Wilfred Zeph Jacobowitz (1917 - 1930)

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Nicknames: "Billy", "Wilfred"
Birthplace: Jersey City, NJ, United States
Death: Died in Jersey City, NJ, United States
Cause of death: diphtheria
Managed by: David Jacobowitz
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Wilfred Zeph Jacobowitz

"Billy (Wilfred Zeph) was born almost three years after Toddy, completing the family in nice round numbers -- another redhead. The partiy for the Brith was quite an event, someone asking 'Is this your FIRST child?"

It is difficult to write about him. All of you will remember him well, his high intelligence, the warmth of his love, his eagerness to learn, to participate in all the activities of the family. He was four or five when he wanted a bicycle, a two-wheeler, and Pop thought he was too young, so he offered to prove he could manage one, and demonstrated by riding one of the boys' bicycles, catching successfully the foot pedals as they rose, He got the bicycle. He and Toddy occupied twin beds in the back bedroom, and Bud used to bribe him to come into the double bed where he slept with Norman in the middle room, to come in to be warmed up and get kissed..." As I Remember, 1962, P. 39

"Miriam's wedding was set for March 29th, 1930. In between the two marriages (Ruth-Louis and Miriam-Sol), the one tragic event in our lives occurred: we lost our beloved son, Billy, three days short of his twelfth birthday, the darling of our hearts. He had a highly developed intelligence, a sense of humor, an understanding heart. He was born on the very date of our twelfth anniversary, and would have been Bar Mitzvah on our twenty-fifth. He had already issued personal invitations to friends for that event, notably his dentist, Dr. Fleisig, in New York, where he went for appointments unaccompanied, since two or three years before. He took the wrong train once but nothing daunted he got out at the next station and phoned the Doctor, who gave him directions.

   We never got over it, especially Eli, who had been in the habit of telling him bedtime stories Friday night, lying alongside of him until he fell asleep. The time came when Pop fell asleep before Billy did, roused to tell him he had no more stories, so perhaps Billy could tell a story for a change; he was young enough to remember the "other side" where he came from. This teasing didn't please Billy one bit; began describing how the soul animated the body, ending his description with a question: "How do you know the souls of your father and mother aren't hovering around you?" "How do you make that out?" Pop asked, and this is what Billy gave us to remember: "I'll prove it to you: go downstairs, everything is quiet, but turn a button on the radio and you hear voices, music, talking and laughter. Some day our ears will be attuned to the voices of the departed, and we will be able to communicate with them."
   I don't want this to be a sad part of the record; we all decided not to evade talking about him, to remember the way he lived, the funny incidents,the mischief, the greatness of his character. In time I consoled myself with the thought that Billy lived out the full span of his years in that short twelve years, some purpose he had to fulfill. He loved old people, was a regular member of the "Shalle Sudos" Club, a group of elderly men who met Sabbath afternoons to study Torah, argue, sing liturgical as well as Hebrew songs, and of course the snack of herring, cookies and schnapps. There was one old man who used to deliver our Sukkoth Esrog every holiday, asked directions for delivering another one in the same neighborhood, so Billy accompanied him and didn't come back for over an hour: he had gone with the old man to every other customer.
   I have a time-worn but beautiful hand printed tribute on a decorated cardboard, a bird (in color) pasted in the corner, with Hebrew letters which, translated, read: "Peace: In remembrance of the little lamb who had no healing; he was like a bird whose voice resounded in song, making sweet the taste of the Sabbath Shalle Sudos. His young spirit blended with the old. May there be no more need for the young to be cut off -- from beginning to end." A humble housepainter inscribed those words.   LKJ As I p 57-58
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Billy Jacobowitz's Timeline

1917
February 12, 1917
Jersey City, NJ, United States

"...He was born the very date of our twelfth anniversary, and would have been Bar Mitzvah on our twenty-fifth." LKJ As I Remember, p. 56.

