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Asser Levy's Geni Profile

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Asser Levy

Also Known As: "van Swellem"
Birthplace: Vilnius, Lithuania
Death: Died in New York, NY, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of Benjamin Levy and NN. Levy
Husband of Miriam Israel
Brother of Rachel van der Wilden and Asser Levy

Managed by: Justin Swanström
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Asser Levy

Asser Levy (died 1680), also known as Asher Levy, was one of the first Jewish settlers of the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam on Manhattan Island.

He has been called the Founding Father of American Jewry.

Online articles on Asser Levy include

There are various theories regarding the ancestry of Asser Levy. These include that Asser Levy was:

  • The son of a Benjamin Levy who was in Recife, Brazil. Asser Levy may have been born in Vilnius (Vilna), or elsewhere in the Ashkenazi world in Europe.
  • The son of Juda Loeb form Vilnius.
  • The son of Loeb Schwelm (Schelm), born in Frankfurt.

This profile currently reflects the theory that Asser Levy was the son of Benjamin Levy.

A profile has also been created at Asser Levy van Swellem to reflect Asser Levy being the son of Loeb Schwelm (Schelm), born in Frankfurt.

Various Geni users are currently investigating the available sources to document what they tell us regarding Asser Levy's ancestry and perhaps to reach a conclusion on what might be considered "correct".

It is proposed to create a project discussion to enable collaboration. When created, a link will be posted here. In the meantime, interested readers can contact the managers and curator of this profile if they wish to participate in the discussion.

Online sources that suggest that Asser Levy was born in Vilnius include:

Online sources following the view that Asser Levy was the son of Loeb Schwelm (Schelm), born in Frankfurt, are currently referenced at Asser Levy van Swellem

As at 15 January 2012, the Wikipedia article on Asser Levy states: "Although it is not certain, Levy was probably born in Amsterdam"

See also,5

Asser Levy (Van Swellem) is first mentioned in public records in New Amsterdam in 1654, in connection with the group of 23 Jews who arrived as refugees from Brazil, it is likely that he preceded their arrival. Levy was a Kosher butcher for the small Jewish community. Levy fought for Jewish rights in the Dutch colony and is famous for winning the right for Jews to be admitted as Burghers and to serve guard duty for the colony.

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Asser Levy's Timeline

February 1, 1682
New York, NY, USA
Vilnius, Lithuania