Albert Weissenberg: 12th August 1850 to 5th February 1920
We found out about Albert when Malgosia helped us to find Leopold’s birth certificate. Albert’s signature is clearly visible in the image extracted below.
Obviously, at this distance, we will not be able to find out very much about great-grandfather Albert, but we do have some pieces of information from the various certificates that have been found.
Albert was born in Alt-Tarnowitz, in (the region of) Kreis Tarnowitz. Sławek, who kindly sent us the copy of Albert’s death certificate, tells me this is now called Stare Tarnowice, and is part of Tarnowskie Góry. Albert’s parents were innkeeper Markus Weissenberg and his wife Dorothea Weissenberg, geb. Panofsky (or Panofski). Their last known residence was in Tarnowitz/Tarnowskie Góry. (For the source of this information, see Albert’s death certificate at the bottom of this page).
We looked up Albert’s details in JewishGen Online and found the following entry and image.
Thus, Albert is confirmed as being born on 12th August 1850, and his birth was registered on 19th August.
And after this amazingly quick ‘find’, we then noticed that Albert was not the only junior Weissenberg to have been born in that generation …
Albert Aron Weissenberg had siblings: Heimann, born on 26th April 1848. The birth was registered on 15th May.
Then we found Eduard Eber Weissenberg, born in May 1853.
Sadly, Eduard only lived for a few months, and the following entry is his death certificate entry and image, below. He died in October 1853.
Then there was another little boy – Siegfried, born in 1855, as shown in the two images below. He was born on 20th October, and his birth was registered on 12 November 1855.
And finally, as far as I have been able to find, there was a little boy called Hermann, for whom there is only a death certificate, because he only lived for a short time. There probably wasn’t time to register the birth.
Albert Weissenberg was an Eisenbahngehilfe – a helper on the railways – or a wagon master/railway official. We know this because it is noted on his son’s death certificate, extracted below.
As far as I have been ascertain from Wikipedia, there was an Upper Silesian Railway, the Oberschlesische Eisenbahn AG. It connected Breslau with Myslowitz. The first section opened in 1842 and the company then merged with the Prussian state railway in 1883.
A typical timetable is shown below. Even a cursory peruse of the family place names in this website will suggest that this was the line Albert was likely to have worked on, although I cannot be sure.
We now know from Albert’s death certificate (image extracted below) that Albert and Bettina owned an apartment in Beuthen (now Bytom) – number 16 Virchowstraße.
We can be fairly sure that Albert and Bettina owned this property because it passed to great aunts Hedel and Clara after their parents died. They are listed as living there in 1937 in the Beuthen Adreßbuch for that year, for example.
When we visited Poland in May 2016, we found the apartment, which can be seen in the photograph below. The whole block has clearly been renovated recently and looks really smart.
When we visited Poland in December 2016, we went to the Bytom New Jewish Cemetery (the town was called Beuthen and was in Germany when our family were living there). We had found a record (see below) at JewishGen Online for a grave in Bytom for Albert Weissenberg and his wife, Bettina (geb. Pinoff).
Eve, a remarkable and kind woman who looks after the cemetery, showed us a book that lists all the known graves among the several thousand there. Our entry is shown below.
It was a bitterly cold day, but among the remaining snow on the ground, and among the fallen leaves, was indeed the gravestone of my great grandparents – Albert and Bettina.
The gravestone gives us another piece of information about our great grandfather Albert – his Hebrew name was Abraham.
Which, as this is probably as far back as we’re likely to get, seems an excellent name for our family patriarch.
Update May 2017
Albert’s is shown below, and an English translation follows.
C. Number 240
Beuthen, O/S., on February 6 1920
In front of the signing civil registrar, businessman Leopold Weissenberg – not known to the registrar, appeared in person, with an identification card,
Living in Tost, Kreis (in the region of) Gleiwitz
And informed that the retired wagon master, his father, 69 years old, of Jewish religion, living in Beuthen, Virchowstr. 16, born in Alt-Tarnowitz, Kreis Tarnowitz, married to Bettina, geb. Pinoff, son of innkeeper Markus Weissenberg and his wife Dorothea, geb. Panofsky, both deceased, last residence in Tarnowitz (now Tarnowskie Góry),
in Beuthen, O/s, Virchowstr. 16
on February 5 1920, at 4:45pm, has died in the presence of the person making this announcement.
Read out, authorized and signed
The accordance with the main registry is authorized.
Beuthen, on February 6 1920
Civil registrar Kaluza [Signature}
[Translated by Rüdiger Rodrigo Dikty-Daudiyan, MA in Translation & Localization Management; Member of the Federal Association of Interpreters and Translators]
Extraordinarily, this means we are now another generation back on the Weissenberg side as well – with Albert’s father’s name being given here as Markus, and his mother’s as Dorothea, whose last known place of residence was Tarnowitz.
These two certificates are what have in part enabled us to find out so much about some family members from so long ago.