Posted By Ann Rabinowitz
I was writing about an entirely different topic on The Jewish Chronicle Blog when someone asked me about British naturalizations. In responding to their question, I found some interesting data on the UK National Archives site which I thought might be helpful to JewishGenners.
Plugging in the name of GOLDBERG, I came up with 381 entries for the name regarding naturalizations. Well, this was a landfall, especially when I realized that many of the individuals were listed by their original name from “der heim” and their present name or how they were known as. This incongruity points out the tremendous difficulty in connecting with other researchers who are looking for a particular name.
The name GOLDBERG was either the original name or one that was taken by the emigrant. Alternative names given in the records were:
Besides the name change which a researcher would have to contend with, there was the fact that the GOLDBERG entries came from a wide variety of places such as from Latvia, Lithuania, the Ottoman Empire, Poland, Prussia, Romania, and Russia.
Further, if one looked at the naturalization data, there was information on where the person was resident at the time of naturalization. The majority of GOLDBERG entries were from London as well as Leeds, but were also from other locales throughout the UK such as Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leicester, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Plymouth, and smaller places such as Aston Manor, Hornsey, Leyton, Middlesbrough, Muswell Hill, and Westcliff-on-Sea.
A unique aspect was that there were a small number of Irish GOLDBERG entries as follows:
GOLDBERG, Aron, Cork, March 9, 1907
GOLDBERG, Bernard, Limerick, August 28, 1902
GOLDBERG, Jacob, Belfast, June 23, 1932
GOLDBERG, Lewis, Dublin, January 12, 1897
GOLDBERG, Louis, Limerick, August 20, 1902
GOLDBERG, Simon, Dublin, June 8 1891
GOLDBERG, William, Cork, September 16, 1904
If one looks in the 1901/1911 Irish Census, one can confirm that these names (with the exception of Jacob Goldberg) can be found living in the selfsame places as noted on their naturalization certificates. One of the names stands out though, Louis Goldberg, as it belongs to the father of the first Jewish Lord Mayor of Cork, Gerald Yoel Goldberg (1912 – 2003).
Coming to Ireland from Akmene, Lithuania, Louis settled in Limerick, Ireland, and is found there in the 1901 Census with his wife Rachel, three children, Fanny, Molly and Henry, who were born in Limerick, his mother Elie, and brother-in-law Joseph Sandler. In 1902, Louis obtained his naturalization in Limerick and in 1904 he was injured in the Limerick Pogrom. Fleeing to England, he had two more children, Nellie and Arthur, before returning to Ireland. At that point, he settled in Cork where he is found in the 1911 Census, now with three more children, Isidore, Hyacinth and Jocelyn, a nine month old son.
As this was a curious name for a Jewish child, I thought that it might be an error. To confirm who this was, I asked Irish Jewish genealogist Stuart Rosenblatt for his take on the name. Looking into his voluminous records, Stuart was able to confirm that Jocelyn was David Jacob Goldberg and that he was born June 26, 1910. His younger brother was Gerald Yoel Goldberg, the Lord Mayor, who was born April 12, 1912 and therefore was not listed in the 1911 Census.
Further information on any of the Irish Jews listed under naturalizations or other areas can be obtained from Stuart Rosenblatt. He is always happy to provide information and to receive what you may have to add to his database.
A last comment is about the first or given names of individuals in the naturalization records. Many Anglicized their names and this makes it difficult to find the exact person one is researching. This is especially if there are several Harry, Louis or other common names that are utilized. With the naturalization, at hand, the original name may be given and this solves the problem.
No telling what I will find as I troll through the Archives for information in the future.