The Mystery of Abraham Prantki

4 Jun

As I search through the photo album we found hidden in my grandparent’s attic, I am still finding mysteries and photos of people who were never identified.  But this time, I found one, or should I say two, that were different.

I found two copies of the same photo postcard sent in 1923.  The young man identifies himself as Abraham Prantki.  The cards are made out to my grandmother and to her Aunt Gussie. They say the same thing, “For friendly memories I send my picture to… “

So now the questions.  He sends the one to Tante Gussie, I think.  It might say Tante Sunia?  But the last name is the name of my great-great aunt.  I am assuming that is who he meant? Maybe?

Is he really her nephew, and my grandma’s cousin?  If so then he would be from my great grandfather’s side.  He had five sisters.  I know the descendants of two of them.  However, they were from Poland. So why is this postcard written in German?  But then, they must have read German if that is the language he wrote to them in.  Actually,  my grandmother was well educated. She spoke and read several languages.

The other odd thing… on the top right of the photo addressed to the Tante, there is writing in another handwriting. I have no idea what that says.

I would love to claim him and put him somewhere on my family tree.  He looks a bit like my grandmother’s family. Like he could be related.  But it is just too nebulous.  What do you think?  A first cousin?  A border?  A relative?  Or just a friend?

And then the date, 1923.  My grandmother had been in the USA just a year.  She was 17 and living with her Aunt Gussie.  She married my grandfather in 1925.  So I have to ask, did Abraham Prantki survive?

So many questions.  I might know his name, but I still do not know who he is and what happened to him.

(Thank you to a member of Tracing the Tribe who translated the German on the postcards for me.  Update with more translations:  It seems he did address the one postcard to his cousin and the other to his aunt.  So I say YES a cousin.  I now know that his mother was one of three women, maiden name either Sura Szenk, Esther Szenk or Leba Szenk.  I will check Yad VShem.  Thank you all!)

These two previous posts discuss my grandmother’s family.

13 Responses to “The Mystery of Abraham Prantki”

  1. Alexis Chateau June 4, 2018 at 11:12 pm #

    Nothing quite like digging up old history! Countries that close to each other often knew each other’s languages.

    • zicharon June 5, 2018 at 6:57 am #

      That is what I think as well.

  2. Amy June 5, 2018 at 7:16 am #

    Have you checked Yad Vashem for his name? And I agree that even if they lived in Poland, they might have known German (or Yiddish?). But would your grandmother have known German? Or Polish?

    • zicharon June 5, 2018 at 8:10 am #

      My grandmother knew polish, Yiddish, Hebrew and English. And possibly German. She came from an educated family. I knew she spoke many languages.

      • zicharon June 5, 2018 at 8:18 am #

        I will check yad vshem.

      • Amy June 5, 2018 at 8:21 am #


      • zicharon June 5, 2018 at 8:36 am #

        She was something else!

  3. zicharon June 5, 2018 at 8:58 am #

    Amy, I checked Yad V Shem. Abraham is not there. So I hope he survived. But I have not checked for a while. They have really improved their on line records. I knew my great grandparents were there, but I found one of my grandfather’s brothers!!! I also got more information on them!!! So glad you suggested going to the Yad VShem website.

  4. Luanne June 5, 2018 at 9:11 am #

    I hope you learn more!

    • zicharon June 5, 2018 at 9:29 am #

      I am always amazed what finding out one fact can lead to!

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