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Mystery Monday: Who was Ethel Broida Pincus?

John Jacob/Zelig Broida and his seven sons. From left- front sitting- Max,standing- Phillip, Joseph J., Morris, Louis, Theodore, Harold. Sitting on right- John J. "Zelig" Broida.
John Jacob/Zelig Broida and his seven sons. From left- front sitting- Max; standing- Phillip, Joseph J., Morris, Louis, Theodore, Harold. Sitting on right- John J. “Zelig” Broida. Taken 25 July 1930 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Click to enlarge.)

Broida Family (Click for Family Tree)

Do you see a daughter in this picture? No? Hmmm…

One of the first Broida artifacts shown to a new married-in is the July 1930 picture of John Jacob “Zelig” Broida with his seven sons. It is a wonderful picture of them all, taken on a visit John made back to the US from Palestine, where he had immigrated in 1920. (Note all the nice suits!)

Gertrude Broida Cooper, John’s granddaughter through his son Phillip Broida, mentioned a couple of times that there was talk of a sister, in addition to the seven sons, but no one knew anything about her. She obviously was not important enough be in the family picture (but sons were the most important in a Jewish family of that time), and the sister is in no other images known to the immediate family, so that was Mystery #1.

We recently found a death notice for an infant named Samuel Broida, and he was listed as a son of John and Gitel Broida. The 1900 US Federal census states that Gitel had borne 10 children, 7 of which were still alive, so could one of the other 2 children who likely died young have been the mystery daughter? (Mystery #2)

Mystery #3 is that searches for the name “Broida” often bring up a woman by the name of Ethel Broida Pincus, but no one in the immediate family knew exactly who she was or how she was related.

Mystery #4: A 1910 US Federal Census entry for 206 Hull Alley in East Pittsburgh (Ward 3), Pennsylvania, listed a ‘Jacob Broida’ as head of household, age 54, and proprietor of a clothing store. As we have seen John listed before with the name Jacob and the occupation is correct, we can assume this is the same man. A wife named Fannie, age 35, to whom he had been married 6 years seemed correct, as John’ s first wife Gitel Frank Broida died in 1901, and we knew Fannie was the name of wife #2. Fanny was 19 years younger than John if the census is correct, and pictures of them together do suggest that she was quite a bit younger. So this is consistent with known facts.The census notes this marriage as John’s second-again, consistent- and Fannie’s first, BUT- it states Fannie had 2 children, both still living in 1910. So was John her first husband, or second? Family oral history states they had no children together since they married later in life. Who are the 2 children she had per the census? New Broida researchers might think that the youngest child on the census list could possibly be Fannie’s- Theodore, at age 17 would have been born when Fannie was 18, which is plausible, but she would have been just 13 when Phillip was born.

These aren’t her children though. Many of us already knew that.

This census also included in the household five of the eight (or more) sons born to John and Gitel Frank Broida: Joseph, age 27; Louis, 25; Max, 24; Philip, 22, and Theodore, 17. Yes, this had to be ‘our’ John Broida. (See notes for the other 2 ‘missing’ surviving sons.)

But wait- here is MYSTERY #5 (capitalized because this is a biggie)- there is an “Ethel Broida” listed as a sister (which would be to John as head of household, theoretically) on this enumeration, age 49, single, and born in Pennsylvania. So if the census is correct, Ethel Broida was John Broida’s sister. Indeed, many online family trees list Ethel Broida as John Broida’s sister, probably because of this census; some instead list her as his daughter. (We’ll explain where that may have come from in a minute.)

1910 US Federal Census excerpt for 'Jacob' (John) Broida and family.
1910 US Federal Census excerpt for ‘Jacob’ (John) Broida and family. (Click to enlarge.)

The 1910 census states that John, Fannie, and Ethel were all born in Pennsylvania. The age listed for Ethel, 49, could work if she was John’s sister, since he was 54. It could also work if she was a sister to Fannie- a 14 year age span did happen with large families, BUT the census suggest Ethel’s surname was Broida, not Fannie’s maiden name (whatever that may be). Ethel, however, could NOT be John’s daughter or even Fannie’s daughter if the listed ages are correct.

The age of 49 in 1910 would place Ethel’s birth in 1861. Does the woman below look like she could have been born in 1861? Does the photo look of that era? (approx. 1900s) Doesn’t seem to be, to me.

