I had a minor breakthrough these past few days. While continually reviewing the records that I’ve found on my family, trolling for any little clue to run after, I found a birthplace for an indirect ancestor. His name was Izrael Silber, and he was born in Ujfeherto, Hungary, according to a marriage record I found a couple of months ago. First, though, a little background.
The family story goes that brothers Isidore and Simon Silber, from Temesvar, Hungary (now Timisoara, Romania) went north to Fony, Hungary and married sisters Sali and Jolan Schwartz. Simon and Jolan are my great-grandparents.
A couple of months ago I was at the Family History Library here in Salt Lake City, and found the marriage record for Simon and Jolan. This was pretty exciting because we had very little information about his parents, who turned out to be listed as Samuel Silber and Czeczilia Kupferstein. It also verified Simon’s birth date and place of birth (Temesvar), and said that the Silber family lived in Temesvar.
I decided to keep looking through all the marriage records to see if I could find any marriages for Jolan’s brothers and sisters (or anything, for that matter). That’s when I found Sali’s marriage record. However, her husband’s name was Izrael Silber (not Isidore), and his parents were Saji Silber and Terez Kupferstein. These Silber’s also lived in Temesvar, but Izrael was born in Ujfeherto.
Now, I was thinking, based on the family story, that Izrael and Isidore were the same person. It was not uncommon for Hungarian Jews to have a few different names, used at different times. I also figured that Samuel and Saji were the same person, as were Czeczilia and Terez.
Now, back to my story. This weekend I realized that Izrael was born in Ujfeherto, and that might be an avenue to pursue. (I haven’t had any luck looking for records from Temesvar–they pretty much don’t exist, or at least don’t exist in the Family History Library). Just by dumb luck, I decided to google Ujfeherto, and found a godsend! Someone has indexed the Jewish records for Ujfeherto, and I found a few familiar names. Not only did I find Izrael’s birth record, I found a sister of his. I also found a Samuel Silber and Czilli Kupferstein who had a son named Samu (listed Samu v. Moritz–not sure exactly what that means).
(That brings up another old family story–I seem to remember a story that my great-grandfather Simon had a brother who ran away from home in Hungary and was never heard from again. His name was Moritz. Could I have found him?)
So after seeing this (and that the records were on microfilm at the Family History Library), I went to the library yesterday to scroll through the film myself. Given the large number of Kupfersteins in Ujfeherto, I’m pretty much convinced that Czilli and Czeczilia and Terez are not the same person. I’m also guessing that Saji and Samuel are not the same person. However, I do think still, based on the family story, that they are all related. Isidore and Simon are probably cousins, not brothers.
As always, though, finding one bit of information just opens more doors and creates more questions. Now I’m more obsessed that ever!