About Amy

I am interested in genealogy and family research, books, movies, cats, dogs, and baseball.

Milton Goldsmith’s Family Album, Part X: A Son’s Loving Tribute to His Mother

This is Part X of an ongoing series of posts based on the family album of Milton Goldsmith, so generously shared with me by his granddaughter Sue. See Part I, Part II, Part IIIPart IVPart VPart VI, Part VII , Part VIII,  and Part IX at the links.

This is by far the sweetest and saddest page in Milton Goldsmith’s album, a page dedicated to his beloved mother, Cecelia Adler Goldsmith, who died in 1874 when Milton was thirteen years old:

It reads:

Our beloved Mother, who alas, passed away too early and whose death brought not only sorrow, but all kinds of misfortune.

She was the only child of Samuel and Sarah Adler, was born in Germany, but arrived in Philadelphia at the age of one year.  She grew to womanhood, a very beautiful girl;- rather short in stature, round in figure, a head of brown ringlets, – a belle among the Jewesses of her day and circle. She had many admirers.  Father proposed to her over a plate of ice-cream on “Simchas Torah”, a Jewish holiday.  It was in every way a “Love-match” which was only terminated at her death.  She died of peritonitis, which to-day would be called Apendicitis [sic]. A perfect wife, – a wonderful mother, – A woman whose children call her blessed.

She died Nov. 8th 1874, at the age of 35 years. I was 13 at the time of her death, the oldest of six children.

It’s interesting to read what Milton thought was the cause of his mother’s death, which conflicts with her death certificate. According to the death certificate, she died from apoplexia nervosa:

“Pennsylvania, Philadelphia City Death Certificates, 1803-1915,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-69HW-K75?cc=1320976&wc=9F52-L29%3A1073307201 : 16 May 2014), 004010206 > image 874 of 1214; Philadelphia City Archives and Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

In the upper left corner, Milton inserted a piece of Cecelia’s wedding veil:

In the lower right corner, he inserted a piece of fabric from one of her ball gowns.

What a sweet and sentimental thing for a son to do. How devastated he and his father and siblings must have been when Cecelia died.

 

Happy Passover and Happy Easter

This year the lunar calendar has aligned Passover and Easter perfectly.  The first seder takes place on the evening of Good Friday, so this weekend Jews and Christians (except Eastern Orthodox Christians) will all be celebrating an important holiday. At least in my part of the world, it is also spring. My lawn is green, the daffodils are blooming, and there are buds on the trees about to burst into flower. It should be a joyous time. After all, Passover celebrates the liberation of the Jews from slavery, and Easter celebrates the resurrection of Christ. I hope that for all who celebrate (and for those who don’t) this weekend brings lots of joy.

For me, this year Passover is tinged with sadness. This is the first year my father will not be with us. It’s just two months since he died, but somehow it feels so much longer. So for today’s post, I want to ponder Passovers past and my father’s role in them.

When we first celebrated Passover, it was at my Aunt Elaine’s house. Her husband, my Uncle Phil, had grown up in a more traditional home than my mother and her sister or than my father. Uncle Phil could read Hebrew, and he knew the traditional songs and the blessings. So, of course, he led the seder. We used the Haggadah for the American Family—almost all in English, except for the blessings, the four questions, and some other passages. It was perfect for our assimilated, non-affiliated, non-religious family.  I was enchanted by the whole experience. It was my first and for the longest time only exposure to Judaism, and I loved the story, the music, the rituals, and, of course, searching for the afikomen.

Uncle Phil and Aunt Elaine

After the first couple of years, my mother must have decided that she also wanted to have seders at our home, and so we began to have one seder at my aunt and uncle’s house and one at our house. At our house, my father took over the leader’s role (with my uncle helping on all the Hebrew and the songs). Given that my father was not at all religious, it was perhaps an uncomfortable role for him to assume, but he certainly wasn’t going to let another man lead the seder in his house. If he was uncomfortable, he certainly did not show it. He always did a great job, and I can still hear his voice, reading the English text, admonishing us to be quiet and listen, and then giving up and moving on to the next page.

When my aunt and uncle moved to Florida, my father was all on his own as the leader. By then I was an adult and married with children, and we did one seder with my husband’s family, one with mine. My husband’s family’s seders were far more traditional and educational, but also always warm and filled with love. The seders at my parents’ house continued to be somewhat chaotic—too many people talking, too many people getting up and down, chasing the children, helping with the food and the dishes. My father continued to lead the seder, and we all read from the Haggadah and said the blessings and sang the songs. Our children read the four questions.  And in the midst of all the noise and chaos, the seders continued to be cherished by us all.

Then I became a grandmother. And we wanted our grandchildren to experience Passover at our home. Now my grandsons read the four questions. Now my husband and I hide the afikomen. And now my husband leads the seder.

Passover, 2016.

My father graciously moved out of the leader’s chair. I wonder whether that was hard for him—recognizing that another generation was taking over and that his time as the leader after over fifty years in that role was over. If so, he never showed it. He seemed to relish the opportunity to watch over the younger generations without having to worry about keeping the seder rolling along.

My dad, Passover 2016

This year there will be a missing chair at the table, a missing voice adding to the chaos, a missing mouth to feed. That missing chair, that missing voice, that missing mouth will be noticed and felt by us all. When we open the door for Elijah and wait for him to sip the wine, I will be watching for my father instead. Not, of course, literally. I don’t believe in ghosts. But I know that his spirit will be there inside each and every one of us as we hear, once again, the words of the Haggadah.

 

Final Chapter for Joel Basch and His Family: Tragedy and Generosity

In 1930, Joel Basch was still in the tobacco business and living with his wife Jeanette and sons Sidney and Gustavus in Columbus, Ohio. Sidney was working as a clerk in a finance company and Gustavus as a salesman in a furniture store.

Joel Basch, 1930 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Page: 13A; Enumeration District: 0042; FHL microfilm: 2341530
Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census

In the 1930s, Gustavus moved to Miami. In 1940, he was still living in Miami, where he was the manager of a tourist camp.1 I wondered what that meant and searched for Gustavus in the newspaper databases and found this advertisement from the December 6, 1936, Miami Herald (p. 72):

Apparently a “tourist camp” was a place for tourists to stay while vacationing in Miami—a place to park a trailer or rent a cottage. As indicated in the advertisement as well as on Gustavus’ World War II draft registration, this was his own business.

His parents, Joel and Jeanette, were listed right above him on the 1940 census, but they were enumerated twice in 1940—once in Columbus living with their older son Sidney, once in Miami with their younger son Gustavus. The Columbus enumeration was done on April 11, 1940, and the Miami enumeration was done on April 30, 1940. The Columbus enumeration reported that Joel, now 73, was retired, and that Sidney, 43, was a clerk at an insurance company.

