Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Backing up to the Garbers--and Two New Ancestors!

My grandmother Sonia Diamond had told me that her maternal grandmother's name was Devorah Garber Fine.  She was pretty sure that Devorah's father was Yisrael Garber, and she knew that Devorah had a brother Nathan whose children lived in America--Isadore, Harry, Eva and Ada, as well as a daughter Greinah who may or may not have come to America.  I even remember meeting Eva's son Stan (who went by his stage name "Hale") when I was in high school, and he helped me fill out the tree for his part of the family.

After getting a DNA match on Ancestry to one of Harry's granddaughters (who hasn't responded to my messages to her just yet), I decided to revisit the Garber branch.  And I found something very interesting--that started a cascade of finds that helped me push my family tree back further.
Garber Family Ship Manifest; 1921

Children Herszko (Harry), Chaja Bejla (Ada), Icek (Isadore) and Chana (Eva), all from Horochow (my grandmother's hometown) all came to America in April 1921.  And they were accompanied by their mother Henia Garber.  And who were they to meet?
Garber Family Destination
They were going to meet their husband and father Noach Garber in New York--so it seems that Nathan's Hebrew name was Noach (not the literal Nosson) and he had come to America!  So I started tracking him.
Noach Garber Ship Manifest, 1909
Noach Garber from Orechow (Horochow) came to America in 1909.  His closest relative remaining in Europe was his wife "Enie" (or Henie).  It sounds like whoever wrote this manifest entry had a Cockney accent and dropped his H's in spelling!

The first mention of the family together is in the 1925 New York State census.
Garber Family; 1925 New York Census; Brooklyn, NY
By 1930, Eva and Isadore were out of the house; Ada was married to Sidney Berstein, and the young couple was living with Ada's family.
Garber Family; 1930 United States Census; Brooklyn, NY

In 1940, Nathan and Anna were living alone.  Anna died in 1943; Nathan died in 1947.  And Nathan's death certificate had crucial information; it gave his parents' names--those of my great-great-great grandparents:
Nathan Garber Death Certificate; Brooklyn, NY; 1947
Nathan's parents were given as Hyman and Ida nee Veinner.  Not only do I have my great-great-great grandparents' names, but I have my great-great-great grandmother's maiden name!  Since Ida (so far as I know at this point) never came to America, she wouldn't have been known as Ida; it's likely that she was Chaya.  And backing this hypothesis is that her granddaughter Ada was Chaya (Chaja Bejla on the manifest above) and her granddaughter Sara Fine Wallach had a daughter Chaya (called Cheike); both Ada Garber and Cheike Wallach were born around 1910 and were likely named after "Ida Veinner."

Using the death certificate, I was able to find Nathan's tombstone which gave more information:
Nathan Garber Grave
Nathan was again called Noach--and his father's full name was Chaim Asher.  Nathan was said to be a simple and straightforward man who kept the Sabbath his entire life.

Chaim Asher sounded very familiar.  It turns out I've had his name cataloged in my "Garbers-who-don't-fit-but-who-are-in-the-right-area" collection.  I'm still putting things together, but stay tuned.  If this turns out as I think, I have Chaim Asher's father's and grandfather's names--jumping me from my great-great grandmother all the way to my 5th great grandfather!

Note:  I'm on Twitter.  Feel free to follow me (@larasgenealogy).

Want to get future blog posts emailed to you automatically?
Enter your email address:


  1. Great post---as always, I am so impressed with your research abilities. Mazel tov on all these new discoveries!

  2. Didn't you just have a Veiner last week?

    1. I think I mentioned it to you as this was all coming together.

    2. It's very hard to keep it all straight in my head. I have so few family names - you have so many!

  3. Yet another post to back up the use of collateral research to open the doors in brick walls. I think it is wonderful that with the emergence of DNA and it's use in genealogy research researchers are going to the collateral lines to prove their ancestors. As Amy said, great post. ~ Cathy

  4. Hi from Harry's granddaughter! You are a super sleuth.. great work! I'm going to email you directly. I can try to help with any gaps on the Harry Garber side.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.