. It was not Mina. Nina actually pronounced her name Nynuh, with the emphasis on the first syllable.

The second line for both groom and bride should have been their addresses (from a genealogical standpoint, an opportunity missed to acquire some additional data - drat!).

Nina and Max's ages are switched. Nina was actually born, according to her death certificate, on 6 January 1888.[2] Max was said to be 52 when he died in 1935.[3]

This was first marriage for both Max and Nina. The Rabbi wrote Nina's town of birth, once again, in the "Number of bride's marriage" spot.

The Rabbi's name and the name of one of the witnesses is pretty much unintelligible. The first witness' name almost looks to me as if he is writing at least part of his name in Cyrillic script.

This marriage certificate found the couple in happier times. This happiness, unfortunately, was not destined to last long-term. Nina died in the Influenza Epidemic in 1919, leaving a seven year old daughter, Winnie, and a two month old son, Victor. Since Max could not care for the children and continue to work, his children were taken in by Nina's parents, Saul and Hoda Wilson. In 1935, Max, a pedestrian, was hit by a car and died.

My mother, Norma, was always proud that she had been named after her aunt Nina and shared the same Hebrew name. To me that is one of the aspects of Ashkenazi Judaism that is particularly nice: that lives cut short may be recalled and honored with another chance at life.

Notes:
1. New York County, New York, Certificate and Record of Marriage no. 11661 (26 May 1910), Max Herman and Nina Wilson, New York City Municipal Archives, New York.
2. New York County, New York, Certificate of Death no. 1585 (11 January 1919), Nina Herman, Municipal Archives, New York, New York.
3. Bronx County, New York, Certificate of Death no. 7919 (2 September 1935), Max Herman, Municipal Archives, New York, New York.

19 March 2014

American Jewish history featured by the NEHGS

The Weekly Genealogist, the free electronic newsletter from the New England Historic and Genealogical Society, has announced an occasional series featuring Chapters in American Jewish History, a series of essays edited by Michael Feldberg, Ph.D., Executive Director of the American Jewish Historical Society from 1991 to 2004. The NEHGS became a partner of AJHS in 2013 and houses AJHS's New England Archive.

The first essay featured (which links to the AJHS, New England Archive website) is Chapter 1: "Hank Greenberg: Baseball’s First Jewish Superstar." You may view all the published essays here.

Access the essays via a link delivered to your inbox weekly in the Weekly Genealogist, or access then directly via the AJHS New England Archives page ("Chapters in American Jewish History").

I am not a paying New England Historic and Genealogical Society member, but I have signed up on their site as a guest user to be able to use their free resources  - and the newsletter is one of them. Sign up for the Weekly Genealogist newsletter here.

13 March 2014

Treasure Chest Thursday: Rose Liebross and Dr. Nathan Bernstein Marriage

My great aunt Rose Liebross, daughter of Louis Liebross and Bertha Wenkert Liebross, spent much of her adult life single and living with her brothers and sisters at 31 Colin Place, Brooklyn, New York. But, for a short time she was married. I did not know this until I was searching, early in my genealogy research, on ItalianGen.org for all Liebross marriages and located this one. I then ordered the record from the New York City Municipal Archives.[1]



















Groom: Nathan Judas Bernstein
Groom's Residence: 291 Stuyvesant Ave
Age: 32 years
Color: white
Single, Widowed or Divorced: single
Occupation: Dentist
Birth Place: Russia
Father's Name: Aron
Mother's Maiden Name: Rebeca Azof
Number of Groom's Marriage: First

Bride: Rose Liebross
Bride's Residence: 291 Stuyvesant Ave
Age: 27 years
Color: white
Single, Widowed or Divorced: single
Maiden Name, if a Widow: ----------
Birth Place: N.Y. City
Father's name: Louis
Mother's Maiden Name: Bertha Weingart
Number of Bride's Marriage: First

I hereby certify that the above-named groom and bride were joined in Marriage by me, in accordance with the Laws of the State of New York, at 144 Beach 74th St., Rockaway Beach, in the Borough of L.I., City of New York, this 14th of November, 1926.
          Signature of person performing the ceremony Jos. Somerstein
          Official Station: Minister
          Residence: 2046 83rd St, Brooklyn

Witnesses to the Marriage: David Stollmach [signed David J. Stollmach, D.D.S.]
                                        Jacob Goldberg

I've posted previously about the Liebross women and their penchant for getting younger through time. According to the 1898 manifest for her voyage to the United States, Rose was born in about 1887.[2] So, this marriage certificate took more than ten years off of her age. 

In addition, she was likely born in Radauti, Romania (at the time Radautz, Bukovina, Austrian Empire), not New York City.