Joel and Jeanette Basch, 1940 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: m-t0627-03243; Page: 9A; Enumeration District: 93-77
Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census

Joel and Jeanette Basch and Gustavus Basch, 1940 US census, Census Place: Dade, Florida; Roll: m-t0627-00580; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 13-22
Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census

Gustavus enlisted into the US Army on August 11, 1942,2 when he was 38 years old. He was serving as the “chief of the radio nets for his fighter squadron in 1943.” According to Wikipedia, a radio net is “essentially a moderated conference call conducted over two-way radio…. A net manager is the person who supervises the creation and operation of a net over multiple sessions. This person will specify the format, date, time, participants, and the net control script.”

“Visits Parents,” Columbus (OH) Dispatch, October 8, 1943, p. 14

The family suffered a terrible loss on January 10, 1945, when Sidney Basch had a cerebral hemorrhage and died in the family’s garage in Columbus.  According to his death certificate, his body was not discovered until ten hours later. The newspaper reported that a neighbor found Sidney’s body, lying between the garage door and the rear bumper of his car; the paper also reported that Sidney had a history of heart attacks. He was 48 years old when he died.3

Sidney Basch, death certificate, Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-DH64-VL8?cc=1307272&wc=MD96-DTP%3A287601701%2C287601302 : 21 May 2014), 1945 > 00001-03300 > image 1423 of 3510.

His brother Gustavus was serving in Europe at the time of Sidney’s death, but must have been discharged not long afterwards. He spent several months with his parents in Columbus after his discharge before returning to Florida in October of 1945.4

Two years later Jeanette Mendel Basch died on December 26, 1947. According to her obituary, she had been ill for a year. Jeanette had outlived two of her sons—Robert, who’d died as a young child, and Sidney. She was survived by her husband Joel and son Gustavus.5

But Joel only outlived Jeanette by three years. He died on December 8, 1950, from a heart attack and arteriosclerosis. He was 87.

Joel Basch, death certificate, Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6Q67-VC2?cc=1307272&wc=MD9N-9P8%3A287599801%2C294723701 : 21 May 2014), 1950 > 74601-76700 > image 303 of 2329.

Gustavus, who according to Joel’s obituary 6 was the secretary-treasurer of Tourist City Corporation in Miami when his father died in 1950, continued to live in Florida for the rest of his life. He died on November 13, 1989, in Miami, at age 85. Gustavus had not married or had children.7

An article that ran in numerous Florida newspapers revealed that Gustavus had died a wealthy man. In his early years he had invested in real estate in Miami that he sold after World War II; he had successfully invested his profits in the stock market and died with an estate worth five million dollars. He left two million dollars to the Miami Metrozoo and smaller amounts to his alma mater, Ohio State University, the United Negro College Fund, and South Miami Hospital. I found it ironic that Gustavus had done so well “gambling” on the stock market, given that his father Joel had lost his business as a young man due to gambling debts.8

As neither of Joel and Jeanette’s sons had children, there are no living descendants of Joel and Jeanette (Mendel) Basch. But their stories are not forgotten.


  1. Gustavus Basch, 1940 US census, Census Place: Dade, Florida; Roll: m-t0627-00580; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 13-22, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  2. Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946. 
  3. “Solicitor’s Body Found in Garage,” Columbus (OH) Dispatch, January 10, 1945, p. 1. 
  4. “To Miami,” Columbus (OH) Dispatch, October 2, 1945, p. 12. 
  5. “Mrs. Jeannette Basch,” Columbus (OH) Dispatch, December 27, 1947, p. 3. 
  6. “Joel Basch,” Columbus (OH) Dispatch, December 9, 1950, p. 11. 
  7. SSN: 265019585, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  8. “Frugal Man Leaves $2 Million to Zoo,” The Tampa Tribune, 25 Nov 1990, p. 29. 

Milton Goldsmith’s Family Album, Part IX: The Missing Babies

This is Part IX of an ongoing series of posts based on the family album of Milton Goldsmith, so generously shared with me by his granddaughter Sue. See Part I, Part II, Part IIIPart IVPart V,  Part VI, Part VII,  and Part VIII at the links.

After reading last week’s post about the birth records found in her grandfather’s family album and the speculation as to why only five of Abraham Goldsmith’s ten children were listed, my cousin Sue went back to the album and realized that she could remove the page with the birth records. On the back were not only birth records for Abraham’s other five children; there was also a sad entry for the death of his first wife Cecelia:

All of the birth entries again confirmed what I’d found in the official records, and once again Abraham entered not only the dates, but the times the babies were born.

For Estella, who often was referred to in records as Estelle, he introduced her as “our sixth baby.”

Then there is the heartbreaking entry for Cecelia:

My beloved wife Cecelia Goldsmith died on Sunday the 8th day of November 1874 at 6 o’clock PM after an illness of 6 days. Hebrew date [inserted in Hebrew]

May she rest in peace.

Abr.Goldsmith

Abraham’s signature here confirmed my hunch that he was the one who wrote all these entries (except the dates of death that occurred after his own death).

The next entry is for Alfred, who was Abraham’s first child with his second wife, Frances Spanier, But there is no break in the record to reflect that Alfred had a different mother from the first six children. He is introduced as “Our seventh boy” [emphasis added], despite the fact that he is the first child of Frances. You may notice that Alfred is the only one on this page who has a date of death.  That’s because those dates were entered by Milton, and the other four on this page—Estella, Bertha, Alice, and Louis—all outlived Milton.

Similarly Bertha is introduced as “Our Baby Bertha.” Then Abraham records the birth of “Baby Alice,” and finally the last child, Louis Seligman. At the end of the entry for Louis, Abraham wrote, “Louis Spanier his [?].”

Can anyone decipher what that says? From a later page in the album I learned who Louis Spanier was—Frances Spanier’s uncle—so Louis Goldsmith’s great-uncle. But that does not say “great-uncle” or “namesake” as far as I can tell.

And I got quite a kick out of the last word on this page: Finished. I don’t know whether Abraham wrote that to indicate the records were now completed or to emphasize that he was ready to be done having children after Number 10!

 

Lena Goldsmith Basch, Final Chapters: Frank and Hinda

In 1930, four of Lena Goldsmith’s six children were still living—Frank, Hinda, Joel, and Joseph. They ranged in age from Joseph at 63 to Frank at 73. Their children, Lena’s grandchildren, were all adults by 1930. In fact, by 1930 Frank had five grandchildren himself, and one more would arrive in the 1930s. Joel and Joseph would also have grandchildren born in the 1930s. And there were also more marriages among the grandchildren in the years that followed.

The next three posts will conclude the saga of the Basch family of Columbus, Ohio. This post will complete the stories of Frank and Hinda; Joel and Joseph will be discussed in subsequent posts.

Frank Basch’s family

Lewis Basch, Frank and Freda (Rosenthal) Basch’s son, married Maryleone Freund on June 30, 1931. Maryleone was the daughter of a rabbi, Charles J. Freund, and Elizabeth “Bertie” Oberdorfer. She was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, on November 29, 1910, but also lived in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In 1930 she was living with her parents in Toledo, Ohio.1

Lewis Basch, marriage record, “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939L-FZFC?cc=1614804&wc=Q6SP-NLG%3A121350601%2C123701101 : 15 July 2014), Franklin > Marriage index and records 1935-1937 vol 108 > image 208 of 330; county courthouses, Ohio.

