Go Back Home
Click below to view the pages for each family
Display/Hide All
 Chaiken Family of Nezhin
 Chazanov Family of Nezhin
 Fine Family of Bialystok
 Geffen Family of Vilkomir
 Goldberg Family of Jablonka
 Katz/Hollander Family
 Zavelsky Family of Glukhov
Polish Documents from the archives are available to search online. Click here
Seeing the Fine Family from the nineteenth century come alive through photographs was an emotional experience

Research for the Fine family was conducted in four different ways. It was a fascinating experience and one which yielded many rewards.

Personal Interviews
When I first started the Fine family story, I taped my mother's memoirs. My mother has a wonderful memory and she can recall facts and people from eighty years ago. It was her taped conversations that enabled me to put together the complicated family tree and relationships.

I also spoke with many other family members who verified the relationships. They told me stories and remembrances and gave me photographs. I met relatives in person that I had never known of before.

When we searched through my mother's storage room we found boxes of photographs that were brought from Bialystok by German Fain. It was these photographs that told us about my great grandfathers brothers and sisters and his parents. Each photograph was meticulously documented on the reverse side. We learned the names of his siblings, where they lived, the names of their children and facts of how they moved around during the Holocaust.

My mother's mother, my grandmother, unfortunately died at a very young age. I felt I came to know her through the pages of the photograph albums she kept. It was quite amazing to me how albums that were over 75 years old could tell a story so well and document a life. My grandmother must have loved taking photographs. She photographed all of the places she and my grandfather visited on their honeymoon. She revisited the town of Kingston, NY, where she was born and photographed it. Her albums enabled me to find the birth and death records from the town.

Polish Archival Records
Once again, the Internet was a major source for finding archival records. Almost all of the Polish documents have been entered into the JRI Index on the Jewish Gen Web Site. One can search for records for a surname. There are birth, death, marriage and census records available. We were fortunate in finding many records for our Fine ancestors.

Visiting Ancestral Towns
In 1995 we visited the three Fine ancestral towns: Bialystok, Ciechanoviec and Warsaw. Walking where your ancestors walked and seeing where they lived is to fully experience ones past history. We have been very fortunate to have learned so much about our Fine family's past.

German Fain...1891- c.1970

Minerva Lipschuz Fine...1894-1921

Vera Fine with her husband, Harry Sovel (1909 - 1957)...photo 1955