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Friday, December 4, 2009

Finding an Ancestor in 1910 Census using City Directories

A query:
RE: My great grandparents, Morris (Moritz) M. and Bertha (nee Unterberger) Schultz

1900 US Census: Listed as Morris/Bertha Schutz from Galicia (Austria). He was born in July, 1864 and immigrated in 1886, living in Manhattan. (Bertha was born in about June, 1872)

1920 US Census: Listed as Morris/Bertha Shultz ( lists them as Shiltz [Shultz]) from Austria, Morris, age 53 (approx. 1867), immigrated 1888, living in Bronx.

1930 US Census: Listed as Morris/Bertha Schultz from Austria, Morris, age 63 (approx. 1867), immigrated 1887, living in Bronx.

A copy of Cedar Grove Cemetery Assoc. (Mt. Hebron section) purchase contract lists Morris as "Morris M. Schultz, aka Moritz M. Schutz", (died May 21, 1940, age 73). (Bertha died on January 27, 1947, age 74--this means she was born in about 1872-73).


1. 1910 US Census: I can't find Morris/Bertha although I have looked using *wildcard

2. Birth Information: I am looking for info. on where Morris was born, but so many possibilities came up and I don't know how to
tell, which, if any are correct. A few are listed with their resources below:

In Poland: JRI Vital Records Database (Births) I found---

a. Moritz Schutz born on Jan. 19, 1865 in Miserau (Mizerow, Poland) but I don't know if this was part of Galicia, Austria at
the time. (birth registration in Pless), and the date is too early and the month is incorrect, based on most of the info. found in the above
census information.

b. Moritz Schutz born on July 22, 1857 in Deutsch Weichsel (birth registration in Pless), but I don't know if this was part of Galicia
either and the birth date seems too far off base.

c. Moritz Max Jolles (on a couple of soundex lists, the name Jolles appears when Schultz is plugged in), born April, 1865 [Lviv PSA AGAD
births 1863-76, 1900,01]

On immigrant passenger lists I found--

a. Moritz Schutz from "Krakau, Ostereich" (Krakow, Austria) on a Hamburg passenger list on The ship was the
Wieland which departed on May 1, 1887, Hamburg to NY. He was 22 yrs. old. But when I looked at the original list his name appeared to be crossed

(In Poland: JRI, Krakow Deaths 1810-54, 69-89, I found the death of a Michael Schutz in 1870. One of Morris's sons was named
Michael, could it be he was named after this man found on this list of deaths???)

b. Moritz Schutz on the Eider, leaving Bremen, Germany on Mar. 15, 1887 to NY. But this man was only 18 years old (1869) and
he was from "Bohemia" according to the original manifest.

I'm not sure what my next step should be in my search.

Olive Tree Answer: The 1910 census is difficult to search; I estimate that at least twenty per cent of my searches in that census, no matter which index used, are futile and NYC is particularly difficult. I have however had success finding entries by using street addresses. You can obtain street addresses of the individuals by finding birth or death records, or city directories, or newspaper articles (police reports, real estate transactions, bankruptcies, etc. all reported in local newspapers.)

You can send for Morris' death certificate ( he died in the Bronx, the certificate is # 5061 ). As he died before Bertha, you may be fortunate and find that Bertha has supplied the information for that certificate.

The census indicates that Morris was naturalized around 1895: a copy of his naturalization records may supply you with the information you seek. Earlier records consist of little more than a name, and a signature or two where the prospective citizen swears allegiance to the USA, but occasionally you do hit the jackpot.

The Jewish Daily Forward (and many other resources) are available at the NY Public Library; an obituary may be found for both Morris and bertha.

Please do not go hunting for Maybe Morrises until you have obtained all the information which is available to you; that method will most certainly take a great deal of time, and what appears to be a good lead might send you off in the wrong direction.

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