Friday, December 1, 2017

Taking a closer look

This blog is mainly to show other genealogists how I find what I find.  But in doing so, I'm using the Cotopaxi Colony as my project.

And this morning, I made another great find to add to this story!

Here's a copy of the 1841 England Census.

On the 4th line down, I think you can see that it might be J. Lewis Harris, age 20.  However, the transcribers have it typed in as Flavie Harris.

In the top line, I think you can see Rachael Harris, age 50 and then Rachael Hart, age 80.  Again, this was transcribed as Rachael Harres, age 30 and Rachael Bart, age 30.  You would never match this up by just using an ancestry search!

Jane Harris was E. H. Saltiel's mother and is age 15 in this census.  Her brother is Judah Lewis Harris and he was age 20 at this time.

I think a rather important note is that only Flavie and Jane were listed together in this census.  So with the ages of 20 and 15, one might assume they were husband and wife.  So happy I didn't make that assumption!!!

Saltiel's grandmother was Rachel Harris, age 50 at this census and his great grandmother was Rachel Hart, age 80.  I did not have this information prior to this find.

They were living in District 6, St Bottle Without Bishopsgate, Middlesex - all now suburbs of London.

Why is this an important find?  Because I am still trying to prove the relationship of EH Saltiel to ES Hart. They would have been 2nd cousins.

This is HARD WORK!!!  Because you can't rely on transcribers, you have to widen your search, then go to the actual document and read each line.  Who knew that Flavie Harris would lead me to the census record that I needed for this family!!!

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Friday, November 24, 2017

Zadeck (Zedek) family - also spelled Zadek, Zedak, Zeedak, Zadak....

The Zedek family (Zadeck, Zadek, Zedak, Zeedak, Zadak)

I have decided to tackle each family individually and share what I have learned about them. If additional information becomes available, I’ll come back to this post and add to it.

Their name was spelled Zedek while they were in Cotopaxi, but it has evolved to Zadeck over time. Historically, names changed often until the draft for WWI which was about 1914. After that, it seems there were very few spelling changes - thank goodness!!!

Again, the first written record of the spelling we have is from Nov, 1882. Zedek.

Saltiel wrote this in a letter dated Dec 27, 1882:
Two other families, Nudelman and Zedek, will get along well, as the heads of each are fair carpenters and builders, and have industrious families.
Julius Schwartz wrote this on March 2, 1883:

The grounds must not have been so utterly worthless if it is considered, that despite of the circumstances, that potatoes were sown as late as the end of June, and despite of the heavy hailstorms and the devastations of the thousands of grazing cattle, Loeb Zedek, as he himself states in one of his letters, which I annex hereto, has taken up thirty sacks of potatoes. Zedek’s farm is located on Oak Grove Creek, on the very same mean, narrow strip of land, on which, as the two gentlemen remark, “no beast could subsist.”

In the 1925 Spivak interview it lists them as such:

Zedek, carpenter, wife and four boys. Came from Keiff, Russia.

But after 1925, it got a bit confusing. Flora Satt in her 1950 thesis on Cotopaxi, combined Zedek and Nudelman in to one person and listed them as

20. Morris ‘Zedek’ Neeleman, with his wife Rivka, four daughters. That has led to some confusion over the years for other researchers

When I started my research into each family, the first 2 places I searched were census records and immigration records. I got lucky because this family arrived on the same ship as the Shuteran, Schradsky and the Moskowitz families. This manifest lists the Zedek family as such:

Leib Zedek age 30 M born 1852

Riwke Zedek age 28 F born 1854

Baruch Zedek age 10 M born 1872

Chascha Zedek age 8 F born 1874

Jeschaja Zedek age 6 F born 1876

Isaak Zedek age 2 M born 1880

This family arrived in NYC on March 1, 1882, and had resided in Keiw, Russland, before that (Kiev, Poland, today.) They came through Hamburg and London and the ship’s name was “Gemma”.

