An Immigration Story

Courtesy of Min K.

In 1918 my father was born in Litin Podolie. World war and revolution in Russia had led to upheaval and oppression in the Ukraine. My grandparents were eager to join relatives in Detroit, Michigan. Their first son was sick and died. Carrying their second surviving son, the family made their way across the border to Bucharest, Romania. Their stay was prolonged by the birth of another son, but in 1922 with Romanian documents (including the family portrait) they boarded the S.S. Majestic and embarked for American. The ship held 438 passengers - 303 in steerage (including my grandparents, toddler father and infant uncle) and 135 in first or second class cabins. With $130 (and the souvenir photo), the family passed through Ellis Island and made their way to Detroit, where my father's four uncles lived and worked. His grandparents joined them within a few years, leaving only married daughters in the old country.

Passport Photo of the Katz Family
Dated 15 May1922, Taken in Bucharest. My grandfather, Moshe Katz, is standing on the left. The inscription (in Hebrew) reads "for memory to a good friend Mr. Moshe Katz from the central branch in Galatz" and is signed L. L????t chairman and Sh. Bantsch (?). There is also a round stamp (also Hebrew) which reads Galician branch for something for something from Poland and Ukraine.

Prepared July 2002 by RAF