Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thankful Thursday ~ International Passenger Lists

And connecting with distant cousins...

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I recently received an email from a second cousin of my mother-in-law who has done quite a bit of research on their common Segal (Siegel) immigrant ancestor. He was able to tell me the exact dates and ships that Simche Siegel and his family traveled on to get to America in 1891.

The Siegel family first traveled from Hamburg, Germany, to Glasgow, Scotland, on the ship Coblenz leaving Hamburg on November 27, 1891. This is where I am thankful to for providing free access to their international passenger lists from August 29 to September 5, because with my U.S. Membership, I do not have access to passenger lists between Hamburg and Glasgow. I took advantage and found the following. (Click to enlarge.)

Staatsarchiv Hamburg, Hamburg Passenger Lists, 1850-1934
(Provo, UT, USA, Operations Inc, 2008),, Database online. Record for Simche Siegel.

With a little help from Google Translate, I find that this is a list of people who are going to America via Glasgow on the steamship Coblenz. The paragraph above Zuname (Surname) and Vornamen (First name) says that people belonging to a family must be listed together and denoted as a family by a bracket. In looking at the list of people bracketed with Simche Siegel above, it looks like there were more family members who came with him than I originally thought:
Simche, age 56
Blume, age 26
Golde, age 22
Hinde, age 19
Itzig, age 17
Lea, age 10/12
Wolf, age 27
Rachel, age 25
Reisel, age 3/12
Mayer, age 26
Freide, age 25
Aron, age 4
Basse, age 6/12

Columns 5, Bisheriger Wohnort, and 6, Im Staate resp. in der Provinz indicate the passengers' former residence, town and "state or province".

The town that the Siegels (and the family listed above them) were from was Shytomir.

The country that all of the passengers on this page were from was Russland (German for Russia).

Using the JewishGen Communities Database, searching for Shytomir in the pre-WWI country of Russian Empire, I find the following. (Click to enlarge.)

Present day Zhitomir, Ukraine, is about 82 miles west of Kiev, the capital of Ukraine. Passenger Ships and Images [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations Inc, 2007. Original data: Various maritime reference sources.
USS Circassia (1878 - 1900)
From Glasgow, the family then traveled by No. 2 Steerage on the ship Circassia to New York City, arriving on December 15, 1891. (See Wikipedia for a reminder about how unpleasant travel by steerage was.)

New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 (Provo, UT, USA, The Generations Network, Inc., 2006),, Database online. Year: 1891; Microfilm roll: M237_580;
Line: 47; List number: 1914. Record for Simche Siegel.
The families are grouped differently on this list. These Siegels are listed together:
Simche, age 56
Blume, age 26
Golde, age 22
Hinde, age 19
Itzig, age 12 (this was 17 in the Coblenz passenger list)
Lea, age 1

The family of Wolf, Rachel and Raisel are listed with a last name of Segal with a family of Leib, Malke, Gedalie and Koppel, who are listed as from Romania on the Coblenz passenger list. The family of Mayer, Freide, Aron and Basse are listed with a last name of Seiger. All of these families are listed as coming from Russia, with a destination of New York. Once again, researchers are reminded to look at all possible sources to evaluate what might be the country of origin and the ages of family members.

It is believed that Simche Siegel and his family spent very little time in New York City and moved to the very new Jewish agricultural community in Woodbine, New Jersey soon after arriving in America.

You can read more about Golde Segal Levitt at Levitts in Woodbine.

Thankful Thursday is a daily blogging prompt from GeneaBloggers, the genealogy community’s resource for blogging. It is used by many genealogy bloggers to help them tell stories of their ancestors.

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