Joseph and Bessie Brotman

Joseph's headstone

Joseph’s headstone

Joseph, son of Abram and Yetta,  was born some time between 1826 and 1850 in Galicia.  His birthdate is a mystery because every census or other record has a different age.  Even his headstone and footstone are in conflict: his headstone says he waas 73 when he died; the footstone says he was 67.  On Gussie’s birth certificate in 1895, it says he was then 60; on Sam’s birth certificate five years later, it says he was then 42!  So who knows…He was married first to Chaye Gelberman, with whom he had four children, Abraham, David, Sophie and Max, born in Galicia.

Joseph's grave

Joseph’s grave

After Chaye died, Joseph married Pessel (Bessie) Broat Brotman, daughter of Joseph and Gittel Brotman.  Bessie was Joseph’s cousin.  With Bessie, Joseph had five children who survived, Chaim (Hyman, Herman) and Tema (Tilly) who were born in Galicia, and Gussie, Frieda, and Samuel, who were born in NYC.  Joseph came to the US in 1888, perhaps with Max.  Bessie, Hyman, and Tilly came in 1891 on the Obdam.


Pessl, Chaim and Tema Brodman's arrival

Pessl, Chaim and Tema Brodman’s arrival 1891

Brotman family in NYC

Brotman family in NYC

Joseph was a coal carrier in NYC.  He died in 1901, apparently of heart failure.  He was seen as a hard-working man who supported his family and rejoiced in making them happy, according to the inscription on his footstone (seen above).

Joseph came to the US from Galicia around 1888. We have located six of his children: Max, Herman (Hyman), Tillie, Gussie, Frieda and Sam

Our great-grandfather Joseph Brotman

My aunt, Elaine Goldschlager Lehrbaum, described Bessie as a sweet and soft soul who held the family together. It’s no surprise that so many of her descendants were named for her.  Her children and grandchildren all must have loved her very much.  As her headstone says, “In our hearts you live forever.”



Bessie's headstone

Bessie’s headstone

After Joseph died, Bessie remarried Philip Moskowitz in 1908 in NYC and lived with him and his children from his prior marriage and Frieda and Sam.  Bessie and Philip had lived next door to each other in the Lower East Side and were both widowed.  Bessie had diabetes and had to have a leg amputated. She died in 1934.  Philiip died January 26, 1947.

bessie philip marriage certificate


Bessie was Joseph's second wife and mother of five children

Bessie”s Death Certificate

6 thoughts on “Joseph and Bessie Brotman

  1. Pingback: Pessel bat Yosef « Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

  2. Pingback: More Manna from Heaven: Of Bessie, Joseph and the Brotmanville Brotmans « Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

  3. Pingback: Gifts from Doing Genealogy: My Wonderful Cousins « Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

  4. Pingback: Passover wishes and thoughts « Brotmanblog: A Family Journey

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