Henry Goldsmith, Part VIII: Milton Goldsmith’s Second Marriage

While many of the children of Henry Goldsmith moved to Los Angeles in the 1930s, three remained in Pittsburgh, not far from Connellsville where they were all born and raised. The three who stayed behind—Milton, Walter, and Helen—remained in the area for the rest of their lives. This post will focus on Milton.

Milton had some sad times in the years after 1930. His wife Luba died on October 7, 1931, at the age of 52.1 According to her obituaries, she had been sick for over a year and died after an operation at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.  The obituaries not only discussed her medical career and accomplishments but also her literary skills and accomplishments:

“Dr. Luba Goldsmith Dies in Mayo Clinic,” The Pittsburgh Press, October 7, 1931, p. 6

“Dr. Goldsmith Rites,” The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, October 8, 1931, p. 5

Luba was survived by her husband Milton and sons Norman and Albert. Norman had just graduated from the University of Pennsylvania medical school in June, 1931,2 and his younger brother Albert was only sixteen and still in high school. After graduating from high school, Albert went on to the University of Pittsburgh, from which he graduated in 1936:

School: University of Pittsburgh, School Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USAYearbook Title: Owl, “U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012”; Yearbook Title: Owl; Year: 1936, Ancestry.com. U.S., School Yearbooks, 1900-1990

School: University of Pittsburgh, School Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Yearbook Title: Owl, “U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012”; Yearbook Title: Owl; Year: 1936, Ancestry.com. U.S., School Yearbooks, 1900-1990

He then received a master’s degree in 1937 from Harvard.3

In 1940, Milton and his two sons were living together in Pittsburgh; Albert had no occupation listed on the census, and Milton and Norman were both practicing medicine.4

Then on March 17, 1941, Milton remarried. I found this in the most indirect way and late in my research. (In fact, I’d already started drafting this post when I found this second marriage.) I was searching for Milton in Pittsburgh directories in the 1940s to see whether he was still practicing medicine, and I noticed that some of the listings in the 1940s listed him with a wife, Fanny—for example, this one in 1949.

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, City Directory, 1949, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995

I had not realized that Milton had remarried until I saw those listings, so I searched for information about this second wife, Fanny. I then found this announcement in the March 19, 1941, Pittsburgh Press (p. 25):

When I saw that Fanny’s birth name was Goldsmith and that she was from Philadelphia, I wondered whether she was a member of my extended Goldsmith family. There were many Fanny Goldsmiths on my tree, most born too early to marry Milton, but some were possibilities. Plus there were many other Fannie or Fanny Goldsmiths who were not related to me or to Milton.

Then I found one who died in Pittsburgh in July 1975 on the Social Security Death Index.5  So I turned to the newspaper databases, and I found this death notice for Fannie G. Goldsmith,6 who was indeed Milton’s wife:

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, July 28, 1975, p. 24

And when I saw that she had a brother named Lester and a nephew George, things started to click. Fanny Goldsmith Goldsmith was the daughter of George Goldsmith and the granddaughter of my first cousin, four times removed, Jacob Goldsmith, and the great-granddaughter of Simon Goldschmidt. George Goldsmith died suddenly in 1899  from pneumonia when Fanny was only ten, as I wrote about here. By 1900 Jacob and most of his children had moved west, and I had wondered whether George’s children had much of a relationship with the other Goldsmiths, especially after their grandfather Jacob died in 1901.

But apparently there was still some connection, as Milton and Fanny found each other in 1941 when he was 63 and had been a widower for ten years and Fanny was 51 and marrying for the first time. They were half-first cousins, once removed. Fanny was the daughter of Milton’s half-first cousin, George, as this chart indicates:

(The chart, generated by my Family Tree Maker software, fails to show that Henry’s mother was Fradchen Schoenthal, not Eveline Katzenstein, and that thus Henry and Jacob were half-brothers.)

My guess is that the extended family somehow facilitated this connection, but this was not a second marriage where a father was searching for a woman to care for his children. Milton’s sons Norman and Albert were adults themselves in 1941. The fact that  Fanny’s death notice identified Albert as her son suggests that there was a close familial relationship between Fanny and Milton’s children.

So I was happy to discover that Milton had remarried after losing Luba. Meanwhile, his sons were living their own lives. More on them in my next post.

  1. Death County: Olmsted, State File Number: 010312, Certificate Number: 010312,
    Certificate Year: 1931, Record Number: 601288, Ancestry.com. Minnesota, Death Index, 1908-2002. “Dr. Luba Goldsmith Dies After Illness Extending Over Year,” The Connellsville Daily Courier, October 10, 1931, p. 7. 
  2. “Penn Graduates,” The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 18, 1931, p. 6. 
  3. “Who’s Who in Pittsburgh Music Circles,” The Pittsburgh Press, June 4, 1950, p. 75. 
  4. Milton Goldsmith and sons, 1940 US census, Census Place: Pittsburgh, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: m-t0627-03653; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 69-84, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  5.  Number: 188-36-5720; Issue State: Pennsylvania; Issue Date: 1962, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  6. As so often happens, some records spell her name Fannie, but most spell it Fanny. 

22 thoughts on “Henry Goldsmith, Part VIII: Milton Goldsmith’s Second Marriage

    • It sure was! I’d never been able to find what happened to Fanny either and so this little clue allowed me to find closure for both of these cousins.


  1. Often in our research we stumble over an important family detail that we were not actually looking for. How great must have been your joy to discover the details of Milton’s second marriage! Congratulations, Amy!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Peter. Stumble is exactly the right word. If I had not seen those directory listings, I might never have searched to find more about Milton’s second marriage.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my, Amy, what a network of relationships to work through! You have much patience and perseverance. I am happy to think that Fanny and Milton came together through the extended family network. A successful doctor was better received in social circles when he was married. I know that from researching some community members in my own family history research. Bachelors and single women were not made to feel comfortable in middle class or upper class circles. Being single also opened one to opportunists. It makes alot of sense to me that the family brought Fanny and Milton together. They were at an age where companionship means so much. While Milton’s children were older it still must have been comforting for them to know their father had a companion and wife whose family and relations they knew.

    Liked by 2 people

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  4. There’s a feeling of cosy familiarity here. Do you think Fanny was close enough to Milton and Luba to help them through Luba’s passing, maybe close enough to support Milton in what must have been a desperately sad episode? There can be nothing worse than losing a life companion so early, but maybe the ten years between Luba’s death and Fanny and Milton’s marriage were less about solitude and loneliness and more about a continuing friendship they solemnised in the natural course of things. It would be gratifying to think of it in that way.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I wish I knew more, but unfortunately I do not. But since Fanny was living in Philadelphia until she married Milton, I doubt there was much of a relationship before then. (The two cities are about 300 miles apart.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • Well, I wouldn’t have expected you to know the distance between two US cities and would hope you wouldn’t expect me to know, offhand without Google, the distance from Liverpool to London.

        Liked by 1 person

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