1922
1922
Age 4
Worcester, MA, USA

Here’s a picture taken at my Uncle Horace’s Bar Mitzvah in Worcester, Mass. in 1922. The first row is Eli Jacobowitz, Lillian Kreinick, Leah Jacobowitz. Second row: Billie Jacobowitz, Horace Kreinick, Florence Kreinick, Freida Kreinick (great-grandmother),Tianna Opper, S. Joseph Kreinick (great-grandfather). Third row: Ruth Kreinick, Gene Kreinick in sailor suite, and Sylvia Kreinick. I guess my grandfather, Irving, took the picture.

1922
Age 4
Jersey City, NJ, USA

"He grew fast, his Bar Mitzvah made us proud, reading the entire Portion and the Mussaf as well, followed by Kiddush in Shule and a party at home." LKJ p 72

1924
1924
Age 6
Jersey City, NJ, USA

We lived in the Oak St. home about ten years. Pop attended an auction on Harrison Ave., and yes, he bought "150." It was a beautiful, well built house, formerly owned by an architect who had built it for himself, and Pop fell in love with it; at last he found "Mommy's house." The family went over to see it, were immediately charmed by it. To me it seemed oike an aristocratic old dowager who had come on hard times, forsaken, neglected. The radiators were all broken, the beautiful hardwood floors almost unrecognisable. But how were we going to keep up a 14-room hours? Ruth at once offered to contribute $50 a month, the children would all help as, if, and when they could, and it was settled. Pop had no trouble getting a loan from the bank, where his name was A1, and he spent well over a thousand dollars on repairs and decorations. There were real fireplaces, one in the large entrance room which was a library, with hardwood built-in book cases, window seat, and the parquet floor, a wide staircase with a landing part way up, showing a large stained glass window almost covering the wall, which the Western sun turned into rainbow colors. On the right was the living room with (a) rolling door entrance; on the left of that the dining room, also with an entrance from the foyer; it, too, had a colored tile fireplace. On the second floor there were six rooms; the first front one intended for a sitting room, with a brick fireplace, wich became Ruth and Miriam's bedroom; on the left the large master bedroom, with a marble built in basin; next room a bedroom, also with a marble sink; across this room from the hall, a large tiled bathroom with the biggest bathtub I ever saw., Further down the hall, another bedroom facing the rear, and from an ell turning left, two more bedrooms, with a basin at the end of the hall -- smaller rooms evidently intended for servants. Back stairs led to the kitchen downstairs, which was a 20-foot square sunny room, a big pantry, a little hall which led to the dining room on one side, and into a "Butler's Pantry" on the other, This latter room we changed into a breakfast room; it also had a built-in book case. There was a dumbwaiter in the little hall to the second floor, and a large clothes closet which Pop turned into a "powder room." The top floor was a finished apartment, one large room with floor, walls and ceiling (slanted) finished with paneling; a small store room in front, a larger room in the rear, and a nice bathroom. We put a gas range in the store room, and rented the big room to a couple named Brody; they stayed with us a number of years, both were business people and never bothered us. Later on Irving's son Horace found a job in Brooklyn and came to live with us, occupying the rear bedroom. After his engagement to Anne Wernick, a Holyoke girl, she too came to live with us, having gotten a teacher's job in Brooklyn. We put a bed in the little room for Horace and Ann occupied the bedroom, but it wasn't long before they left to be married. LKJ As I Remember, Pages 53-54.

1929
November 10, 1929
Age 12
NY, USA

Ruth & Lou's Wedding

"Ruth and Louis were married Nov. 10th, 1929. We had met the Brenner family, exchanged courtesy visits, and became good friends, from then on to this day. We belonged to the same organizations, formed a bridge club of our own, and Pop and I were their guests in Belmar the first few years after Ruth and Louis were married." Leah Kreinick Jacobowitz, As I Remember, 1962, p. 56

"Ruth's wedding took place in Brooklyn, in one of those "Mansions" so popular at the time, with about 250 guests. The first grandchild to be married, giving my Father and Mother a full cup of happiness as they watched that tall, beautiful bride walk down the aisle to be married, the crown on her veil made of a piede of my own wedding dress -- a crown which Miriam and Toddy also wore -- and some still remains whic has been used by some of Pop's and my grandchildren." p. 58

