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Old 04-18-2018, 12:41 PM
 
768 posts, read 579,988 times
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I'm trying to trace all my relatives back to Europe. I had some luck, but I'm down to my last few relatives and hitting some roadblocks.

I cannot find anything on one of my great-grandmothers beyond where she lived in 1925-30. I think she was a widow at that point, and she was the second wife. I believe her husband had married before and had older children. She had one son (my grandfather) and she died in 1939. I can't even find the cemetery where she's buried. My grandfather is gone and my father's information is very limited. How do I even begin to look for records for her?

One set of my great-great grandparents died young, but I don't have dates or places of death for either of them. Their five daughters took take care of each other. I believe both great-great grandparents changed their first name (he's listed as John on my great-grandmother's marriage license, but I sincerely doubt a 19th-century Jewish man was born with that name). Their last name was Baer, which is also very common in NY. I can't find John's WWI draft card and I don't know if he applied for citizenship before he died. My great-grandmother and all her sisters were born in NY; their parents list their home as Russia on the 1910 census and on my great-grandmother's marriage license. How do I track these great-great-grandparents down? Would my great-grandmother's birth certificate have her parents' towns/cities of birth? Where else can I look?
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Old 04-18-2018, 05:18 PM
 
Location: VT; previously MD & NJ
4,039 posts, read 1,959,128 times
Reputation: 9502
Have you tried JewishGen? https://www.jewishgen.org/
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Old 04-18-2018, 08:04 PM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
9,256 posts, read 14,314,355 times
Reputation: 12070
Quote:
Originally Posted by GiveMeCoffee View Post
I'm trying to trace all my relatives back to Europe. I had some luck, but I'm down to my last few relatives and hitting some roadblocks.

I cannot find anything on one of my great-grandmothers beyond where she lived in 1925-30. I think she was a widow at that point, and she was the second wife. I believe her husband had married before and had older children. She had one son (my grandfather) and she died in 1939. I can't even find the cemetery where she's buried. My grandfather is gone and my father's information is very limited. How do I even begin to look for records for her?
Do you know where she died? See if you can order her death certificate, that should tell you where she was buried.

Quote:
I can't find John's WWI draft card and I don't know if he applied for citizenship before he died.
Some census records will indicate whether a person has naturalized or not, or is in the process of it.

Quote:
My great-grandmother and all her sisters were born in NY; their parents list their home as Russia on the 1910 census and on my great-grandmother's marriage license. How do I track these great-great-grandparents down? Would my great-grandmother's birth certificate have her parents' towns/cities of birth? Where else can I look?
It might, but I can't promise it will. Check with the Department of Health - there are separate ones for NYC vs NY State.
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Old 04-18-2018, 10:37 PM
 
5,221 posts, read 4,531,076 times
Reputation: 11353
Keep in mind New York also had state censuses 1905, 1915, 1925 (& also 1892 and before).

Sometimes state censuses were town or county specific with birthplace notes.

Another thing to look for are passport files on the chance any family traveled back to visit relatives in the home country.
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Old 04-19-2018, 08:56 AM
 
3,989 posts, read 3,474,710 times
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Have you gone back and looked for your grandfather's obituary? There may be a clue in there.

Was your dad an only child? Sometimes you can find out more by researching the siblings.

I would also research the five sisters on the other part of the family. See if you can find birth and death certificates, obituaries, marriage licenses, census records, etc., for them.
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Old 04-19-2018, 09:53 AM
 
Location: NJ
12,631 posts, read 22,576,541 times
Reputation: 11538
Quote:
Originally Posted by GiveMeCoffee View Post
I'm trying to trace all my relatives back to Europe. I had some luck, but I'm down to my last few relatives and hitting some roadblocks.

I cannot find anything on one of my great-grandmothers beyond where she lived in 1925-30. I think she was a widow at that point, and she was the second wife. I believe her husband had married before and had older children. She had one son (my grandfather) and she died in 1939. I can't even find the cemetery where she's buried. My grandfather is gone and my father's information is very limited. How do I even begin to look for records for her?

One set of my great-great grandparents died young, but I don't have dates or places of death for either of them. Their five daughters took take care of each other. I believe both great-great grandparents changed their first name (he's listed as John on my great-grandmother's marriage license, but I sincerely doubt a 19th-century Jewish man was born with that name). Their last name was Baer, which is also very common in NY. I can't find John's WWI draft card and I don't know if he applied for citizenship before he died. My great-grandmother and all her sisters were born in NY; their parents list their home as Russia on the 1910 census and on my great-grandmother's marriage license. How do I track these great-great-grandparents down? Would my great-grandmother's birth certificate have her parents' towns/cities of birth? Where else can I look?
Go to FB, search Russia genealogy, FB groups should pop up. From what I saw of my quick search, people say to join Ukraine groups too because the borders changed.

We used to have a customer Hank Baer at my dads gas station in Somerset county NJ but of course I can't recall if it was spelled like that. I don't believe it was spelled like the paint. He owed a local radio station until he passed away. Figured I'd mention it in case it rings a bell.
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Old 04-19-2018, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Ozark Mountains
634 posts, read 539,466 times
Reputation: 787
Ancestry.Com has a database of marriage certificates, etc. all the way to the 1800s.
Are you a member of Ancestry.Com?
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Old 04-19-2018, 06:31 PM
 
768 posts, read 579,988 times
Reputation: 787
Quote:
Originally Posted by ansible90 View Post
Have you tried JewishGen? https://www.jewishgen.org/
Yes. It’s not the most user-friendly site I’ve ever seen, but I’ve used it to find the relatives I mentioned. No dice.
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Old 04-19-2018, 06:33 PM
 
768 posts, read 579,988 times
Reputation: 787
Quote:
Originally Posted by ozarknation View Post
Ancestry.Com has a database of marriage certificates, etc. all the way to the 1800s.
Are you a member of Ancestry.Com?
I was, and took screenshots of everything I could find before cancelling my membership. Ancestry.com is most of the reason I have the limited information that I do possess...
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Old 04-19-2018, 06:41 PM
 
768 posts, read 579,988 times
Reputation: 787
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarahsez View Post
Have you gone back and looked for your grandfather's obituary? There may be a clue in there.

Was your dad an only child? Sometimes you can find out more by researching the siblings.

I would also research the five sisters on the other part of the family. See if you can find birth and death certificates, obituaries, marriage licenses, census records, etc., for them.
My dad has an older sister but she is a miserable human being that treated my amazing father like gum on her shoe. I’d do almost anything to avoid her.

I have names, birthdates, occupations of all five sisters. Only my great grandmother and one sister ever married. Their parents names are listed on their marriage licenses, but I cannot find other records with her parents’ names anywhere.
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