Category Archives: 1900 – 1950

A Russian Artist Leaves a Legacy

Rissa Rasnovsky was born in the late 1800s in Borzna, Russia (now Ukraine) in the Pale of Settlement. The Pale was an eastern section of Russia where the Russian Czars and government ordered Jewish people to live in. Places other than the Pale of Settlement were mostly forbidden for Jewish people to reside in, limiting the opportunities and freedom Jews ... Read More »

Tuckman and Lily Ng

              Stan Ng recalls that in his 1960s and 70s Los Angeles childhood, one of the main activities his family enjoyed was to simply get out on the open road and drive. His dad would go up and down the 101, or make his way towards Santa Monica and drive past the Hollywood landmarks ... Read More »

No Return Trip (Lithuania)

My grandmother, Fruma Dushnitzer, did not intend to become a US immigrant when she came to visit in July of 1939.  She and her 3 year old daughter Fagie, came on a ship, “The New Amsterdam”, to visit her parents in Chicago, as they had never met their granddaughter.  They had emigrated from Lithuania to Chicago in the late 1920’s.  ... Read More »

Eleven Year-Old Sweatshop Worker (Russia)

                Lena Solomon, née Hurwitz, was Russian and Jewish, and was born in 1902 in the Russian city of Pskov. Although age was rarely discussed and remained mysterious within their family, it is speculated that she must have been the third youngest sister of eight sisters who survived through infancy. Various circumstances led ... Read More »

Unsung Hero: Judge Dennis Cantrell II (Tennessee)

This is my grandfather Judge Dennis Cantrell II. I was born on June 3rd, 1919 in Gainesville Georgia. I was born into a family of 9 and poverty. Not long after I was born, my family moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, the things I saw were different than what I had saw in Georgia, or at least what I had remembered. ... Read More »

War Bride from Algeria

My great grandma’s name is Paule Lucienne Zahara Kalfon she is from Algeria her and her family were Sephardic Jews and lived there during the holocaust. I interviewed my dad about my great grandma (she goes by nana, it’s what she wanted to be called after I was born). She is my dad’s grandmother. I interviewed my Dad about her ... Read More »

Family (China)

At first, I thought it was just a cold. He had all the signs of a cold – he coughed at night, he sneezed, had headaches, had a runny nose. I urged my husband to stay home for just a day. He worked as a waiter at the Golden Pheasant at night and ran a small pharmacy during the day. ... Read More »

A Storied Life (Japan)

Only a few short months off his ninety-first birthday, sitting cross-legged in a recliner that he had owned long before my birth, my grandfather told me, “My life isn’t all that exciting.” My grandfather is a private and simple man. He is the type that would much rather spend an evening watching a baseball game with a hearty homemade dinner ... Read More »

WWI Refugee Starts Over in California (Italy)

Prologue: Battle of Caporetto, Italian military disaster during World War I in which Italian troops retreated before an Austro-German offensive on the Isonzo front in northeastern Italy, where the Italian and Austrian forces had been stalemated for two and a half years. October 1917 saw the Italian army’s disastrous defeat at Caporetto and its eventual retreat into the distant Piave ... Read More »

The World Was His Oyster (Singapore)

Carl, my Grandfather, passed away on March 14, 2015. Before then he would always tell me stories of great wisdom and symbolism. Though it wasn’t until I was older that I realized how incredible his own life story was and how it connected to these intricate tales I heard growing up. Grandpa was always a wise and honorable man, although ... Read More »

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