Ratners of Albany

a few new findings--The Bloch-Ratners arrived in 1890 or 1891

Dan gave me the password to Ancestry.com and showed me around a little bit, and I managed to make a few findings from the census. The 1900 census lists the arrival date of Abraham and Rose Ratner in America as 1890 (whereas the 1930 census says 1891). Assuming that one or the other is correct it solves the Ellis Island mystery--they arrived shortly before the opening of the Island on January 1, 1892 and were probably processed in the barge office that served as the site between the closing of Castle Garden on April 18, 1890 and the opening of Ellis Island. We see from that census that their oldest child was Peyzer born 1891 followed by Hyman (George?) 1892 and Lillie (probably Til ) 1896 and Sadie (clearly Selma) 1899 and Dora born 1900, who probably died soon thereafter. At that time they lived at 42 Broad Street, are renting their house and Abe is already listed as a soda water manufacturer. The 1930 census, by the way, has Abe, Rose and Thelma (Til) at 16 Cuyler Ave, which has a net worth of $14,000 and mentiones that they own a radio set (one of the few on the this page of the survey to do so). Amazing stuff.
Well, lets collect a lot more of this stuff before I get back to revising the Ruby Family Histories.

16 Cuyler Avenue



Walter and Dan visited the house on Cuyler Avenue in July 2006 and found a sprawling three story white house with a large front porch. The house was in somewhat dilapidated condition and, like the south-side neighborhood in which it is located, had clearly had seen better days. The various entrances to the house and its large size led us conclude that the house had been built and operated as a multi-dwelling house, and that the Ratners must therefore have had renters in their own dwelling as well as in other properties.

Albany Hebrew Tailors Organization




The next few posts describe our visit to the cemetery where Abe, Rose, and Aunt Til are laid to rest. The Albany Hebrew Tailors Organization cemetery is one of three or four old Jewish cemeteries along Western Ave. in the Albany outskirts. Having trained as a tailor, Abe supported the organization as a charity. His role is signified by the memorial bench inscribed with the Ratner name near the cemetery entrance.

The Ratner grave site




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