Ethel Broida Pincus (Click to enlarge.)
Ethel Broida Pincus (Click to enlarge.)

Mystery #6- John Broida’s obituary after his death on 12 November 1938 lists his seven sons as surviving him, 2 brothers, and one sister, Mrs. Rachael (Broida) Goldstein (wife of Morris I. Goldstein) of Pittsburgh. No Ethel Broida is listed as a sister or a daughter, but Ethel was still alive in 1938.

Mystery #7- The obituary for John Broida’s son Joseph J. Broida on 26 Dec 1958 lists his brothers Theodore and Morris as surviving him, and along with those siblings, “Mrs. Ethel Pincus of Miami.” So this is why some researchers list Ethel as a daughter of John Broida, instead of a sister.

 

Confused yet? (Yep.) Maybe a bit crazy? (Definitely.)

So what is the solution to these mysteries? Is there another sister to John Broida, or a daughter?

Research over the years has only found a few pieces of information about who we believe is this same Ethel Broida. She does have an entry on the MyHeritage website, and it and other research indicates she married a Jacob Mordechai Pincus (1880-1956).

1920_0200_PINCUS_Jacob M_passport picture
February 1920 passport picture of Jacob M. Pincus. via Ancestry.com.

It is highly unlikely that Jacob would have married a woman born in 1861- she would have been 19 years older- and that they would have had three sons, beginning when she was age 51. Again, the age on the 1910 census has to be wrong if they are the same person.

Jacob and Ethel Pincus had three sons:

Irwin Jacob Pincus, 1912-2000, married Lena L. Magaziner; he was a physician in Beverly Hills, California;

Bernard B. (or E.) Pincus, 1914-2001, born Pennsylvania, died in Southfield, Michigan;

Max J. Pincus- possibly born as Jacob M. Pincus Jr.? Born about 1923, died 1987 in Detroit, Michigan. May have married Lois Padover per Ancestry.com members.

In his obituary, Jacob Pincus is noted as having married “the former Ethel Broida.”

11 Apr 1956 Obituary of Jacob M. Pincus, Philadelphia Inquirer, page 23, columns 1-2. Posted with kind permission of fultonhistory.com.
11 Apr 1956 Obituary of Jacob M. Pincus, Philadelphia Inquirer, page 23, columns 1-2. Posted with kind permission of fultonhistory.com. (Click to enlarge.)

The Social Security Death Index listed Ethel Pincus as being born 26 December 1892 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She died 13 Sep 1973 in Beverly Hills, California, per the SSDI.

The naturalization papers of Ethel’s husband Jacob Pincus state that she was born in Ostrow, Russia but other records, such as census, state Pennsylvania; Jacob Pincus was also born in Russia. If this is the same Ethel Broida as in the 1910 census with John Broida’s family, she would have actually been 18 at the 1910 census, using the SSDI birth date. She could still be Fannie Broida’s sister, but questionable as to John’s since he was 54, unless Ethel was from a second marriage of his father to a much younger woman. (Such a marriage is not known for John’s father, Joseph Broida.) Additionally, for Ethel to bear two children that were still living in 1910 when Ethel was just 18 does not seem likely, though it was possible, so again, most probably some of the 1910 census information is in error.

The obituary for Mrs. Jacob Pincus, of Beverly Hills, California (where her son Dr. Irwin J. Pincus lived) stated that she was the “former Ethel Broida,” and listed their three sons by name.

 

So more data was needed. A marriage license has not been found for John and Fannie Broida, and we still do not know her maiden name, nor very much about her at all. We now think they were in Pittsburgh when they decided to marry, rather than when they lived in Florida; neither place has a marriage record that we have been able to find online. Dead end there after a lot of searching over the years- for now, anyway.

OK, how about a marriage record for Ethel Broida and Jacob Mordecai Pincus? Not an easy find there, either, but if it listed her parents, it would be a winner. The search continued…

MyHeritage.com was helpful in having the 15 Aug 1911 engagement notice of ” Miss Ethel Broida of East Pittsburgh and Mr. Jacob Pincus of Monessen…” The article continues: “Miss Broida is the daughter of Mrs. J. Broida….The marriage will be an event of the early fall.”