P. 70. "Louis wanted a small wedding, but gave in to family pressure, and 250 guests attended, as I have already stated. Here is where Pop has to be mentioned. Ruth had faithfully given him the $50. a month for the upkeep of "150", and even I didn't know that he saved it all, and handed her a check for $500. in lieu of the dowry he wished he could give her. "

1930
February 9, 1930
Age 12
Jersey City, NJ, United States

"In between the two marriages (Ruth-Louie and Mirian-Sol), the one tragic event in our lives occurred: we lost our beloved son, Billy, three days short of his twelfth birthday, the darling of our hearts. He had a highly developed intelligence, a sense of humor, an understanding heart. He was born on the very date of our twelfth anniversary, and would have been Bar Mitzvah on our twenty-fifth. He had already issued personal invitations to friends for that event, notably his dentist, Dr. Fleisig, in New York, where he went for appointments unaccompanied, since two or three years before. He took the wrong train once but nothing daunted he got out at the next station and phoned the Doctor, who gave him directions.

We never got over it, especially Eli, who had been in the habit of telling him bedtime stories Friday night, lying alongside of him until he fell asleep. The time came when Pop fell asleep before Billy did, roused to tell him he had no more stories, so perhaps Billy could tell a story for a change; he was young enough to remember the "other side" where he came from. This teasing didn't please Billy one bit; began describing how the soul animated the body, ending his description with a question: "How do you know the souls of your father and mother aren't hovering around you?" "How do you make that out?" Pop asked, and this is what Billy gave us to remember: "I'll prove it to you: go downstairs, everything is quiet, but turn a button on the radio and you hear voices, music, talking and laughter. Some day our ears will be attuned to the voices of the departed, and we will be able to communicate with them."

I don't want this to be a sad part of the record; we all decided not to evade talking about him, to remember the way he lived, the funny incidents,the mischief, the greatness of his character. In time I consoled myself with the thought that Billy lived out the full span of his years in that short twelve years, some purpose he had to fulfill. He loved old people, was a regular member of the "Shalle Sudos" Club, a group of elderly men who met Sabbath afternoons to study Torah, argue, sing liturgical as well as Hebrew songs, and of course the snack of herring, cookies and schnapps. There was one old man who used to deliver our Sukkoth Esrog every holiday, asked directions for delivering another one in the same neighborhood, so Billy accompanied him and didn't come back for over an hour: he had gone with the old man to every other customer.

I have a time-worn but beautiful hand printed tribute on a decorated cardboard, a bird (in color) pasted in the corner, with Hebrew letters which, translated, read:
"Peace: In remembrance of the little lamb who had no healing; he was like a bird whose voice resounded in song, making sweet the taste of the Sabbath Shalle Sudos. His young spirit blended with the old. May there be no more need for the young to be cut off -- from beginning to end."

A humble housepainter inscribed those words. "
LKJ As I Remember

"[Miriam and Sol's] wedding was shadowed by the untimely passing of our beloved Billy. During his last illness he actually worried about the expense of having a nurse, besides doctors, etc. Pop reassured him that a "big deal" he had on would bring enough money." LKJ Page 71.

November 11, 1930
Age 12
New York, New York, USA

Leah Kreinik Jacobowitz, As I Remember, 1962, p. 69.
"One notable event was their 50th wedding anniversary. We inveigled them to come to New York on some trumped up excuse, the family loaded up in Pop's and Morris Blatt's car, and when we arrived in the Hall, they had an overwhelming surprise. Uncle Aaron and Tante Gittel came from Buffalo, Uncle Zalmon and his wife all the nieces and nephews, cousins, and of course our children, including Louis who was then engaged to Ruth. Mother cried, Father was shaken, and all he could think of to say was: "at least you could have told me to change my pants." There was a "ceremony", the oldest grandchildren escorting the bride and groom, after dinner speeches, and a song by Billy which he asked to do: "Shomer Shabbos" in Hebrew....."

