Family Archive

Finding Ship Manifests

Posted June 18, 2017 By dailiness

There must be dozens (or many anyway) of ways to locate information about ship sailings of genealogical significance. Today I used several sources to locate and document a record. They include:,_Castle_Garden,_etc.

The New York Times often listed ship arrivals each day in a column called “Marine Intelligence.” Below is notice of the ship that brought my great-grandparents Elias and Rachel to New York.


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One Record Leads to This & That

Posted June 16, 2017 By dailiness

After finding the ship manifest for Elias and Rachel, two of my great great grandparents, I wondered what else I could discover about this part of their emigration and immigration to the U.S. I know that this part of the family was considered a German immigrant in regards to their landing in NYC.

They sailed on the S/S Rhynland, Red Star Line. The Ships List tells me that she was a 3,689 gross ton ship built in 1879, length 402.8ft x beam 40.2ft, one funnel, four masts, iron construction, single screw and a speed of 14 knots. Accommodation was provided for 150-1st and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Their ship sailed every Saturday between Antwerp and Castle Garden NY. I do not yet know their passage rates but Spring and Summer rates from an ad are: First cabin, $60 to $100; excursion, $110 to $180; second cabin, $45; excursion, $80 and $85. Steerage at very low rates.
Peter Wright & Sons, Gen. Agents, 55 B’way.

The Red Star Line alone carried about two million immigrants across the Atlantic. A quarter of them were Jewish, including Albert Einstein.

I think about their voyage and what they did on the ship. Did the men play games, the women play at the piano and sing, or were my relatives in a different part of the ship altogether?

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Found 2nd Great Grandparents U.S. Arrival

Posted June 16, 2017 By dailiness

Phew, it took ages, over the ages, to locate the passenger list for one pair of my great great grandparents Elias and Rachel. Some time ago I had already found the ship manifest for his emigration voyage. It’s indexed under the name Elias Perbolner, which is not too far off from a valid surname spelling. But where to find the New York arrival list.

Today I took a different tack. And I think that is an appropriate verb considering I was looking for a ship. Some in this family used a completely different surname and I have not figured out why. That is another story, however.

Today with the sailing date and an approximate number of days they would be expected to be at sea, I searched under a first name only. I figured that leaving Hamburg with the first (given) name of Elias, he might arrive and have the same recognisable name on this side of the Atlantic. From the departure list, I could not tell the name of the ship but I had enough information to plug into one of Steve Morse‘s databases. And from there I got to a next step which eventually led me to use his first name and find not too many records to look at.

It’s no wonder to me now that I could not locate his name or the other family members. Their surname is entered as Vorlobna. From the image, I included here you can understand how the spelling was indexed incorrectly. I can see how that mistake was made, and it took me a long time to use different methods to find this record.


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On Jewish Headstones

Posted December 25, 2015 By dailiness

I’ve learned from other researchers that a tombstone may include personal information about the deceased. And it may yield some important genealogical clues. But what to make of the details I am still learning. I don’t read Hebrew and need to rely on the generosity of others to translate text carved in stone.

I believe that the woman buried here is my 1 cousin 3x removed. Or she may be related to me, but from another branch of my family. A copy of  her marriage to Maurice Littman states this is her 2nd marriage with her first to a Mr. Goldberg.

My question today was what the engraving on the headstone is, and will it help me to confirm a relationship with her. I posted the query on a Facebook group called Tracing The Tribe and was the translation reads: Sarah the daughter of Mr. Israel Yaakov. Ok, as I also learned that Hebrew inscriptions often only include the patronymic name.  And the patronymic name Yaakov does translate to her father’s name Jacob….but I’m no closer to knowing a confirmed relationship with her. But I’ve learned more about Jewish tombstones.

Apart from a known relationship with her I’d like to know if she had children, and most likely from her first marriage. I know I have DNA relatives with the surname Goldberg.


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Found – Another Third Cousin

Posted January 21, 2015 By dailiness

And this ‘new’ 3rd cousin has 5 siblings and mentioned 1 cousin of hers. They have descendants too. And a cousin in SoCal is excited too! More family now 🙂

I’m not clear on many aspects of these ‘lost’ relatives. I have them listed on two family trees written by different people in 1955. But at this point I don’t understand the rather complete disconnect of us knowing about the other. I suspect that people just got busy living their lives. My father died when I was in my 20’s, and I moved away from home to establish my own life. I did not realize at that age how important family connections are.

I do know that while I grew up in the Chicago area we often had people over for dinner or parties. I called them all aunt or uncle or some other term of kinship. As I grew older and long forgot the exact relationship, I thought of these people as friends or even business partners of my parents, and really did not realize that most of them were indeed relatives.

What did I hear after contacting one of the descendants of a ‘lost’ great uncle? AWESOME!!!!!

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