Yorker Family

David Yorker

b: April 15, 1858, Russia

m: 1880 Russia Lillie Yorker

i: June 11, 1906

d: December 14, 1920, Philadelphia,PA

  Original last name: Jaroker

Lillie Yorker

b: 1863, Russia

m: 1880 Russia

i: April 6, 1910

d: March 15, 1948, Philadelphia,PA

  Original last name: Jaroker

  Nickname(s): Lena

  Hebrew name(s): Leah,Chaya Leah,Chava

Celia Bobrow

b: c.1883, Russia

m: 1906 Philadelphia,PA Louis Bobrow

i: May 1, 1905

  Maiden name: Yorker

  Hebrew name(s): Tzirel

  1. Eva Bobrow
  2. Michael Bobrow

Abraham Yorker

b: June 3, 1887, Kanev,Russia

m: August 2, 1909 Philadelphia,PA Fannie Yorker

i: June 11, 1906

d: June 6, 1955, Atlantic City,NJ

  Original last name: Jaroker

  Nickname(s): Avrom,Abe

  Hebrew name(s): Abraham Yitzhak

  1. Sarah Bekoff
  2. Samuel Yorker
  3. Edward Yorker
  4. Dorothy Davis

Goldie Israel

b: November 27, 1891, Russia

m: 1910 Philadelphia,PA Charles Israel

i: March 1, 1908

  Maiden name: Yorker

  Nickname(s): Golda,Golde

  1. Yetta Israel
  2. Lillian Israel

Max Yorker

b: November 25, 1897, Russia

m: 1919 Philadelphia,PA Sarah Yorker

i: April 6, 1910

  Original last name: Jaroker

  Hebrew name(s): Mendel

  1. Reba Yorker
  2. Ruth Yorker

Celia Bell

b: c.1899, Russia

m: 1919 Philadelphia,PA Harry Bell

i: April 6, 1910

  Maiden name: Yorker

  Hebrew name(s): Zywe

  1. Joseph Bell
  2. Elaine Bell
  3. David Bell

Yorker Family Overview

The Jaroker immigration story is a piecemeal operation to reunite the family in the New World. The first to make the trip is the eldest child, Cirel Jaroker, who arrived in Philadelphia on 5/1/1905 by way of Liverpool. She was going to meet her Uncle, M. Lurvoker (Jaroker?, as in, her father's brother?).

Did she go because at 20 she was the only one old enough to leave home? (The next oldest, our Abe, was then 17.) Or was she already engaged when she immigrated to follow her fiancé? Because within the year of her arrival, she was married to Leib Bobrizki, who arrived 7/24/1904 from somewhere in Russia...

...which we know because when Avrom Jaroker arrived from Kaniow, Russia on 6/11/1906, with his father, Dowed, in tow, the ship manifest says they were met by Dowed's son-in-law, Leib Bobowski! And their tickets were purchased on 4/3/1906 by one Louis Bodzicky via Rosenbaum Bank. Great sucking up by a new son-in-law, though he (or the clerk) butchered the family name into Jarsker.

(Note: 1906 was the peak year for Jewish emigration from Russia. 150K immigrants arrived along with Dowed and Avrom that year.)

The presence of David here so early confuses me, since as you will see below, David did not immigrate until later. Was he checking out his daughter's new husband to make sure he was good enough? Was he evaluating this strange new world of Philadelphia to see if he and the rest of his family could find happiness there? Whatever the reason, it is very odd, as I didn't think the family had that kind of disposable income.

Next up is the third child, Golde Jaroker. Her ticket was purchased by Abraham Jaroker on 12/8/1907 via Rosenbaum Bank. Originally from Kaniev, she left Hamburg for Liverpool on 2/8/1908.

She sailed out of Liverpool and arrived in Philadelphia on 3/1/1908. Her ship records gives her hometown as Kaniew and says she was meeting her brother Abraham and left behind her father David.