After marrying Lewis, Maryleone completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio State University. Lewis and Maryleone would have two children in the 1930s.

U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012″; Yearbook Title: The Makio; Year: 1932
Ancestry.com. U.S., School Yearbooks, 1900-1990

Just three months after her brother Lewis’ wedding, Coryne Basch, Frank and Freda’s daughter, died at age 33 from appendicitis on September 27, 1931.  According to her death certificate, Coryne was the owner of a kindergarten. Coryne was survived by her parents, her sisters Rae and Ruth, and her brother Lewis. She had never married or had children.

Coryne Basch, death certificate, Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:X6HL-K9C : 8 March 2018), Coryne Basch, 27 Sep 1931; citing Columbus, Franklin, Ohio, reference fn 53945; FHL microfilm 1,992,473.

Frank Basch died on January 5, 1934, in Columbus, from coronary disease and hypertension. He was 76 years old. With his death, only three of his siblings remained.

Frank Basch, death certificate, Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-6QM9-HSN?cc=2128172&wc=7DZ2-PQB%3A1296032501%2C1296824302 : 2 October 2014), Franklin > Death certificates, 1926-1927 > image 1504 of 3280; county courthouses, Ohio.

In 1940, Frank’s three surviving children were all living in different places. Lewis and his family were living in Bexley, Ohio, a suburb less than four miles east of Columbus. Lewis was a dentist in private practice.2 His sister Rae was living with her family in Chillicothe, Ohio, fifty miles south of Columbus; her husband Sidney Katz continued to be a clothing merchant.3  Ruth and her husband Sigmund Front and their children were living in Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1940, where Sigmund was managing an electrical supply store.4 Sigmund’s 1942 World War II draft registration revealed that he was no longer working in his father’s Front Company business, but for Westinghouse. I could not locate Freda Rosenthal Basch, Frank’s widow, on the 1940 census.

Sigmund Front, World War II draft registration, The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; WWII Draft Cards (Fourth Registration) for the State of West Virginia; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975; Record Group Number: 147; Series Number: M1937, Ancestry.com. U.S., World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942

Rae Basch Katz lost her husband Sidney six years later. He was 57 years old when he died on July 6, 1946.5 She outlived him by 23 years; she died on October 25, 1969, at the age of 73.6 Rae and Sidney were survived by their three daughters.

Freda Rosenthal Basch died on September 16, 1954, twenty years after her husband Frank. She was 85 years old.7

Ruth Basch Front’s husband Sigmund died in Wheeling, West Virginia, on November 2, 1960. He was 66.8 Ruth later moved to Florida, where she died at age 83 on June 1, 1988. Ruth and Sigmund were survived by their two sons.9

Tragically, Lewis Basch lost his son Richard, who, like his father, was a dentist, on July 3, 1970, when Richard was killed in a car accident after his car crossed the median on the Kentucky Turnpike and struck another vehicle. Richard was only 33 and was survived by his wife and two children.10

Lewis Basch and his wife Maryleone remained in the Columbus area, and Lewis died there on July 5, 1986, when he was 86 years old.11 He was survived by his wife Maryleone, who died at 90 on February 14, 2001, in Columbus.12 Their daughter survived them as well as their grandchildren.

Hinda Basch

In 1940 Hinda Basch was living alone in Columbus without an occupation.13 She died four years later on June 23, 1944, from hypostatic pneumonia and myocardial degeneration. She was 83. She was survived by her brothers Joel and Joseph and a number of nieces and nephews. She had no direct descendants.

Hinda Basch, death certificate, Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-9PKP-W466?cc=1307272&wc=MD9X-TP8%3A287599501%2C294550101 : 21 May 2014), 1944 > 36501-39300 > image 1707 of 3268.


  1. State File Number: 2830A, Ancestry.com. Utah, Birth Certificates, 1903-1911. Charles Freund and family, 1910 US census, Census Place: Salt Lake City Ward 5, Salt Lake, Utah; Roll: T624_1607; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0142; FHL microfilm: 1375620, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census  Freund family, 1930 US census, Census Place: Toledo, Lucas, Ohio; Page: 15A; Enumeration District: 0080; FHL microfilm: 2341570, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census 
  2. Lewis Basch and family, 1940 US census, Census Place: Bexley, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: m-t0627-03068; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 25-1, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  3. Sidney Katz and family, 1940 US census, Census Place: Chillicothe, Ross, Ohio; Roll: m-t0627-03138; Page: 18A; Enumeration District: 71-22, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  4. Sigmund Front and family, 1940 US census, Census Place: Wheeling, Ohio, West Virginia; Roll: m-t0627-04436; Page: 6B; Enumeration District: 35-37, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 
  5. Ancestry.com and Ohio Department of Health. Ohio, Death Records, 1908-1932, 1938-2007 
  6.  Certificate: 202624; Volume: 90023, Ancestry.com and Ohio Department of Health. Ohio, Death Records, 1908-1932, 1938-2007 
  7. Ancestry.com. Web: Columbus, Ohio, Green Lawn Cemetery Index, 1780-2010; Original data: Green Lawn Cemetery Burials. Columbus, Ohio. Joe and Dick Fleshman. http://greenlawn.delaohio.com/greenlawn/Greenlawn/index.htm: accessed 09 February 2012. 
  8. FHL Film Number: 857652, Ancestry.com. West Virginia, Deaths Index, 1853-1973 
  9. Ancestry.com. Florida Death Index, 1877-1998 
  10. “Son-in-Law of Dr. King Dies, The Newark (OH) Advocate, 09 Jul 1970, p. 22; “Dental Surgeon, Farmer Die in Separate Accidents,” The (Louisville, KY) Courier-Journal, 04 Jul 1970, p. 15. 
  11.  Certificate: 052193; Volume: 26521, Ancestry.com and Ohio Department of Health. Ohio, Death Records, 1908-1932, 1938-2007 
  12.  Certificate: 010106; Volume: 32734, Ancestry.com and Ohio Department of Health. Ohio, Death Records, 1908-1932, 1938-2007 
  13. Hinda Basch, 1940 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: m-t0627-03244; Page: 81A; Enumeration District: 93-119B, Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census 

Lena Goldsmith Basch’s Grandchildren Reach Adulthood

As seen in my last post about the Basch family, the children of Lena Goldsmith Basch suffered two losses in 1915. Their brother Jacob died on April 5, 1915, and Ella’s husband Isidor Shatz died seven months later. But not all the events of the 1910s were sad ones.

On February 5, 1917, Lena and Gustavus Basch’s oldest granddaughter, Frank’s daughter Rae, married Sidney Katz in Columbus.  She was twenty years old, and he was 28.

