The Glovner Young Men's Benevolent Society

Written and Contributed by Cathy J. Flamholtz

We can only imagine what courage it took our ancestors to leave Glowno and relocate elsewhere. Today, in our modern mobile society, we pack up and move all the time, knowing that we can always pick up a phone and stay in touch or hop on a plane and visit the relatives in a few hours time.

But in the late 1800s and early 1900s, these options were not available. Leaving Glowno meant saying good-bye to fathers and mothers, grandparents, cousins and friends you had known your entire life, realizing that you would probably never see them again. It was leaving the forests where they had played and picked berries as children. Never again would they swim in the Mroga River and have picnics on its shore with their friends. They knew they would not be buried in the Jewish cemetery, dating back to the 1750s, where generations of family gravestones stood.

Many Glovners set out for America, while others moved to European cities, like Paris. Some, fueled by the Zionist movement, fulfilled their dream of settling in Eretz Israel. Others left out of desperation, just ahead of the Nazis who marched into the town in 1939. They knew that the Jews faced hard times under the Nazi occupation, though certainly nobody could imagine the horror that would actually befall the community. They tried to persuade family and friends to accompany them, but their efforts were often in vain.

And so, a number of residents of Glowno slipped across the Russian border, hoping that they would find comfort with these foes of the Nazis. It was not to be. These Glovners were rounded up and sentenced to work in slave labor camps in Siberia.

The Glovners that came to New York in the early 1900s faced a new and uncertain world. Most spoke only Yiddish and had no contacts to help them secure a job and a place to live. While many dreamed of fame and fortune, they found New York City to be a grim and forbidding place to live. Rents were high and landlords unforgiving. What would happen to them if they became ill and could not work? There was no safety net and welfare societies routinely took away the children of indigent parents and placed them in institutions. Disease was rampant and medical care either expensive or dispensed by charlatans. What synagogue would they attend? And when they died, who would come to the service and where would they be buried?

It's difficult for us to realize today just how important our ancestors felt it was to be buried along with their fellow Glovners. And so, like Jews from so many other shtetls, those from Glowno joined together to create their own safety net, a bulwark against the difficulties facing them in the New World. The Glovner Young Men's Benevolent Society, Inc. was organized on November 18, 1923.

The Charter Members were:

Adelson, Samuel (see note 1 below)
Berger, I. Dr.
Bernstein, Victor
Bleiman, Abraham
Breitstein, Julius
Breitstein, Samuel
Bleiweizer, Israel
Cohn, Adolph (should be Cohen)
Cobrin, Louis
Devitz, William
Ellgut, Frank
Elkins, Henry
Flamholtz, George
Flamholtz, Joseph
Flamholtz, Morris
Frohman, Max
Folslager, Sarah
Gart, Jacob
Gilbert, Reuben, Dr.
Gold, Alter
Gold, Joseph
Goldhammer (no first name listed)
Goldwasser, David
Jacobs, Max
Karmelson, Solomon (may be Karmason)
Klein, David
Kutner, Max
Kutner, Samuel
Krohn, Joseph
Landau, Reuben
Levant, Louis
Levy, Fred
Leichman, Samuel
Lieberman, Abraham
Lieberman, Godel
Lieberman, Harry
Lieberman, Herman
Lieberman, Jacob
Lieberman, Samuel
Marsdon, Murray
Myers, Samuel
Newman, Abraham
Podvoll, S. M., Dr.
Portegal, Paul
Posnansky, Samuel
Posner, Morris
Posner, Phil
Rothkopf, Morris
Reiber, Isidore
Reichbach, Samuel
Reisman, Morris
Rosenberg, Alter
Rosenberg, Morris
Seidel, Abraham
Seidel, David
Seidel, Louis
Selis, Jack
Salt, Esther
Salt, Irving
Salt, Maxwell
Schwartz, Solomon
Schwartz, Philip
Sohmer, Joseph
Solomon, Tobias
Stein, Samuel
Summer, Abraham
Summer, Harry (see note 2)
Summer, Joseph
Warsinger, Sam
Wolman, Isidore
Zand, Morris

1. Samuel Adelson 's name was listed under the letter K. It is possible, then, that there may have been a misprint and the name may have been Kadelson.
2. There are two entries for Harry Summer on the list. (Original name back in Glowno was Szumiraj.)
A special thanks to Steve Bendelson for providing this list.

The Glover Society was a place where members could get together. Often the members played cards and reminisced about life in Glowno and the people they knew and missed. They became a link between the Old World and the New.

Immigrants to the US, often arrived clutching a paper with the name of a member of the Society. There were two doctors who were members and could be counted on to administer to those who became ill. And, when hard times hit and someone lost his job, the Society advanced him enough money to enable him to get back on his feet. If a Society member became ill, they would be visited by designated members of the group. And, when a man died, the Society would come to the aid of his widow and children.

