To date we have identified over 10,000 Jews who were either born or resided in the Mielec powiat at some point in their lives, and an additional 13,000 Jews who descend from this initial group of 10,000+.
The Mielec Family Tree
One goal of this site is to catalogue these families in an overall “Mielec Family Tree”. This tree is an ongoing project that owes its success to many people and their time and energy committed to this effort.
The Mielec Family Tree is not available for public viewing due to the sensitive nature of its contents. If you wish to see it, please contact us here.
Surnames and Family “Islands”
The Jews of the Mielec powiat tended to group themselves into relatively distinct “islands”, mostly along religious and socio-economic boundaries. In very general terms, these islands are described (and further examined via their links) below. Numbers in parentheses indicate the number of people in each “island” on the Mielec Family Tree as of January 20211.
- The Horowitz family led by the Horowitz Rabbinical Dynasty, this group of Jewish families were the most religious and held in very high regard. Other common surnames include Brand, Eckstein, Eisig, Halberstam, Keitelman, Komito, Nussbaum, and Wind (1181 people, 12 generations)
- The Friedman family, and surnames including Bram, Genser, Kampf, Kleinman, Lampel, and Schwartz (2827 people, 10 generations)1
- The Allweiss family and surnames including Brenner, Cytryn, Habler, Jochnowicz, Korn, Kurtz, Roth, Thaler, and Zuckerbrot (851 people, 9 generations)
- The Blattberg family, and surnames including Brand, Hermele, Klagsbrun, and Spitz (839 people, 8 generations)
- The Kiwowicz family, and surnames including Gettinger, Montag, Planczer, Pomeranz, and Schnall (346 people, 8 generations)
- The Schraub family, and surnames including Birnbaum, Leiman, and Rubin (245 people, 7 generations)
- The Verstandig family, and surnames including Fenichel, Ostrow, and Reich (237 people, 7 generations)
- The Amsterdam family, and surnames including Feuer, Hollander, and Rosenbaum (217 people, 8 generations)
Other common surnames not included above: Adler, Aisland, Apfel, Berger, Bisgaier, Blumenkehl, Dienstag, Drillich, Fallik, Fellenbaum, Fenster, Franzblau, Geiger, Goldklang, Grossel, Grunberg, Haller, Honig, Katz, Laufer, Messinger, Silber, Storch, Todres, Trompeter, and Werdesheim.
Surname and Given Name Methodology
Due to the many, many ways that people spelled names over the years, I use a method where anyone born before WWII (and sometimes after) is recorded with their “standard/most common Hebrew names”. It makes it a LOT easier to match people whose names could be spelled many different ways.
So what do I mean by “standard/most common Hebrew names”? For the most part, I use the reference guides by Dr. Alexander Beider:
- For given names, I generally use Handbook of Ashkenazic Given Names and Their Variants (Avotaynu, 2009)
- For family names, I generally use A Dictionary Of Jewish Surnames From Galicia (Avotaynu, 2004)
However I have taken some liberties in modifying the listings in Beider’s books based on 20+ years of researching Jews from Mielec.
For given names, I put what Beider generally considers the standard Hebrew name first, then followed by all spellings found in parentheses. For example, if a person’s name was “Anna”, I record this as “Chana (Anna)” because “Chana” is the standard Hebrew name for Anna. If the standard Hebrew name is not clear, I will put a question mark like this: “Esther? (Etel)”. I do not do this generally for people born after 1945 .
For family names, I always list the family name from birth, and use the most common spelling found in the Mielec powiat. If the family spelled it differently, I put it in an “Alias/AKA” category. For example, the family name “FISCH” is used for all names with similar spellings such as “FISH”, “FISCHMAN”, “FISHER”. “FISCHER”, etc…
Sometimes I am wrong and have grouped names together that are different. It is not a perfect science. And it is quite possible that you will disagree with what I use for “standard/most common Hebrew names”. I can only say that this is only used to manage a massive 25,000+ person family tree and not to disrespect any particular spelling of a family’s name.
- There is an inherent bias in the counting of people in each of these islands due to the fact that this is done primarily by one person, me, Scott Genzer. Naturally I have researched the “Genser” family more than others, and hence I expect that the number of people in this ‘island’ is unfairly biased higher than others.