Category Archives: Hesse/Levy

Morris Levy [or not] (1838-1896)

Morris LEVY was my maternal grandfather’s maternal grandfather. But it appears he was not born with that name.


“Morris Levy”, c. 1883

Morris was born in Kozmin, Prussia – also known by its German name, Koschmin – on 11 May 1838. This was only about 30 miles from Sandberg, the birthplace of his eventual spouse, Helena JACOBOWSKY, although it’s unknown if the two families knew each other. His father’s name, according to Morris’s gravestone, was Samuel HaLevi; that is, “Samuel the Levite”.

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Photo Forensics

My Aunt Lillian – technically, my mother’s Aunt Lillian, but we always called her “Aunt Lillian” – was the keeper of the family photographs. I recall visiting her in the early 1990s, and looking at her photo albums while she told me who people were. Unfortunately, at the time, I really wasn’t paying attention to people I had never heard of before, and who had died prior to my birth.

When Aunt Lillian died in 1995, the photographs remained, but for many of them, no survivor knew who they were, nor where, when, and why they had been recorded. This is one reason I am always on the lookout for cousins with family photographs, and hopefully recollections about who they are.

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Helena Jacobowsky (1838 – 1915)

My great-great-grandmother, Helena (Lena) JACOBOWSKY was born in Sandberg, Prussia – now in Poland, near(ish) to Leszno – in 1838. Her parents were tailor Hirsch JACOBOWSKY and his wife Taube (Tennie) WOLFF JACOBOWSKY.  I know of two older brothers, Schaie and Moritz, both of whom immigrated to the United States. Continue reading