Ancestry.com. Ohio, County Marriage Records, 1774-1993

Sidney was born in Ohio on January 13, 1889,1 and grew up in Cincinnati, where in 1900 he was living with his widowed mother, Dina Bing Katz, and siblings.2 Sidney’s father Henry Katz had died when Sidney was just ten on December 24, 1899.3 Both of Sidney’s parents were German immigrants. In 1910, Sidney was living with his mother and sister in Cincinnati, working as a traveling millinery salesman.4

Rae and Sidney settled in Chillicothe, Ohio, about fifty miles from Columbus, where their first child, Dorothy Basch Katz, was born on March 19, 1919.5 In 1920 they were still living in Chillicothe, and Sidney was working as a dry goods merchant.6 Rae and Sidney had a second child, Jean, born on June 19, 1920,7 and then a year later a third daughter Frances was born on November 5, 1921.8

Rae’s younger brother Lewis served in World War I. He enlisted on October 18, 1918, when he was just eighteen. He was discharged two months later after the war ended.9 In 1920 he was back in Columbus, living with his parents Frank and Fred and his sisters and attending Ohio State University. According to the 1920 census, no one in the household was employed.

Frank Basch, 1910 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 3, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1180; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 0057; FHL microfilm: 1375193
Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census

Joel’s son Sidney Basch also served in World War I. He served from November 1917 until April 25, 1919.10 In 1920, he also was safely back home and living with his parents Joel and Jeanette and brother Gustavus. Joel was still in the tobacco business, and Sidney was a clerk in the industrial slate business.11

In 1920, Joseph Basch and his wife Ida were living with their twins, Elene and Joseph, Jr. Their father Joseph, Sr., was working with his brother Joel in the tobacco business.12

The two sisters, Hinda and Ella, were living together in 1920. Neither had children, and neither was working. The bequests left by their brother Jacob (and perhaps by Isidor Shatz also) must have left them sufficiently comfortable that they did not need other income.13

Thus, as of 1920, the surviving five children of Lena Goldsmith and Gustavus Basch were all living in Columbus, Ohio.

The 1920s brought another marriage and more children to the extended family. On March 9, 1925, Frank and Freda (Rosenthal) Basch’s youngest child Ruth married Sigmund S. Front in Columbus.

Ancestry.com. Ohio, County Marriage Records, 1774-1993

Sigmund was born on November 4, 1893, in Krakow, Poland, to Henry Elias Front and Rose Thieberger.14 He immigrated with his mother and siblings in August, 1899, joining his father who was already here.15 By 1901 the family was settled in Wheeling, West Virginia, where his father was working as a laborer in a brewery in 1910.16 In 1920 Sigmund was living with his family and working, along with his brothers, as a salesman for the gas and electric supplies business now owned by his father in Wheeling and known as The Front Company.17

Their wedding received a lovely detailed write-up in the Columbus newspaper, which also reported that they would be living in Wheeling after their honeymoon:

Columbia (OH) Dispatch, March 10, 1925, p. 16

Wheeling is about 130 miles east of Columbus, Ohio, and I have no idea how Ruth and Sigmund met. After marrying and settling in Wheeling, they had two sons born in the 1920s. In 1930, Ruth and Sigmund and their children were living in Wheeling, and Sigmund was now the secretary of the Front Company, according to the census, although the 1930 Wheeling directory lists him as its president.18

Meanwhile, Ruth’s father Frank Basch and his wife Freda and their two unmarried children, Coryne and Lewis, were still living in Columbus in the 1920s. Lewis studied dentistry at Ohio State University graduating in 1925,  and then he served in the dental reserves.19 In 1930, Lewis was living with his sister Coryne and his parents in Columbus where he was practicing dentistry. He was the only family member with an occupation listed.20

Frank and Freda’s oldest child Rae, who had married Sidney Katz in 1917 and moved to Chillicothe, Ohio, was still living with Sidney and their three daughters in 1930. Sidney was a clothing merchant.21

As for the other Basch siblings, the 1920s were relatively quiet. Joel Basch and his family continued to live in Columbus. In 1926, Joel purchased for investment a building in Columbus, perhaps with his inheritance from his brother Jacob.22 In 1930, Joel was still in the tobacco business and living with his wife Jeanette and sons Sidney and Gustavus in Columbus. Sidney was working as a clerk in a finance company and Gustavus as a salesman in a furniture store.

Joel Basch, 1930 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Page: 13A; Enumeration District: 0042; FHL microfilm: 2341530
Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census

The youngest brother Joseph and his wife Ida were also still in Columbus during the 1920s. Their daughter Elene was studying at Smith College in the 1920s,23 and her twin brother Joseph was a student at Ohio State University.24  In 1930 both Joseph and Elene were living at home in Columbus, where their father continued to work in the tobacco business with his brother Joel. Neither Elene nor Joseph, Jr. was employed.25

There also do not appear to have been any noteworthy events in the lives of the two sisters, Hinda Basch and Ella Basch Shatz, during the 1920s. Ella, however, was not destined to enjoy the next decade. She died on January 29, 1930, from heart failure; she was sixty-four. According to her obituary, she had been a social worker, although I never saw any indication of that on any of the census records.26 She had been a widow for almost fifteen years and had no children who survived her. Under the terms of her brother Jacob’s will, the property that she had inherited from him now passed to her sister Hinda. Hinda continued to live in Columbus in 1930.27

“Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-D4LQ-GG4?cc=1307272&wc=MD96-DN5%3A287601401%2C287598802 : 21 May 2014), 1930 > 00001-02900 > image 2674 of 3183.

There were now four remaining siblings left in the Basch family: Frank, Hinda, Joel, and Joseph, all living in Columbus, Ohio. By 1940, there would only be three left.