Oh my- this Ethel is the daughter of the wife of a J. Broida, and from East Pittsburgh. There were a number of J. Broidas in Pittsburgh during these years, but could it be our John/Jacob/Zelig Broida? Ethel was living with John & Fannie Broida in East Pittsburgh for the 1910 census one year earlier- could this be our solution?

Then, of course, the great research find happens in the wee hours when there is no one around to proclaim the exhilaration to, and do the happy dance, with, (note second line below):

Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 1, via Ancestry.com.
Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 1, via Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)
Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 2, via Ancestry.com.
Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 2, via Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)
Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 3, via Ancestry.com.
Marriage record of Ethel Rubinstein to Jacob M. Pincus in Delaware, 06 Sept 1911, part 3, via Ancestry.com. (Click to enlarge.)

So Jacob M. Pincus, age 30, born in Russia and a merchant in Monessen, Pennsylvania, married Ethel Rubenstein, age 20, born in Russia but residing in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The record gives Jacob’s parents as Isaac Pincus and L. Freeman, and other research verified that. Thus this has to be the Jacob we are seeking, and the wedding date was confirmed by other researchers (though the license has not been shown on any family group records I have seen).

Did you notice the interesting part- the Happy Dance inspiration?

The bride’s name was Ethel Rubenstein.

The bride’s parents were Jacob Cohen and Fanne Robenstein.

Lightbulb moment- Is Fanne Robestein/Rubenstein the second wife of John Broida?

And how did those names work out? Was Fannie first married to Jacob Cohen, and then he died (or they divorced, etc.), and Fannie married a Rubinstein (marriage #2), then Ethel took that name? Or was Mr. Cohen a bad memory and Fannie reverted to her maiden name of Rubinstein, giving that to Ethel as they started a new life?

Is there a sibling somewhere for Ethel, since the 1910 census noted that Fannie had two children who were still living of the two born to her?

And then, when Fannie married John Broida, she became the “Mrs. J. Broida” listed as Ethel’s mother in the engagement announcement. Note that there is no father of the bride listed- his absence is suspicious; even if Fannie had remarried he might have been mentioned if he had taken an active role in his daughter’s life.

So here is a solution hypothesis for your consideration:

Ethel Cohen was born to Jack Cohen and Fannie Rubinstein (maiden name or a second marriage name?) 26 December 1892 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Ethel Cohen’s name was changed at some point to Rubinstein- whether by her mother’s next marriage or if her mother reverted to her maiden name at some point. (There is also the possibility that Jack and Fannie were not married thus the child took the mother’s name, but highly doubtful in that era/ group of people.)

Ethel’s mother Fannie married John Jacob Zelig Broida after his first wife died, and when she assumed his surname, so did her daughter, who became Ethel Broida. She would have been the step-sister to all seven living sons. Because Ethel lived with the family at least in 1910, she was probably treated like a sister in the household.

15 Aug 1911- engagement to Jacob Mordechai Pincus announced; fall ‘event’ planned.

Ethel and Jacob decided to elope and marry in Delaware. (There is no date of registration prior to the marriage, so it may have been a spur-of-the-moment event.)

07 Sep 1911- Ethel Broida and Jacob Mordechai Pincus marry in Delaware.

For a marriage license, however, Ethel likely needed to use her legal name, Rubenstein. Perhaps that is why they traveled to Delaware to marry- so announcements would not mention her real name or biological father?

Son Irwin J. Pincus born in 1912.

Son Bernard B (or E.) Pincus born in 1914.

Son Jacob M. Pincus, Jr/ Max J. Pincus born about 1923.

He husband Jacob was the founder and President of Pincus Brothers, a clothing manufacturer in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Jacob belonged to Temple Beth Shalom in Pittsburgh. (We might be able to gather more information from them about Ethel as she likely was a member as well.)

Jacob M. died 08 Apr 1956 in Miami, where they had a second home.

Ethel moved to Beverly Hills, California to be near her son Irwin.

Ethel Cohen Rubinstein Broida Pincus died 13 Sep 1973 in Beverly Hills, California.

What do you think?

 

 

Next time: a most interesting document that more clearly delineates the relationship of Ethel Broida to John Broida. Of course, it has been in my possession for a while… Just have to wait until the genealogical muses sing before one can see the connections, sometimes.

