Showing posts with label Botpalad. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Botpalad. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Tuesday's Tip: What's Your Genealogy Elevator Pitch?

Do you have a genealogy elevator pitch? You know, a few quick sentences summarizing your family's background, adapted to the situation at hand. Entrepreneurs use elevator pitches to get investors interested in their businesses; we use elevator pitches to connect with relatives and possible relatives in several situations.

With genealogy elevator pitches, the goal is to share information very concisely, spark interest in your family or your research, and--hopefully--motivate action. Especially valuable during Genealogy Go-Overs or Do-Overs!

Here are three situations where I use my genealogy elevator pitches:
  • Following up on a DNA match or a family-tree hint. The right elevator pitch, polite and concise with an upbeat tone, makes a big difference. Mention exactly what the match or hint is, then list family names/places to get the ball rolling on trying to confirm the match. Some people manage more than one DNA kit and are active on more than one DNA site or family-tree site, so I give particulars to save them time. My elevator pitch: "My name is ___, my kit # is ___, and I'm writing about a match with FamilyTreeDNA kit #___, which is listed under the name of ____.  I suspect the connection might be through my Farkas family from Botpalad (Hungary) or my Kunstler family from Nagy Bereg (Hungary). Please let me know if any of these names or places are familiar. Thanks very much, and I'm looking forward to hearing from you." By adding the phrase looking forward to hearing from you, I'm requesting a response, positive or negative. Much of the time, it works.
  • Younger relatives ask a question or appear interested in an old photo. Be ready with a minute or two of explanation--vividly bring that person to life in that moment. Above, a photo my grandsons found interesting. My elevator pitch: "That's your great-great-grandpa James Edgar Wood and his construction crew, building a house in Cleveland Heights more than 100 years ago. Did you know he built so many homes in Cleveland that Wood Road is named for him? And most of those homes are still standing today!" Depending on the reaction, I either dig out more house photos or tell another story about the Wood family--keeping it brief.
  • At a family gathering or on the phone with a relative who asks, "what's new?" Oooh, so glad you asked. My latest elevator pitch: "Hubby and his first cousins took DNA tests, and surprisingly, the results show that the Wood family has some roots outside the British Isles. Would you consider taking a DNA test so we can learn more? [Insert name of DNA testing firm] has a big sale coming up!" The element of surprise in DNA results can be highly intriguing, and the mention of a sale also grabs attention. Three cousins were kind enough to take a DNA test during a sale this summer. My pitch was successful! So many cMs, so little time.
So polish your genealogy elevator pitch. And if you're going to a genealogy conference, polish the "surnames research" part of your pitch and/or have calling cards printed (above, mine and my husband's cards) to exchange with other researchers.

    Tuesday, September 6, 2016

    Tombstone Tuesday: Ida Farkas and Herman Weiss

    Ida Farkas, a cousin of my Grandma Minnie Farkas, was born in Botpalad, Hungary (where many Farkas ancestors were from).

    She married Herman Weiss and, with four children, they came to New York just after the turn of the 20th century. Soon they had two more children together. Herman worked as a presser in the garment district.

    Unfortunately, Ida died of pneumonia in 1924, at the age of 52; Herman lived another 19 years.

    Ida's stone shows a candelabra, which is often included on a Jewish woman's headstone. Herman's stone shows a pitcher, which is associated with the Levi tribe. More on Jewish symbols and reading headstones here

    Both are buried in Montefiore Cemetery ("Old Montefiore") in Queens, NY. Thinking of these cousins on Tombstone Tuesday.


    Thursday, October 29, 2015

    Those Places Thursday: In Search of Farkas Connections in Botpalad

    My maternal great-grandpa, Moritz Farkas (1857-1936), was born in Botpalad, Hungary (shown circled in red with a black arrow, above). This is an area still considered part of Hungary but very close to the borders of modern-day Ukraine and Romania (two red arrows at far right).

    Moritz's parents were Ferencz Farkas and Hermina Gross. Farkas is a common name in Hungary, but we know we're definitely connected in some cousiny way with another branch of the Farkas family.

    The young granddaughter of Ida Farkas Weiss (1873-1924) was at my parents' wedding in New York City and she vividly remembers attending Farkas Family Tree meetings in NYC during the 1940s and into the 1950s. She and her parents were known to be cousins, but nobody told the younger generation exactly how we were related.
    Today I want to look at Ida Farkas's niece, Gizella Steinberger, who was the daughter of Josephine "Pepi" Farkas and Noe Steinberger and the granddaughter of Elek and Roszi Farkas. I'm guessing that Elek Farkas was the brother of Ferencz Farkas. That would make Gizella my 2d cousin, 2x removed.

    Born in Botpalad on November 6, 1898, Gizella Steinberger arrived at Ellis Island in December, 1923, and applied for U.S. citizenship in 1926.

    In 1929, Gizella married Irving Huppert (1900-1982). They were living at 1821 Davidson Ave. in the Bronx when she became a naturalized U.S. citizen, as shown on this index card.

