Thursday, August 8, 2019

I Love It When Cousins Call Me!

Ruchel Dwojre (Jaffe) Brainin,
one of the ancestors my
cousin asked me abour.
She is our great-great-grandmother.
I had a wonderful surprise on Wednesday.  Out of the blue, I got a phone call from one of my younger cousins!

He told me that his mother had given him all of the genealogy materials I had shared with her.  I haven't heard yet what prompted this, so I don't know at whose instigation this happened.  But he apparently started reading thorugh it avidly and then had lots of questions.  So his mother gave him my phone number.

We spent an hour and a quarter on the phone!  Mostly he seemed to want to know what I knew about any rabbis on the Brainin branch of my family (the line we have in common) and which members of the family were Orthodox Jews, but he also asked about anecdotes and stories, things that went beyond just the bare facts that are in the family tree information he already had.  I was able to remember lots of things (really good, since I didn't have any papers in front of me and I was totally unprepared), which seemed to satisfy at least some of his curiosity.  But some of what he asked about I still don't have answers for.  Now that someone else is asking, however, I feel a little reinvigorated about researching that line.  Maybe that was just the motivation I need to make some new discoveries!

I met this cousin and his family in person in 2013, when the IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy was held in Boston.  I actually stayed at their house for the week.  One of the amusing things about the phone call today is that my cousin didn't seem to remember having met me, even though that was only six years ago and at the time we made a big deal about the fact that we share the same birthday.  I don't feel so bad about some of my forgetfulness if someone 34 years younger than I am is forgetting things also!


  1. Isn't it fun when someone else in the family starts to get the genealogy bug? In my family, it's my son's cousin.

    1. I know! I'm so happy that someone else, and particularly a younger generation, is showing interest. Now if I could find someone for every family line . . . .


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