 

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

1) 1910 US Federal Census for John Broida, listed as ‘Jacob Broida’-

Year: 1910; Census Place: East Pittsburgh Ward 3, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: T624_1293; Page: 21A; Enumeration District: 0064; FHL microfilm: 1375306

2) Morris Broida, in 1910, at age 14, was still living with his father’s cousin Jacob Broida in St. Louis, where he had gone at age 4 when his mother became ill and moved to Denver, where she died of tuberculosis. Harold, who had gone to Denver as the baby of the family, was 13 in 1910, and apparently was sent to live with their St. Louis relatives after the death of Gitel- he was only 4 when she died in 1901. They are listed as ‘nephews’ to Jacob Broida and his wife Anna, but Jacob was actually a cousin to John Broida. See 1910 US Federal Census- Year: 1910; Census Place: St Louis Ward 4, Saint Louis City, Missouri; Roll: T624_812; Page: 23A; Enumeration District: 0064; FHL microfilm: 1374825.

3) 1910 US Federal Census for Jacob Broida (a cousin of John Broida) in St. Louis, Missouri-

Year: 1910; Census Place: St Louis Ward 4, Saint Louis City, Missouri; Roll: T624_812; Page: 23A; Enumeration District: 0064; FHL microfilm: 1374825

4) 1900 US Federal Census for John Broida and family-

Year: 1900; Census Place: Denver, Arapahoe, Colorado; Roll: 120; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0126; FHL microfilm: 1240122

5) “Engagement of Local Man” in the Daily Independent, Monessen, Pennsylvania, 15 Aug 1911, Vol. 10, No. 59, Page 1, Column 6, via MyHeritage.com.

6) Delaware marriage record for Ethel Rubinstein and Jacob M. Pincus-

Ancestry.com. Delaware Marriage Records, 1806-1933 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010. Original data: Delaware. Delaware Vital Records. Microfilm. Delaware Public Archives, Dover.

 

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The Real Max Broida, AKA Buster Brodie


John Broida and Sons 25 July 1930 Pittsburgh PA

Broida Family (Click to see family tree)

The real Max Broida, also known as “Buster Brodie” on stage (See “Talented Tuesday- Max Broida-Now Starring as Buster Brodie“), was the third of ten children born to Zelig/John Jacob Broida and his wife, Sarah Gitel Frank Broida. John and Gitel were immigrants, born in Eišiškes, Salcininkai, Lithuania (also known as Eishyshok, Poland or Russia) in the late 1850s. John came to the US in 1874, and Gitel in 1881, the same year they married. (We don’t know if the plan was for John to come first and get established, then bring over Gitel, or if John had traveled back to his homeland and asked her to join him and marry, or if they met in the US.) Max was born 11 October 1885 in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

Max Broida, circa 1894. Cropped from family portrait.
Max Broida, circa 1894? Cropped from family portrait. (Click to enlarge.)

Max was brought up in Pittsburgh, which had a flourishing Jewish population.  There were many Russian immigrants too, so they would have had some sense of ‘home.’ John had a very strong Yiddish accent even into the 1930s, per his grand-daughter, so Max probably spoke Yiddish, and maybe knew Hebrew as well. Max’s younger brother Samuel Broida, born in 1889, died in 1891 at the age of 2 years, 9 months; two other siblings died young. By 1897, with the birth of Max’s youngest brother Harold H. Broida, it was a family of seven sons. They seemed to have moved fairly frequently but stayed in Pittsburgh, where the family of nine was living at 1102 Fifth Avenue in 1899.

The year 1900, when Max was 14, was a difficult year. The family had moved to Denver, Colorado by 07 June 1900 when the census was taken- but only part of the family was in Denver. John, Gitel, their oldest son Joseph Jacob Broida, and youngest son, Harold H. “Harry” Broida were with them. There were four boarders in the home, but their other five sons could not be found in the census.

Much research over many years culminated in us learning that Gitel had died of pulmonary tuberculosis in Denver. So dear Max and four of his brothers had been separated from their mother for almost a year, maybe two years, and she likely died tragically without all her children by her side. Her body was returned to Pennsylvania for burial, where all her sons could pay their last respects. (See posts listed in notes below for details.)

