97-07-17, From: Fadoop
I'm related to Efrons in Minneapolis:
Does this help?
97-07-17, From: Fadoop
My maternal grandmother, from Tulcea, Romania, was Rachel Rosela Sadowski (She married Isadore Wexler.) One of her brothers was Samuel who was the first to come to America in 1909. His daughter was Jeanne who married Stanley Efron.
On 6/22/97 Jonathan wrote “We believe that Yitzchok Eliezer was named for a maternal grandfather not an Efron. My father was not sure who he was named after. But it is traditional for the father to get the privelege of giving the first name. So it may be likely that my father was named for an Efron but then again he may be named for his fathers maternal side.
My father also recalled that his father said that he was from Horodok close to Bialystok. I am sure that Horodok is the same as Gorodok. Another bit of info was that my grandfather's grandfather or uncle was called Leib the Chosid, he had fiery red beard and he owned or managed forests.
I am going to start working on my aunts and uncles this week to see if they may have additional information.”
On 6/13/97 Johathan Lewis of New York e-mailed me . He wrote:
“My grandfather Yaakov Shmuel came to Ireland probably via England. Apparently he took the name Lewis as a family name because he had a relative in England with that name. At some point he moved to Dublin and did not maintain any contact with his family either in Europe or in England.
He was not very forthcoming about his family history. He ran away from Russia to avoid conscription in the Army and he seemed to have a fear that he would somehow be found. He did mention to my father and uncle at one point that his real name was Efron and that his family came from Bialystok.
In Dublin he married my grandmother Anne Bernstein who came to Dublin in 1899 as an infant from Lithuania. He worked as a tailor and at one point - for a short time - he was quite successful. Apparently, his partner swindled him which led to his illness and death. My grandparents had 6 children my father being the eldest. My grandfather died in Dublin in 1944 and was about 45-50 years old. When he died my father was 17 years old and therefore did not really have much opportunity to obtain a lot of details. My grandmother died in 1979 and unfortunately we never really "debriefed" her about my grandfather. (She had quite a lot to say about her own family though).
My grandmother moved to the US in 1955 and settled in Chicago. My father who was already married stayed in Dublin until 1957 when we also moved to Chicago. I was born in 1955 in Dublin.
My wife and I were in Dublin a few weeks ago for a family wedding. We also visited the cemetery where I have a number of relatives from both my father and mothers side. My grandfather's stone reads -
R' Yaakov Shmuel ben R' Moshe Shlomo”
> Dear Jonathan,
> I have files upon files related to my research of all persons named Efron. Your amily I don't know about. Are you saying that your family settled in Ireland? Are you in Ireland? I know that there are several branches of Efrons who came from Bialystok or nearby. I would guess that the name of the father of Samuel cannot be too difficult to determine, if you know where he lived when he died, and where he was buried. Do you know where the name Lewis came from? I could guess its source, but maybe you know already. I look forward to hearing from you. Please tell me more about what you know. No detail is too small. With any luck, I can connect your branch to another branch of the family.
Thanks for the quick reply.
The information that I have is quite sketchy. <Quoted portion cut from here> Thats about all I know. I have asked my father and uncles many times for ny scrap of information that they may remember and the same basic story comes out.
As to myself, my parents left Chicago in 1970 and moved to Israel. I subsequently came back to the US to continue my studies in 1973. I stayed in the US and I currently live in New York, am married and have 5 children.
I have this nagging desire to find out more about my family but since I have so few details I really didn't know where to begin until I happened to surf to the Jewish Gen page and I came across your name and your interest.
Ii would be great if you could somehow connect us to the Efrons, or at least point me in the right direction for my own further research.
Thank you for your time and interest.
In 2006, Jonathan learned from his father that it was his grandfather’s grandfather who was Leib the Chosid.
Abe Eisen was my grandfather’s half-brother. I knew (from ellisisland.org) that he had arrived here in 1912 (although I thought it said at age 21). And I thought it said that he went to live with his brother (he had two here already; I don’t know which he referred to).
Where did you find your info.? I don’t know about any of the other people whom you mention. Unfortunately, my father only remembers his father’s siblings and doesn’t recall aunts, uncles, cousins on his father’s side. He had an overwhelming number of relatives on his mother’s side to keep track of (Barrison/Borison family from Lunna). So Bess Liss, Max Feinberg—I haven’t heard of these people.
I’m signed up at ancestry.com and have had some fun with it over the past week tracking down where people lived. I have found a reasonably lot of them, although the name spellings can be pretty challenging. But I like the boat manifests better, where they list who they left behind in the old country. Ellisisland.org will be a lot better once the “sounds like” search function works better.
