Gabriel Rubenstein

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Gabriel Rubenstein

Birthdate: (64)
Birthplace: probably Bilogorodka, probably Volhynia, probably Ukraine
Death: November 8, 1928 (64)
West Frankfort, IL, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of Menachem Nachum Reib and Wife #1 Reib
Husband of Rosa Rubenstein
Father of Devera Burg; Samuel Rubenstein and Shirley Nona Swartz
Brother of Geneva Ida Meyer; Max Reib Rubenstein and Leah Geeser
Half brother of Jacob Jean Reib; Meyer Reib and Eugene Lester Rieb

Managed by: Hatte Blejer
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Gabriel Rubenstein

Update - based on DNA from the descendants of Gabriel (Lippe / Lipmann)'s sister, Leah Reib, we now know that at least Leah, Gabriel and Max were siblings. His obituary states that Geneva Reib was also their sibling and that J.J. and Eugene Reib were Gabriel's step brothers. In another newspaper account, Meyer Reib and Eugene Reib are mentioned as brothers of Max Reib Rubenstein.

Here is what we know about the parents' names of the Reibs:

  • Max Reib Rubenstein born 1858 - fether's Hebrew name Menachem Nachum (gravestone)
  • Gabriel (Lippe) Rubenstein born 1864 - father's Hebrew name Nachum (gravestone)
  • J.J. Reib born ? - father's Hebrew name Menachem
  • Eugene Reib born ? - no information found
  • Leah Reib born 1878, father's Hebrew name Menachem Nachum (gravestone / Nathan Reib (death certificate)
  • Geneva Ida Reib born ? - father Nathan Reib and mother Adele Rosenberg (Social Security)
  • Meyer Reib born 1881 - father Menachem Nachum (gravestone) / Charles Reib and Ida Weintrub (death certificate) [Note: the informant was probably staff from the institution where Meyer died]

The surnames Reib and Rubenstein were used by several of the siblings. J.J. also went by Rubenstein earlier in his life in America.

Rosenberg is the name taken by the brother of Rosa Rubenstein (nee Rubenstein), wife of Gabriel Rubenstein (nee Reib). And it also appears as the maiden name of Geneva Reib's mother.

Weintraub / Wintrob / Weintrub are cousins of Max Reib Rubenstein (see his profile). Some of their Weintraub cousins lived in Muscatine with Max and Gabriel (Mary Fryer and Oscar Wintrob). Other Weintraubs lived with Max Reib Rubenstein's daughter, Sarah Gould, years later. Another Weintraub was the father of Harold Brodkey, who was adopted by Max Reib Rubenstein's daughter, Doris Rubenstein Brodkey.

Gabriel Rubenstein Obituary

Neosho Daily News, Neosho, Missouri 14 Nov 1928

Death of G. Rubenstein

The following article, taken from the Daily American of Frankfort, Ill., will be of interest to a number of people in Neosho. The gentleman, whose death is noted in the article, was at one time engaged in business in Neosho, buying the stock of the Moss store from O.A. Moss. His death occurred last Thursday. Mr. Rubenstein retained his Eastern Star membership in the Neosho chapter.

Gabriel Rubenstein, 64, died in the Union hospital, at 2:30 this morning, death closely following a stroke of paralysis which came upon Mr. Rubenstein at about the same hour Wednesday morning.

For the past two years Mr. Rubenstein has been in ill health, and treatment to which he had been subjected had varying effects upon the physical being. At times he would appear quite improved and brighten up quite noticeably, only to be downcast as his condition would change to an unfavorable one.

Mr. Rubenstein was for many years a successful businessman of this city, operating what was known as the Famous store for ten years, but retired about two years ago, and since that time has spent much time at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Max Burg, at 508 West Main street.

Lodge circles claimed quite a bit of Mr. Rubenstein’s attention, and his membership was held in high esteem in the Masonic order, Odd Fellows, Modern Woodman and Eastern Star. He was loyal to his lodge and lodge friends, and was a “minute man” when a call for help was sent out.

Mr. Rubenstein was born across the sea, but came to America when quite a boy, and the greater part of his life was spent in St. Louis. He was a successful businessman and had a keen insight to things that had a commercial relationship.

He is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Barney Schwartz, Buffalo, N.Y., Mrs. Max Burg, this city, a son, Sam, of Sharon, Pa., two step-brothers, J.J. Reib, Quincy, Ill. and Eugene Reib, Hannibal, Mo., and two sisters, Mrs. Lea Spreckles, St. Louis, Mo., and Mrs. S. J. Myer, Quincy, Ill.

The body will lie in state at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Max Burg, 508 West Main street during the afternoon and evening hours of November 8, and will be taken to St. Louis tomorrow for burial. The children and other relatives will join the funeral party in St. Louis.


Updated 2017, based on requesting a photo of Gabriel Rubenstein's gravestone. Also, we have autosomal DNA results from a descendant of Gabriel that might support the hypothesis I am currently following, which is that Gabriel Rubenstein was born Reib and was the brother of Max Reib Rubenstein of Muscatine, Iowa, Rock Island, Illinois, and Alton, Illinois.

Naturalized October 12, 1888 in Muscatine, Iowa.

