Sunday, September 22, 2013


About a month ago, the following announcement showed up on several of the JewishGen discussion lists.
This is just the beginning. It continues on for several more paragraphs.
Note the reference to the All Galician Database as AGD, not to be confused with AGAD, the Warsaw archives which holds most of the available vital records for east Galicia in the late 1800s.

Having interests in most of the towns with the new records, I decided to have a look. Their drop-down menu did not include Skalat and Podwoloczysk (or for that matter Brzezany) among its choices, so I did a search for Pikholz records from Grzymalow, which is quite near Skalat.
The actual search. (I added the red arrow for the readers' convenience.)
The search produced thirty-two results, six of them from Grzymalow, the rest from elsewhere in east Galicia. Thirty-one showed the name Pikholz  - one was Pekules, which is reasonable as a sound-alike. I already had most of these records and I have actually met some of those mentioned in the Grzymalow school records. And it turns out I get the same thirty-two records regardless of which town I ask the system to search.

I would like to tell you about the four which I  am planning to order, all from the Podwoloczysk.records in the AGAD archives.
Prof. Jonas Zellermayer came to Israel form Vienna when he was twenty-four and lived here 
for nearly seventy years. His son-in-law was my boss thirty-five years ago.

Everything we have here lists his father as Avraham, without the second name, so we now know that his father was actually Avraham Yitzhak. One odd thing with this family - we know much  about Avraham's family, but not his parents' names. We know the names of the grandparents and his Pikholz great-grandparents, his mother's three brothers and two sisters, but we know neither the name of his Pikholz mother nor that of his Zellermayer father.

But now we know, as their marriage record was the great surprise of this new set of indexed
records. Jonas'  father Abraham Eisig was the son of Zalmen Juda Zellermayer and Ettel Pickholz.

The fact that he came from Liczkowce may also prove useful as we have several Zellermayer-Pikholz connections and it is not at all clear if there is a larger family story to be told.

In fact, at least three of the four  records I cite here are in some way connected to Zellermayers. 

In the meantime, I sent the marriage entry to the two granddaughters of Abraham and Basie and as a result had my most significant interaction with either of them in some years. Those two granddaughters are, by the way, named after Basie's parents Don and Rifke.

We have a Pikholz couple named Gabriel and Sara who lived in Husiatyn. They had a son Moshe in 1851 and a daughter Chanzie. Gabriel, who was described as "from Skalat" died in
1852 at age thirty in a house associated with a Zellermayer family. Our only knowledge of Chanzie is that she was married to Joel Halpern and lived in Podwoloczysk, which we learn from the 1887 death record of their young son Isaak and the 1893 birth record for their daughter Breine. We know nothing further of Breine.

The new records include the 1911 marriage of their previously unknown daughter Jente to Schamschon Duwid Sirki, son of Mechel and Ester. Thusfar, I have not found other references to the surname Sirki, but it would be great if we can find some descendants.

And this one must be related too. In 1896, we have the Podwoloczysk marriage of Wolf Feldman, age 29, son of Hirsch and Male of Tarnopol to Etie Golde Pikholz, the thirty-two year
old daughter of Gabriel and Breine of Husiatyn.

This cannot be the same Gabriel above - that one died 1852 and this one had a daughter in 1864. Nor can it be any other Gabriel we know. And although we do not have any ther couple named Gabriel and Breine, we do have the one Gabriel with a granddaughter Breine and another whose mother is Brane. It all seems to revolve around Husiatyn.

I haven't a clue how this couple fits in, but the existence of the marriage record opens the possibility of finding some Feldman descendant.

So I must see if I can find anything else of the Sirki and Feldman couples - nothing so far. I will also order the four records themselves from AGAD, as these are not online.

I plan to see if others want to order anything, so that I can put together a larger order, so I asked if any other new records will be added to the All Galicia Database in the coming weeks. (No sense in placing an order and finding out two weeks later that it could have been bigger.) The answer I received was "Nothing that would be from AGAD."

One other odd one. A couple of weeks ago, Jurek, a research colleague in Sweden was
looking at a 1938 telephone directory that Logan Kleinwaks had just uploaded to his wonderful site. There was a listing - apparently a business - for "Pickholz i Wachs" in Skalat. The telephone number is 8. Nothing else but the street name.

This is very strange, as there are no other Wachs in Skalat, at least during the earlier period for which we have records.

But we do have some sort of undefined relationship between the Wachs family of Zalosce-Podkamen and my own Pikholz family  who lived in that same area. So I cannot just ignore this.

I have asked one of the surviving Skalaters here if she knows anything about this business or the families involved and I plan to ask others as well.

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If you missed my piece about Uncle Kenny last year, you might want to have a look. His yahrzeit is Monday.

1 comment:

  1. Great post Israel!
    Besides the work from Gesher Galicia JRI-Poland is doing new indexing of 1906-1911 records for many Galician towns and are beginning to work on newly available 1912 records. None of these images are online (yet).