Another Photo, Another Trip to the Yad V’Shem Database

26 Sep

Since I recently returned from a trip to the Baltics, and actually used my school-girl German,  I decided I needed to open my Grandma’s album and continue my search.  I chose a photo with German writing, since I could translate that.

The note was written to my grandma, from her cousin.  “For my cousin, Tauba.  I send my ‘Bilck” (I think that means image).    Dated August 22, 1931, from Wieruszow, a city I have written about before, you can read about it in the blog below.

I had a difficult time figuring out his name.  I knew the Anshel/Anssel.   But the last name stymied me.  So once again thank you to the Tracing The Tribe group, who gave me the last name Eisner.   It opened the door on the Yad VShem Database.

Anshel Eisner, who was born in 1906, was murdered in the Shoah.  The year 1906 hurt my heart, as that is the same year that my grandmother was born. 

His parents, Moses Aron Eisner and Rivka Manes, were married in 1898. His mother and my great grandmother were sisters. I image they were happy to be pregnant at the same time. (Thank you Elzbieta from Tracing the Tribe).

He is probably one of the many cousins that she told me about…that she played with at her grandmother’s house.


He looks a bit like her own brothers.  So much so that I will now look at group photos to see if I can find him.  And I think I found him standing on the far right of this photo that includes my great uncle, who is seated on the left. (See blog below.)

Anshel was married to Liba/Libka.  I could not find her on the data base.   But it said that Anshel was a merchant and died when he was 32 years old.  1942. That was a big year for murdering my family.

His testimony was prepared by his uncle Yitzchak/Isaac Ajzner/Eisner.  I did an advanced search and found that Yizchak prepared testimonies for 54 people who were murdered in the Shoah, including his parents, his siblings, his nieces and nephews and cousins.  He also included friends who perished. These people came from Wieruszow, Lodz, other cities in Poland and Czechoslovakia.

I assume that not all 54 are related to me.  But I take them to my heart.  I add them to the hundreds I already mourn for who perished.  I think of the many cousins I should have in my family who are gone and forgotten and who names have disappeared into the whispers of the past.

Each photo I find that leads to the database breaks my heart a bit. But then, in my heart, I thank my Grandma for saving all these photos.  For keeping their memories alive in a book hidden in the attic for me to find and rediscover and remember.

Baruck Dayan HaEmet.  May their memories be a blessing.  I hope I help them live though my blog.


12 Responses to “Another Photo, Another Trip to the Yad V’Shem Database”

  1. thegenealogygirl September 26, 2019 at 11:47 am #

    Oh Ellen, I’m so sorry. I imagine going through your Grandmother’s album is very emotionally draining. Thank you for pushing through that and helping to preserve the memories of those who perished. ❤️

    • zicharon September 26, 2019 at 11:51 am #

      Thank you. I have to take long breaks between. It is sometimes so distressing. But I need and want to know who these people are and name them.

      • thegenealogygirl October 3, 2019 at 11:16 am #

        That is understandable, I’m sure the breaks do you some good. It is a very important work, I wish you the strength to continue. ❤️

      • zicharon October 3, 2019 at 4:25 pm #

        Thank you. I want to make sure at least my family knows their names. But it does take its toll.

  2. Amy September 26, 2019 at 2:15 pm #

    You are doing a wonderful and important though painful job every time you write about your relatives, those who were murdered in the Holocaust and those who were not. You honor their memories and not only preserve their legacies—it’s a reminder to all of what happened and what can happen again if hate is allowed to prevail.

    • zicharon September 26, 2019 at 2:17 pm #

      I hope so. Sometimes the sadness is overwhelming and I understand why the album was hidden in the attic.

      • Amy September 26, 2019 at 2:33 pm #

        Yes, I know. I still have to catch my breath every time I read of a relative who was killed. It is still just as shocking, just as horrifying, as the first time.

      • zicharon September 26, 2019 at 2:51 pm #

        Exactly. And so many. It hurts the heart. I think of what my grandmother felt when she saw these photos of family killed.

      • Amy September 26, 2019 at 3:34 pm #


      • Jeff Feuer October 7, 2019 at 5:00 am #

        How can I contact you directly I think we may be family and I have details relating to Shalom Hollander

      • zicharon October 7, 2019 at 7:58 am #


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