Now fast forward to March 1910. We have three Jaroker children living in Philadelphia for 1.5-4.5 years. Tzirel and Leib Bobrowski became Celia and Louis Bobrow and now have two children, Eva and Michael. Abraham married Fanny Skversky (remember her?) eight months earlier, and they share a house with another family at 632 Wharton St., which was perhaps arranged for them by Louis, who was living at 635 Wharton St. at the time Abraham arrived. Fanny is seven months pregnant with their first child, Sarah. At some point he changed the family name to Yorker, though perhaps he is following the lead of other related or unrelated Jarokers who made the break earlier. And Golde is not yet married.

Meanwhile, we have the last children and the parents yet to immigrate.

The tickets for Dawid, Chaje Lea, Mendel, and Ciwie Jorker were purchased on 9/23/09 from Rosenbaum Bank by somebody Lewin. (Thank you, Mr. Lewin!) On March 23, 1910, David, Chava, Mendel, and Zywe Jerocker were the last of the family to leave Kaniew and arrive in Philadelphia. As the ship record states, they left behind David's brother M---- Jarocker to meet his son, Avram, and two daughters, who were waiting for them.

The 1910 census, which came by a month later, records Celia and Abe living with their spouses, as noted above, while the 1910 Pennsylvania Miracode Index has David and Leah Yerker living with their three other children, Goldie, Mendal, and Celia. Yes, Celia. The last daughter (Ciwie or Zywe) Americanized her name to the same name as her older sister (Tzirel). By 1920, Mendel was Max. (Yes, Max—the name that was too Jewish for Abe's future son-in-law!)

How did I unearth all of this? It all started with finding Golde Israel's 1926 Petition for Naturalization in late August 2009, one of only two such documents* I had then found for any relative (not surprising given how little of this information is indexed, but very unfortunate given how useful the information it provides is). (Prior to a change in the law in 1922 it was rare for women to become naturalized.)

Anyway, from there I went straight to the record of the ship she said she took and discovered Golde Jaroker, her maiden name! Not only did that prove what we always believed the family name to have originally been, but it also provided the right spelling by which to search for the others.

Thought it's spelled differently across all the records I have, it's clear they are from Kanev (unclear if the district or its capital city), then in Kiev province in the Ukraine. The blue pointers in the map below pertain to the Yorker family; click on each pointer for more information:

View Davis-Yorker Family -- Towns in the Ukraine in a larger map

As for the Yorkers' history prior to Kanev, Josh Yorker (grandson of Abe) told me on 7/7/10 that his father, Sam, told him a long time ago that his grandfather (presumably David Yorker) told him that the Yorkers originally came from Spain -- were kicked out during the Spanish Inquisition -- and ended up in the Ukraine.

Anyway, here's where they all were in Philly. Yellow is Abe & Fanny Yorker. Blue are David & Lilly & the rest of the Yorkers. Everyone stayed in Philly for the period for which I have records except Celia Bell, who moved south to Chester.

View Davis-Yorker Family -- Addresses in Philadelphia in a larger map

(Explore historical Philly maps here.)

To tie up another strand of the story, son-in-law-of-the-year Louis Bobrow continued to show generosity towards his in-laws. According to the 1920 census, they were all living together! Unfortunately by the 1930 census Louis passed away, leaving his wife with their two grown children. I can't find David & Lilly in the 1930 census, so I suspect they passed away in the preceding decade, too.

* In case you were wondering, the other one is Marcus A. Benn, uncle of Grandma Fanny. His certificate, dated 9/21/1896, doesn't have the helpful ship information. Too bad! There is also a funny letter attached dated 9/21/1908, wherein Marcus asks for a replacement certificate, as the original was "lost or destroyed in moving from house to house about seven months ago."


What is Lillie's maiden name? Philly death cert?