Because families often traveled together, I have to wonder if the Shuterans, Schradskys and Moskowitz families were related. Were the wives all sisters? That’s going to be a question for future researchers to determine.

In searching the census records, I found this family residing in Chicago in the 1910 census:
Abraham L. Zadek age 60 M born 1850
Rebecca Zadek age 60 F born 1850
Benjaman Zadek age 38 M born 1872
They were living in an apartment at 2600 State Street. It tells us that she had 9 children, 4 are still living. Rebecca and Benjaman were born in Russia, Abraham L. was born in Germany. They all speak yiddish and immigrated in 1878 (a conflict with the ships manifest above). Both father and son are carpenters.

Living at 2626 State Street in Chicago, I found the Isaac Zadek family:

Isaac Zadeck age 30 M born 1880
Etta Zadeck age 27 F born 1883
Stella Zadeck age 8 F born 1902
Roseline Zadeck age 5 F born 1905

This record does not give a year of immigration. It shows that Isaac was born in Illinois, but that his father and mother were born in Russia and spoke Yiddish. Isaac started listing his first name as Edward and by the 1930 census, ha had dropped Isaac from his name.

There is a will dated 9/5/1918 showing Rebecca Zadeck’s son as Isaac. Further research of that will which is only indexed online might show her daughter’s names.

I found an Alouis Zadeck living on 2912 Calument Street in Chicago in the 1900 census. He was married to Rosa and they have a son, Benj, born 1870 in England. And a second son, James, born in 1876 in England, married to Annie Neiman. James could be Jeschaja from the ship’s manifest? And Annie Neiman could be related to the Neiman/Newman’s who lived in Cotopaxi?

The Zadeck family seems to be short lived.

Sons James and Benjamin had no children.

I can find nothing on Chascha who was a daughter.

Their son, Isaac, had 2 daughters.

Stella married Joseph Gottlieb and they had 1 child, Rochelle. I can find nothing else for her.

Rosaline may have married a Soloman. I can find nothing else for her. 

If I learn more about this family, I will update this post

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Monday, November 20, 2017

Krupitzky, Grupitzky, Kroupitsky, Ruhittsky, Grupik, Keripitzky, Krupit, Groupetzky, Kropetzky, Korpitzky, Krupit, Krup line

Yes, in researching the David Krupitzky line, there are at least that many spellings and changes to the surname!  Makes it really hard to research this family.  Not to mention that some descendants claim their ancestors were never part of the Cotopaxi Colony.

Let’s start out with the earliest record, the land deed at Cotopaxi.  This is dated June 20, 1882 and his name is listed as David Grupitzky.

There were 3 weddings in the summer/fall of 1882 at Cotopaxi.  In all 3 wedding certificates, David Grupitzky was the “minister” and he spelled his name that way.  I’ll attach one of those certificates here.  Just click on any of these documents to zoom in and look at them closer.

In the October 23, 1882 letter from Julius Schwarz to HEAS, we find the following mention of David Grupitzky:

David Grupitzky, a man who during the week, shovels the ground and carries lumber, or goes to work, while on Sabbaths he performs the duties of a reader and rabbi,

The next time we see his name is in the 1885 census and he is living in Denver, next to many of the other colonists.  This 1885 census shows his name was transcribed by the census department as being spelled Ruhittsky.  But when you look at the actual writing on the census record, it’s easy to see that it should have been spelled Rupittsky.  The “h” on th eline above is much different from the “p” in his name.

In 1887, the Denver City Directory lists him as a pedler (that matches his occupation in the 1885 census).  David Krupitzky, r, 7th, ur. Wynkoop.  That tells me he lived in the rear of the building at 7th and Wynkoop.  

In the 1888 Denver City Directory, he was a pedler living in the rear of 1628 7th street and he spelled his name Kroupitsky.

In 1890, he spelled his name Krupitzky and was now and Expressman living at 111 Market Street in Denver.

We find the same spelling, occupation and residence in the 1891 and 1892 directories.