----- Original Message -----
From: _ Jim Yarin_
To: _ Sandy Eisen_
Sent: Thursday, March 03, 2005 11:25 PM
Subject: Re: Amdur
Just came across this from my research:
Abraham Eisen in NYC in 1920 census, age 27, arrived 1919. Lives with cousin, Bertha Liss. Bertha is married, but her husband is not there. There is a son Daniel Liss. Other cousins living with Bertha are Max Feinberg and Dora Efron. I found the arrival of Max Feinberg; that is; I found an arrival for a Max Feinberg, correct year and all, who was born in and lived in “Amdo”, Grodno Gub. Could only be Amdur.
Anything ring a bell??!!
----- Original Message -----
From: _ Sandy Eisen_
To: _ __
Sent: Wednesday, February 23, 2005 8:00 PM
Hi, Jim. Having stumbled upon your family tree, here’s what I have for you:
1. My grandfather’s name was Chaim Eisen, born in Amdur in 1886 or 1888. His mother died while giving birth to him. Chaim came to New York in 1908. His son (my father, still living) was never told the name of this grandmother who died in childbirth; no living relative was able to give me the answer when I started asking in the late 1990’s. This remained a mystery until I was able to retrieve my grandfather’s social security form, where he lists his mother’s name as “Helen Zinas.” It is now clear to me why he wrote “Helen”—her name was, I’m sure, Chaya . Two of my father’s cousins were named Helen (in English) and Chaya (in Hebrew) -- I’m sure they were named in her memory. The reason I’m telling you all of this is that the “Zinas” sounds very much like the “Tsinnes” that you list as your earliest Amdur relative. So we’re related? I suspect we cannot find that out, since other than this Chaya Zinas, died ~1888, I know nothing about that branch of my family. Her husband, Moshe Eisen, remarried a woman named Rivka and had more children with her. Although my father thought that Rivka may have been Chaya’s sister, I’m not convinced: Rivka’s son wrote something like “Chavitz” as a last name for her on his social security application.
2. I assume that you are not related to anyone named Levine from Lunna. If that’s not the case, please let me know. I have Levine relatives from Lunna - they moved to Boston but I believe all children were girls and hence the Levine name was lost. Miryam Levine was my great-grandmother—another great-grandmother who died in childbirth, this time in Lunna. I have a photo of her tombstone but was unable to find it when I was in Lunna.
3. And along those lines: I have a question. I know that Dartmouth kids worked on the Amdur cemetery (and are going back this summer to work on the Lunna cemetery). I’ve seen stuff about this on the web, but I haven’t seen a list of tombstones. Do you know if they’ve posted such a list? (I was unable to decipher most of the stones when I was there in 2000, and I speak/read Hebrew, but I was hoping maybe they did better than I, as I didn’t try for more than a half hour or so...)
4. Just for your amusement: I work at the Securities & Exchange Commission (federal agency) in Washington and there is an Efron working there—I believe Howard Efron, probably 30-something. So I popped into his office to ask him if he knew anything about his family background, that many Efrons originated in the same hometown as my family. Well, this guy looked like I had fallen from Mars—he was 100% completely uninterested. So that was the end of that! This was maybe a year ago.
So that’s it! If you have any thoughts on any of this, let me know. I also put my phone no. below—it’s not that I didn’t want to talk about this by phone (and it’s free from my cell phone), but I just thought it’d be easier for you to contemplate in writing. I hope you and your family are well. We corresponded once or twice back when Amdura had just been born—that was a long time ago!
Our family graves in Amdur are very old and wouldn't have last names. I am looking for: Moshe, died circa 1905 at age 56 (I realize there could be 100 Moshe's...); and Chaya, died approx. 1/18/1886 or 1/18/1888, probably in her early 30's.
Here's everything I know about my Levine family from Lunna. Aryeh Leib Levine was the patriarch, probably born mid-1800's. I don't know for sure that he lived in Lunna. His daughter Miryam ("Merke") married Chaim Aryeh Klitnitsky. They lived in Lunna together and had 5 surviving children, one of whom was my grandmother. Miryam died giving birth to a 6th child who also died. She died on Dec. 26, 1902 (I have a photo of the tombstone). Chaim subsequently remarried. Before coming to the USA, he and his brothers adopted the last name Borison; some now use Barrison or Borrison (so Miryam's name at death would have been Miryam Klitnitski or Miryam Barrison - I don't know - last name isn't on tombstone). The Barrison family is big with lots of living descendants.
Now, Miryam Levine had one brother that I know about named Zalmon who lived in Lunna. His wife's name was Malchi. Zalmon operated some kind of ferry boat, probably on the Neiman River. As far as I know, they had 4 children, 3 girls and 1 boy. The boy died by becoming tangled up in the ropes on the boat that his father operated, drowning in the river. I believe it was on a Yom Kippur -- my grandmother remembered that being the case. The parents and 3 girls came to the U.S. and settled in Boston. In this country, the girls were called Rose, Marion and Gittel/Gertrude. They would have been young children when they came here in the first decade or so of the 1900's. Gittel married a man named Mike Lauri. And that's where it stops -- although the Boston Levines kept in touch closely with the Barrison's of New York (Zalmon Levine's nieces and nephews) for many years, they lost touch after the girls got married. So I don't know their last names, other than Lauri, and I don't know what children they had. Ring any bells at all?
