An example of detailed genealogy research. Fascinating and very moving.
Born just one year after Simon, the next sibling was Jakob Schoenthal. (I am using the German spelling for two reasons. First, Jakob stayed in Germany and thus that is how he spelled his name. Second, it helps to distinguish him from his nephew, Simon’s son Jacob.) Finding Jakob’s story was quite a lesson in genealogy research. It took some lucky breaks and the help of others, and in the end it led to a story of both tragedy and triumph.
First, some background. I’ve already written about eight of the ten children of Levi Schoenthal and Henriette Hamberg, my great-great-grandparents. They were the eight children who came to America between 1866 and 1881 and settled here permanently, including my great-grandfather Isidore Schoenthal. All of them lived relatively long and seemingly satisfying lives. They started in western Pennsylvania, but eventually…
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