Oral family history states that he died in 1892.  There is no 1890 census.  

In the 1896 Denver City directory, we find Mrs. Annie Krupitzky living in the rear of 111 Market street.  We also find her oldest son, Reuben Krupitzky, a salesman for CF Adams Co, living in the rear of 1348 1st Street.

In the 1900 census, his widow, Anna states that she was born in Russia in 1860 and that she immigrated in 1876.  

Their oldest son Rabin was married to Grace and in his census record he states that he was born in 1873 in Russia and immigrated to America in 1876.  Because this concurs with Anna’s census, we can assume that David and Anna were married and immigrated to America about 1876.

I have been unable to locate them in the 1880 census and that is most likely due to the various spellings of their surname.

The next child is Sarah.  She married Morris Breslow and these are her census answers.

1900 Census
1910 census
1920 census
year born
1876 Russia
1877 Russia    
1870  Russia
year immigrated

1900 Census
1910 Census
1920 census
year born
1884 NYC

1886 Colorado
1881 Colorado
year immigrated

in the 1925 Spivak interview, it is “remembered” family “7.  David Korpitzky, age 36.  Hebrew teacher, three daughters and one son one year old.  Came from Kaidanow, Russia.”  Later it states, “Kropitzky was learned in ancient lore and acted both as a rabbi and chazan.  He tied the know of Motel Shuteran with Hanna and of Jacob Millstein with Yente.  One child, a boy of one year, the son of David Kropitzky, died in the colony and was buried there.”

Dorothy Roberts wrote in 1944, “Only one death occurred while the colonists were in Cotopaxi.  A child, one year old, the son of David Korpitzky, died from injures received in falling from a window.”  

That 1885 census shows us:

David Ruhhitsky     age 35   born in 1850
Annie age 30   born in 1855
Reuben                   age 9     born in 1876
Sarah age 8     born in 1877
Luis                       age 1      born in 1884

If the child who died was age 1 in 1882, he/she would have been born in 1881.

But that only gives us 3 children in Cotopaxi, and 1 was a boy, so that is a conflict with the 1925 Spivak report.

We need to keep in mind that 1925 was 41 years after Cotopaxi disbanded.  How much does one remember about their neighbors 41 years ago?  The last record that we have that this family was in Denver was 1896.  We then find them in New York City.  There is no evidence that they corresponded or kept up with any of the people who were in Denver.  So the Spivak report is the memories of those who were at Cotopaxi.  While it’s a great place to start, the reliability is perhaps questionable when it comes to the family members and the ages of their children.

It’s probably more reliable to go with census data (although that also has it’s problems as well).  The fact that there were 4 children is provable if Luis was born before they left Cotopaxi.  

The next problem is their year of immigration.  Almost all of the census records agree with 1876.  There should be a record of them in the 1880 census.  But I have not been able to locate it - probably due to the variety of name spellings.  

I received an email from a possible descendant who had been told that his ancestors settled in 1876 in Cripple Creed.  We have to remember that Colorado became a state in 1876 and was a territory prior to that.  It was originally part of El Paso county and did not become “Cripple Creek” until 1890.  It’s quite possible that there were early minors in the Cripple Creek area, but from all the maps there were no roads.  There was a railroad spur by 1884.  And because we know the train came through Canon City in 1880, we know there was no spur earlier than that.  It is doubtful that the Krupitzky’s were in Cripple Creek in 1876.  Until we locate them in the 1880 census, we simply won’t know.

We do know at this point is that the Krupitzky’s were in Cotopaxi in 1882, that they were in Denver by 1885 and that they moved to New York City by 1900.

There is no mention of a wife in Cotopaxi, but there was one, Anne, in the 1885 census.  And until we find the ship’s manifest or records in Europe, we won’t know if she was at Cotopaxi or not.  There are no records of their marriage in Denver so I think at this point, we should assume that she was with in in Cotopaxi.