    Gizella and Irving had two children and lived into their late 80s. They are buried at Mount Hebron Cemetery in Queens. I'm going to "edit" the relationships of each on Find A Grave to show husband and wife, and include their dates and places of birth.

    Still searching for more Farkas connections from Botpalad, Hungary!

    Friday, July 3, 2015

    Independence Day Ancestors

    Moritz Farkas (1857-1936)
    Happy 4th of July! Two ancestors on my mother's side have a connection to early July:

    Moritz Farkas was born in Botpalad, Hungary on 3 July 1857 and died in 1936. Happy 158th birthday, Great-Grandpa.  

    Sam Schwartz (original name: Simon Schwartz) was born in Ungvar, Hungary on 4 July 1883 (and died in 1954). Happy 132d birthday, Great-uncle Sam, older brother to my Grandpa Tivador Schwartz.

    Friday, January 24, 2014

    Surname Saturday: Contacted by Slatter, Wood, Markell (and more)

    Thanks to my Ancestry family trees and this blog, I've heard from three people this week who are either related to my/my hubby's ancestors OR are researching the same surnames. And thanks to a genealogy message board--and a LOT of patience--my Boulder cousin has connected with cousins we never knew we had!

    • Slatter. This morning I awoke to an Ancestry message from Australia, written by a descendant of John Slatter and Mary Shehen Slatter. This relative is the child of hubby's second cousin! Because that branch of the Slatter family left England for Canada in the early 1900s, I've had little luck tracing their more recent whereabouts. Now I know why. Can't wait to share info with this Slatter cousin!
    • Wood. Earlier in the week, I heard from a distant relative on the Wood side, a descendant of Thomas Wood and Content Thurston (married 1690). He had read my ancestor landing page about Mary Amanda Demarest and got in touch! Now he and our Wood family genealogist, Cousin Larry, are exchanging family tree information, I'm delighted to say.
    • Markell. This afternoon I got an intriguing e-mail from a Markell, asking about the Julius Markell I wrote about in "Two Lebowitz Sisters Marry Two Markell Men." 
    Lena Kunstler Farkas, about 1923
    There has also been an exciting new development in my Boulder cousin's research into the family trees of my maternal great-grandparents, Moritz Farkas and Lena Kunstler.

    Years ago, my cousin posted a Kunstler query on a JewishGen message board. She never got so much as a nibble.

    But her patience paid off. Last week, out of the blue, she heard from a lady who is definitely a cousin from the Kunstler family. New cousins! What a genealogy week it's been.

    Friday, January 10, 2014

    52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks: Sandor Farkas from Botpalad, born in 1884 or 1885?

    For the second week of Amy Johnson Crow's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge, I'm focusing on my great-uncle Sandor Farkas (called "Alex" in the family). He was born in Botpalad, Hungary, in 188_ (4 or 5) and died in Manhattan in January, 1948. His Hebrew name was Shmuel Zanvil, named for his late grandfather.

    Here's what Sandor looked like in 1909, when he was photographed for the fifth anniversary of the Kossuth Ferenc Hungarian Literary, Sick, and Benevolent Society in New York City, where he and all his siblings lived.

    A few months ago, I posted a query about Sandor's father, Moritz Farkas, on Ancestry's Szatmar/Hungary message board. A kind, knowledgeable respondent told me to check the Family Search microfilm Hungary, Szatmár, Fehérgyarmat - Jewish records. And that's where I found Sandor's birth info, shown below (as well as Moritz's birth info!).

    Interestingly, this birth record indicates that Sandor was born in Botpalad on December 12, 1884. (See that handwritten notation in the heading? It translates to "84.")

    But Sandor used the birthdate of December 25, 1885 on his draft registration and other papers.

    So was Sandor born in 1884 or 1885? My inclination is to believe the document from Hungary, not Sandor's memory.

    Here's a photo of Alex on his wedding day, December 24, 1916, when he married Jennie Katz. My Farkas grandparents and uncle are at right in the photo.





    Thursday, December 5, 2013

    Those Places Thursday: Botpalad, Home of Moritz Farkas & Family

    Thanks to the Family History Center microfilm 642919, which contains records for Fehergyarmat, Hungary, last night I confirmed that my great-grandpa Moritz Farkas (1857-1936) was born on July 3, 1857 in Botpalad, Szabolcs-Szatmar-Bereg, Hungary. The record-keeper often left the initial number off the year, as shown below.

    At left, a closeup of the area around Botpalad. In 19th century records, Botpalad was abbreviated "B.palad."


    Moritz's father was Ferencz Farkas and his mother was Sara (Hermina) Gross, as shown in the excerpt below. Way over to the right on the photo is the notation "B.palad." Bingo!





    Botpalad has a statue of Kossuth Lajos (left), one of the heroes of the Hungarian independence movement.

    And Moritz's children were active in the Kossuth Association in New York City, as I've written in earlier posts.