The couple was married at 144 Beach 74th Street which was the home of Rose's Uncle Simon Liebross and Aunt Ethel Hammer Liebross.[3] 

Rose and Nathan divorced in 1931.[4]

Notes:
1. Kings County, Brooklyn marriage certificate no. 3319, Nathan Judas Bernstein and Rose Liebross; Municipal Archives, New York City.
2. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 13 May 2009), manifest, Britannic, Liverpool to New York, arriving 1 July 1898, Libros, citing National Archives Microfilm SerialT715; Microfilm Roll: 25; Lines: 20-28; Page Number: 2.
3. 1925 New York State Census, Queens County, New York, population schedule, Arverne, Assembly District 5, Enumeration District 67, sheet 13, entries 16-17, Simon and Ethel Liebross; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 9 September 2012), citing New York State Archives, Albany, New York.
4. Florida Department of Health (Jacksonville), "Divorce Index, 1927-2001," indexed record for Nathan Bernstein and Rose Liebross, page 6, Hamilton County, Florida; "Florida, Divorce Index, 1927-2001," database online, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 11 May 2008).

11 March 2014

Tombstone Tuesday: Harriet Garber, daughter of Max and Mary

It never gets easy seeing the grave of a child. Often, in Jewish cemeteries, children's headstones are small, made of fairly porous material and set in the back of the plot (one can see a few of those variety behind Harriet's stone in the photo accompanying this post). This is mostly true for the plot at Block 89, one of the First Lubiner Progressive Benevolent Association plots at Montefiore Cemetery in Queens, New York. Harriet Garber's stone, however, is granite, exceptional in honor of a child her age.

photo by Emily Garber, 7 September 2008
It reflects the theme often used for one who has died too young: a broken tree.

Here lies
Chaye Siril
daughter of Mordechai
-----------
HARRIET
GARBER
DIED
OCT. 6, 1929
AGE 2 YRS
-----------
DEAR
DAUGHTER
AND SISTER

Last year in September, I posted about Harriet's death certificate from the City of New York. She was born and died in Brooklyn. This tombstone is actually inaccurate in that it lists 6 October 1929 as the date of death. That was actually the date of her burial. She passed away on the 5th of October.

Harriet rests in Block 89, Gate 156N, Line 2R, Grave 3.

06 March 2014

Treasure Chest Thursday: Max and Mary Garber Marriage Certificate

One thing I've noticed about marriage certificates for Jewish immigrants in early twentieth century New York, is that the Rabbis, undoubtedly learned men, often could barely write English. This can be frustrating when trying to make out what was actually written. Luckily, with a little on-site research at the New York City Municipal Archives, one may locate the Affidavit for License to Marry and get another chance to decipher the information on the marriage certificate.

Max Garber was the first of the Garber siblings to emigrate from Labun, Russian Empire.[1] I have been unable to locate him in the 1910 U.S. Census or any other likely record prior to his 1914 marriage to Mary Morgenstein.[2]
The items entered in red, below are either incorrect or unreadable on the certificate.

 [1st page]
Groom: Max Garber
Residence: 201 E. 2 St.
Age: 23
Color: White
Single, Widowed or Divorced: Single
Occupation: Egg Dealer
Birthplace: Russia
Father's Name: Abie
Mother's Maiden Name: Anna Nazarowitz
Number of Groom's Marriage: [blank]

Bride: Mary Morgenstein
Residence: 325A Housten St.
Age: 22
Color: White
Single, Widowed or Divorced: Single
Maiden Name, if a Widow: ---
Birthplace: Austria
Father's Name: Max
Mother's Maiden Name: Rose Rosenblatt
Number of Bride's Marriage: [blank]
I hearby certify that the above-named groom and bride were joined in marriage by me, in accordance with the laws of the State of New York, at 28-30 Ave. A, in the borough of Man., City of New York, this 11 of June, 1914.

Signature of person performing the ceremony:  
                              /s/ S. Ohbrauch
Official Station: 49 Clinton St.
Residence: 49 Clinton St.

Witness to the Marriage: [first line unintelligible]
                                              Harry [?]ilkin

[2nd page]
WE hereby certify that we are the Groom and Bride named in this Certificate, and that the information given therein is correct, to the best of our knowledge and belief.
                              /s/Max Garber Groom
                              /s/Mary Morgenstein Bride  

Signed in the presence of  /s/S. Ohbrauch
and 49 Clinton St.

-------------------------------
Max and Mary applied for their marriage license on 3 June 1914. Max's mother maiden name, Mazawitsky, easily mangled, has been on the certificate (but not on the license [3]).