In conclusion, the ship’s manifest and the 1880 census will be crucial in making any more determinations about this family.   And the fact that there could be even more spellings for this surname!!

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Monday, February 20, 2017

Powerpoint presentation Feb 27, in Canon City

I will be giving my presentation "The Jewish Colony at Cotopaxi" this Saturday, Feb 27, at 1 pm in the back room at Design Ur Memories, 518 Main Street, Canon City

This is the presentation that I will be doing next month in Gush Etzion, Judea, Israel.  This is going to be from a historical perspective rather than a genealogical view.  I plan to cover these issues:

The Cotopaxi area in the late 1800s
Why the Jews wanted to leave Russia
How Emanual Saltiel got involved, what he promised to do, what he didn't do and why.
The past written records and new findings.
The 3 weddings.
The miner's lien.
Saltiel's hotel and who he was.
The cemetery, the records and the road marker.

Those are a few of the things I have been asked to research in the past.

Sorry, this will not be recorded as this is my trial run for the Israeli presentation and I will allow questions at any time during the presentation just so I know what to fix for next month!

If you live in Colorado, I hope you can come.  There are chairs for about 20 people but there's always room to sit on the floor!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Who writes about Cotopaxi and future presentations

It is interesting who decides to write what about the Cotopaxi Colony.  There is a new article out in Hebrew in a Jerusalem newspaper.  Click here.  You can do google translate and will find it's the pretty standard "story" of what happened based on Flora Satt's 1950 thesis and other popular writings.

I just wanted to remind everyone of a couple of other websites that you can use to ask pertinent questions when someone is telling the "story".

The Jewish Gen Kehilalinks Site has numerous pages of information.  The Family Names Page shows us that Nettie Milstein, daughter of Saul Ber Milstein, arrived on the ship "the Polynesia" on July 16, 1882.  She traveled here with her Uncle, Isaac Leib Shames.  She was part of the second group to arrive in Cotopaxi.

Contrary to the "popular" version of the Colony story, she did not arrive in the US in 1880 at the age of 20.  She came in July, 1882, at the age of 17.....AFTER the first colonists arrived in Cotopaxi in May.

I have written extensively about this in a past blog.   I show the marriage certificate as well as the marriage license application forms which show she was only 17 years old in September 1882, and she needed the consent of her uncle, Isaac Shames, to be married as her parents did not arrive in this country until December, 1884.

Because of her age,  because of the requirement to have a signed consent, and because I have thoroughly searched the records in Gilpin County, Colorado, I do not believe there was a marriage prior to the one in September in Cotopaxi.

And this alters the "common" story to some degree.

This link to the Kehilalinks site that shows the various ships manifests is quite valuable because the far right hand column also shows the inter-relationships of the various individuals.   It can be used to prove ages, year of birth, date of arrival, people who traveled together and so on.  It proves and disproves much of what Flora Satt wrote.  It proves that Saul Baruch Milstein was never at Cotopaxi.

I'm pretty sure that the author of the recent article in the Jerusalem News did not know about my research, or about the Kehilalinks site or this blog.  One more great source of information is  the Cotopaxi Colony site by Nelson Moore.   It should be studied in depth as it contains valuable resources and photos.  It also covers the story about the restoration of the Jewish portion of the cemetery at Cotopaxi.

As a quick update - it may be 2-3 months before there are more posts to this blog.  My research continues.   I am currently working on the real estate aspects of the property owned by the Colonists. That's turning out to be an education in itself!

My sister and I are traveling to Israel for almost 6 weeks starting March 2.  We will be giving a powerpoint slide presentation on the Cotopaxi Colony in Gush Etzion the evening of March 21 and possibly another presentation in Jerusalem that same week.    If you are interested in attending either presentation, email me at

I will do one more post when the dates, times and locations are confirmed.

Nancy Oswald will also be presenting on this topic at the Senior Mini College in Canon City.  You can follow this website to see when they post the date and time for her presentation.

