Sunday, September 18, 2005

Family Branches and Leaves

I was at Pesh and Ken's for Shabbos, my aunt and uncle. Shabbos was nice, I had my new black hat finally, Tuviya was there, Ita and Rachel too, it was lots of fun. Rachel won Settlers of Catan.
Motza'ei Shabbos though, Ken showed me some stuff. He showed me the family tree he's been working on for a year or so, and the pictures from the Poland trip. It's amazing how much info he has on the family. He has gone back til saba great-grandparents, Savta's great-great-grandparents, and if some of his information is correct, then he can go back another 3 generations or so, for around 10 generations. Like, holy mother, he has information from the 1930 census, he has papers from a boat in 1911 that came from Austria, with Savta's mother on it. It's ridiculous. It was really cool though to see my family. My great-grandfather, my great-great-grandfather, etc. Saba's maternal grandfather's name was Shmuel Gesang. And Schwarzmer in Polish is spelled Szwarcmer, there's Avraham Szwarcmer, Mendel Szwarcmer, Alter Moshe Tzvi Szwarcmer. There's Pakulas, there's Gottfrieds, there's even a Koenigsberg. There's a Kohane, Saba's great-grandfather. Ken though, said we can't take anything at face value, because, as he said, all these records are Polish, so if these Jews only did this Jewish weding thing with some rabbi, they Poland wouldn't recognize it, and they gvet he kids the mother's last name. Therefore, when Pesh found an application Saba filled out for an id, it didn't say David Schwarzmer (or Szwarcmer), but it said David Gesang. BHYY Saba changed his name to Schwarzmer when he came here...even though Gesang means "to sing" in Yiddish (or thereabouts), and that's what our family was blessed by HaShem to sing. And back to where we were, Pinchas Kohane's last name could be from his mother.
It got me thinking. When people die, they're remembered a little bit after, but after a while, we start forgetting them, their decendants aren't told about them. You think I knew about Alter Moshe Tzvi Szwarcmer? Pinchas Kohane? No. Not at all. I had no idea who they were. And Ken was able to tell me about Savta's mother's family. Her mother was a seceratary somewhere, I forgot what her mother did, but Kenny was able to find this out.
We can't forget about our past. We can't forget about our ancestors, where we came from, who we came from. Who knows, maybe you came from the Rambam, or the Vilna Goan? Or maybe you came from a simple person, but everyone liked him/her, and if you asked about them, you would be told they were unbelievable people. Who knows?

There is only one way to find out though...


Anonymous Vos Iz Nies said...

There is only one way to find out though...

share it with us please

Mon Sep 19, 06:59:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Stairmompeg said...

Tonny, WOW...what a wonderful gift you got, to be able to "meet" the family in some way. It's true what you said, about after we die...I guess that's why it's so important to really try hard to be the best we can be, and hope that people who love us will remember us for that. I once read a Ziggy cartoon that said, "Your future is shaped by your past--so be very careful what you do in your past!" It's funny, but it's kinda true. Each of our todays become our yesterdays and our memories and what we do each day, becomes who we are today and who we will be remembered as, tomorrow.
I love you today and tomorrow! SMP

Fri Sep 23, 07:47:00 AM 2005  

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