21 November 2009

UK: Meeting the family in Israel

Tracing the Tribe loves family reunions. The Jewish Chronicle covered the recent get-together of the Sugarman family in Israel.

The story was written by one of the attendees - Gita Conn - making it very personal, indeed.

Thirty-six people from the Conn branch of Manchester were among the more than 200 people - including 80 children - at the reunion in LaRomme Hall, in Rehovot. Some were meeting for the first time and some were there in utero, born after the historic event.

The attendees were all descendants of Manchester quilt-blanket manufacturer Chaim Sugerman, born in Vaslui, Romania, and his wife Rosa. Some 80 years ago, in 1929, the couple brought five of their eight children to Palestine.

According to the story, the group was a real mix:

The dairy farmer from Meggido met the financial director from Paris; the radical feminist from Haifa chatted to the head of a yeshivah; the UK’s leading legal pensions expert hung on the words of the retired Ashkelon health inspector, fascinated to hear that, after service in the British Army from 1938, he departed Manchester in ’48 to serve the Hagganah and, at the age of 91, still spoke fluent English “with a Mancunian accent which only exists abroad”.

Secular and Charedi, professionals and blue-collar, kibbutzniks and city dwellers ate, drank and mingled joyfully as they celebrated a Jewish family saga with a rare theme of happily-ever-after… at least so far. We had made it. Grandchildren and spouses, great-grandchildren, great-great and one great-great-great descendant of just one couple — Chaim and Rosa Sugarman, who took five of their eight children from Manchester to Palestine 80 years ago.
Planning a similar reunion?

There are tips in this story for you including badges, activities, recording the historic event, an historic photo display, family tree books, entertaining the children at such an event, displaying memorabilia and much more.

Read the complete story at the link above.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous2:53 PM

    What a wonderful occassion this must have been. Kol Hakavod to all the organizers especially Ruth Greenwald. She has great organization power. Kol Hakavod also to Gita my dear and long-time friend.

    Hoping you'll be doing it in another ten years!!!

    Lorna Muller