Sunday, July 29, 2018

Sara Rivka / Shayna Basya - Solved

Back in January, I wrote about how I was no longer sure that my 4th great grandmother was Shayna Basya Halpern.  I'd found a birth record for a Yisrael Wolf Halpern whose father was given as Yitzchok son of Yisrael Halpern--my great-great-great-great grandfather.
Birth of Yisrael Wolf Halpern, 1870

This birth record says that Yisrael Wolf's mother was Sara Rivka, daughter of Hirsch.  This made me question whether my great-great-great-great grandmother was Shayna Basya, as I had thought, or Sara Rivka.

But it turns out that there is an error--both in the Hebrew and Russian--on Yisrael Wolf's birth record.
Marriage of Yisrael Wolf Halpern, 1889
Yisrael Wolf Halpern married Rochel Laikin in 1889.  Here, Yisrael Wolf's father is clearly Shmuel.

Shmuel Halpern was a son of Yitzchak Halperin.  And sure enough, his wife is listed (in his other childrens' birth records) as Sara Rivka daughter of Hirsch.

So Sara Rivka was not the wife of my great-great-great-great grandfather Yitzchok but rather his daughter-in-law.  And my 4th great grandmother was Shayna Basya (which makes sense given naming patterns in my family)!

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  1. Did you get help with the translation? If so, where did you get the help?

    1. I can read the Hebrew easily and can sound out the Russian. When I need help translating, the Genealogy Translations facebook group is helpful.

  2. My stepmother's grandmother's maiden name was Halperin... except that now I think it might have been something slightly differnet. When I looked at the records I could find for this family, naturally the Russian said Galperin -- unsurprising, since Russian always substitutes G for H in words of non-Russian origin. When I looked at the Hebrew side, however, things started to get a little more interesting.

    On the Russian side of the records, my stepmother's great-great-grandfather was Noach Gesel Gelperin. The Hebrew versions had Noach Hesel (with a hey) Gelperin (with a gimel), which proves that Gelperin was the original name and not a Russification. In fact, there's also a Russian annotation underneath Noach's death record stating "it's pronounced 'Gelperin'" signed by a rabbi (I can't read the signature). My suspicion is that that rabbi was preparing for the funeral and was confused by this same G/H issue. Perhaps he was corrected by the family and made the notation so that he would remember to pronounce it correctly at the memorial service.