If you have questions about the colony, feel free to send me a note or add a comment to a post.

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

More on the Nudelman house

Back in February, I posted a blog about the Nudelman house - from the standpoint that several documents had been tossed into the trash and then found their way to the local History center.

I've been researching it ever since.  I'd like to verify the location of the house today - if it still exists.

First, that original document found in the trash:

Another document that was pulled from the trash is the sale of the other half of the house, the Chuteran property, the same day.  Interesting that this document was just one page.

 The typed version of the Chuteran document:

Bill of Sale
Solomon Chuteran to
W. S. Hart
Filed for Record Aug 7, 1883 at 6 o’clock pm
Jno Wilson Recorder

This indenture made on this the Thirtieth day of April in the year Eighteen Hundred and Eighty three.

Witnesseth that I the undersigned Solomon Chuteran of Cotopaxi, in the County of Fremont, state of Colorado, do for and inconsideration of One Dollar, lawful money of the United States of America and other valuable consideration received hereby, sell, assign, transfer and set over to Eleazer S. Hart of Cotopaxi, same state and county aforesaid a certain frame house or dwelling situated in Cotopaxi as aforesaid, and heretofore occupied by myself and  my family as a dwelling which said dwelling was erected for my use and benefit and I delcare that I have the full right and authority to sell and transfer the said building, which is situated on grounds leased for the purpose near the track of the Denver and Rio Grande Railway on the northerly side of said railway track and distant about five hundred feet easterly, from the present site of the Cotopaxi Hotel and adjoining the House of Joseph Nudelman.  I do further hereby sell and transfer assign and set over to said Eleazer S. Hart the furniture in said dwelling house, consisting of one kitchen stove with appurtenances and utensils, one bed, one table, 3 chairs and other miscellaneous articles.

In witness whereof I hereby affix my hand and seal this the thirtieth day of April, in the year 1883.

S. Chuteran

Witness Joseph Bardine

State of Colorado
Fremont County ss

Personally appeared before me the subscriber and acknowledged this as his free act and deeds, and wishes it to be recorded as such.  Witness my ahdn and seal this the 30th day of April A. D. 1883.  G. H. Rummel seal, Justice of the Peace

For value received I hereby assign all of my right and title to the property acquired by this instrument except the goods as mentioned and conveyed to with the household goods to Mrs Susan A McCoy.

Witness my hand and seal this the sixteenth day of August A. D. 1883  E. S. Hart, seal, Witness G. H. Rummel.

Personally appeared before me the subscriber and acknowledged this as his free act and deeds and wishes it to be recorded as such.  Witness my hand and seal this 16th day of August A. D. 1883.  Z. T. Banta seal, Justice of the Peace.

Down the left side of the page:

For value received I hereby assign all my right and title to the property acquired by this instrument of writing to Mr Epptein. This assignment has not been accepted, has not been conveyed.  E. S. Hart, witness H. S. Tooling.

I have not been able to locate all of the documents that I am looking for but I do have some that refer to this as the "McCoy double house".  As soon as I have a complete "trail" I will come back and update this post.  But it appears that this was 2 families living under a common roof with a wall adjoining their residences...the houses were attached to each other.

It is also evident that the houses were built on land leased from E. H. Saltiel.

In my later documents, the land was sold by O. B. Carroll to A. A Sloan.  Then Sloan sold the double house and the land to W. A. Hendricks.  Hendricks sold it back to Sloan who sold it to Kate Gorman in 1895.  I do not have documentation yet as to how it got to Carroll from McCoy.....or who it went to after Gorman.

Couldn't I just to a title search?  No - that won't work for most of the houses in Cotopaxi.  For most of the houses, sometime between 1910 and 1950...the owners all went to court to prove their ownership.  And by doing such, they didn't have to go back and verify the earliest ownerships.  They would stand on the court house steps in Canon City and literally call out every possible owner's name.  No one showed up and the judge awarded the property to the current owner.