Marion Gardner, married to Benjamin Gardner, died 3/6/90. Interestingly, she and her husband are buried in the same cemetery section as my Mom and a good bit of that part of my family (Abramson Section of Baker St., W. Roxbury).
I'm researching and writing this at the same time.
Solomon and his wife, Mollie are also buried at Abramson cemetery. I was just at Abramson on Wednesday, coincidentally; my Mom is buried there.
The family is in the 1930 census. For some reason I didn't find it immediately, though I should have. I don't know who Ruth (per 1930 census) married. Gertrude married Michael Lourie. Gertrude and Michael are both listed in the Jewish Advocate obit database on JewishGen. Both were born in 1913. In 1930, Marion was married and living with the rest of her family. Also there was an Ida Berson, with two daughters (widow, I guess, but I didn't note).
Did not see Louries in JewishGen cemetery database. In marriage database two entries for sons of Michael and Mrs. Lourie. One is a marriage of James H. Lourie to Barbara Sulkin, but I also note that Barbara passed away on 10/02/97. . Per SSDI, Gertrude Lourie lived in Natick in 1979 when she died. The other brother is William S. Lourie, married to Rochelle, but I found no record of him.
He worked as a tailor and at one point - for a short time - he was quite successful. Apparently, his partner swindled him which led to his illness and death.
When my grandfather arrived in London his name was changed to Lewis either voluntarily because that was his relatives name or involuntarily because the custom’s officer saw in his papers that he was going to someone named Lewis so he gave him that name.
“My grandfather was a mystery. His father-in-law Moshe Bernstein was actually not in favor of the marriage and from what I hear he may not have attended the wedding. I'm not sure if they ever reconciled. He remained close to his daughter and grandchildren though. I asked my great uncle (my grandmother's brother - son of Moshe Bernstein) who is still living in Dublin about my grandfather and what the dispute was about. He didn't really answer me other to say that my grandfather was very independent and had his own ideas. I tried pressing him but he said that it was all so long ago and why speak about it now. My speculation is that my ggf was against the wedding because my gf was alone without family and didn't have very promising financial prospects.”
“My father said that his father believed that his family were all killed in a pogrom.”
“The Bernsteins are a well known family in Dublin. My grandmother had 11 siblings. Her father’s brother who lived in Dublin for some time as well also had a large family and many of the children’s names of the two families were the same, causing some confusion. One of my Bernstein cousins was Rabbi Isaac Bernstein and although he died at a very young age he was the Rabbi at a large synagouge in London. He was a great orator and gained some fame as “The Irish Rabbi.” Some of his clases have been recorded and can be heard on the internet. I am sure that there are many hits to his name on the Jewish Chronicle [newspaper].
The name Noyek is familiar – I am sure my Aunt would know of the family but I don’t think that they are related. To my knowledge my grandfather had no relatives in Dublin (my grandmother had many).
In the Jewish Chronicle, indexed hits (not fully reviewed) were found for the addresses from the marriage certificate and found a fair number of hits for Bernstein at no. 1 and no. 3 Rosedale Terrace. There are lots of Jack Lewis hits, but without a more contemporary address than where they lived when married it is not easy. The marriage witness Harris Daniel Noyek shows up in a 1903 article. The marriage witness name Hyman Byrne showed up in 4 articles, I think all of them putting him in Dublin, so he is probably the correct one. No marriage or death notice was found in the Chronicle.
Also noted by a grandchild of Yakov Shmuel was that there was a Yehuda Leib Ephron who lived in Kurenets/Kurenitz/Kureniec http://www.eilatgordinlevitan.com/kurenets/kurenets.html who might be the Leib the Chossid who was spoken about in the Lewis family. According to the wewbsite:
“IN THE SIXTIES OF THE 19TH CENTURY KURZENIEC BECAME THE SPIRITUAL CENTER FOR THE SURROUNDING COMMUNITIES, FAMOUS FOR ITS SCHOLARS AND A FOCUS FOR THE JEWS OF LUBAVITZ IN THE DISTRICT. MOST OF THE JEWS OF KURZENIEC WERE HABAD HASSIDIM AND ON GOOD TERMS WITH THE MITNAGDIM MINORITY IN THE TOWN. RABBI ZALMAN KORNITZER WAS CONSIDERED THE LEADING HASSID IN TOWN AND JEHUDA LEIB EPHRON, RABBI YEHUDA SUSSMANN, RABBI YOSEF HALEVI AND THE GAON RABBI ZISCHKE BELONGED TO HIS CIRCLE.”
