The Jewish Genealogy Association 

Correct interpretation of tombstones listings.

Jean Bloch– Translated into English by David Presburger-Hauser

The inscriptions found on funerary monuments are an important source of information.

However, one should be careful not to draw erroneous conclusions, as it sometimes happen when reading them.

Thus, e.g., if Samuel Levy was buried in the Durmenach cemetery, this information does not automatically mean he died in this town. This for a number of possible reasons. Here are a few, very common:

  • Durmenach, like many other Jewish cemeteries, "welcomed" the deceased of several surrounding municipalities.

  • Our Samuel Levy might have express in his lifetime, one way or another, his will to be buried in the cemetery of his parents or ancestors, although he had left the area for many years. Here’s an example from our website:

on a list of people entitled to be buried in the Durmenach cemetery (Haut-Rhin) are found families who had booked their resting place but lived in municipalities sometimes very distant, sometimes in other french departments, or even in Switzerland. The most recent example is George Meyer, CEO of Galeries Lafayette, buried in Durmenach although residing in Paris.

When there is a cemetery register, the location of death is often filled in; sometimes it is even engraved on the tombstone itself. If not and the death certificate is not in the records of the municipality where the cemetery is located, one must conduct further research.

Our association can help you more accurately, based on the evidence gathered, the cemetery in question and the family concerned.