Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Before Shpikov -- Welcome to Kuna!

I've always known my grandfather's family was from Shpikov.  Except that I found that the Tolchinskys weren't from Shpikov.  And the Sanshucks and Brandmans weren't from Shpikov--although they were from nearby Krasnoye.  But I knew the Supkoffs (or Zubkis family) were from Shpikov--they were listed in the 1895 Households List.  So there was proof of my family's long-time Shpikov existence, right?

Well, not so much.  Here's the 1882 Households List from Shpikov.  And the Zubkis family is here again!
1882 Shpikov Households List; Zubkis Family (males)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Ancestor Deep Dive: Avraham Tzvi Diamond

Even though he is a relatively recent ancestor, my great grandfather Avraham Tzvi Diamond didn't leave much of a paper trail.  He was born about 1879, likely in Biscupice, Russian Empire (now Berezhanka, Volhynia, Ukraine), just north of the road connecting Horochov and Lutsk, midway between the two cities.  His parents were Hillel and Hinda (nee Kreiss) Diamond, and his siblings included:
  • Leibish (b. abt 1886)
  • Shaindel (later Jenny Dorfman, b. 1891)
  • Esther (married Motel Landman)
  • Rivka 
  • Basya (married Mordechai Landor)
Avraham Tzvi married Tzivia Zuttelman, and they had 5 children in Biscupice:
  • Kreina (married David Mazurik), born about 1915
  • Dvorah (later Deborah Schuster), born 1920
  • Pesach (later Paul Diamond), born 1921--my grandfather
  • David, born 1924
  • Shlomo, born 1928
In 1925, when the two oldest children were in school, Avraham Tzvi signed a document allowing those children to be taught in Polish; the area recently had become part of Poland after WWI.
1925 School Declaration by Abram Diment; Source: State archive of Volyn oblast. Fond 454, opys 2, file 450, page 103

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Sheva Baich and My First A-File

I've already done an Ancestor Deep Dive on my great grandmother Sheva Fine Baich.  But I recently received her A-file via the USCIS Genealogy program which contained a treasure trove of information on her, and some photographs that I'd never seen before.

While still in Germany, she applied for a visa.  The document verified her parents' names (my grandmother had been pretty sure of Sheva's mother's maiden name but had not been positive) and gives details of where she was during WWII.  Interestingly, Sheva consistently puts her married life as taking place in Lutsk whereas her daughter Sonia has always maintained that the family lived in Horochov.
Sheva Baich Application for US Visa, January 1947 (page 1)