Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Wordless Wednesday ~ Portrait of Four Unknown Children


The personalities of these four children come through in their faces. Look at how the oldest is showing off her confidence in keeping her younger siblings in line.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Wordless Wednesday ~ Unknown Girl with Ringlets


I wish I knew who this smiling girl was. And I also wish this had a photographer's imprint to let me know if it came from Philadelphia or New York or New Jersey. This was from my mother-in-law's side of the family, so likely Segal or Levitt or possibly Goldstein.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Wordless Wednesday ~ Unknown Woman at Window

This woman is probably a relative on the Segal side of my mother-in-law's family.


The photograph was taken at Caplan Studio, 706 S. Fifth St., Philadelphia.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Eight Years of Blogging!

I started A Jewish Genealogy Journey eight years ago when I realized that my husband's genealogy stories would appeal to a slightly different audience than my first blog, From Maine to Kentucky.

Looking back at this year's posts, I see that they were almost all about the Handler family. Most of the posts were part of a series about a half first cousin once removed of my husband's, Herman Handler. Each post shows him in a different record, showing that an immigrant ancestor can be found in many records. Links to all the posts in the series are at Obituary for Herman Handler.

However, I did enjoy writing about my husband's grandfather as a jitney driver in Miami.

For those of you still reading my blog, thank you! I will try to post a little more often in the coming year.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Stories From the Census ~ Hattie Handler

When the 1930 census became publicly available in 2002, one of the first families I searched for was that of my father-in-law, because I knew exactly where the Handlers were living: in Akron, Ohio.

I knew I had the right family on lines 29-36: head of household Joe, wife Lena, and children, son Arthur, age 20; daughter Margaret, age 16; daughter Bella, age 12, son Alfred, age 10, son Louis, age 8, and daughter Hattie, age 7.

1930 U.S. census, Summit County, Ohio, population schedule, Akron, enumeration district 77-44, sheet 14A, dwelling 23, family 28, record for Joe Handlar [sic]; image, Ancestry (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed 7 September 2009); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 1875.

Daughter, Hattie? Actually that last name should be son, Harry, age 7, my father-in-law.

When I showed this to my father-in-law, he laughed, and imitated his mother's accent as she likely recited the names of her children for the census taker. She was from Hungary, and spoke Hungarian, also referred to as Magyar. With this accent, it is absolutely possible that "Harry" sounded like "Hattie" to a census taker not familiar with the family.

Although it is not known for certain who provided the information to the census taker in any U.S. census before 1940, based on Harry's memory and description of his mother's accent, it is very likely that Lena provided the Handler household's information to the census taker in 1930.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

JewishGen Features ~ SIG Mailing Lists and KehilaLinks

As you probably know, JewishGen is a necessary online resource for Jewish Genealogy. The link is in the sidebar of this blog and is also a tag, meaning that all the posts that I've written about JewishGen are tagged with JewishGen.

Do you know what country your ancestors were from? If so, you should check out the SIG (Special Interest Group) mailing lists. These are online discussion groups for researchers to ask questions and to receive news from the JewishGen volunteers about new resources that are coming online at the website.

I subscribe to only four SIG mailing lists:
Gesher Galicia SIG (Galicia, where the Levites/Lewites/Levitt family was from)
H-SIG (Hungary, where the Handlers and Hollanders were from)
Romania SIG (Romania, where the Goldstein (possibly Yancowitz) family was from)
Ukraine SIG (Ukraine, where the Segal family was from)

You can even search archived messages within each SIG for surnames and other topical information.

The mailing list subscription page looks like this for me:


However, there are 31 possible SIGs to subscribe to ranging from DNA to rabbinic genealogy to Early American.

It occurred to me this morning that I wanted to be sure that all JewishGen users were aware of this (free!) benefit because in each of the SIG emails I got today (and no, they don't all have daily posts), there was an update on the KehilaLinks projects (which I have shared before at KehilaLinks at JewishGen) noting that the KehilaLinks page for  Farming Communities of New Jersey had been updated. I don't know if the page for Woodbine was updated, but this web page has good information about the history of the town that my mother-in-law and her mother before her grew up in. Both the town-specific page and the main page give a wonderful sense of what life was like in rural southern New Jersey at the turn of the last century.

Take advantage of all that JewishGen has to offer, and if you are able, consider making a donation to this non-profit organization, not only because it's doing great work, but a donation of at least $100 gives you greater flexibility in searching their databases.