Lillie Yorker

Is this Lillie's father: ZAITSOV, Pinkhas in Kanev Jewish Religious Personnel in the Russian Empire, 1853-1854

Lillie Yorker

Events & Records

1858-04 Birth of David Yorker
1863 Birth of Lillie Yorker
1880 Marriage of Lillie Yorker & David Yorker
c. 1883 Birth of Celia (Yorker) Bobrow
1887-06 Birth of Abraham Yorker
1891-11 Birth of Goldie (Yorker) Israel
1897-11 Birth of Max Yorker
c. 1899 Birth of Celia (Yorker) Bell
1905-05 Immigration of Celia Bobrow
1906 Marriage of Louis Bobrow & Celia Bobrow
1906 Birth of Eva Bobrow
1906-04 Ticket to Philadelphia purchased
1906-06 Immigration of David Yorker and Abraham Yorker
1907-12 Ticket to Philadelphia purchased
1908 Birth of Michael Bobrow
1908-02 Immigration of Goldie Israel
1908-03 Immigration of Goldie Israel
c. 1909 Fanny & Abe around the time of their wedding
1909-08 Marriage of Fannie Yorker & Abraham Yorker
1909-09 Ticket to Philadelphia purchased
1910 Marriage of Charles Israel & Goldie Israel
1910-04 Immigration of David Yorker, Lillie Yorker, Max Yorker, and Celia Bell
1910-04 Address of Yorkers
1910-04 Address of Yorker family
1910-04 Address of Bobrow family
1910-05 Birth of Sarah (Yorker) Bekoff
1911 Birth of Yetta Israel
1911-10 Abraham Yorker's Declaration of Intention
1914 Birth of Lillian Israel
1914-09 Birth of Samuel Yorker
1915-01 Abraham Yorker's Petition for Naturalization
1915-04 Abraham Yorker's Oath of Allegiance
1917-06 WWI draft registration for Abe Yorker
1918-09 WWI draft registration for Max Yorker
1919 Marriage of Harry Bell & Celia Bell
1919 Marriage of Sarah Yorker & Max Yorker
1919-01 Birth of Edward Yorker
1920-01 Address of Bobrow family with Yorker parents
1920-01 Address of Yorker family
1920-01 Address of Max Yorker family
1920-01 Address of Bell family
1920-02 Address of Israel family
1920-12 Death of David Yorker
1921 Birth of Joseph Bell
1921-01 Birth of Dorothy (Yorker) Davis
1921-07 Birth of Reba Yorker
1921-12 Max Yorker's Declaration of Intent
1922 Dorothy Yorker in 1922
c. 1924 Yorker family c. 1924
1924 Birth of Elaine Bell
1924-12 Max Yorker's Petition for Naturalization
1926 Birth of David Bell
1926 Dorothy Yorker in 1926
1926-05 Golda Israel Petition for Naturalization
1929 Birth of Ruth Yorker
c. 1930 Fanny Yorker and children c. 1930
1930-04 Address of Bobrow family
1930-04 Address of Bell family
1930-04 Address of Max Yorker family
1930-04 Address of Israel family
1930-04 Address of Yorker family
1930-08 Marriage of Martin Bekoff & Sarah Bekoff
1931-08 Birth
c. 1934 Yorker family photo
c. 1935 Memories of Abe
1937 Marriage of Minnie Yorker & Samuel Yorker
1938-05 Birth
1940-06 Birth
1941-08 Marriage of Dorothy Davis & Max Davis
1942-04 WWII draft registration for Abraham Yorker
1945 Marriage of Edward Yorker & Ruth Yorker
1945-01 Birth
1946-07 Birth
c. 1948 Fanny & Abe in the mid-to-late 40's
1948-03 Death of Lillie Yorker
1948-03 Birth
1948-10 Birth
1955-06 Death of Abraham Yorker
1986-11 Marriage of Charlotte Yorker & Samuel Yorker
1987-08 Death of Sarah Bekoff
1995-12 Death of Edward Yorker
2004-12 Death of Dorothy Davis
2009-08 Death of Samuel Yorker