  1. Sidney Katz, World War I draft registration, Registration State: Ohio; Registration County: Ross; Roll: 1851088, Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 
  2. Sidney Katz, 1900 US census, Census Place: Cincinnati Ward 2, Hamilton, Ohio; Page: 3; Enumeration District: 0017; FHL microfilm: 1241274, Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census 
  3. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/156611817 
  4. Sidney Katz, 1910 US census, Census Place: Cincinnati Ward 2, Hamilton, Ohio; Roll: T624_1188; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 0023; FHL microfilm: 1375201, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 
  5. SSN: 300184495, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  6. Sidney and Rae Katz, 1920 US census, Census Place: Chillicothe Ward 1, Ross, Ohio; Roll: T625_1431; Page: 10A; Enumeration District: 132, Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census 
  7. Ancestry.com. U.S. Public Records Index, 1950-1993, Volume 1 
  8. Ancestry.com. Ohio, Birth Index, 1908-1964 
  9. SSN: 273365982, Branch 1: ARMY, Enlistment Date 1: 18 Oct 1918, Release Date 1: 11 Dec 1918, Ancestry.com. U.S., Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010 
  10. Ancestry.com. Ohio Soldiers in WWI, 1917-1918. 
  11. Joel Basch and family, 1920 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 5, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T625_1381; Page: 3B; Enumeration District: 96, Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census 
  12. Joseph Basch and family, 1920 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 4, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T625_1381; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 86, Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census 
  13. Hinda Basch and Ella Basch Shatz, 1920 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 7, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T625_1381; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 138, Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census 
  14. SSN: 233053103, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 
  15.  The National Archives at Washington, D.C.; Washington, D.C.; Records of the US Customs Service, RG36; NAI Number: 2655153; Record Group Title: Records of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1787-2004; Record Group Number: 85, Ancestry.com. Baltimore, Passenger Lists, 1820-1964 
  16. Wheeling, West Virginia, City Directory, 1901, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995. Sigmund Front, 1910 US census, Census Place: Wheeling Ward 7, Ohio, West Virginia; Roll: T624_1692; Page: 15B; Enumeration District: 0108; FHL microfilm: 1375705, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 
  17. Sigmund Front, 1920 US census, Census Place: Wheeling Ward 7, Ohio, West Virginia; Roll: T625_1966; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 102, Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census 
  18. Sigmund Front and family, 1930 US census, Census Place: Wheeling, Ohio, West Virginia; Page: 13B; Enumeration District: 0036; FHL microfilm: 2342284, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census 
  19. “Play Will Open Graduation Days at University,” Columbus Dispatch, Friday, Jun 12, 1925, Page: 6. “More Reserve Officers,” Columbus Dispatch, Wednesday, Jul 15, 1925 Columbus, OH Page: 5. 
  20. Frank Basch and family, 1930 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Page: 3B; Enumeration District: 0044; FHL microfilm: 2341530, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census 
  21. Sidney and Rae Katz and family, 1930 US census, Census Place: Chillicothe, Ross, Ohio; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 0021; FHL microfilm: 2341599, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census 
  22. “Store Building Sold,” Columbus Dispatch, June 13, 1926, p. 27. 
  23. Columbia Dispatch, December 28, 1924, p. 30 
  24. School: Ohio State University, School Location: Columbus, Ohio, USA, Yearbook Title: Makio Yearbook, “U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012”; Yearbook Title: Makio Yearbook; Year: 1926 
  25. Joseph Basch, 1930 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Page: 22A; Enumeration District: 0029; FHL microfilm: 2341529, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census [Elene is listed a number of lines below her parents and brother on the page.] 
  26. “Mrs. Ella Schatz, Social Worker, Passes Away,” Columbus Dispatch, January 30, 1930, p. 2 
  27. Hinda Basch, 1930 US census, Census Place: Columbus, Franklin, Ohio; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 0056; FHL microfilm: 2341528, Ancestry.com. 1930 United States Federal Census  

Milton Goldsmith’s Family Album, Part VIII: Birth Records

This is Part VIII of an ongoing series of posts based on the family album of Milton Goldsmith, so generously shared with me by his granddaughter Sue. See Part I, Part II, Part IIIPart IVPart VPart VI and Part VII at the links.

This record of the births of five of the children of Abraham Goldsmith and Cecelia Adler touched my heart.

I love the florid old script.  Who wrote these entries? Was it Abraham or Cecelia? I wasn’t sure at first, but I was reassured by this record that all the dates I had for the births (and deaths) of these five children were correct.  I loved that the writer added the time of birth, giving a personal touch to the facts.

For the first two entries, there are also Hebrew inscriptions. Thank you to Tracing the Tribe for helping me with these.  For Milton, it says “Mendel Goldsmith born 12 Sivan  5621.” Milton had mentioned on an earlier page that Mendel was his Hebrew name given to him in memory of his maternal grandfather.

The second entry is for Hildegard or Hilda, as she was called on the records I found. How sweet to see the formal name her parents gave her. Hilda died two months before her fourteenth birthday, as I wrote here and as noted on this record. Looking at this entry more carefully, I noted that whoever wrote the entry for her death had also written the entry for her birth.  It is the same handwriting.  And since her mother Cecelia had died in 1874, two years before Hilda died on June 7, 1876, that means that Abraham wrote this entry and all the other birth entries on this record.

No one on Tracing the Tribe was able to translate the Hebrew inscription for Hildegard except to say that it also states her birth date. Her Hebrew name was not legible. I guess Abraham’s Hebrew writing had deteriorated between Milton’s birth and Hilda’s. And the fact that he did not include any Hebrew for the next three children’s birth records may be a sign of his assimilation into secular American society.

It’s also interesting to see how Abraham introduced these entries.  Milton was “our boy.”  Hildegard was “our daughter.” Edwin has no descriptive introduction, nor does Emily, but Rosalinda is “our fourth baby.” (I also never knew that Rose was formally named Rosalinda—what a beautiful name!) I wonder whether Abraham wrote each of these at the time the baby was born or all at once. Since some of these have introductions and others do not, I think each was done separately when each baby was born.

For the last three entries—for Edwin, Rosalinda, and Emily—someone other than Abraham inscribed the information about their deaths. I assume Milton added this information as he outlived all three of those siblings. And there is no death date added to the entry made for Milton.

What is perhaps most perplexing about this page from Milton’s album is the absence of an entry for Abraham and Cecelia’s sixth child, Estelle. Estelle was born on January 20, 1870. Had Abraham lost interest in recording his children’s births by the time his sixth child was born? Or was there a second page that included Estelle (and perhaps Abraham’s four children with his second wife Frances Spanier) that somehow was lost and thus not included in Milton’s album?

 

A Brother’s Will: A Caring Sibling

By 1910, Lena Goldsmith and her husband Gustavus had passed away, but they were survived by their six children and by nine grandchildren—Frank’s four children, Joel’s three children, and Joseph’s two children. All their children and grandchildren were living in Columbus, Ohio, except for their daughter Ella, who was living with her husband Isidor Shatz in Findlay, Ohio.

Two members of the family died in 1915. First, Jacob Basch died at age 56 from a cerebral hemorrhage on April 5, 1915. He had been suffering from chronic nephritis and myocarditis. His brother Joel was the informant on the death certificate.

Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HT-62VC-K3N?cc=2128172&wc=7DZ2-PQ7%3A1296032501%2C1296751602 : 2 October 2014), Franklin > Death certificates, 1915, no 1-1803 > image 995 of 1856; county courthouses, Ohio.

Jacob had never married and had no descendants, but he left a very long and very detailed will, and it is clear from reading it just how close-knit these siblings were. Jacob provided for all five of his siblings and named all three of his brothers to be the executors of his will. It is obvious that he gave a lot of thought to how he wanted his assets divided.

 

I, Jacob Basch, of the city of Columbus, county of Franklin and state of Ohio, do make this my last will and testament, hereby revoking any and all former wills by me heretofore made:

ITEM I. I direct that all my just debts and funeral expenses be paid out of my estate as soon as practicable after the time of my decease.

ITEM II. I give and bequeath to the National Jewish Hospital for Consumptives in Denver, Colorado, the sum of one thousand dollars ($1000.00).

ITEM III. I give and bequeath to the United Jewish Charities of Columbus, Ohio, the sum of five hundred dollars ($500.00).