It may be that another Tzvi Efron is related. A Lewis grandchild wrote:
“Tzvi Efron who was a Rabbi in Szczuczyn until 1932 and was killed in the holocaust www.szczuczyn.com/yizkorbook1.htm - He was previously a Rabbi in Vishnive. His full name was Tzvi Eliyahu. I think that he moved to Israel and returned to Europe.” (See Section 9 for further information on this individual)
And, as learned from one of the sons of Yakov Shmuel:
NOTES FROM MY INTERVIEW WITH PINCHUS WEINER:
Sarah Effron married Pinchus Weiner around 1898 or 99. Pinchus was from Krynki, where he was a yeshiva student and he studied weaving. After they married, they moved to Bialystok. R' Aryeh Lieb was a rich man, a leader of the business community and a leader in the religious community. He was a Baal Shacras in the Shul in Amdur on Rosh Hashonah and Yom Kippur. He was a great ruler, he was a grain dealer. They were very, very religious people. My buba said that he used to sleep a whole Sukkos in the Sukot and that he used to eat only Matzo Shmora on Pesach. They were very, very religious people.
He was married to a lady whose name was Devora Raisel. My buba depicted her mother as a very big Tsadikas; she used to say that her mother was much more frumer than her father was. When she got married her parents gave her a candleabra for Shabbas. In those days they didn't have silver, they were poor, they had brass. I inherited a half of the set.
My buba had three brothers and two sisters. The brothers were all in the yeshivas. The sisters were married to yeshiva men. The whole family was killed by Hitler. The father, R' Aryeh Leibe, was sick, was taken for hospital treatment in the 30' in Warsaw, and he's buried in Warsaw. It could be that his grave is extant, because the cemetery there remains whole, as far as I know. Her mother also died before the war. Amdurer was on the border between Russia and Poland and that was the battleground. That's why there was such great desolation there, as there was in Grodno.
R' Aryeh Leib was the son of Reb Mordecai, Motte. My father's name was Motte. He was named after him. Motte died in 1910. The day she got a telegram that he died, my father was born that day and she named my father after him. This was in the Fall of 1910, tuf resh ayin aleph. Motte's father's name was Moishe. He also was a very big tsadik. My buba said that this Moishe used to fast every Monday and Thursday.
My Bubby was the oldest. She was named after a young daughter of Reb Avrom Ezra, the Rav. The Rav's name was Katz. He was a big, big tsadik. There is a whole lot written about him. Someone had said that the family was related to the Vilna Gaon, but if the family was related to the Vilna Gaon, that is something that my buuba would have told me. She didn't know about that, for sure. What I do know is that this Reb Avrom Ezra was that he was related to Reb Nachum Ke Horodna. He was a big tsadik in the mid 19th century; he died around 1880. He was very famous. He was not Reb Avrom Ezra's father, but I have written back at my house what the relationship is. It's probably a relationship through marriage.
My Bubby told me that half the city of Amdur was Effrons. She told me that everyone who has the name Effron is related. The Solovechik's have a forebearer named Effron and I asked them if they knew how he fit in, and they don't know.
Aryeh Leib had five children. Sarah was in America, the oldest son was Avrom Ezra, then was Yisrael, then there was Shevach Dovid, and the two daughters were Toiba and Sima. Everyone got killed, The only one who didn't get killed was her because she came to America. She said when she came to America, it was like the biggest tragedy for her parents, because she left them and because America was such a traife land. They were very, very religious people.
Shevach Dovid. About him I can tell you, he was one of the ten richest men in Poland. He lived in Grodno. When Hitler marched into Poland, the Polish government pulled together the ten richest men and he was one of them. He had a lumber business in Grodno. I was told by people who lived in Grodno before the war that he was the epitome of a religious balabous. He was a pious person, he was a learned person, he was a rich person. He was also a baal Svetah. As his father was a baal svetah (led the congregation in prayer on Rosh Hashona and Yom Kippur) in Amdur, he was the baal svetah in the yeshiva in Grodno between the wars. Between the wars there was a big yeshiva in Grodno, led by the world reknown talmudic scholar Reb Shimon Shcob. This Shevach Dovid was the baal musah, which means he led the musah prayer during Rosh Hashona and Yom Kippur.
This Shevach Dovid had one son, who was saved in the war. My father and him were first cousins, and my father was instrumental in saving him. His name was Joseph. There was a whole long story about him, which I don't want to tell, it's not, how do you say... He was in the Russian army, and he was a mercenary in the Russian army, and he was sold to Britain. When he was in Britain, he hooked up with my family, they were his first cousins, and my father went through a great deal of effort to save him. He went to Cuba. He was in Cuba until Castro came in. He had become great in real estate, and he lost all his money when Castro came in. Then he went to Miami. My father was again instrumental in getting him out. My father wanted him to stay in Miami, but he opted out for Puerto Rico. He died a couple of years ago in Puerto Rico. His son, David is the only son. David and I are close. David doesn't come to Israel without seeing me. I have more contacts with David than with anyone else in my family. David is a very successful attorney. David is very interested in tracking down Effrons. He's very interested in this.