One of the most important aspects of the Society was the purchase of a burial plot where members and their families could be buried. The Glovner plot is located at Beth David Cemetery in Elmont, New York. If need be, the Society would help to finance the funeral and might even pay for the gravesstone.

A List of Those Buried in the Glovner Plot:

The Glovner plot is at Beth David Cemetery, in Elmont, New York. The list of those buried there was given to me in November 2000 and was current as of that date. There are still available spaces in the plot so it's possible that additional people have been buried since than.

Those seeking information on their ancestors who may be buried there should be able to gain details from the cemetery which can be reached at the included address or fax number. I know of two people who have contacted them and found the staff to be wonderfully helpful.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! I'd like to compile a more complete list which gives the names and birth and death dates for those buried in the plot. We'd also like to have the names of their parents, if possible. Any information you can give

us on your family who may be buried in the plot would be greatly appreciated. You can also include your email address so anyone who comes across the information on this web site can contact you. It would be ideal if someone who lives in the New York/New Jersey area could undertake a project to either record the information on the gravestones or photograph them for us. Your information can then be included here.

I'd do it myself but Georgia is a long way from New York and it's difficult for me to get away. There are only 124 graves in the Glovner plot so it's not an overwhelming task.

Again, should you contact Beth David Cemetery, please share with us what you learn. You can send your information to me at:
Cathy J. Flamholtz
1881 Oak Village Lane
Lawrenceville, GA 30043

Email: flamholtz@gmail.com>

 

Special thanks to Steve Bendelson for providing this information.

Beth David Cemetery
Elmont Cemetery, Inc.
300 Elmont Road
Elmont, NY 11003
USA

Phone 516-328-1300
FAX 718-343-3762

The List:

Beer, Joseph
Beer, Rose
Bendelson, Minnie
Bendelson, Norman
Bendelson, Rose
Bialach, Bella
Bialeck, Sam
Bleiman, Abraham
Bleiman, Lena Raisel
Bleiweiss, Celia
Bleiweiss, Israel
Breitstein, Fanny
Breitstein, Julius
Breitstein, Lillian
Breitstein, Molly Anna
Breitstein, Samuel
Cohen, Adolph
Cohen, Tillie
Flamholtz, Anna
Flamholtz, Celia
Flamholtz, Gershon (George)
Flamholtz, Henry
Flamholtz, Joseph
Flamholtz, Morris
Flamholtz, Philip
Flamholtz, Rose
Flamholtz, Tessie
Folslager, Sarah
Frohman, Ida
Frohman, Max
Gimpelson, Allen
Gimpelson, Joel
Gimpelson, Sidney
Gold, Abraham
Gold, Ida
Gold, Sara
Gold, Sarah
Goldberg, Fannie
Goldberg, Pauline
Goldberg, Sidney
Goldhammer, Harry
Goldhammer, Helen
Goldwasser, David
Goldwasser, Esther
Goldwasser, Ida
Goldwasser, Paul
Hendel, Ernest
, Rose
Jacobs, Max
Jacobs, Nettie
Karmason, Natalie
Karmason, Solomon
Katz, Jennie
Katz, Paul
Kesselman, Murray
Kesselman, Sylvia
Klein, Hilda
Kutner, Fannie
Kutner, Samuel
Land, Gussie
Landau, George
Landau, Pauline
Landau, Sara
Leiberman, Abraham
Leiberman, Dora
Leiberman, Ida
Leiberman, Jacob
Leichman, Helen
Leichman, Sam
Levant, Augusta
Levant, Louis
Levy, Ella
Levy, Fred
Marsden, Baby
Portegal, Paul (Pincus)
Posner, Anna
Posner, Isidore
Posner, Morris
Poznansky, Rose
Poznansky, Samuel
Reiber, Chaya
Reiber, Isaac
Reiter, Philip
Richards, Doris
Rothkopf, Esther
Rothkopf, Louis
Rothkopf, Morris
Rothkopf, Rose
Rosenberg, Alter
Rosenberg, Lena
Rosenberg, Morris
Rosenberg, Rose
Sacks, Baby
Sacks, Simon g, Hilda
Rosenberg
Salt, Esther
Salt, Etta
Salt, Harry
Schultz, Dora
Schultz, Harry
Schwartz, Claire
Schwartz, Joseph
Schwartz, Rose
Schwartz, Solomon
Seidel, Estelle
Seidel, Ethel
Seidel, Louis
Sheer, Sigmund
Silverberg, Bella
Silverberg, Harry
Silverberg, Mollie
Silverberg, Samuel
Solomon, Jennie
Solomon, Tobias
Summer, Abraham
Summer, Baby
Summer, Joseph
Summer, Molly
Summer, Yetta
Weiss, Tillie
Wolman, Fannie
Wolman, Isidore
Zand, Morris
Zang, Baby (possibly should be Zand)

Below you will find sections from the Constitution and Rules and Regulations of the Glovner Young Men's Benevolent Society. They make for interesting reading. The officers, in 1931, were:

President Morris Rothkopf
Vice President Joseph Flamholtz
Financial Secretary Harry Lieberman
Cashier Sam Breitstein
Protocol Secretary Morris Zand
Chairman of Cemetery Abraham Lieberman
Trustee Eliazar Zeidel
Trustee Sam Edelson.


