Thursday, March 29, 2012

What was YOUR family like in 1940?

Following is a cool infographic from This is the company that won the contract to build and maintain the servers that will house the 1940 US Census images for NARA.

1940 census

Additional help to find your ancestor's enumeration district can be found by using Steve Morse's One-Step Website. I will be spending time next week at NARA's 1940 Census website looking for some of my husband's family, including his mother's family in Woodbine, New Jersey, and his father's family in Akron, Ohio.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Wedding Wednesday ~ Another Holländer Wedding in Hungary

I'm working my way through the Hungary, Civil Registration Records at FamilySearch to find records of family members of my husband's paternal grandmother, Lena (Hollander) Handler (1890-1983). My newest find is a marriage record for Lena's younger sister, Roza Hollander. (See Roza's Birth Record about halfway down my post about Lena's siblings' birth records. Roza was born on December 4, 1892 in Bonyhád, Tolna, Hungary.), Hungary Civil Registration, 1895-1980, Bonyhäd, Tolna, Hungary,
Marriages, (Házasultak) 1914-1917 (sic), image 157 of 190.
Record for Ernö Breuer and Roza Holländer, February 14, 1913.

The heading of the left-hand column reads: "A házasság-kötés helye és ideje (év, hó, nap)", which translates to "The bond of marriage place and date (year, month, day)" which, for Roza and Erno is in Bonyhád, on February 14, 1913.

A vőlegény: the groom.

Ernö Breuer's occupation looks like "kereskedősegéd", which translates to "trading assistant" in Google Translate. The izr- below his occupation indicates his religion.

Google Translate indicates that Ernö is Hungarian for Ernest.

Below that is his birthdate: May 29, 1887, in Bonyhád.

To the right are his parents' names: Sama- or Soma- Breuer and "néhai" Berta Tager. "Néhai" translates to "late" meaning that Ernö's mother was deceased at the time of his marriage.

A menyasszony: The bride.

Roza Holländer does not have an occupation. Her religion is indicated by izr-, and her birthdate here agrees with the birth record: December 4, 1892, in Bonyhád.

The column to the right names her parents: Sam[uel] Hollander and Anna Honenwald (or Honenvald?).

I find it interesting that the right-hand section, which has the header: "A házasságkötési tanuk családi és utóneve, lakhelye" (translates to "The marriage witnesses first and last name, home") indicates that one of the witnesses is Jakob Honenwald. This could be a relative of Anna Honenwald, the bride's mother, but I have yet to explore records from Hőgyész, the town that Anna came from.

May 2013 update: Jakob Honenwald is Roza's maternal grandfather, of Hőgyész.

There are not many stories handed down from this side of the family. What my father-in-law remembers from his youth is that his mother's family in Hungary would write to them, often asking for money because times were hard for them in Bonyhád.  Times were hard everywhere and the family in America did not always have money to send.

During the early 1940's, the letters stopped coming. It was in the spring and summer of 1944 when Bonyhád Jews were removed from their homes into a ghetto, and ultimately sent to Auschwitz.

By the time my mother-in-law got to know her husband's mother, Lena (known to the grandchildren as Bubbie Lena), all she ever said about her family was that she had a sister, but now she had no family - that they were all lost in the Holocaust.

Now that I know that Lena's sister married a man by the name of Breuer, I can start looking for that name in various records.

Wedding Wednesday 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.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Wordless Wednesday ~ Joseph Handler family

Joseph and Lena Handler and their six children,
taken in Akron, Ohio, after May 1941 and before November 1942

Back row, left to right: Louis, Arthur, Alfred, Harry
Front row, left to right: Belle, Joseph, Lena, Margaret

Joseph's naturalization papers provide birth dates for the oldest four children (Arthur, Margaret, Belle, Alfred).

Alfred, Louis, and Harry served in World War II, which is how I am able to approximate the date of this photograph. (Note that Alfred wears a uniform; Louis is in a suit.)

Wordless Wednesday 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.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Wedding Wednesday ~ Holländer and Händler in 1909

As I mentioned in an earlier post about finding birth records for Lena's siblings, civil registration started in Hungary in October 1895. These civil registration records can be found at's Collection List, under Hungary, Civil Registration, 1895-1980, where at this time, there are over 5.5 million unindexed images. This just means that you have to find the community you want and search screen by screen, like going through a microfilm roll.

I have been working my way through the (unindexed and mis-titled) images for Bonyhád, Tolna, Hungary, looking for any record with the surname Holländer. I have found a few Holländer birth and death records, but I really wanted to find the marriage record for my husband's paternal grandparents.

I knew that Lina Holländer and Josef Handler had married around 1908-1909 because their oldest son was born in January 1910, Josef immigrated to America in April 1910, and Lina and her son immigrated in May 1911. See my post about passenger lists for these details and how much I learned.

Bonyhád, Tolna, Hungary, "Civil Registration, 1895-1980" Marriages (Házasultak) 1914-1917 [sic],
Image no. 86, (1909, no. 20). Marriage record for Jozsef Handler and Lina Hollander
Jozsef Händler, (izr. = Jewish), born August 24, 1884 in Ilok (Hungary) married Lina Holländer (izr. = Jewish), born September 5, 1889 in Bonyhád. It looks like his occupation is Fuvaros, which Google Translate tells me is "Carter" and his parents' names are Aron and Szah (?) Händler. Lina's parents' names are Samuel Holländer and Anna Honevald, which I already knew from the birth records for her and her siblings. The names in the following column are names of the two witnesses, Antal Engelmann and Salamon Heller, both of Bonyhád.

Handwritten records are a challenge. The items here that I'm unclear on are:

Jozsef's occupation: does this look like fuvaros? If so, is "carter" an accurate translation?

What is the word above Aron Handler's name? I wonder if it means "the late" Aron Handler and he was no longer living? It is believed that Joseph's and Lena's oldest child, Arthur, was named after this grandfather. Update (3/24/2012): I found another, more legible, instance of this word: "néhai", and yes, it does translate to "late" as in he was deceased at the time of his son's marriage.

What is Jozsef's mother's name? My first instinct was Leah, but on closer look and comparing letters with others on the page, the first letter is not "L" and the second letter looks like "z" not "e". The 1911 passenger list has a Roza Handler so perhaps this is a variation on the "zah" sound of the name? Update (3/25/2012): Thank you to a reader from Jerusalem with generations of ancestors iHőgyész, Tolna, Hungary, who emailed me to let me know that she reads this as Szoli which is an equivalent of Sara.

All in all, I am pretty excited to have found this record. I will still work my way through these records, looking for Hollanders to try to piece together Lina's family, who are believed to have died in the Holocaust, as there were no more letters after World War II. To find these cousins, I need to find out who her sisters married.

Wedding Wednesday 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.