My own family. My Bubby, Sarah Weiner, she was a very big tsadakis. She came to America in 1900, she died in the 60s, and you might say she never came to America. She hardly knew English. She was a very religious woman, and she raised her family like that, that's what she was busy doing. She was around 85 or 90 when she died. She was the backbone of the family. She had had five children. The oldest one's name was Moishe, named after Moishe... The next one's name was Ted (Tudris), named after the father of her mother. I don't know what his last name (eg Devorah Raisel's maiden name) was. Moishe has two children, Paula and Julian. They live in Kingston. Moishe was the only one born in Europe, all the others were born in America. Ted has one daughter, Phyllis Goldman, and she lives in White Plains. The next one is Rae (Rachel). She lives in the Daughters of Sarah Old Folks Home in Albany. She never married. She would be good to talk to. She also has information. She also had a daughter Rivka Evelyn Gollop, who live in Boca Raton now. Her husband's name is Oscar Gollop. The Gollops of Kingston, whom I know all of them, were from Amdurer, but I don't think they were related to the Effrons. Moishe's wife, she is still alive, was also from Amdurer. Her maiden name was Stone.
Those five people were born in Kingston. They came in 1900. First my zayde came, Pinchus Weiner, and a couple of years later my bubba came over, with Moishe. The rest were born here. Why did they come to Kingston? They came to Kingston because she already had family here, there was already Effrons living in Kingston. Who were her family? Her father's brothers were already living in Kingston. Moishe, her uncle, was already living in Kingston. He had a daughter, Lena Kalish. She was my bubba's age, and they were as cousins.
So the Kalish's of Kingston were also from this family. She also had an uncle in Ellenville, Victor. His daughter's name was Jennie Bauxbaum. Her daughter was Dawny Bauxbaum, and she had a son, who is a lawyer. He and David Effron are hooked up. Toibe lived in New York at the time. Her name was Mannheimer. She had two daughters, Sadie Mannheimer and Sarah Harris. I didn't know them, but they were spoken of in our house. Etka came to Eretz Israel early, before the 1920s, at about the same time as my bubba came to America, in the 1900's, in the city of Nesher, a little village.
David Effron would know about them, he has more connections to Israel than I do. David Effron comes looking for Efrons. He has Efrons in Arizona; that's his business, he comes looking for Effrons.
Amos also mentioned that his mother Sima (Efron) Krasnitzki was related to the Yanovsky family. Interestingly, I know of Yanovsky members who were originally from Ross. I also know of Yanovsky members who lived in Lunna and one of them was even named Shmuel-Moshe [the same first name as Sima's father]. I think that the combination of Shmuel-Moshe is not too common. Well, the connection between Efron and Yanovsky families is new to me. Perhaps you know something about that. (Ruth Marcus)
“Mordachai was born in 10/10/1918 he had an older brother Avraham and two sisters Gila and Devora. The four of them managed to get to Israel during or after the Shoa. Both his parents and at least one sister, Sara, were killed in the Shoa. He might have had other brothers or sisters but I don't know. Mordechai passed away in 1992 so I can't ask him. Mordechai married Golda (Zehava) Kalman (my grandmother), which he met on the way to Israel. After the war, they had 3 sons - Zvi, Moshe and Roni.
“Zvi, my father, was born in 28/10/1948 and past away in 1984. He married Arnona Shriber(My mother) and had 4 children's - Roy(myself), Dorit , Avraham and Reut. Three of us live in Israel and Avraham is in Australia. Moshe has 3 daughters-who live in Israel and Roni has 3 daughters as well, all in California.” (Roy Efron)
Rebecca Zaveloff (or Zaveloffsky when in Russia) came from Kossowa, Belarus. She came with her father Meier and brought over her mother, Chana Sora and sister Jennie. She later brought over her brothers Abraham, Israel, Samuel and Willy. One brother, Aaron did not come right away because he was in a Yeshiva. She married, Benzion Efron and had three children, Helen, Martin and Seymour in Princeton, NJ, where they bought a farm around 1950. (cite)
[Shortly after Feb. 9 2009 I received] several lines taken from a book published in 1919. It is stated that Sima Efron from Kineret is seeking for her parents in Lunna, Grodno Gub. She did not hear from them during the war [WW1] and she wants to inform them that she is well and works at the Kibbutz.
The next day I called Amos Krasnitzki [Sima's son] and we talked over the phone. His mother's parents are: Shmuel-Moshe Efron and Leah (nee Sirota). Sometime in the 1920s Sima brought her parents from Lunna to then Palestine. They lived with her in Haifa and died in Haifa. The next day one of my friends who lives in Haifa went to look for their tombstones in the cemetery of Haifa. According to the inscription Shmuel-Moshe Efron was a son of Reb Mordechai from Ross [a town close to Lunna]. Shmuel Moshe died in 1936 when he was 71 y.o. [thus, born 1865]. Leah (Sirota) Efron died in 1948. (Ruth Marcus).
Sharyn Reiner wrote: My mother, Celia Efron was born in Grodno in 1903 and came here with Mendel and Sol her brothers. Her brother, Monya, went to Israel.He has a daughter there but I have not been able to find her. Many Efron cousins came here as well.