But where had Max been during those years? We finally realized that the school-age sons had been placed with relatives while Gitel and John were in Denver. Max, who was enumerated as “Moros” (so we initially thought it was his brother Morris listed, but the age was wrong) and with an earlier birthdate (August 1885) along with his older brother Louis, age 16, were living with their paternal aunt, Kate Broida York, and her family in the Carnegie Borough of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. They were noted as nephews, and their nine cousins, ranging in age from 27 to 3, were living in the household as well. Kate’s husband Joseph York was a dry goods merchant, and his two oldest sons, as well as Louis, may have worked in the store with him. Max and the other children likely helped out at the store when they were done with their schoolday.

In 1910, the John Broida family was enumerated mostly together again. Max, age 24, was living with his father, who had remarried about 1904 to Fannie __, plus an ‘aunt’ Ethel (may not be actually related but was treated like a sister), and his brothers Joseph, Louis, Phillip, and Theodore. Max’s youngest brothers, Morris, age 14, and Harold, 13, had continued living in St. Louis, Missouri with their ‘uncle’ Jacob, who actually was their father’s cousin. There are family stories that some of the boys were not very happy in their temporary homes after Gitel’s move to Denver and her subsequent death. It must have been a very hard time for a close-knit family to be separated.

Max, Phillip, and Theodore were listed as laborers in a shop in the 1910 census, with Louis listed as a clerk in a clothing store, and Joseph a merchant. Their father was the proprietor of a clothing store, so it is possible that some or all of the sons worked for him. They might also have worked for Frank & Seder, a Pittsburgh department store. Their mother’s maiden name was Frank, many Broidas worked in the Frank & Seder stores, and the families socialized together as well.

Max Broida 1916
Max Broida at the wedding of his brother, Theodore “Dave” Broida on 20 Aug 1916 in Denver, Colorado. (Click to enlarge.)

We do not know what happened next, or when for Max Broida. His oldest brother Joseph married about 1906, Phillip in 1910, brothers Louis and Morris both about 1913, Theodore married in 1916, and Harold about 1918. The above picture is from the wedding portrait of Theodore Broida and Lucy Shatzke in Denver, Colorado, on 20 Aug 1916- perhaps Max was the Best Man?

Max’s father, John/Zelig Broida, and his wife Fannie emigrated to Tel Aviv, Israel, in September of 1920. He did come back to visit at least once, in June of 1937. Hopefully Max was able to see his father at that time. Zelig died in 1938, in Israel.

The obituaries for Max in the Los Angeles Times and in Variety tell us that Buster Brodie, Max’s stage name, was an original ‘Buster Brown,’ and he toured the country advertising Buster Brown shoes, possibly even working in plays as Buster Brown. He also worked in the circus, maybe as a clown (did he run away from home to join the circus?), and vaudeville as well before he began his film career in the mid-1920s. Film was the new medium and Buster Brodie was in silent films and then graduated to the talkies when they began. We know he was in a silent short in 1925, and was still acting in movies in 1947. There are a few years that we do not know what he was in- 1929, 1930, 1936, 1939, and 1948, the year of his death. It is hard to see how he could have supported himself some years, with so little work produced. (The years noted on his filmography are the years the picture was released, so he may have worked more hours than it appears.) Buster/Max may have needed to work a second job, as so many actors must do to pay the bills.

Documenting Max or Buster is difficult in Los Angeles. There was a ‘Max M. Brodie,’ salesman, listed as a Republican and living at 651 W. 42nd Place, in Los Angeles in the 1916 California Voter Registrations. Could this be our Max Broida, working while trying to break into film?

‘Max Buster Brodie’ was listed as a salesman in the 1924 California Voters Register for Los Angeles, living at 1020 W. Pico St., and registered as a Republican. (Note the new middle name.)

Next we find ‘Buster M. Brodie’ at 2603 W. Pico St., working as an actor, and noted as a Republican in the 1928 California Voters Register. Buster/Max was not listed in 1929-1931, but then we find him listed with the same name (‘Buster M. Brodie’) and address in the 1932 Los Angeles City Directory. He was also listed that year in the Voters Register, at 1843 W. 6th St.; he declined to state his political party.