ITEM IV. I give and bequeath to my brother Joseph Basch, in trust, the sum of five thousand dollars (5000.00) upon the following trust and purpose, to-wit: to construct and erect, at a cost not to exceed the sum of five thousand dollars ($5000.00) an income producing structure upon the plot of ground described and delineated as lot seventy-six (76), Sullivan’s Addition to the city of Columbus, Ohio, being the piece of ground hereinafter devised to my brother Joseph Basch for and during his natural life, and upon his death, to his children, share and share alike absolutely and in fee simple. I direct that the trust fund provided for in this Item of my will be raised by the sale of such amount of my said securities as shall be necessary. In the event that said structure shall not cost the sum of five thousand dollars ($5000.00), the balance of said trust found shall be distributed among my brothers and sisters, share and share alike.

ITEM V. I give and bequeath to my brother Frank Basch an equal one-fifth (1/5) part of my personal property remaining after the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses and the legacies mentioned in Items II and III of this my last will and testament and the setting aside of the trust fund provided for in Item IV of this my last will and testament.

ITEM VI. I give and bequeath to my brother Joel Basch an equal one-fifth (1/5) part of my personal property remaining after the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses and the legacies mentioned in Items II and III of this my last will and testament and the setting aside of the trust fund provided for in Item IV of this my last will and testament.

ITEM VII. I give and bequeath to my brother Joseph Basch an equal one-fifth (1/5) part of my personal property remaining after the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses and the legacies mentioned in Items II and III of this my last will and testament and the setting aside of the trust fund provided for in Item IV of this my last will and testament.

ITEM VIII. I give and bequeath to my brother Joseph Basch in trust the remaining two-fifths (2/5) part of my personal property remaining after the payment of my just debts and funeral expenses and the legacies mentioned in Items II and III of this my last will and testament and the setting aside of the trust fund provided for in Item IV of this my last will and testament, to be held and used by him during the lives of my sisters Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz and during the life of the survivor of them, upon the following trust, to-wit: To invest and re-invest the proceeds of said personal property in United States, state or municipal bonds or in first mortgages upon improved city real estate, and to pay each of my said sisters Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz during their lives an equal one-half (1/2) of the net income of said investments, and after the death of one of my sisters to pay all the income of said investments to the survivor of them.

After the death of my said sisters Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz and the survivor of them, I give and bequeath said principal sum herein provided to Joseph Basch in trust of my said sisters, to my brothers Frank Basch, Joel Basch and Joseph Basch, share and share alike. In the event of the death of either or any of my said brothers before the death of the survivor of my said sisters Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz, then the share of said principal which would have been received by said deceased brother, if living, shall be distributed among his children, then living, share and share alike.

ITEM IX. In the division of my personal property bequeathed in Items V, VI, VII and VIII of this my last will and testament, I direct that the then value of my personal property be first ascertained and that a sufficient amount in cash to pay the legacy bequeathed to my brother Joseph Basch in trust for my sisters Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz and the survivor of them, be raised by the sale of such amount of my securities as shall be necessary.

I further direct that my said legatees Frank Basch Joel Basch and Joseph Basch may retain by way of investment any securities belonging to my estate at the time of my death, dividing said securities amongst themselves in such manner as to carry out the provisions of Items V, VI, and VII of this my last will and testament. In the event that my said legatees Frank Basch, Joel Basch and Joseph Basch can not agree as to the manner of division of such securities, then I direct that my executors shall sell all of said securities and apportion the proceeds in the manner directed in Items V, VI, and VII of this my last will and testament.

In the event of the death of my said trustee, Joseph Basch, I then appoint my brothers Frank Basch and Joel Basch and the survivor of them to act as such trustees and trustee, with full power to carry out the provisions of said trust.  I further direct that said trustees and trustee shall be bound by the limitations imposed upon my said trustee, Joseph Basch, as to the manner of investing said trust fund.  It is also my will that all future trustees who may be appointed to carry out the provisions of the within trust be likewise bound by said limitation as to the manner of investing said trust fund.

ITEM X. I give and devise to my sister Hinda Basch for and during her natural life my residence property known as 438 East Rich Street, Columbus, Ohio. From and after the death of said Hinda Basch I give and devise said property herein devised to her for and during her natural life to my brother Joseph Basch for and during his natural life. From and after the death of my said brother Joseph Basch, I give and devise said property herein devised to him for his natural life to his children, share and share alike absolutely, in fee simple.

I give and bequeath to my sister Hinda Basch absolutely all furniture, books, pictures and household effects which at the time of my decease shall be in, about or belonging to my aforesaid residence.

ITEM XI. I give and bequeath to my sister Hinda Basch an annuity of twelve hundred dollars ($1200.00) per year, for and during her natural life, payable on the first day of each and every month, and the payment of the same is hereby made a charge upon the realty hereinafter devised to my sister Ella Schatz, for and during her natural life. It is my will and I direct that said annuity of twelve hundred dollars ($1200.00) per year shall be a first and best lien on said real estate hereinafter devised to my said sister, Ella Schatz, for and during her natural life, and in the event said premises shall be destroyed by fire or rendered unfit for habitation so that the income derived from said real estate shall not be sufficient to pay said annuity, then in that event said annuity shall be paid out of the fund or funds realized from the fire insurance on said real estate. It being my will that in any and all events my said sister, Hinda Basch, shall receive an annuity of twelve hundred dollars ($1200.00) per year payable out of the real estate, either income or principal, hereinafter devised to my said sister, Ella Schatz, for and during her natural life.

In the event of the death of my said sister, Hinda Basch, before the death of my said sister, Ella Schatz, it is my will and I so direct, that my said sister Ella Schatz shall enjoy all of the net income of my said real estate hereinafter devised to her for and during her natural life.

ITEM XII. I give and bequeath to my sister Ella Schatz, for and during her natural life, subject to the annuity hereinbefore bequeathed to my sister Hinda Basch, all my real property, except my residence property hereinbefore devised to my sister, Hinda Basch.

My said devisee Ella Schatz shall keep the buildings upon said real estate in good repair and insured against loss by fire, and shall pay for such repairs, premiums of insurance, taxes and charges of every kind which may be lawfully claimed against said real estate. In case of loss by fire or other damage to such buildings and houses, I direct that my said devisee, Ella Schatz, shall rebuild and repair such property and pay for such rebuilding and repairing from the funds received for insurance.

In the event of the death of my said sister, Ella Schatz, before the death of my sister Hinda Basch, then in that event I give, devise and bequeath all of said real estate herein devised to my sister Ella Schatz, for and during her natural life, to my sister Hinda Basch, for and during her natural life.

Last will and testament of Jacob Basch, Will Records, 1805-1918 ; Index, 1805-1905; Probate Place: Franklin, Ohio,  Will Records, Vol Mm-Oo, 1915-1917,
Ancestry.com. Ohio, Wills and Probate Records, 1786-1998

ITEM XIII. After the death of my sisters, Hinda Basch and Ella Schatz, and survivor of them, I direct that my real property be divided as follows: [Each brother is then devised a specific property for their use and benefit during their lives and then to their children.]