My grandfather, Harold Effron, told me that his father came from a town in Russia called Vill...something. Sorry, but I can't remember exactly what the rest is. Anyway, he said that many years ago, a woman with the last name of Effron in that village, had over twenty children. My guess is that these children eventually came to America and had their names changed to Efron, Ephron, and even Hefron. Effron was also kept. I have met about four people with the Effron variation, who actually have said that they know that story too. My grandfather says that we are related to every variation of Effron.” (Jason Hoffman)
“WE USED TO HAVE EFFRON COUSINS CLUB MEETINGS AT SOMEONE'S FARM IN SPRING VALLEY. THERE USED TO BE A BIG PICTURE WITH ALL THE FAMILY. I DON'T KNOW IF WE STILL HAVE IT.” (Batya Dashevsky)
“MY UNCLE JERRY WAS INDEED A WAR VETERAN. HE UNDERWENT AN OPERATION EARLY IN WWI AND PROGRESSIVELY BECAME DISABLED OVER THE NEXT 20 YEARS. HE RETURNED TO SYRACUSE ABOUT 35 YEARS AGO. SOON THERE AFTER HIS CONDITION DISABLED HIM AND HE ENTERED THE VETERANS NURSING HOME. HE REMAINED THERE UNTIL HE DIED ABOUT 20 YEARS LATER. HE WAS AN AVID WRITER AND WAS VERY WELL KNOWN IN THE SYRACUSE COMMUNITY.” (Batya Dashefsky)
Ze’ev Sharon of Israel, who is researching his Kaminka family and is from the Kozlowski (his original family name) family sent me the following email 5/2/09. In "sefer kehilat suvalki and it's daughters"there is an essay on Benyamin Efron, born in Indura. He was a teacher and educator, and zionist. an engineer. His brother, sister and mother immigrated to israel. There is part of a letter which his daughter Reneta (~) kept , which he wrote to his brother in Haifa in 1922, after he was 2 years in Suvalki. The suvalki community registered him in the "keren kayemet gold book". Another essay is (written by ziporah haber) is about his wife Paulina Efron.
[From Jonathan Lewis:
…while in Canada on vacation. We were staying in a hotel in Quebec that had a kosher program for the summer. People and families came from all over the US and Canada to enjoy the beautiful Laurentian mountains in a kosher environment - three minyonim a day, learning programs and kosher food. There was a mix of people, Rabbis, academic and business professionals. We were sitting for some of the meals with a very nice Jewish doctor from Cleveland, Dr Igor Genkin, originally from Russia, and his wife and family. Dr Genkin told me that he is a Hematologist with a specialty in Oncology.
One or two days into the vacation, I received the DNA results that established the Ephron connection and I was pretty excited. So sitting at lunch with the Genkins, I told him the whole Ephron story and the DNA test results. I thought he would find it interesting since he is a hematologist. Dr Genkin is listening patiently as I make my way through the story and at the very end he says, “Very interesting, my grandmother’s maiden name was Ephron!” I was pretty stunned - to put it mildly. Just too coincidental to be a coincidence, getting the DNA results and then almost immediately finding out that person that I just met shared the same ancestral name!
We spoke more and Dr Genkin told me what he knew of his great-grandfather, who he never met.
He said that his grandmother had an uncle that left Russia at an early age and went to the US (he thinks) and was never heard from again. His great grandfather’s name was Nochum Ephron. Dr Genkin has a picture of him and is going to have it scanned and emailed to me when he gets home.
Since this is such a fantastic story – I told it to some of the other people that we met at the hotel - the reaction was basically “wow, amazing!” ]
I did get a note from the Doctor whose ggf was an Efron. He actually emailed a picture of him that he found. He said that he was going to continue to look for additional papers or pictures. He also told me that he has an original Efron Jewish encyclopedia that was handed down to him by his mother or father.]
Dr. Genkin has a copy of the Jewish Encyclopedia that his father handed down to him, but it is not stated that he is from the family of Ilya Efron (publisher of the encyclopedia). More information is needed to conjecture about the relationship of Dr. Genkin to this or any other branch of Efron.
Ada Greenblatt (now, Ada Green) researched NY deaths for me back in 1995 and emailed me results. The first two pages was a discussion about sosme Newburgh, NY family and some notes about her research of Efron deaths in NY.