Interestingly, the ‘Max M. Brodie,’ salesman, from 1916 was listed in 1932 at 1043 W. 6th St., and a Republican. He also was listed in years between, and a Mrs. Elizabeth J. Brodie, a housewife and Republican, lived at the same address for many of those years. No one has found evidence that Max ever married. Mrs. Brodie was also listed in the Voter’s Registration book after Buster died in 1948, as was ‘Max M. Brodie.’ Names have sometimes been continued on the voter’s roles after death, or is this evidence that they are not the same man?

Another intriguing bit of information: ‘Max M. Brodie’ lived at 1043 W 6th St in 1932, and ‘Buster M. Brodie lived at 1843. In 1936, Buster M. Brodie, actor, was living at 1043 W 6th St, where Max M. lived 4 years earlier. Is this a joke these guys/this guy is playing on future family historians? One would think the Voter Registration Books would get it correct, but Max was an actor, and who knows how many personas he could have presented? Or perhaps the imagination rambles too far…

Buster M. Brodie, actor, was found in the 1939 Los Angeles City Directory at 5640 Santa Monica Blvd. That is the address of the El Cortez Hotel, where he was a resident for many years. Buster died there on 09 April 1948. His close friend Chester Conklin, himself a comedian, found Buster, who died of a heart attack at age 61. (Chester is an interesting person- his fourth marriage was to a woman he met in the home for elderly actors- he was 79.)

Buster Brodie/Max Broida obituary in the Los Angeles Times, 09 Apr 1948.
Buster Brodie/Max Broida obituary in the Los Angeles Times, 09 Apr 1948. (Click to enlarge.)

Buster Brodie was buried in Pierce Brothers Valhalla Memorial Park, North Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, in Lot 5, Section 7690, Memorial G. He is listed on Find A Grave in the ‘Famous’ section.

Buster Brodie/Max Broida obituary in Variety, 14 Apr 1948.
Buster Brodie/Max Broida obituary in Variety, 14 Apr 1948. (Click to enlarge.)

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

1) 1899 Pittsburgh, PA City Directory: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

2) 1900 US Federal Census for John Broida: Year: 1900; Census Place: Denver, Arapahoe, Colorado; Roll: 120; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0126; FHL microfilm: 1240122. Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

3) Posts that detail more of the Denver story:

http://heritageramblings.net/2015/02/02/matrilineal-monday-where-were-the-children-of-sarah-gitel-broida-in-1900/

http://heritageramblings.net/2015/02/06/friday-follow-up-death-record-of-sarah-gitel-frank-broida/

http://heritageramblings.net/2015/02/11/wordless-wednesday-mortuary-record-for-sarah-gitel-frank-broida/

4) We have not seen information on any census as to name or sex of the unknown sibling, but the 1900 US Federal Census states that Gitel had borne 10 children.

5) 1900 US Federal Census for Max and Louis Broida, Joseph York, head of household- Year: 1900; Census Place: Carnegie Ward 1, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1366; Page: 2B; Enumeration District: 0354; FHL microfilm: 1241366. Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004.

6) 1910 US Federal Census for Jacob (John) Broida, head of household- Year: 1910; Census Place: East Pittsburgh Ward 3, Allegheny, Pennsylvania; Roll: T624_1293; Page: 21A; Enumeration District: 0064; FHL microfilm: 1375306. Ancestry.com. 1910 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2006.

7) Los Angeles City Directory, 1939- Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

8) California, Voter Registrations, 1900-1968 on Ancestry.com.

9) An image of 5640 Santa Monica Blvd.- not a very good part of Los Angeles these days.

https://www.google.com/maps/@34.090766,-118.312778,3a,75y,182.9h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sTdOrFA4ii0KG0oLcVNsxPQ!2e 

9) Chester C. Conklin (1886-1971) was a comedian who acted in silent films as well as talkies- over 280 of them. He created a character and broke into vaudeville, then minstrel shows and circuses as a clown. He may have met Buster Brodie in one of these venues, or they may have met out in Hollywood. Conklin became one of Charlie Chaplin’s ‘Keystone Kops’ and they became lifelong friends.  Both Chester and Buster worked in many studios, and both with the Three Stooges (though in separate shorts). Conklin was married four times- his last in 1965 when he was 79, she 65; they both were living at the Motion Picture Country Home and Hospital. Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chester_Conklin

10) See also “Talented Tuesday: Max Broida-Now Starring as Buster Brodie”- http://heritageramblings.net/2015/04/07/talented-tuesday-max-broida-now-starring-as-buster-brodie/

11) Again, a special thanks to Frank Reighter, who shared the above obituaries and other information about Buster’s career.

