Dear all participants,
I would like to bring up an issue that was brought to my attention by Judith Nathan Elam.
As Daniel Loeb states in the top of his page, http://www.loebtree.com/heller.html there are several different versions of who are Jacob's parents. And I quote:
"However, according to Paul J. SALAZAR there were two Abraham HELLER's. One the ancestor of the other. The former Abraham married Rachel LOEW. Their son Mose Halevi HELLER-Frenkl (b. ca. 1520)'s son was the latter Abraham Halevi HELLER-FRANKEL (d. 1572). The latter Abraham married Bella the daughter of Meir Ha LEVI (whose family has been researched into the 1300's, and it is the latter Abraham and Bella who were the parents of Jakob KOPPEL FRAENKEL HELLER-WALLERSTEIN."
And there is another version listed there, and this is the one Judith holds with (as far as I could understand). "Finally, according to David Peter John LEWIN davidlewin at btinternet.com, Rahel bat Maharal LOEW married Mose Halevi HELLER-FRENKL (b. about 1520) (see page 17) and they had a son Abraham HALEVI-HELLER (d. 1572/1591) who married Bella (see page 66) and they had a son Jakob KOPPEL FRAENKEL HELLER-WALLERSTEIN."
Please share your data on this, preferably with sources.
The three possible versions of "Jacob's family tree" have been created and included in the Tree since at least 3 years ago. Many attempts to merge Jacob's parents - of the three variations, by Geni players (with probably "good intentions", but being probably unaware of the three possible links), created repeatedly "blunders" of Jacobs relatives being their own grandparents etc. and other impossible variations. On several occasions, we had to remove parts of the tree and start all over again and again - with Geni staff assistance.
The final accepted consensus has been to include in the tree ONLY the SHORTEST version, and to quote the other 2 suggested versions in the "About Me" section of the relevant figures.
The situation is, I agree, a mess. But the fact is the current lineage is WRONG. The confusion arose because there are 2 Abraham Wallersteins. I spent a long time researching various sources, including several e-mail discussions with the Director of the Jewish Museum in Prague. Ironically they had just had a major exhibition there and he was very clued in on this topic. He also agreed that the lineage is the following:
Jacob's parents are Abraham Wallerstein and Bela bat Meir Halevi. Abraham's parents are Moses Halevi Heller Wallerstein and
Sorry, got cut off. Abraham's parents are Moses Halevi Heller Wallerstein and Rachel Leow. Moses' father is Abraham Wallerstein. This is one of the "alternative versions" listed on Daniel Loeb's tree and is the correct one. I received other sources, but the correct version is the one I described and we need to correct the tree on Geni to reflect this. So how can we do this? I for one, do not want to be part of an incorrect tree, and I would imagine all the other descendants would agree.
I agree that the tree should reflect the true lineage or as close to the true lineage as possible. The "higher" we climb the tree, the more "alternative versions" will have to be considered. We should keep in mind that the "documented" lineage versions were written by people, sometimes according to "family tradition and memories" and sometimes also tainted with "personal" subjective aspirations or interests of the writers themselves.
So for one - let us not get too overwhelmed with the "written words" of the lineage versions. Let us agree that they are not holy and not "Kitvei Kodesh". They could indeed be true, but taking it with a grain of salt won't hurt.
This is DEFINITELY NOT an exact science.
On the other hand we want to build the tree, and we should "work" with all the available information. Some info we trust more, some we doubt more. Nevertheless - we prefer a single tree (at least I hope so) - this is why we try to merge all the duplicates.
After rebuilding the Maharal of Prague "junction" of the tree at least five times - with at least 50 profiles each time! I would approach any changes there with great care. The current Geni version may not be the absolute truth, but it certainly reflects an accepted version, and quotes all other versions as well (in the profile text). This does not mean that it need not be corrected. Your preferred version could indeed be closer to the true one.
As far as I remember - Bella and Avraham were the main stumbling blocks at one of the wrong branching points in our older versions of the tree. They were both included in one of our older version of the tree. However, in several other family trees, Bella was listed as one of Maharal daughters, and this caused a blunder once merged with "our major Maharal tree".
Since once on the tree - a parent cannot dismiss a child (after being erroneously merged), and in many cases the managers of Bella would not respond to my requests to correct the mistake, a whole chunk of the tree had to be eliminated and rebuilt.
Also the lineage of Jacob: ben Avraham ben Moshe ben Avraham ben Moshe Wallerstein caused many wrong merges at and of the two Avrahams - the father & the Grt.Grandfather.
If you feel that you absolutely "cannot live" with the current version - would an insertion of the "missing persons" labeled with "DO NOT MERGE !!!" tags do? I personally am not in favor of it - but if it meets your pressing needs - who am I to object?
In such a case - would you please take upon yourself to correct any future wrong merges at this tree-junction. I for one will NOT do it anymore.
I didn't know the history of this mess - thank you for filling me in! Of course I am not happy with an incorrect tree, but it sounds like trying to correct it would be an even greater nightmare. I didn't realize that. I certainly am not computer savvy enought or Geni savvy enough to take on the responsibility of wrong merges. So I guess we are caught between a rock and a hard place. On my Legacy software program I can "unhook" and "reconnect" people - is it not possible to do this on Geni? If it is, wouldn't we solve the problem this way? Forgive me if my question is naive, but when I got stuck with the complexities of Geni before, Randy Schoenberg very kindly bailed me out.
Without going into too much detail, I contacted every source of information and while there was, I believe one, which supported the current lineage, the others all said that the dates could not possibly support that version. I seem to recall that there is a grave inscription that supports this lineage too - that is, it states who the father was on the inscription. Clearly, the confusion stems from the mixing up of the 2 Abraham Wallersteins and I can see how easily people would be merging the wrong Abraham.
If the unhooking is not possible, then I agree that it sounds like the only option we have is to attach a link or notation of some kind with the correct lineage. Can you do this? I would be afraid to mess things up. As I stated, I am not Geni savvy.
Dear Judith (and Yigal),
I am glad we are getting closer to an understanding here.
I would be willing to do this, BUT I am not a manager of any of these profiles. Perhaps I should start requesting management?
For this purpose Judith I would need you to accept collaboration with me and I would be happy to go over the exact details of the lineage with you so that I will not make any silly mistakes.
You are obviously Genealogy-savvy, I am Geni-savvy - together we can work this out, I'm sure!
Thanks for the show of faith in me. I hope I will not disappoint.
Can you please point me to the people you are most concerned about, and I will try to work on them first?
Right now I have a take-home final, but I will do my best to work on this in the next couple of days / week.
Do you want me to show you which merges I do before I do them, or do you trust me enough to go ahead and plow through the multitudes of merges? :-)
Right now I am concerned about Jacob Koppel. Do you want to plunge in the deep end with him, or are we going to do as Yigal suggested and just attach a note?
Why don't you tell me which people you are merging first? As I mentioned previously, I am not concerned with, nor can I pass comment on people who are not on my tree. But I would like to see who you want to merge first.
Hi there. I am researching the Heller Lippman tree. It seems to me that Yehuda Loew and Moshe were contemporaries. Yehuda born 1525 and Moshe in 1520. Rachel couldn't have been born earlier than 1543 (and she was not a first born so more likely she was born later) and had to have been at least 18 (not before 1561) when she married. Moshe would have been around 40 years old or more. His son Avraham seems closer in age and a more suitable match being born around 1550.