Re: Surnames in Podhajce

elissa sampson

Cynthia et al,

The Brzezan discussion that is in video footage was from an interview that was made a few years ago in which Redlich was asked about his childhood after writing his book. I saw it because I was interested in the last Jewish film made in Poland right after the war. He was interviewed since he was in that film since he went to school in the orphanage that is featured in Unzere Kinder (Our Children, by Shumacher and Dzigan).

You are right about the Lower East Side. That's the place 180 Stanton Street. The Stanton Street Shul, a.k.a., Bnai Jacob, Anshei Brzezan, which can be read about at  It is now trying to raise the money to keep the building going since its walls are a mix of 1840 and 1913, and in bad shape. The Jewish zodiac drawings (mazelos) are still there, although they are also in bad shape.

Willet Street has only the Bialystoker shul left; most of the street got chopped off by urban "renewal."

From: Cynthia L. Singer
To: "podhajce@..."
Sent: Wednesday, July 4, 2012 3:01 PM
Subject: Re: [podhajce] Surnames in Podhajce

Didn't know there is video footage for the book.

My mother Bella Walfish Lacher lived with her parents Max and Ida Walfish at 66 willett St and their knish store, M.Walfish was at 237 Stanton St.
I remember going to shul a few doors away from the house on Willett Street but don't remember the name. I remember the frescoes and remember sitting upstairs.

Warmest regards,


On Jul 4, 2012, at 1:25 PM, Elissa Sampson <ejswoo@...> wrote:

I also highly recommend both the video footage and the book "Together and Apart in Brzezany" by Simon Redlich. These two communities histories have been intertwined for a long time and the War brought them abruptly together.

I am from the Stanton Street Shul, a.k.a., B'nai Jacob, Anshei Brzezan, which is about a five minutes walk from the remaining Podhacjer Shul here in the Lower East Side (see below). My name is Elissa Sampson, and I'm from the Kellner and Citron families in Podhacje. I, and one other immigrant from Podhacje, Abbie Roth who had left in the 1920s as a child, davened at the Brzezaner shul.

This is a photo of the Podhacjer Shul's Yinglish gate (the building is now a residence with apartments). It was built in 1926, a relatively late date for a Lower East Side Shul.


From: Cynthia Singer <CLS316@...>
To: "podhajce@..." <podhajce@...>
Cc: CINDY <cls316@...>; Meylakh Sheykhet <meylach@...>
Sent: Tuesday, July 3, 2012 3:33 PM
Subject: Re: [podhajce] Surnames in Podhajce

Hi all,
My name is Cindy Lacher Singer.
My maternal grandfather, Menachim Mendel Walfish was from Verbiv, and his brother,my uncle, was Shea Walfish (Wolfisch) who lived and perished in Podhajce (or more likely Berezhany) on Yom Kippur 1941. He was married to Babcia Milch.  Family lore was that he survived in the woods along with a son, returned to claim his home, and was then murdered. However, upon reading Dr. Bernard Milch's "Can Heavn Be Void" and his testimonies, I learned that Shea (his brother-in-law)was killed in Berezhany.  It is one of those mysteries of fate that my daughter and I were in Berezgany in 1996We and met a man who was willing to talk to us about the War. Later that day he assembled his entire family and told them for the first time what he had witnessed as a young boy. He spoke of how the ground moved for days and the blood flowed. We did record this but he was unwillng to provide permission to publish it. Now, I can hardly believe that I saw where, and heard from an eyewitness, about the probable slaughter of my uncle.

Other family were GGF Ohring and  Chaim Muhlstock (from Glina).

Any further information is greatly appreciated.

By the way, I am just now reading "Together and Apart in Brzezany" by Simon Redlich. It covers the period 1919-1945. Some of my curiosity pertains to what "war" my grandfather was enlisted by the Poles and endrd up in Siberia as a POW around 1920 or so. He returned to Glina (home of my grandmother  Yidis Muhlstock Walfish, where my mother was born. They also lived in Pomurin and in Peremyshliany.

On my paternal side, my Grandmother was Anna Paget from Bibrka. My grandfather was Isadore Lacher from Chororov ( or nearby).

My last visit was in 1998. However, i am in frequent contact with Meylach Schocket. Some of you also have this pleasure of knowing him. I am hoping to raise money so that the Jewish Cemetery in Glina ( Glinianny) will be protected from privatization. We worked  on getting the Bibrka mass grave protected as well.

I welcome another visit- with your group if that can be arranged.

All the best.
Cindy Lacher Singer
Westport, CT

On Jul 2, 2012, at 10:39 AM, "gwhaken" <gwhaken@...> wrote:

It has been a long time since I posted so I am repeating my info. From the LDS Podhajce film I found Jutta Hacken married to Yechil David Loewe. They had two children, Isaak Loeb b. 1876 died at age 2 and Sara Gittel born 1879 and died at 5 months. The record did tell me that Jutta's mother Shaindel Leah Hacken was the midwife. Shaindel Leah Buchwald was married to Moishe Mendel Hacken and they lived in Vishnevchik which was very close to Podhajce. Many of the Hackens lived in the area. Always glad to share what I have found.

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