 

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Original content copyright 2013-2015 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

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Wednesday’s Child: The ‘Missing’ Children of John and Sarah Gitel Broida

 

1900 US Federal Census excerpt for John Broida and family, Denver, CO
1900 US Federal Census excerpt for John Broida and family, Denver, CO. (Click to enlarge.)

Broida Family

A previous post, entitled Samuel Broida- An Unknown Son of John Zelig Broida and Gitel Frank? posed the question of the parents of a young Samuel who is buried in the family plot. At the time of writing that post, I did not go to each of the US Federal Censuses, but should have at least looked at the 1900 census for the family. In that census, Gitel was still alive (she died in 1901) but the census asks “Mother of how many children?” and then “Number of these children living?” While looking for some other information this past week on that census, I noticed that Gitel’s entry states that she was the mother of ten children, with only seven still living. This helps to explain some of the gaps in childbearing.

The 1900 census states that John and Gitel had been married 19 years, so that would put their marriage in 1881. Son Joseph Broida was then born in 1882, Louis Broida in 1884, and Max Broida in 1886. Phillip E. Broida was born in 1887, and Samuel Broida, who likely was their child, in 1889. There was then a gap before Theodore “Dave” Broida’s birth in 1893, and another gap before Morris Broida was born in 1896. Their last son, Harold, was born in 1897, when Gitel was 38 years old. Thus there may have been children born about 1891 and 1894-5, but they didn’t survive. We will need to search for burial information in Beth Hamedrash Hagodol-Beth Jacob Cemetery, McKees Rocks (Allegheny County), Pennsylvania for these dear little ones.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

1) Previous post about young Samuel Broida: http://heritageramblings.net/2013/11/20/samuel-broida-an-unknown-son-of-john-zelig-broida-and-gitel-frank/

2) 1900 US Federal Census for John Broida, Head of Household, in Denver, Colorado: Year: 1900; Census Place: Denver, Arapahoe, Colorado; Roll: 120; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0126; FHL microfilm: 1240122

 

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Copyright 2013-2015 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 
Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright of our blog material.

 

Sentimental Sunday: Rose Broida and Samuel Pollock

Wedding of Rose Broida and Samuel Pollock, 10 March 1907
Wedding of Rose Broida and Samuel Pollock, 10 March 1907

From left to right:

Front Row: Abraham Pollock, Belle __, Esther Pollock, Jacob Broida (Rose’s father), and his wife Sara __, unknown.

Second row: Louis Pollock, Rose Broida, the bride, and her groom Samuel Pollock, Ida Pollock, and unknown.

Third row: Ben Pollock, Samuel Broida, and Max Broida.

Mystery Monday- Gitel/Gertude (Frank) Broida

Sarah Gitel Frank holding baby- possibly Theodore? Son Philip standing to the right of her, husband John sitting. The other 3 boys are probably Joseph standing, Louis in center, and Max sitting on right.
Sarah Gitel Frank holding baby- possibly Theodore? Son Philip standing to the right of her, husband John sitting. The other 3 boys are probably Joseph standing, Louis in center, and Max sitting on right.

Broida Family-

The lack of knowledge concerning the death date, place, and final resting place of  a woman who bore 10 children and now has countless great-great-grandchildren has always puzzled me. Gitel, as she was called by the family, seemed to have just faded away. I have searched on and off through the years, hoping that more would be available to help find this dear woman. Finally, there is, though not all questions are answered- yet.

One big clue was a transcription from The Jewish Criterion of 1 May 1936, page 22:

J. J. Broida for two sets Chumoshim and Machseirim in memory of his mother,
Sarah Gitel Broida and wife, Fannie Broida.

 

“J. J.” would be Joseph Jacob Broida (1882-1958), who married Fannie Glick. This notice told me that Gitel’s formal first name was “Sarah.”

Then I started thinking about information I had found for a ‘Sarah G. Broida”- I had not known who that was until I started comparing what I knew about Gitel and what I was seeing about Sarah. They were the same person!