I have yet to determine what kind of venue was at 28-30 Avenue A, New York, New York. From reading the certificate, I was a little unsure of the officiant's name: it looks like S. Ohbrauch. That reading is confirmed by what is on the license. And on the license on learns that his first name is Sam. The closest name I have seen in available directories for that time period living at 49 Clinton Street is Samuel Elrauch, a grocer. Perhaps he was also a rabbi by training.

The witnesses' signatures are obscured on the document. And since Sam Ohbrauch mistakenly signed as a witness on the second page, I do not have another chance to determine their names from the certificate. License to the rescue: William Zeffert and Harry Tilken. Unfortunately, these men do not appear to be relatives (at least on the Garber side of the family). And I have only been able to find one reference to either of them, thus far:  1922 city directory for William which indicates he lived somewhere in Brookyn.

The other bits of information on the license and not on the certificate are occupation of the bride ("at machine," presumably clothing factory work) and provinces for place of birth: "Wolin Russia" for Max and "Galicia Austria" for Mary.

I will provide more on accessing NYC Marriage license records in a future post.

Notes:
1. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 7 February 2009), manifest, Pretoria, Hamburg to New York, arriving 30 December 1907, p. 10, line 5, Motel Garber; citing National Archives Microfilm Serial T715, Roll 1067.
2. New York County, New York, Certificate and Record of Marriage, Number 15344 (11 June 1914), Max Garber and Mary Morgenstein, New York City Municipal Archives, New York.
3. New York County,  New York, Affidavit for License to Marry, no. 14925, for Max Garber and Mary Morgenstein, recorded 3 June 1914; Manhattan Borough Marriage License Records, 1908-1929, New York City Municipal Archives, New York, microfilm roll M1914 222 MN35221.

04 March 2014

Tombstone Tuesday: Lee Urbass Wilson

My Aunt Lee Wilson was a Renaissance woman. I think of her as warm, self-confident and adventuresome. A fine cook, she became like Julia Child (but shorter). Late in life she parlayed her organizational skills into a career.

Here lies
Died 6 Nisan 5762
LEE WILSON
BELOVED WIFE, MOTHER
AND GRANDMOTHER
SEPT. 2, 1921 - MARCH 19, 2002
 
Lee was the third child of Yudel (Julius) and Feiga (Fannie) Tepper Urbass in New York City. Yudel had emigrated to the United States in 1913 from Radom Gubernia, Russian Empire.[1] Feiga, born in Opatow, Radom Gubernia (located 164 km south of Warsaw in today's Poland), and her two children followed in 1920.[2]  I have found several records that indicate that Lee's real name may have been Lillie or Lillian (something I did not know, previously).[3]

Lee married my uncle Ira Wilson (my mother's brother) after World War II. They settled in Brooklyn and had one child.

Lee grew up in an Orthodox Jewish home and kept Kosher. When the family would celebrate Passover together, we would always go the Aunt Lee and Uncle Ira's house. This was because my mother did not keep a Kosher home and Lee didn't feel she could eat there during the holidays under those circumstances.

Lee and Ira had a summer cabin on a small lake in Succasunna, New Jersey. Lee and their son would spend the week there and Ira would join them on the weekends. My family would occasionally go to New Jersey to visit for the day. One of my fond memories is the one time I spent a few days at the cabin with Lee. The cabin was spartan but comfortable. There was a row boat to take out on the lake, poles for fishing (although I cannot recall ever catching anything), and comfortable chairs along the shore. It was quiet, relaxing and comforting to spend quality time with someone I loved.

After her son was grown and out of the house, Lee decided to enrolled in City College. She got a student job in the College President's office and after graduation, they offered her permanent job. She was to organize official dinners and events for the President's office.

Lee had always been an excellent cook, but now she learned from the pros and absorbed a great deal. When my husband and I would visit New York, Lee and Ira would invite us over for dinner - enjoyable conversation and gourmet fare. What could be better! Always a highlight of our trips.

Lee fought the good fight against cancer, but succumbed on 19 March 2002. I flew home (across country) for the funeral - the only relative (aside from my parents) for whom I've done that. 

Notes:
1. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com
 (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 12 March 2013), manifest, S.S. Zeeland, Antwerp to New York, arriving 10 June 1913, List 5, passenger 30, indexed as Tidel Arbus; citing National Archives Microfilm Serial T715, Roll 2101.

2. "New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957," digital images, Ancestry.com
 (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 24 February 2014), manifest, S.S. Nieuw Amsterdam, Rotterdam to New York, arriving 12 October 1920, List 40, passenger 17, Fajga Urbas; citing National Archives Microfilm Serial T715, Roll 2851.

3. 1925 NY State Census, 1930 U.S. Census, 1940 U.S. Census and Yudel's Petition for Naturalization. Fannie's naturalization petition lists her daughter as "Lea."