023 Source Document
Email received in 1999 from Paul Eliasberg with portion describing the Elias Stone legend
024 Source Document
2/11/1946 letter from Myrtle Kotkin to Ed Rutstein
2/20/1946 letter from Myrtle Kotkin to Ed Rutstein
From Alexander “Sasha” Yarin, ca. 2008
“I knew Aunt Sonya pretty well. She lived in Moscow in a house across the street from the Soviet Foreign Ministry at Moscow downtown on the street which is rather famous in Russian history (Sivtsev Vrazhek-known from the 14th century). Before I settled in Moscow, I stayed at her flat (actually not a flat but a rather big room in a "communal flat" with many neighboring families in the other rooms sharing toilet and kitchen and fighting each other-- one of the greatest communists achievements). She came to Moscow in the 1920s and initially was a singer indeed (but not a famous one). Then, she became a teacher of singing in the Ippolitov-Ivanov musical school (or college), where she had a long teaching career and, in particular, was a teacher of the most famous (in Russia) pop-singer Alla Pugacheva (still popular among divorced women), whom she branded a [woman of loose morals]. She had a lot of funny antiques in her flat and a dog, Shakhan. She was an ardent communist (being younger than my grandma, she was affected by the communist yakety-yak). Her first husband (a Russian communist) loved her a lot and had a son from her. They came to arrest him in 1937 ([major purges] when one comi killed the other comi in a power struggle, and in addition several millions of ordinary people -- like my grandpa Peter Yarin, just for fun). Her communist husband committed suicide when he heard NKVD coming to pick him up. Then, she married a movie-director, Voitetsky, who adopted her son Igor and he became Igor Voitetsky. The movie-director wasn’t a famous one. He was into documentaries, and the only one of his movies I saw was a recording of the full Griboedov comedy played in a theater "Gore ot uma", which means "Troubles from Cleverness"-- a classical Russian comedy of the early 19th century. This Igor Voitetsky went to learn foreign languages (he was already listed Russian, not a Jew). There he was accepted to KGB, and as to my understanding he became a KGB courier traveling to different countries to bring diplomatic post etc., as I heard from my mom. He was married to a Russian anti-semite woman with KGB relations, and I think that was his leverage to be accepted there in spite of his half-Jewishness. My parents avoided him from the beginning of his glorious career (which wasn’t difficult, since they didn’t live in Moscow and never travelled abroad). For 13 years I lived in Moscow, I saw Aunt Sonya probably twice, and one time this guy showed up as well (that was on the funeral of Sonya's and my grandma's younger brother Misha, also a colorful character). So, I saw him as well. As I understood, he was already retired from his former job but I did my best to avoid any conversation with him and to promptly leave. He has a son, Alexander Voitetsky. I heard once that he didn’t want to study. Never mind, his KGB relatives most probably found him a sinecure in arts or something like that. I have a feeling that somebody told me that he is also a movie-director (but not Arthur!).”
Not very far from me by the way. I visited it on a business trip two years ago but I definitely hadn’t seen any Efron there, since I don’t know them. Your info on the Buffalo Professor is interesting (I have also been, even twice, and my late Mom also was there-because of the Niagara Falls). What is his field? Is he still Efron, or lost this name in generation as I did? Regarding Sakharovs. The original name was Sakhar (which means trader or merchant in Hebrew). They lived in Vilna-now Vilnius, the Lithuanian capital, rather close to Vileika, where Rudnitskys lived). Sender-Yitskhak Sakhar (after whom I named, Sender=Alexander) work as a worker in a lamp factory (was deeply religious, we had his photo with ear-locks). He and his wife Hanna were Polish citizens until 1939. Then Vilna was occupied by the Soviets, and they came to Dniepropetrovsk to their son, my grandpa Solomon Issakovich Sakharov (he made Sakharov from Sakhar to "russify" the name, since there are many goys Russians with this name which means sugar-like in Russian, the famous Academician Sakharov was one of them). In 1941 Dniepropetrovsk was occupied by Germans. My grandpa Sakharov and grandma Reizel Rudnitsky were drafted into the Soviet army as physicians. Their old parents stayed in Dniepropetrovsk. The old Sakhharovs were thrown from the 3rd floor by a local Ukrainian collaborationist. The old Rudnitskys were taken with my mother’s younger cousins (Misha's sons) to a place in the forest to be shot. My great-grandpa David Rudnistky realized that there would be shooting and asked a German soldier whether everybody will be shot. The answer was yes. Then, he told his grandchildren Yulya and Victor to run away, which they succeeded to do, since one of the German soldiers in the perimeter chain was crying. From Yulya we know all these details, since he survived and after all landed in Buchenwald concentration camp, where in 1945 he was freed by the Americans. After he came back to the USSR, he had extra troubles because of this (it wasn’t good to be POW, and even worse to be freed by Americans). He died in Moscow in the 1990s. Before that he sent his memoirs in Russian to my Mom in Israel where she published the final part -- the shooting -- in a Russian-language newspaper. I have a copy of that publication.
Portions from an unpublished school project. NOTE: much of this information is deducated, and has been subsequently revised. This it the original paper. For example, the father of the three Elias brothers was not Joseph, but was in fact Meyer. See note in Chapter – about the Texas Efrons and research of the Elias family.
