Friday, June 28, 2013

The Genealogy of Sarah Schwartz Gerstein

Sarah Schwartz Gerstein

Sarah Schwartz Gerstein was born in Berdychev, Russia, now Ukraine in 1882, the daughter of David Schwartz and Fanny Kessler. She has interested me from the first time I learned about her from my father-in-law, Dave Gerstein. Her daughter, Rose Gerstein Endliss gave me more information about her, and Sherry Berkman Endliss, her grand-daughter sent me the family pictures. Although she died in 1929 at the age of 47, she had a great impact on her family.  All her grandaughters are named for her, Sandra, Sheila and Sherry.  Since I have more images of Sarah as a young person than of all the other older members of the Gerstein family, I am devoting a post to her and her immediate family.

Sarah was born in Berdychev, one of the most important Jewish cities in Russia. The city originally was a part of  the Polish-Lithuanian Kingdom, but became part of the Russian Empire in 1793, in one of partitions of Poland.   Sholom Aleichim, the writer, lived in Berdychev, and Joseph Conrad, author of The Heart of Darkness, was born there to a family of the Polish nobility. When it was the commercial center of Eastern Poland it was owned by the Radziwill family.  In the 1850's, Jews were 70% of the population of  Berdychev and by 1861, it was the second largest Jewish community in Russia. Most of the Jewish population were merchants or artisans.  By 1897, with the building of a railroad link in 1870,  Berdychev became a center of light manufacturing.  Like many of the Jewish families of Berdychev, Sarah's family moved to Odessa, and eventually to the United States.
Berdychev in the early 20th century
 Sarah Schwartz was the daughter of David Schwartz and Fagie Kessler.
There were four children, Sarah, 1882-1929, Baile ( Becky) 1887-1963, Avrom(Abe) and Nathan. Sarah and Becky lived in Chicago, I do not know where where Abe or Nathan lived.

Nathan and wife, Simma Schwartz

Sarah and her parents, David and Fagie Schwartz

Baile,  Simma,  grandmother, Fanny Kessler, and Sarah Schwartz

Sarah's children, David, Rose and Philip Gerstein

Sarah and her brother Nathan.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Traveling Again

Rooted in Eastern Europe is taking a short trip-- visiting Springfield, IL, (Lincoln Presidential LIbrary), Fayetteville, (Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and History) and Little 
Rock, Arkansas. The Blog will be back on Friday, June 21.

Friday, June 7, 2013

The Genealogy of the Holmberg-Koshuba Family

The Joseph Koshuba family continues to fascinate the genealogist in me.  My great uncle, Joseph Koshuba, married Florence Elizabeth Holmberg on Febuary 4, 1913, in St Paul, Minnesota. I have been researching the Holmberg-Koshuba family off and on for the few past years.

Florence Holmberg Koshuba was the daughter of Ida Christine Larson and Erick Carl Holmberg, both born in Sweden; Ida in 1857, Erick's birth date is unknown. I have found no information about Ida and Erick's wedding, neither date nor place. Ida came to the United States sometimes between 1871 and 1885, again, no immigration information about Erick.

Erick and Ida had three children: Julius Herman(1889-1970); William R.(1892-1972), and Florence Elizabeth, born in 1894, death date unknown.

In 1900 US Census, Ida is listed as a widow. Erick Holmberg died  between 1894 and 1900. Ida and her children were living at 257 Williams St, St Paul.

In the 1910 US Census, Ida is listed as married to Gilbert Nelgard,  who was born in Norway.

In 1913, Florence married Joseph Koshuba. They had three children, Fred, (1914-1941), Catherine Florence (1915-unknown) and Marie Olga (1917-1993). They lived at 886 W. Central Ave. in St Paul.  Joseph died in January 1919.

Joseph, Florence and Fred Koshuba, 1916

In the 1920 US Census, Florence Koshuba is listed as a widow. She is still living on Central Ave in St Paul, and continued to live there until 1929-/30. Her mother Ida, is listed as Holmberg, so her second husband, Gilbert Nelgard, may have died, or they divorced.   William Holmberg, Florence's brother, divorced and was now living with the Koshuba family. Ida Holmberg died on Sept 14, 1920.

In the 1930 US Census, Florence Koshuba is living at 177 St Albans Ave,  St Paul, and  worked as a housekeeper in a private home. Fred is a printers helper/apprentice and William Holmberg worked as a pressman at the St Paul Pioneer Press/Dispatch.  The daughters, Marie and Olga attended school but Catherine was also working as a waitress.

According to the St Paul City Directories, Catherine continued to work as a waitress until 1934.  Fred worked in various printing companies.  Catherine attended Central High School in St Paul until 1933. In 1934, Florence and her family moved to Inglehart Ave. in St Paul.  In the 1935 and 1937 St Paul City Directories, Catherine worked at 3M company as a key punch operator.  Marie also worked as a key punch operator at the Minnesota State Employment Office in 1937.

The last entry in the St Paul Directory for Fred Koshuba is 1937.  Fred married Charlotte (surname unknown) between 1937 and 1941.  Marie married John W. Poppler in 1937 in St Paul.  They had two children, Jacklyn Poppler born in 1938, and Richard John Poppler (1941-1976).  
In the 1940 Census, only William Holmberg and Marie Koshuba Poppler are listed in St Paul.  I have found no records in the 1940 Census in Minnesota for anybody else in this branch of the Koshuba family.

In December of 1941, Fred was killed in a automobile accident in Dolton, IL.  According to his death certificate, worked in Detroit, MI, as a payroll clerk for the Ford Motor Company. He was buried in St Paul.

Catherine moved to Los Angeles, California, between 1937-1941, and is listed in the Los Angeles Directory as working as a key punch operator at the SFR Company.   In 1946  the Poppler family was living in Compton California, according to the Compton City Directory. Marie and John divorced and she later remarried.  She died in San Diego California, in 1993.

I have found no further information about Florence or Catherine Koshuba.