Rita and Ben
Cohen of St. Louis, who were long-time close
friends of the Fischer family, were far ahead of
their time in 1948 when they began to compile a
collection of home movies. This very brief
excerpt from hours of film they took shows
Morris and Chana Fischer dancing and eating and
their children, Martin and David, playing at
parties hosted by the Cohens. We are very
grateful that the Cohens managed to save these
treasured memories for us.
Geography lessons: Lands of our ancestors
The Fischer and Levin families and their
ancestors of various surnames trace their origins to a wide area of
Eastern and Central Europe. In the 19th Century, their homelands extended from today's
Latvia on the north to Romania on the
south, and from Ukraine on the east to Germany on the west.
Letters from Pinsk
In 1925, Dweira Mindla Kagan Levik writes from Pinsk,
Poland, to her husband, Abraham Levik in Kiev, Russia (now Ukraine),
whom she has not seen in several years, about their unsuccessful attempts to
arrange immigration to Palestine. In an undated note, an elderly, ailing Eliezar Kagan sends
his love and blessings to his children in America. After Eliezar Kagan's
death, an official from a
yeshiva in Pinsk asks his son Samuel Cohen for a donation for a needed
renovation project. In 1928, Samuel Cohen's brother-in-law Moshe Kolodny
sends the text of the elaborate eulogy carved on the tombstone of
Samuel's father, Eliezar Kagan, in a Pinsk cemetery.
Letters from Romania
Herman Landman's niece Tauba Abramovici writes to him
in 1921 about her family's inability to secure a sufficient dowry for
her. In 1923, college student Misu Landmann writes to his aunt Rebecca Gordon Landman in Kansas City, Mo., to ask
for $4 a month to help with his expenses at Bucharest University. Three
years later, Misu writes to his cousin Libbie Landman of Kansas City
about Bucharest University student strikes and anti-Semitism and wonders
whether the Jews of Kansas City might take up a collection to help the
Jewish Students Association of Romania. Also included are letters from
Romanian cousins who immigrated to Israel after creation of the Jewish
Family photo gallery:
A selection of ancestral images
Old photos offer moments from
the past frozen in time. Here are some memorable faces of our ancestors.
Morris and Chana Levik Fischer.
Joe and Libbie Levin.
Never forget: Our relatives who
The Shoah's evils took the
lives of several first cousins and other relatives of Libbie Landman Levin
and Marie Landman Bernstein, and of Chana Anita
Firing squads amid the
marshes of Pripyet
Within four months after Chana
Anita Levik emigrated from the uncertainty and poverty of Havana, Cuba,
to the freedom and opportunities of St. Louis, Mo., at least seven of her
relatives were massacred by the Nazis in Pinsk, Poland (now
Belarus), as part of the Germans' "Final Solution" to the "Jewish
Treachery on the Black Sea
More than 700 Jews, including
six relatives of Libbie Landman Levin and Marie Landman Bernstein, fled
the anti-Semitic racial laws and pogroms of Romania aboard an
unseaworthy ship supposedly destined for British-mandate Palestine. But
the obstructionist diplomatic policies of Britain and Turkey resulted in
nearly all aboard the immigrant ship Struma drowning when it was sunk in the Black Sea
by a torpedo launched from a Soviet navy submarine operating under orders from Josef Stalin.
An age-old question: When was Ernestine Kober Fischer born?
Her tombstone and obituaries say
she was 100 when she died in 1924, but earlier documents raise less-inflated possibilities.
Making a living: A look at our families' occupations
Tailors and teachers, rabbis
and merchants, caterers and carpenters have all been represented on our
Inventors among us
Herbert Daust of St. Louis
and Herman Landman of Kansas City, Mo., were both granted U.S. patents
for their inventions.
Fischer family members graduate, and cousins get
married in Australia and Israel.
My life: A memoir by Chana
A mother, wife and daughter
Anita Levik Fischer was conceived in Russia, born in Poland, grew up in
Cuba, and got married, raised a family and had a career in the United States.