==== Newspaper Account =======
Married Fifty Years
Jersey Journal (?) Article, November, 1930.
(David Jacobowitz's interpretation.)
Scanned original available upon request.

A golden wedding anniversary surprise party was given to Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Kreinik of Brighton Beach, N.Y., on Sunday, Nov. 11, 1930, by their children, Mr. and Mrs. Elias Jacobowitz of Jersey City, Mr. and Mrs. Irving Kreinick of Brockton, Mass., Mr. and Mrs. [Nettie] Morris Blatt, Mr. and Mrs: [Mae] Aaron [Artie] Pepis, Mr. and Mrs. [Celia] George [Isadore] Rauschkolb, Miss Rebekah [Ruth?] Kreinik and Miss Anna Kreinik [Tianna]. The party was held at 17 West Twenty-fourth Street, New York City.

The couple were led into the hall, with the expectation of viewing the place in order to take it themselves for a later date. There were seventy guests present, relatives and friends, who gave them a warm welcome.

There were tears of joy in the eyes of many as the seventy-year-old bride and seventy-two-year old bridegroom were led under the canopy by their grandchildren, Ruth S. Jacobowitz of Jersey City and Horace C. Kreinick of Brockton, Mass. Dr. Kuperstein of Brighton Beach performed the little ceremony and made a touching address.

Many gifts in gold were presented to the couple, but the crowning event of the dinner which followed was the presentation by their children of a return passage to Europe. Mr. and Mrs. Kreinik will visit their birthplace in Austria [Zglobien, Poland?], as well as other countries, some time in the Spring.

Among the guests, besides the immediate family, were: Mr. and Mrs. Zalmon Kreinik, Mr. Aaron Kreinik of Buffalo, N.Y., Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Krantz, Mr. and Mrs. Marcus Herbst, Mr. Joel Herbst, Mr. Pincus Herbst, Mr. and Mrs. Max Krantz, Mr. Julius Krantz, Mr. Howard Krantz, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Kreinik of New York City, Mr. and Mrs. Sidney Krantz, Mr. Louis P. Brenner of Jersey City, Mr. and Mrs. Pincus Wright, Mr. and Mrs. H. Shattner, Mr. and Mrs. Sam Metcuff, Mr. and Mrs. Louis Messinger, Mr. and Mrs. B. Furman, Mr. and Mrs B. Rauch, Mr. Tobias Weichselbaum, Miss Anna Weichselbaum, Mrs. Rae Blum of Belmar, N.J., Mrs. Celia Kreinik, Miss Sara Kreinik, Mr. and Mrs. C. Zwelfach, Mr. J. Pepis, Miss Anna Bachner. The grandchildren, all of whom were present, are, Ruth S., Miriam R., Eugene, Norman, Paula Zelda and Wilfred Jacobowitz of Jersey City; Horace Carlin, Florence, Sylvia, Ruth and Eugene Kreinick of Brockton, Mass.; Shirley Jane Rauschkolb, Morton Saul Blatt, Ralph Carl Pepis, Natalie Harriet Pepis and Saul David Pepis.
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Steve Maskell:
But I do have a photo of our great-grandparent's 50th wedding anniversary taken in 1934 (sic). I think that this photo is of S. Joseph Kreinik and his family and not my grandmother's family.

My mother is in the last row, second from the left and her sister Flo is the first one on the left, last row. Irving is in the first seated row, second from the right and my grandmother is behind him. The gentleman to the right of my grandmother is her brother Sam Kellman and I think the follow on the other side of her is my Uncle Horace.

I don't recognize anyone else in the photo, do you

1930
- 1935
Age 12
Jersey City, Hudson, NJ, USA

LKJ: "Billy teased her when she started dating George when she was about sixteen" Billy died in 1930, so Toddy must have been even younger than 16.

1930
Age 12
Fair Lawn, Bergen, NJ, USA