Sunday, January 11, 2015

Ancestor Deep Dive: Yechiel Suttleman

Yechiel Suttleman

My great-great grandfather, Yechiel Suttleman, was born about 1850 in Volhynia, Ukraine, likely in the town of Boremel or Topilya.  His parents were Pesach Hirsch and (likely) Sima Rivka.
He is mentioned in the Recuits List of the Russian Empire in 1875, in the "List of Individuals Invited to Dubno County Military Department For Establishing Age by Appearance":
  • Zutelman Khil Peisakhovich (Khil son of Peisakh)  from the town of Boremel –his age was established as 24 years in 1875.
Around that time, he also got married for the first time to his wife Kreina.  She gave birth to five children:
  1. Shaindel (later married Elli Kriger), born around 1875
  2. Moshe (later Morris Zitelman), born July 16, 1877
  3. Baila (later married Morris Bender), born about 1883
  4. Reise (later married Nathan Goldstein Paciornik), born November 15, 1887
  5. Tzivia (later married Avraham Tzvi Diamond), born about 1888--my great grandmother
Kreina died in childbirth with Tzivia.  Within a few years, Yechiel married again to Chana Himelfarb.  Chana had 2 children:
  1. Rivka (married Joe Savitz), born around 1892
  2. Hinda (married Ephraim Alliker), born February 19, 1893 
Chana died in childbirth with Hinda.  Very soon after, Yechiel married Chana's sister, Chaya Himelfarb (born ~1873 in Demidovka, Ukraine).  Chaya had 5 children--4 in Europe and one after immigrating to the United States:
  1. Jessie (married Henry Turk), born March 24, 1894
  2. Hyman David (later Dave Suttleman), born March 22, 1897
  3. Jennie (married Sam Waxman), born April 20, 1901
  4. Minna (married Louis Blank & Herbert Benesch), born March 7, 1907
  5. May (married Sidney Seidenberg), born March 3, 1913
From family stories, the family was quite poor and moved between the towns of Zalawie, Boremel, Truvitz (Targowec), and Topila.  Yechiel wanted to farm, but as Jews weren't allowed to own land, he was continually chased out of various villages.

Some of the children slowly started immigrating to the United States.  Moshe went first, heading to Chaim (brother of Chana and Chaya) Himelfarb in Baltimore in 1904.  Rivka (later Becky) followed in 1908, and Hinda arrived in 1910.

Yechiel and Jessie came in April 1911.
Ship Manifest for "Echiel" and "Sosie" "Sutelman," 1911 (lines 6-7).  Last permanent residence was Targowitz (currently Targowec, Volhynia, Ukraine), with Chaje Sura, Yechiel's wife remaining there
Chaya (later Ida) followed with Dave, Jennie and Minna in October 1911.

The family initially lived at 1208 St Matthew Street in Baltimore.  Yechiel joined Shomrei Mishmeres Congregation (now part of the Jewish Museum of Maryland).
Shomrei Mishmeres Congregation Day Book, 5671 (1911-1912), Yechiel Suttleman (on top) and his brother-in-law Hyman David Himmemfarb (bottom)
The family was still living on St Matthew Street when May was born in 1913; Yechiel's profession at the time is listed as a "praser." As the midwife who filled out the birth certificate wasn't the world's best speller (the baby's sex was listed as "fimale"), perhaps he was a presser?
Suttleman Family ~1917, Baltimore, Maryland; Yechiel and Ida are in the center

In March 1920, Yechiel (using his English name "Charles") and Ida bought a farm in Annapolis Junction, Maryland, acquiring a mortgage that June.
A page from the mortgage of the Annapolis Junction farm--note the Hebrew signatures for Yechiel and Ida, 1920

On March 3, 1920 (before even officially owning the farm), the family was enumerated in the United States Census as living on the farm.
1920 United States Census; Annapolis Junction, Maryland; Suttleman Family (lines 44-49)
Yechiel ("Charlie" here) had achieved his dream and was listed as a farmer on a general farm; Dave was a farm laborer on a home farm.  And Jennie was a tailoress in a tailor shop.

Besides the farm, the family had a small general store near the railroad depot.  That building later became Henkel's Restaurant.
Suttleman/Zutelman Farm Property, Camp Meade Junction (aka Annapolis Junction), Maryland
By 1923, he was back in the Baltimore City Directory, this time living at 19 South Collington Street, and he was still there for both the 1928 and 1928 City Directory listings.

By this time, all of his children and grandchildren (with the exception of Shaindel and Tzivia--who remained in the Russian Empire--and Reiza, who had moved to Brazil), lived in Baltimore.

Yechiel suffered a series of strokes beginning around 1926, and he moved in with his daughter Jessie at some point (he does not appear in the 1930 Census).  He died at her home on Rosedale Street in Baltimore on September 9, 1930 at the age of 80.
Yechiel "Charles" Suttleman Death Certificate; Baltimore, Maryland; 1930

Yechiel Suttleman Grave, Rosedale Cemetery


  1. They wrote Yechiel not Charles on the stone. (I was at Rosedale on 17 Tammuz.)

    1. Yes, he went by Yechiel except on official documents from what I'm told.

  2. Hello Lara! My name is Kathryn Savitz my father is Joseph Savitz. I am so interested in learning about our family history! I would love to learn more. I am also interested in beginning a family tree on my grandfathers side of the family. If you could contact me that would be great. Thank you!

  3. Hello, I really appreciate you posting this website about your family. My great grandfather was W H Brown and he had a store in Annapolis Junction, MD. After looking at your map of your family's farm land, I looked closer and discovered my great grandfather's name on your map. He was the previous owner of the property from 1900-1920, and the building was called the Brown Store and it also was their home where he and his wife, Sarah Brown raised their children. Thank you so much for this information. We had been looking a long time for info about it's location. J. Kaifer (my grandmother was Abby Brown, one of his daughters).

    1. I actually have the deed where your great grandfather signed over the land to my great-great grandfather. I'd be happy to share.

    2. Thank you for your response. This is so exciting. Yes, I would love to have a copy of the deed. You may email it to you or if you would rather mail me a copy email you and I can give you my address. Thank you so much, this means a lot to me and my family.