That or they simply had it re-declared under the Federal Land act.

And yes, this may be wasting my time, but I have to wonder.  With these 2 documents are "new" questions.  

1)  Were the Nudelmans and the Chuterans related?  People rarely lived this close together if they weren't.

2)  Did both of these families leave Cotopaxi in April, 1883, when the houses were sold?  Or had they built another house on the land they farmed that was south of Cotopaxi?

I have found no documents showing the sale of any of the plots south of Cotopaxi.

3)  In both documents, the property was "sold" to E. S. Hart who then "sold" them to Susan McCoy.  Was Hart acting as an early realtor in western Fremont county?

4)  It does not appear that the furniture was transferred to McCoy.

5)  This does tell us some of the furniture they had.

6)  The sale was for $1 and "other valuable considerations."    This is a common phrase used and could mean anything.  Did they just want to dump the property?  Was it worth nothing since they didn't own the land it was on.  What would a 49 year lease be worth?  How much would you give for a duplex that sat on a 49 year lease and you didn't know if the lease could be renewed or not?

7) Who did McCoy sell the place to?

Interesting questions!

One thing I do know is that neither Nudelman or Chuteran  were listed on the miner's lien.  It would be doubtful that Saltiel paid them and not the others.  Thus, most likely, they did not owe Hart any money at his store.  

These documents also show us that:

Joseph Bardine was a witness
G. H.. Rummel was the Justice of the Peace
Z. T. Banta was a justice of the Peace
and there was a Mr. Epptein
and a witness H. S. Tooling.

What were their relationships with the Colonists?  with Saltiel?  with Hart?

This is a prime example of how researching local documents can give you clues as to where to go next with your research, whether it is related to your family tree or not.

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Saturday, October 1, 2016

The Grand Canyon of the Arkansas

That is the 1882 name for what is now known as the Royal Gorge.  Today, we took a train ride up through the canyon to get some photos as it hit me that people who are not from here might want to see what the Colonist saw when they left Canon City heading west to Cotopaxi.

Remember that the train stopped every 7 -10 miles to fill up with water and every 25 miles to add coal.  Since it's 35 miles to Cotopaxi it took awhile for them to get there.

I decided to take photos showing todays train so you could get an aspect as to size and distance.  This is what it looks like when you leave town.  These water diversion gates were not there in 1882....but the landscape was the same and the lack of trees probably the same.

As you round the first couple of corners, you start to see a few more peaks.

Then the river gets more narrow as the peaks get taller

This is the first glimpse of the suspension bridge at the top - you can barely see it, but you can get an idea as to how flat and sheer some of the cliffs in the canyon are.

I wonder what the Colonists thought?  They must have been overwhelmed at the depth of this canon. Of course, the bridge was not there.  And they would have been on a narrow gauge train.  A much different experience than today's ride.

These days, some of the river walls have been cemented in due to floods and erosion of the ground under the tracks.  On the left is a water pipeline that did not exist in 1882.

This photo shows the jaggedness of the peaks going through the canyon.

And this is pretty much the scenery anywhere there is land you could walk on.  Filled with cactus and small shrubs.  Hard to believe this is just a few feet from the river, yet absolutely nothing grows here.

The train stops at Parkdale and then you come back to Canon City.   From Parkdale, the highway follows the train the rest of the way to Cotopaxi.  But if you drive it today, you just will not see what they saw going through the Royal Gorge.

 I was able to get this shot of the water showing how shallow it is.  

Today, rafting is the main industry of this river.  But in the 1880s, logs were cut and then put in the river and floated downstream to Canon City and Pueblo.  This is at Parkdale where the early pioneers ran up to 5000 head of cattle and they crossed the Arkansas here.  That would have been something to see!

On the way back, I was able to get this closeup of the suspensions that support the train tracks through the narrowest part of the canyon.

They were told that they could farm the land and then they saw this.  I just think they had to have shook their heads in wonder!  I do and it's 2016!

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