Joel Levinson

Genealogy Research

Kottler family, circa 1908

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All my wife Diana's family history, as compiled by her father, Donald Foster is now available on this website. The major surnames in the database include FOSTER, DWYER AND ROWLAND. This tree finds its origins in Ireland in the early 1800s, and the Netherlands as well as the United States in the early 1600s.

The transcript of an 1980 Interview with Bea Weinberg and Freeda Kottler is now online. Many thanks to our cousin, Laura Benjaminson, for doing the transcribing! It can be accessed from the main menu under "Memories of Europe".

I've just redone the "Genealogy History" section, using a different program to generate the data, and also include a tree style readout, as well as thumbnail pictures, where available. In addition, thanks to the efforts of some very nice people on Jewishgen, I've been put in touch with the decendants of David Kuperstock, who was the brother of so many of our Baskind ancestors. That information is now available on the site, so we can learn about that line of the family as well. Welcome!

Major names in this database:


Welcome to my family genealogy website. I've been researching my family for several years now, and I've found the following information:

Both my parents families came from Eastern Europe, part in what is now Belarus, and part in what is now Lithuania.

My paternal grandfather, Israel LEVINSON and his parents came Mariampol, in the Suwalki Gubernya. I've also seen documents indicating the family may have lived in Kalverija. These towns are fairly close to each other, in the Suwalki Gubernya. His wife (Rose BASKIND)and her family came from Ilya, in the Vilna Gubernia.

On my mother's side, her parents also came from what is now Belarus. My grandmother and her family (KOTTLER) came from a very small shtetl just north of Danilovichi (Varapaeva). My maternal grandfather, Samuel HURWITZ and his family came from the shtetl of Usla. I haven't been able to pinpoint it yet, but I believe that it is what is on the maps as "Udzela", which is near Minsk. His wife, who was also his first cousin Freeda KOTTLER and her family came from Varapaeva, a small town about six miles North of Dunilovichi, also in the Vilna Gubernia.

The family settled, for the most part, in Cleveland, Ohio on my father's side, and Dayton, Ohio, on my mother's side.

I have compiled a database with over 5600 names, dates, etc. I've included only the main lines directly related to me, almost 850 names. The lines related by marriage are not listed here. If you are interested in those lines, feel free to email me. There are several ways of viewing the data, described and linked below. One or two things about the way I've put this together. First, any surnames I don't know (for example, a woman's maiden name) will be in parenthesis. Surnames are otherwise in all Capitals. If I don't know either a first or last name, I have used "//" to signify that. Hence, someone may be either "Joe //" or "// LEVINSON".

I hope you enjoy looking through these pages. If you are part of my family, and we haven't been in touch, I'd love to hear from you. If I've made some errors, please email me and I'll correct them. There is an email link on each page in the database.

I've recently added a search engine, to do an ancestor search using the various databases at Check it out, let me know if you find anything new!

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