ITEM XIV. I make, nominate and appoint my brothers, Frank Basch, Joel Basch and Joseph Basch, to be the executors of this my last will and testament, and I request that no bond be required of them as such executors. I also request that no bond be required of any of the trustees expressly mentioned in this will. In the event of the inability of death of my said executors, or any of them, the duties of said executorship shall be performed by the survivors or survivor of them.

Dated at Columbus, Ohio, this 29 day of March A.D. 1913

                                                            Jacob Basch

Signed by Jacob Basch and by him acknowledged to be his last will and testament in our presence, sight and hearing, who at his request have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses in his presence and in the presence of each other, at Columbus, Ohio, this day of A.D. 1913

[names of witnesses]

 

A few observations about this will:

Jacob was apparently quite a well-to-do man, having not only what appears to be a fair amount invested in securities but also substantial real estate holdings. He also had a very sophisticated and specific plan for how he wanted his assets distributed. He appears to have had a slight bias in favor of his youngest sibling Joseph—giving him a special bequest of $5000 to build an income-producing building in addition to the bequest of his one fifth of the residual estate and naming him as the trustee of the trusts for his sisters Hinda and Ella and as their successor in interest after both had died. But overall he provided in his will for all five of his siblings and for his nieces and nephews.

Just seven months after Jacob’s death, his sister Ella lost her husband Isidor Shatz. Isidor was 67 and died on November 18, 1915 from paralytic ileus (an intestinal obstruction) and the suppression of urine followed by uremia. Joseph Basch was the informant on his death certificate. And although Isidor and Ella had been living outside of Columbus for all their married years, Isidor was, like Jacob and his parents, buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus.

“Ohio Deaths, 1908-1953,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-GPFX-SYCQ?cc=1307272&wc=MD9F-XTL%3A287601901%2C294657901 : 21 May 2014), 1915 > 57771-60750 > image 2547 of 3300.

Ella then returned to Columbus and was living with her sister Hinda at 438 East Rich Street, the long-time family residence that Jacob had bequeathed to Hinda. From there  Ella was also in a better position to maintain the real estate that Jacob had left to her.

The Family of Lena Goldsmith Basch 1900-1910: A Tight Circle in Columbus

As of 1900, Lena Goldsmith Basch was living with her husband Gustavus and two of her adult children, Jacob and Hinda, in Columbus, Ohio.  Two of her other children—Frank and Joseph—were also still living in Columbus with their families. And the final two of her six children—Joel and Ella—were living with their families in Findlay, Ohio. Gustavus and Lena had five grandchildren in 1900—Frank’s three children and Joel’s two sons.

On June 27, 1901, Gustavus Basch died in Columbus at the age of 76. According to the Franklin County Record of Deaths, his cause of death was gastroenteritis from which he’d been suffering for six weeks.1

A year and a half later on January 24, 1903, the family suffered a tragic loss when four-year-old Robert Basch, the son of Joel and Jeanette Basch, died.2 According to the February 5, 1903 issue of the local Findlay newspaper, The Weekly Jeffersonian (p.7),  little Robert died from Bright’s disease or what we would now call nephritis—kidney disease. Both Gustavus and Robert were buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus.

Joel and Jeanette then had another child. Gustavus Mendel Basch was born on April 3, 1904, in Findlay, Ohio.3 He was obviously named for his recently-deceased grandfather. He was not the only grandchild born in this decade. Frank and his wife Freda had a fourth child, Ruth, born May 14, 1905.4 And Joseph and his wife Ida had twins born on April 5, 1906: Elene Rosalie Basch5 and Gustavus Joseph Basch,6 who like his cousin Gustavus Mendel Basch, was clearly named for his grandfather. (Joseph’s son later dropped the first name Gustavus and was known as Joseph, Jr.)

And who was Elene Rosalie named for? Sadly, her grandmother Lena Goldsmith Basch died just two weeks before Elene and Gustavus were born, and Elene must have been named for Lena. Lena was 80 years old and died from cerebral sclerosis from which she’d been suffering for five years, according to her death certificate. She was also buried at Green Lawn Cemetery in Columbus.

Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F6VT-TY1 : 10 March 2018), Lena Basch, 26 Mar 1906; citing Death, Columbus, Franklin, Ohio, United States, source ID 1906 v 2 fn 176, County courthouses, Ohio; FHL microfilm 2,032,443.

The March 27, 1906 issue of the Findlay (OH) Weekly Courier gave more insight into Lena’s demise:

“Died Friday in Columbus,” The (Findlay, OH) Weekly Courier, March 27, 1906, p. 2

Lena and Gustavus were survived by all six of their children and their grandchildren.

Aside from these births and deaths, the years between 1900 and 1910 were relatively quiet ones for the Basch family.  The directories for 1900-1902 show that Frank and Jacob continued to do business as Basch Brothers and Joseph and the mysterious Louis Basch continued to work at Levy Mendel & Co. In 1903, Frank was now associated with Rosenthal Bros. and Basch, his brother Jacob’s listing merely says “junk,” and Joseph and “Louis” were still at Levy Mendel. The 1904 and 1905 directories are the same, except Louis is missing from the Basch group. In fact, Louis never appears again. Given that Lena was ill for some time before she died in 1906, this seems to support my hypothesis that “Louis” was in fact Lena.7

Columbus, Ohio, City Directory, 1903
Source Information
Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995

Not long after his mother’s death in March, 1906, Joel moved back to Columbus. He sold his business in Findlay “at a great sacrifice” in order to return to Columbus, as reported in the Findlay Courier-Union on April 13, 1906 (p. 8); his father-in-law Levy Mendel had died just a month before Lena—on February 10, 1906,8 and apparently with the demise of both his mother and his father-in-law, he was needed back in Columbus to help run Levy Mendel & Company.

“National Buys Basch Stock,” The (Findlay, OH) Courier-Union, April 13, 1906, p. 8

Here is an advertisement that reveals the size and extent of Joel’s business in Findlay. He clearly had recovered from his earlier business failure caused by gambling:

Hancock County (OH) Herald, April 20, 1906, p. 10

Joel is listed in the 1906 Columbus directory, working for Levy Mendel & Co.; his brother Joseph was also still working there as he had been for a number of years.9

The 1906 Columbus directory raised another question for me. Frank is no longer listed with Rosenthal Bros. and Basch and in fact has no occupation listed at all. In 1907 he and Jacob now both have “junk” listed as their occupation, but in 1908 Frank again has no occupation listed though Jacob still lists junk as his occupation. The same is true for 1909 and for 1910.10

In fact, on the 1910 census, Frank reported that he had not worked for the entire year. Was he ill? Or had he just retired? He was only 53 years old in 1910. But since he lived another 24 years and listed that he was retired in 1920, I am inclined to think that Frank had just taken an early retirement. His four children were still quite young in 1910—ranging from five to fourteen years old.  How fortunate he was to be able to retire and spend more time with them.