Find A Grave

  • Birth: 1864, Russia
  • Death: Nov. 8, 1928. West Frankfort, Franklin County, Illinois, USA

Spouse: Rosa Rubenstein (1868 - 1941)


  1. Devera Rubenstein Burg (1896 - 1990)*

  • Calculated relationship

Burial: Bnai Amoona Cemetery University City, St. Louis County, Missouri, USA

  • Created by: J.R. Pfaff
  • Record added: Jan 06, 2017
  • Find A Grave Memorial# 174971472

Find A Grave

His gravestone says Lippe son of Nachum. This means two things: (1) He is likely the Lippe who traveled with Charles Fryer and Mary Wintrob Fryer since the age matches and that Lippe disappears (2) He is likely the BROTHER of Max Reib Rubenstein since both have a father named Nachum and since Gabriel was in business with and living in the same three towns as Max Reib Rubenstein and Gabriel's descendants changed their name from Rubenstein to Reib.

It's still possible that he's the cousin of Max Reib Rubenstein and they had cousin fathers named Nachum. What is odd is that they Max Reib Rubenstein descendants have no knowledge of Gabriel Rubenstein.

Apparently his wife was a Rubenstein, probably then a relative of Fannie (Feige) Rubenstein, Max Reib Rubenstein's wife.

Update: Requesting death certificate from Illinois. (Feb 2017)

It seems that Gabriel's son and grandson used the surname "Reib," which might mean that Gabriel was a relative of Max Reib Rubenstein, not Fannie Rubenstein.

I have tentatively hypothesized that he is the brother of Max Reib Rubenstein. Both named daughters Devora, although that could be a coincidence. His descendants did take the name Reib. He was in business with Max in Muscatine, Iowa and with Max and Charles Fryer started the first synagogue in Muscatine in Charles Fryer's house. It may not be a coincidence that Gabriel's son, Samuel, and Max' daughter, Sara, both named sons "Nelson" -- William Nelson Rubenstein (changed to Reib) and Jerome Nelson Gould. Perhaps for Nachum, Max and Gabriel's father? Or Nelson for Nathan, if Gabriel was Fanny's relative since Fanny's father was either Yehoshua or Nathan (or both)?

Max and Gabriel were associated with the same towns at the same times -- Muscatine and Alton. Max lived in Rock Island in between, I don't know if Gabriel lived there. Gabriel lived in St. Louis where some of Max' children settled. Sandy Besser, Max' grandson, remembers relatives who lived in St. Louis, although he mentioned them being relatives of Fanny Rubenstein, not Max.

Arrived 1882. Naturalized in Muscatine, Iowa on October 12, 1888. This means that "G. Rubenstein" who worked for Max Bieber & Co. in Muscatine was probably the same as Gabriel Rubenstein of Alton.

Gabriel Rubenstein appears to have been in business with Max Reib Rubenstein in Muscatine. Since Rubenstein was Fannie's name, he may have been Fannie's cousin or brother. Note the name Dora and Samuel. Dora (Dvora / Deborah) is the name of Max and Fanny's daughter also. And Samuel may be a Reib or Rubenstein family name, according to Sandy Besser.

From The Daily Independent of Murphysboro, Illinois Thursday, July 21, 1927

West Frankfort Man Sues St Louis Man • ST. LOUIS, MO., July 20.—(UP) —A $25,000 alienation of'affections suit in which Gabriel Rubenstein of West Frankfort, III., charges Abraham Rosenberg ot St. Louis, with interfering in his family affairs was on file in Circuit Court here today. Rosenberg is a brother of Rubenstein's wife. According to the suit, Rosenberg is at fault for the estrangement of Rubenstein and his wife and for litigation between them. The Rubensteins were, married in 1891.

  • Gabriel RUBENSTEIN 44, RUS-RUS-RUS, Merchant - Clothing

This means that Gabriel was born in 1866, which makes him slightly younger than Max or Fannie. Rosie in 1871, Dora in 1896 and Samuel in 1898.

Fannie's father's name was given as Nathan Rubenstein on her death certificate and as Yehoshua on her gravestone, which if Gabriel is Fannie's brother, would mean that none of the children were named for her father.

Looks like Max and his (hypothesized) brother-in-law had something in common (the family business?)

Illinois Deaths

  • Name: Gabriel Rubenstein
  • Birth Date: abt 1864
  • Birth Place: Russia
  • Death Date: 8 Nov 1928
  • Death Place: West Frankfort, Franklin, Illinois
  • Burial Date: 10 Nov 1928
  • Burial Place: St. Louis, St. Louis, MO
  • Death Age: 64
  • Occupation: Merchant
  • Race: White
  • Marital Status: M
  • Gender: Male
  • Spouse Name: Rose Rubenstein
  • Comments: Length of residence where death occurred 11y
  • FHL Film Number: 1642729

1900 US Census:

  • Name: Gabel Rubenstein
  • Birthplace: Russia
  • Home in 1900: Belleville Ward 6, St Clair, Illinois
  • [St. Clair]
  • Race: White
  • Gender: Male
  • Immigration Year: 1882
  • Relation to Head of House: Head
  • Marital Status: Married
  • Spouse's Name: Rose Rubenstein
  • Marriage Year: 1890
  • Years Married: 10
  • Father's Birthplace: Russia
  • Mother's Birthplace: Russia
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Gabriel Rubenstein's Timeline

probably Bilogorodka, probably Volhynia, probably Ukraine
August 9, 1896
Age 32
November 1897
Age 33
September 13, 1901
Age 37
Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, United States
November 8, 1928
Age 64
West Frankfort, IL, USA