“My Family in Context,” by Jerome B. Ullman, Winter Study Project for Professor Hershatter,January 26, 1988 (unpublished)
“During my senior year at Williams College as a history major, I received respite from the snowy Williams winter to do my January Study Project - ostensibly dedicated to recording my family history - in Miami, Florida, conveniently my research subjects’ natural habitat. …
“The grandparents of my maternal grandfather, Aubrey Elias, came from Russia; the Israel family arrived around 1890 and the Elias family in the late 1890s - early 1900s. The exact dates are again unclear, but approximate dates are worked out as follows: Aubrey’s grandparents, Rachel and Joseph Israel, were married as youths in Russia while Aubrey’s mother, Ida Violet, was born in either Amarillo or Corsicana, Texas. Aubrey’s living brother, Marvin, says his father would be about 100 years old if alive today, so Ida Violet would be about 95. If she were born around 1893 and was the second child, her parents probably came around 1890. [Alternatively, Marvin remembers his uncles Bert and Barney dancing with their mother in Navy uniforms after World War I. Because Bert and Barney were about three years apart in age, Barney was probably 18 in 1914. This puts his birth at 1896. He was the fifth child and so his parents probably had their first child (4 x 1 1/2 = 6 years earlier) in 1890.]”
“The immigration of the Elias family is deduced as follows: Charles was born in Russia around 1888 and came to the U.S. as a young man of about 16 in 1904. He came shortly after his older brother, Joseph, who probably arrived around 1902.
“After Rachel and Joseph Israel arrived in the U.S., they settled either in Corsicana or Amarillo, Texas. They may have settled there in connection with the oil business or perhaps, like many European immigrants, they first arrived in Mexico, and then settled in the southwest. In any case, there must have been only a very small Jewish community and perhaps the local public school system was lacking because the Israel children were educated in Catholic school. At the same time, Joseph Israel served as the local religious leader and itinerant rabbi. The Israels had nine children plus one adopted son. In approximate order of birth, they were: Harry, Ida Violet, Bert, Sophie, Barney, Isador, Nettie, Evelyn, Ivan and Julius (adopted). At some point Rachel Israel moved to New York City but it is not clear what happened to the other members of the family, though the Israel children probably also settled in the New York/New Jersey area.
“Joseph Elias married a woman (name unknown) in Russia and had three sons: Louis, Joseph and Charles. Joseph came to the U.S. first, then Charles came, and Louis followed. Joseph was reportedly very industrious and achievement oriented, while Louis was supposedly more aimless and less aggressive. However, it may be that the oldest son, Louis, was needed to care for his parents while the younger sons could get the family started in America. Their father Joseph died in Russia (possibly in the pogroms) and their mother came after her son Joseph, who set her up in New York City.
“There are several explanations for the origin of the name Elias. Elias is a common name among Jews of Spanish origin. Perhaps Joseph Elias was part of the Sephardic Jewish community that settled in Russia. Alternatively, Charles’ grandson, Charles, remembers his father Frank saying the family name was Elisavitch in Russia and was then shortened to Elias upon arrival. Marvin suggests that when Joseph came to the U.S. he took the name of his employer, and his brothers were assigned this name when they were claimed in immigration by Joseph. Finally, Marvin remembers Elias may have been the name of a stepfather of Louis, Joseph and Charles who then adopted this new name. In any case, Marvin recalls his father saying they were all from “Bylo” in Russia, by which Charles was probably referring to the area known as Byelorussia (White Russia) which borders Poland.
“Once in New York, Joseph Elias entered the glass making industry and ultimately became rather wealthy, lived in a mansion in Rockville Centre and reportedly led a “Great-Gatsby” life through the 1920s. Charles came to work for Joseph in the early days, but they had a falling out. By then, Charles had married Ida Violet Israel, who gave birth to their first son, Aubrey Elias, in New York in 1907. On their way from New York to Washington, D.C., Charles and Ida decided to settle in Passaic, New Jersey. They then had two more sons, Marvin (1911) and Franklin (1917).
“Aubrey Elias graduated high school early and went straight to Rutgers Law School. He passed the bar before he was old enough to practice legally, but he tried cases nonetheless. In one case, Aubrey was arguing against a well-established lawyer, who, fearing loss, brought Aubrey’s age to the attention of the court. Aubrey was then 20 years old. He later became a successful lawyer in Passaic and there fell in love with and married his secretary, Nettie Aitken. They had two daughters, Roberta and Carol. Then, Aubrey was diagnosed as having leukemia with only a short time to live. He took his family to Miami where he lived another 30 years. In Miami, Aubrey was quite active in real estate and became successful when he sold much previously worthless land to developers for NASA and Walt Disney World.
“Bill Jr. met Carol Elias at a local college production of A Comedy of Errors on Valentine’s Day 1960. Bill Jr. attended Williams College for three years before being accepted to Vanderbilt Law School. He and Carol were married and she moved to Nashville to complete her B.A. at Vanderbilt. They then moved back to Miami where Bill Jr. became a federal prosecutor for the United States Attorney’s Office and later had Jerome Billy Ullman III in 1966, and Robert Lawrence Ullman in 1968. Bill Jr. and Carol were divorced in 1977. Bill III and Robert now attend Williams College.”