Isaak and Betty may have met through a Paechter relation in Kolberg

Database record for our ancestor Betty Katz

Isaak and Betty may have met through a Paechter relation in Kolberg

A new edition of “Jews of the former German Empire,“ with data on 223.000 individuals has been released. This database compiled by German genealogist Ingo Paul has been been instrumental for us in the past. It provided the clue that led to the marriage of Isaak Wohlgemuth and Betty Katz, revealing to us the Katz family history in the Pomeranian coastal city Kolberg. (That is the German spelling; it is Kolobrzeg today.)

Today, I took a look at the database entries for one of our other surnames, Paechter, a family branch that we’ve learned much about in the last several months. Isaak Wohlgemuth’s mother was a Paechter originally from the town of Tiegenhof. For example, we know that one of the Tiegenhof Paechters married into the Kleemann family in Danzig, That is interesting because the Danzig Kleemanns are in the family tree of both Peter Nash and Sue Key, both of whom have recently contributed valuable information to the blog.

Not surprisingly, the Ingo Paul database turned up quite a few records for Paechter and Pächter. Our own Friederike Paechter is there, complete with Wohlgemuth data that we contributed a few years ago. The other listings were scattered among multiple towns in Pomerania—Stettin, Griefenhagen, Markisch Friedland, Kallies, and Stolp as well as two places we already knew about.

One of the dozen or so new records is for a Rachel Paechter, born in Tiegenhof in 1780. The record shows she married Moses Fabian from Markisch Friedland (Miroslawicz), a town east of Stettin, and that they lived and died near there in the town of Kallies (Kalisz Pomorski).

Our known ancestor was Julius Paechter was born in Tiegenhof around 1800, so this Rachel is a generation older. She could have been an aunt.

The other revealing new record is for Hisrch Elias Paechter, who lived and raised a family in Kolberg. He died in Kolberg in 1859. I don’t know how Hirsch is related to our family, but it is the first notice of a Paechter presence in Kolberg a half century before Betty Katz from Kolberg married Leopold Wohlgemuth, a Paechter descendant, in Elbing.

This seems to be a strong hint that a Paechter relation in Koberg may have been involved in making the match that resulted in the marriage of Isaak and Betty. If so, that would contradict our previous notion that the marriage was arranged by a broker. 

The Info Paul database is available here for use by genealogists researching German Jewish ancestors. You can access records by surname or town. The available data is consolidated from many sources, including individual contributions from researchers like me.

By its nature, a database of this type is incomplete, so finding your exact ancestor may be hit or miss. Even if you don't find who you are looking for, you might get some other hint that unlocks doors for you in discovering your German Jewish roots.

Congratulations to Ingo Paul for the valuable resource that he has created. I've just sent him a small contribution via PayPal to support his work. You may do the same, or contact him with family information, at