Family oral history was that Gitel died at age 39 of tuberculosis, so I had surmised her death year as being 1898. We knew she had passed away sometime between the birth of their last son, Harold (25 Dec 1897), and the time that John “Zelig” remarried in 1904. The date given for Sarah G’s death on JewishGen.org was 14 Apr 1901, so it fit within the parameters. Sarah G. was buried in Beth Hamedrash Hagadol Cemetery in McKees Rocks, Pennsylvania, as was the Broida’s little son Samuel who died at just 2 years of age. (See Samuel Broida- An Unknown Son of John (Zelig) Broida and Gitel Frank?) Hmmm, the evidence is increasing…

A most intriguing part of this search was that we found “Gussie”, John, their oldest son Joseph J., and youngest son Harold (See Harold and Leah (Schreiber) Broida of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), in Denver Colorado for the 07 Jun 1900 US Federal Census. They were not just visiting, as John was employed as a merchant in dry goods, and Joseph was working as a clerk in a clothing house; they also had a husband, his wife, and the couple’s two children boarding with them in their rented home. As John’s wife was listed as “Gussie,” I initially thought maybe he had already remarried. Checking the census entry further revealed that he had been married to his wife “Gussie” for 19 years, so the woman had to be Gitel. The census also listed that “Gussie” had borne 10 children but only 7 were still living, which lends credence to the find about baby Samuel. The family was listed as living at 1655 Eliot in the 1900 Denver City Directory, and again in 1901, same residence, but John was working in men’s furnishing goods at a business at 1628 Latimer.

Why were they in Denver, Colorado??? John and family had always worked in the clothing business, and had lived in or near the city. As one family member put it, “… I can’t picture Zelig out on the wild frontier.” But cool, pure mountain air was considered a cure-all at the turn of the 20th century. During the late 1800s and early 1900s, hundreds of ‘sanitariums’ and hospitals were started in the mountains, touting all sort sof health benefits in their advertising throughout newspapers and magazines. Maybe Zelig and Gitel had moved out to Colorado to ‘find the cure’ for the cough that Gitel had that eventually became tuberculosis. They would probably have taken their oldest son to help the family with income and caring for the youngest son and Gitel, if she was already ill.

Did Gitel die in Colorado? Death certificates were not required in Colorado until 1900, but that was not enforced until 1925. Denver was in Arapahoe County until 1902, so if Gitel died in 1901, her death may be recorded in Arapahoe rather than Denver County; I have a query out to the Vital Records Department. Or did she choose to go home to see her other children, once she knew she was not getting better in Colorado, and then die in Pittsburgh? Pittsburgh did not start recording deaths until 1906, so we cannot learn the answer there. Jewish customs dictate that it is important to honor the dead by burying them as quickly as possible, so this seems to me the more likely scenario. What do you think? Any cousins out there who can help us answer these remaining questions?

 

Notes, Sources, and References:

1) 1900 US Federal census for Gussie and John Broida: Source Citation: Year: 1900; Census Place: Denver, Arapahoe, Colorado; Roll: 120; Page: 5B; Enumeration District: 0126; FHL microfilm: 1240122. Ancestry.com. 1900 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2004. Accessed 11-19-2013.

2) Denver, CO City Directory, 1900 and 1910: Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

3) Lest one think that genealogy is just a matter of entering a few names and shaky leaves will tell you everything else, here is just a partial list of records reviewed in one afternoon of searching for Gitel’s death date and burial place (Indexes & websites searched for Gitel’s grave, all accessed 11-25-2013.):

Find A Grave: findagrave.com

Denver Obituary Indexes 1900-2000

Denver Area cemeteries: http://history.denverlibrary.org/research/denver_cemeteries.html

Riverside in Denver: http://www.block12riverside.com and http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~coadams/riverside/b.htm

All Adams Co. Cemeteries listed at http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~coadams/index.html#query (contains a portion of Riverside cem, and was part of Arapahoe Co. prior to 1902)

Fairmount Cemetery @ http://www.fairmount-cemetery.com. Removals from the Hebrew Burying and Prayer Ground were re-interred in the Emanuel Sections of Fairmount. Their website does not indicate any Broidas buried there, but I have a query out to them.

Denver Public Library Digital Collections: http://digital.denverlibrary.org/cdm/search

4) PA Dept of Health death Indices: http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt?open=514&objID=1085804&mode=2

 

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Copyright 2013 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.