Here is the short essay she completed in the 1990s about her personal
experiences and recollections.
from the social networking site Facebook announces a
of Facebook friends of Fischer/Kober/Slupsky descendant
Melissa Duke Mooney of Nashville, Tenn., received an e-mail message
in February 2009 titled “Melissa invited you
to ‘Melissa Duke-Mooney Memorial Service’”
Note: Requires Adobe Acrobat Reader
6.0 or higher.
After clicking on link, pdf file will open. Use "Zoom In" tool to
magnify image and "Hand" tool or scroll bars to manipulate.
Genealogy is a never-ending search for
information that, despite our best efforts, is never completely successful.
the Zernes related to the Landmans? Where in Prussia did Morris L. Fischer come
from? What became of Abraham Levik's brother and sister? These are some of the questions we are still trying to answer.
Breakthroughs, discoveries and
Genealogy involves gradual accumulation of facts about
ancestors and other relatives. Sometimes the process leads in
How we learned the names of Abraham Levik's mother, Golda Leah Gordon's father, and Henry and Caroline
Fischer's third sibling; and how we found cousins living in Pennsylvania,
Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi, Vermont, Israel and Australia.
From the Franco-Prussian War to
the Cold War
From time to time throughout history, men in our
families have been called on to serve in their country's military. Here
are some accounts of them.
19th Century news & notes
Early St. Louis newspapers occasionally mentioned
some of our ancestors' activities, such as their leadership positions in
synagogues and fraternal groups, social events attended, confirmations
A speculative scenario about an Ashkenazic family
An unsolved murder mystery
In 1938, Caroline Fischer Slupsky died of peritonitis as
a result of being shot in her abdomen. To this day, the killer is not
most highly cultured young Jewish man in our city'
A potential leader is unexpectedly
struck down by disease
Isidore Victor Weisskopf died in 1903 of typhoid fever in
St. Louis at the young age of 32, he left not only a vacuum
in his family, but also in his community.
Announcement of a 1908 wedding
The Jewish Voice, a weekly newspaper in St. Louis,
Mo., published a brief notice on the marriage of Martha Daust Fischer
and Henry Fischer
The man in our lives:
Remembering Uncle Herman Landman
In 1973, Marie Landman Bernstein jotted down her fond
recollections of her Uncle Herman Landman, who for many years had served as Marie and Libbie Landman's
The story of Rabbi Gershon Joseph
To avoid being forced into the czar's army, Eliezar
Kagan's brother, Gershon, took his wife's last name, Lifshitz, as his own and fled
Russia for the relative safety of the Holy Land.
Gershon Lifshitz was a skilled blacksmith
and scholarly rabbi who settled in Jerusalem late in the 19th Century.
His many descendants became the Israeli and Australian branches of the Kagan/Cohen/Lifshitz
Transformation of a St. Louis dry
How Henry Fischer, responding to increasing
competition, converted his family's stodgy 19th Century Victorian Main
Street-style building in the Carondelet neighborhood of South St. Louis
into a modern 20th Century Art Deco structure.
This site was designed by someone who had no previous
experience with Web site creation. Read step-by-step how he did.
Abe Slupsky: an unforgettable
St. Louis character
When Col. Abraham Slupsky married Caroline Fischer in 1896,
her family must have been less than pleased: Abe was considerably older
than "Carrie," he had been married previously and he had a
less-than-savory reputation as a brawler, gambler and politician.
ancestors lived in Missouri
Explore interactive maps that offer geographic snapshots
of where some of our ancestors lived at various times in the
past between the 1860s and 1930 in St. Louis, Mo. ...
... and from 1897 to 1929 in Kansas City, Mo.
Genetic genealogy leads in
Scraping some cheek
cells into a test tube can uncover previously unknown apparent distant
relatives, but the results can raise more questions than they answer.
genealogist Martin Fischer is available to conduct freelance family
history projects including searching online databases, building
family trees, editing memoirs and creating genealogical Web sites.
For more information, go
http://www.the-efa.org/, click on find a freelancer, and
type Martin Fischer in the search box, or go to
http://www.apgen.org/, click on
search by name, and type Fischer and Martin in the search
boxes. He also has a professional expert genealogist's profile at