When I started looking into my family’s history, I had little information to begin with. A two-page handwritten document offered a brief overview of my father’s lineage, including his ancestors’ brothers and sisters. The document was writtreen either by my father’s aunt or uncle sometime within the past couple of decades. The information gave me a great starting point for my research.
Members of the family tree on Ancestry.com can see the document here. You can join family trees on Ancestry.com for free, despite the company’s incessant attempts to get you to part with your money. If you’re a relative of mine and would like free membership to see the documents I’ve attached to the tree, leave a comment on this website.
The second page of the document indicates that my great grandmother’s brother Albert Lustig married Sadie Jacobs. With this information, I had discovered where Albert and Sadie lived after they were married, but I couldn’t find any information about Sadie prior to the marriage. The marriage should have taken place in New York City during the time in which indexes are freely available via stevemorse.org, but nothing with these names, or using the name Abraham Lustig, as the groom was also known, was available.
I did find a record for a marriage between Albert Lustig and Sadie Isaacs in New York, the same year that I expected my great granduncle to be married. I added this to the list of records to order, but it wasn’t a high priority. While there is a Family History Library about 30 minutes from where I live, ordering microfiche and scanning documents on-site is not something I currently have the time to do. Ordering the records directly from the New York City Department of Records takes a little more time and is a little more expensive. So I order only a few records each month.
In March, I ordered the marriage certificate for Albert Lustig and Sadie Isaacs. When the document arrived this past weekend, I was pleased, but not completely surprised, to see that Albert Lustig’s parents as listed were in fact my second great grandparents, Joseph Lustig and Eliza Sturmwald Lustig. Sadie Isaacs, born in Philadelphia, was the daughter of Henry Isaacs and Rachel Leon Isaacs. I later discovered that Henry Isaacs came to the United States from The Netherlands and Rachel Leon was born in South Carolina.
With this new information confirmed, I was able to find Sadie’s brothers and sisters. Other family historians with trees on Ancestry.com provided some hints to the descendants of Sadie’s siblings, which sent me in search of more records — mostly census records and marriage documents — confirming these new relatives. Again, this isn’t a high priority in my search because most of these relatives are at least one marriage away from my bloodline, but still not as distant as many other individuals included in the family tree. With Sadie’s family’s history in the United States stretching back through time farther than that of most of my direct ancestors, more resources are available online for research, particularly through FamilySearch.
Had I ordered Sadie’s death certificate, I might have been able to determine the her maiden name. Because she passed away in 1965, fewer than 50 years ago, New York City would probably not release the document to me. Only confirmed direct descendants can receive someone’s death certificate within that time frame.
One thing from the original document pertaining to Sadie Isaacs remains correct: she and Albert had no children.