Sunday, October 2, 2022

Check and Check Again / Town Searches

It's important to keep up-to-date on record sets that are newly digitized &/or newly indexed that might give clues about your family.  It's why I consistently re-do searches on JewishGen, Ancestry, FamilySearch, and more.  Just recently, a new batch of records was added to JewishGen which helped me to find out more about some branches of my family, and I found it re-doing a search I'd done many times before.  And while I did then search in that record set for some of my family surnames, searching for ancestral towns found even more branches than I would have discovered otherwise.

1930 Czechoslovakian Census; Fried Family; Kosice, Slovakia

I noticed that JewishGen had added newly-indexed records from the 1930 Czechoslovakian Census, from the areas currently in Slovakia.  My Subcarpathian family did live in what was Czechoslovakia at the time, but their towns were in modern-day Ukraine, and not extremely close to what is now the Slovakian border.  But I figured it was still worth looking to see if any relatives had migrated a bit west.

My initial searches for some of my surnames didn't come across anything exciting (nothing for Rutner that I could tie to my family, Fuchs is too common a name, etc.).  But then I searched for several of my family's ancestral towns (using the Czech names for those towns), and I struck gold.

Toba Rivka Bistricer Fried was my second cousin three times removed.  Her grandmother's maiden name was Fuchs, which is how we are related.  Toba Rivka married in had at least eleven children in the towns of Dombo (now Dubove), Felso-Neresznicze (now Novoselytysya) also Alsokalinfalva (now Kalyny)--the second of which was her hometown.  I'd also found information about a few of her children's marriages and some of their children.  But the majority of the family seemed to have disappeared.

I searched for Novoselice (the Czech name for Felso-Neresznicze), which was where my Fuchs family originated, and I looked at each of the results that JewishGen returned for the 1930 Czech census.  And one family looked kind of familiar.

The family had moved to what is now Kosice, Slovakia.  Toba Rivka had died (but not before having at least one child that I didn't know about before), and her husband David had remarried and had a few new children.  Once I knew they were in Kosice, I was able to discover graves for both Toba Rivka and her husband David in Kosice, as well as more about the lives of some of the Fried children.

1930 Czechoslovakian Census; Adler Family; Velky-Folkmar, Slovakia

This wasn't the only branch of my family that I found in this new record set.  Searching for my family towns--as well as those nearby--turned up several unrelated branches of my family that were enumerated in what's now Slovakia in 1930.  Above is my first cousin three times removed living with her husband and kids in Velky-Folkmar, Slovakia.  What a pleasant surprise!

So no, your tree isn't done.  There's always more to find.  And don't just search by surnames, search by towns too, especially if your family is from a smaller town or village.

Happy hunting!

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  1. Thank you, Lara! Fantastic information, I’m going to take a look right away!

  2. This is an important reminder for all family historians. Thank you! And congratulations on your discoveries.