Comments by translator, Vitaly Charny, on the 1917 birth records
(YIVO, RG 12, Folder 22)
Quite a few of the birth dates are from 1915-1916.
People were on the move, not registered, etc...
Hebrew months names are as it
was written in Russian. I wanted to save the essence of the documents, without my
Many people were from other than Minsk
- it was WWI time and the year of two revolutions. There was no Pale
It was difficult to reconstruct the towns of origin, especially people from
Poland, Lithuania, etc., for two reasons: 1. The names had changed because they were written in Polish, Lithuanian, etc... and 2) the names were given in genitive not nominative case
in record (in Russian):
oтец варшавский мещанин
Transliterated into English:
otets varshavsky meshchanin
father is petty bourgeoisie from Warsaw
I have written "Varshava" - as in the record (but
in nominative case)... not Warsaw, not Warszawa (in Polish) but as in the
Another example: when "is from Mir" it is written in Russian - Mirsky
(genetive case). If you don't know nominative case - it could be Mir, Mirs,
Mirsk, Mira, etc... all of them would make Mirsky [meshchanin].
Where I don't know the town name I leave the name root and put period after
it like "Sol., Vilna"
Another observation from the set - it was used by [Soviet] authorities at
least through mid-1930s to issues birth certificates (as I see from