Frank Basch, 1910 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 3, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1180; Page: 8A; Enumeration District: 0057; FHL microfilm: 1375193
Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census

His brother and long-time business partner Jacob, however, continued to work in the “iron and rags” business, as reported on the 1910 census. Jacob and his sister Hinda were still living in their family home at 438 East Rich Street in Columbus. Neither ever married.11

Joel Basch continued to work at Levy Mendel & Co., the cigar company. In fact, on the 1910 census, he is reported as an employer so he must have had some ownership or management interest in the business.12

Interestingly, Levy Mendel had named Joseph Basch, not his sons or son-in-law, to be his executor of his estate.13 Joseph had worked at the company for many years and was not an heir, so presumably Levy thought he would be a fair and capable executor. On the 1910 census, Joseph is also listed as an employer at Levy Mendel & Co, so perhaps he also was a part-owner of the business.14

I was very fortunate to find an oral history interview that was done by the Columbus Jewish Historical Society with Alan Weiler, grandson of Joseph Basch, on April 8, 2008. There are other interesting parts of this interview that I may refer to in later posts, but for now, I just wanted to quote this small portion that sheds light on the business in which Joseph, Joel, and their parents Gustavus and Lena had been involved and gives a snapshot of Joseph Basch himself.

My grandfather, Joe Basch owned a tobacco and candy company near the old Union Station on North High Street called the Levi Mendel Tobacco Company. He sold candy bars, which was of course was why I went up to see him. He sold cigars, cigarettes, pipes and there was a wonderful smell about his store. …He lived to be 93. He was called “the general.” He was a very handsome man. At least in my family he was called “the general.”

Finally, the remaining sibling, Ella Basch Shatz, was living in 1910 with her husband Isadore in Findlay, Ohio, where Isadore was a clothing merchant.15 With Joel’s return to Columbus in 1906, five of the six Basch siblings were now living in the same community. Only Ella was living outside of Columbus; she and her husband Isadore Shatz were still in Findlay even after her brother Joel and his family left that city.I wonder what it was like for Ella being the only family member not living in Columbus.  And I wonder whether she spent time visiting her siblings and nieces and nephews who were living about ninety miles away.

She would, however, be moving back to Columbus in the next decade.

 

 


  1. “Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QS7-99ZB-P99X-5?cc=2128172&wc=7DZ2-P3M%3A1296032501%2C1296613814 : 30 September 2014), Franklin > Death records, 1899-1903, vol 3 > image 173 of 402; county courthouses, Ohio. 
  2. Ancestry.com. Web: Columbus, Ohio, Green Lawn Cemetery Index, 1780-2010. 
  3. FHL Film Number: 961484, Ancestry.com. Ohio, Births and Christenings Index, 1774-1973. 
  4. FHL Film Number: 285137, Ancestry.com. Ohio, Births and Christenings Index, 1774-1973 
  5.  Number: 277-34-4589; Issue State: Ohio; Issue Date: 1955, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014 
  6. SSN: 365167257, Ancestry.com. U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007. Gustavus J. Basch, 1900 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 3, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1180; Page: 6A; Enumeration District: 0059; FHL microfilm: 1375193, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census. 
  7. Columbus, Ohio, City Directory, 1901-1905, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 
  8. Ancestry.com. Web: Columbus, Ohio, Green Lawn Cemetery Index, 1780-2010 
  9. Columbus, Ohio, City Directory, 1906, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 
  10. Columbus, Ohio, City Directory, 1906-1910, Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995 
  11. Jacob Basch and Hinda Basch, 1910 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 6, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1181; Page: 6B; Enumeration District: 0098; FHL microfilm: 1375194, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 
  12. Joel Basch, 1910 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 3, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1180; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0060; FHL microfilm: 1375193, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 
  13.  Case Number: 19766, Item Description: Will Records, Vol Z, 1904-1905, Will Records, 1805-1918 ; Index, 1805-1905; Probate Place: Franklin, Ohio, Ancestry.com. Ohio, Wills and Probate Records, 1786-1998 
  14. Joseph Basch, 1910 US census, Census Place: Columbus Ward 3, Franklin, Ohio; Roll: T624_1180; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0060; FHL microfilm: 1375193,
    Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 
  15. Ella and Isadore Shatz, 1910 US census, Census Place: Findlay Ward 4, Hancock, Ohio; Roll: T624_1187; Page: 11A; Enumeration District: 0075; FHL microfilm: 1375200, Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census 

Milton Goldsmith’s Family Album, Part VII: Abraham Goldsmith and Cecelia Adler Get Married

This is Part VII of an ongoing series of posts based on the family album of Milton Goldsmith, so generously shared with me by his granddaughter Sue. See Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, and Part VI at the links.

On the page following the photographs of his parents Abraham and Cecelia, Milton included a letter written by his mother on November 5, 1857, which, according to Milton, was shortly before their engagement.

Reading this reminded me of what it was like before cheap phone calls and email made handwritten letters obsolete. When my husband and I were dating the year before our engagement, we also wrote letters back and forth. Of course, we were living several hundred miles apart (but still tried to see each other every weekend) whereas Abraham and Cecelia both were living in Philadelphia. But perhaps letters were the only places they had any ability to communicate privately.

Here is Cecelia’s letter:

Some words were cut off on the right margin and at the bottom, but I have tried to transcribe it as best I can and added some punctuation and capitalization for purposes of clarity. Cecelia was a few weeks short of her nineteenth birthday when she wrote this letter, and Abraham was twenty-five.

 

                                                                                                         Phil. Nov. 5th

Dear Ab,

The few lines you have written to me give me a great deal of pleasure, for informing me of your health & good night’s rest. I passed an excellent night as[?] my cold is a great deal better though I am rather hoarse yet.  My Dear, I forgot to give you Henrietta’s [?] shawl last night, but it will and[?] as well tonight. I would send over the boy with it, but I am afraid he can not find the place. I am obliged for sending me the book & will look through it as soon as possible. Come early this evening, if you can.

I remain yours forever,

                                                                                                         Cely

If you hear of any thing important & have time, write me a note this [?].

 

If anyone can read it any better than I did, please let me know.

Appropriately, Milton placed the invitation to his parents’ wedding on the page that followed:

Note that the invitation is dated January 1, 1858, for a wedding to take place on January 27, 1858—less than four weeks later. Today it seems that wedding invitations arrive at least two months in advance (often preceded by Save the Date cards). Also, the wedding was to take place at Cecelia’s parents’ home at 440 North Second Street in Philadelphia, not in a fancy catering hall or hotel or resort, as many are these days. Life was so much simpler back then.

But life was also so much harder. Cecelia died less than seventeen years later on November 8, 1874, from apoplexia nervosa, or a stroke. She was only 35 and left behind her husband Abraham and six children ranging in age from Estelle, who was four, to Milton, who was thirteen.