14 March 2017

Tombstone Tuesday: Anne and Lawrence Robbins, Beth Moses Cemetery, Pinelawn, NY

Many genealogists lament trying to locate birth surnames for their married female ancestors. That certainly may be a challenge. But, finding married surnames for those who later changed their surnames may be even more challenging. Such is the case with Anne and Lawrence Robbins. My research indicates that Anne was the daughter of David and Rose Cohen documented in a recent post. She was also the elder sister of Irving Cohen and Melvin Cohen

Here lies Khana daughter of David
SEPT. 24, 1921
SEPT. 6, 2006

Here lies Leibel son of Yosef
SEPT. 20, 1922
FEB. 7, 1987

May their souls be bound in the bonds of the living.

The Long Island Star-Journal posted a legal notice indicating that Lawrence Eunice Roblenski and Anna Roblenski had, on 27 August 1963, petitioned the Surpeme Court of New York in Queens County to change their names to Lawrence Robbins and Anne Robbins.[1] They also requested that their children, Joyce Cynthia and Michael Steven, also assume the new surname. The family members were to assume their new names as of 6 October 1963.

Birth dates for all four family members were included in the legal notice. Lawrence, who had no birth certificate, was born on 26 September 1922 at Anniston, Alabama (his tombstone inscription indicates 20 September 1922). His birth date was certified for the court proceedings by a Notice of Separation from the U.S. Navy. Anna Roblenski, born Anna Cohen, was born 24 September 1921 in Brooklyn, NY.

Anne lived with her parents at 457 Georgia Avenue, Brooklyn in 1930 and at 282 South 3rd Street, Brooklyn in 1940.[2] She was 18 in 1940, had completed two years of high school and worked as an operator at a factory making shoulder pads.

Lawrence, then called Eunice (which he later used as his middle name), was in Westerly, Fayette County, West Virginia in 1930, with his parents Joe and Roxie Roblenski. Joe was a coal miner and Polish immigrant.[3] Roxie was born in Alabama.

Lawrence Eunice Roblenski served in the U.S. Navy from his enlistment on 28 August 1942 in Charleston, West Virginia to at least September 1945. He served on the U.S.S. Wyoming and the U.S.S. Swasey.[4]

Anne had her first child in early 1945. It appears that Anne and Lawrence had a third child, Robert, sometime after the 1963 name change proceedings.[5] After Lawrence's death in 1987, Anne married Joseph Cooper, also a widower with children. She pre-deceased him.

Anne's and Lawrence's graves are in Beth Moses Cemetery, Pinelawn, New York, First Lubiner Progressive Benevolent Association plot, Block 24, Maccabee Road.

1. "Legal Notices," Long Island Star-Journal (Long Island City, New York), 4 September 1963, p. 31; image, Fulton History (http://www.fultonhistory.com : accessed 27 February 2017).
2. 1930 U.S. Census, Kings County, New York, population schedule, Brooklyn, enumeration district 24-1215, sheet 17A, dwelling 54, family 337, Anna Cohen; images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 19 February 2017); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1492.
  1940 U.S. Census, Kings Co., NY. pop. sched., Brooklyn, e.d. 24-1530, sheet 10B, household 214, Anne Cohen; images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 19 February 2017); citing NARA microfilm publication T627, roll 2585.
3. 1930 U.S. Census, Fayette County, WV, pop. sched., Waverley, e.d. 10-25, sheet 21-B, dwell. 390, fam. 390, Eunice Roblenski; images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 March 20170; NARA microfilm pub. T626, roll 2531.
4. "U.S., World War II Navy Muster Rolls, 1938-1949," images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 March 2017); entries for Lawrence E. Roblenski, service no. 560-13-67; citing NARA Record Group 24.
5. Joseph Cooper obituary, Asbury Park Press (New Jersey), 25 February 2010; transcription, Legacy (http://www.legacy.com : accessed 5 March 2017).


  1. So now our family knows why we could not find any information on "Eunice." His mother Roxie Clark was a sister to my great grandmother both born in Alabama.

  2. So glad my blog post was helpful to you!

  3. Emily, What a wonderful post from your blog! Lawrence Robbins was my great grandfather, Isaac Leonidas "Lon" Newton Clark's nephew. Lawrence's mother, Roxie Clark, was Lon's youngest sister. It was so interesting to read of the life that Lawrence and Anne had, Anne's parents and siblings, and Anne and Lawrence's children. I was wondering if you had help from the family, or did you do all the researching yourself? New York does not release their records to anyone unless you are a direct family member. It makes it hard to research. Some of the cousins from Alabama have a couple of photos of Eunice Lawrence Roblenski-Robbins. If any of his children ever contact you, would you please let them know that we'd love to share them with them? His children would be our cousins. Again, I just want to thank you for all the work you did on the Cohen family. It enabled us to find this long lost cousin, Lawrence Eunice Boblenski-Robbins. Blessings!

    1. Gayle: I did not contact the family for this post. My interest is in documenting families from the town of Lubin/Labun, Russian Empire. As a consequence, I have been documenting those who are buried in the three First Lubiner Progressive Benevolent Association plots in Montefiore and Beth Moses Cemeteries. I did find additional information about Anne and Lawrence's children that I did not share on this blog post due to concerns about maintaining living people's privacy. If you contact me at extrayad(at)gmail.com I can share further information with you.


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