A special thanks to distant cousin Steve Bendelson (a descendant of Morris Flamholtz) for the Rules and Regulations, the original members and the list of those in the Glovner plot. Steve is the fourth generation in an unbroken line of those who have served as the Society's President.

If anyone has any additional information on the Glovner Young Men's Benevolent Society, please contact me and I'll share your information here.

I'd like to know where meetings were held; if the Society attended a special synagogue; what meetings and get-togethers were like, etc. I'd also like to know if there are any groups for those from Glowno in any other countries, particularly Israel.

Note: We do not have the complete copy of the Constitution and Rules and Regulations.

ARTICLE 8

10. When a member's wife dies and he marries another, he must present a Doctor's Certificate for her. And, if the Doctor's Certificate is favorable, he must add thereto no less than 25 dollars. However, the Organization may in an exceptional case demand more.

11. As long as the Society does not recognize his second wife as a member, he is regarded by the Society as a single man.

12. In the event of the death of his second wife, the Society is under no obligation, if she is not a member, and her children are also not entitled to benefits. But the children f his first wife are entitled as in Paragraph 1.

13. The wife and children of a deceased member are entitled to cemetery and expenses, provided she pays regular dues in the Society.

14. The amount of her dues is 50 cents less than what a married member pays.

15. In the event she marries another man, she and her children are expelled from the Society.

16. When a member belongs as a single man in the Society, then his wife is not entitled to anything.

17. In each case of death, before the burial, a deposit for a stone must be added, to the amount of 10 Dollars, for the child of a member.

18. In the event a case of death befalls a member, who is not yet 6 months in the Society, ad has not yet made two full bill payments and dues, then the Society is obliged to give only cemetery plot, but no other expenses.

19. In the event a member dies and the Society decides to give 50 Dollars for a monument (stone), then all members shall be taxed.

ARTICLE 9

FINANCE COMMITTEE
The books must be inspected by a Finance Committee at least twice a year, and reported at the meeting after inspection.

COMMITTEE FOR VISITING THE SICK
A Committee to visit sick members shall be appointed by the Financial Secretary according to the alphabet. Every member who does not attend to his duty of visiting a sick member shall be obligated to pay a fine of 1 Dollar.

ARTICLE 10

DEALING WITH CHARGES
1.
Members who do harm to the Society or insult other members, may be punished in accordance with the decisions of our Society.
2. The President may release him from his right to take the floor, but for no longer than 6 months.
3. He may punish him with money, but not more than 5 dollars.

ARTICLE 11

AMENDMENTS

1. Each Article or Paragraph in this Constitution, may at any time be amended, if the Society deems it necessary. It must, however, be decided upon by a two-thirds vote of the membership at a Special Meeting, called for this purpose.

ARTICLE 12

RULES AND REGULATIONS

1. The meetings of this Society shall be opened at 8:30 PM the latest.
2. The President shall conduct thmeetings with a gavel. The first sound of the gavel calls the meeting to order. A member may be in the heat of a debate, but when the Presid's gavel is sounded, he must take his seat at once. At two sounds of the gavel, all officials must rise. At three sounds of the gavel, all of the members must rise.
3. When a member wants to talk about some matter, he must get the President's permission to do so. No member has the right to speak without the permission of the President.
4. When a decision is reached at a meeting through a majority vote, it shall be read at the next meeting and if no objection is made against the protocol, it becomes a law and no more debating can be done about it.
5. Meetings must be conducted according to meeting procedure, and all matters conducted according to Parliamentary procedure.

ADDITIONS TO THE LAWS

1. In the case of urgent need the President may aid to the extent of 10 Dollars.
2. No Brother has the right to disclose the business of the meetings outside of the Society, particularly as regards objections made against candidates by certain members. And any Brother who breaks this rule is punishable by a fine of money or suspension for a certain period of time.
3. When a Brother behaves in an immoral fashion and it reflects upon the Society, he may be expelled from the Society.
4. When a Brother brings up to another the fact that the latter received aid from the Society, he shall be suspended for 3 months.
5. When it is disclosed that a Brother has drawn sick benefit from the Society and at the same time conducted his business, or did his work, then he is subject to the punishment of paying twice the sum that he had drawn.
6. No Brother has the right to take part in a debate more than two times.
7. During election for candidates, each Brother shall sit quietly in his place and not run around to try to persuade the others for which candidate to vote.

These Laws were modified on the 25th of February, 1931, and approved by a Special Meeting.

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Last Updated July 30th 2010 (first posted September 2002)