Florence Horwitz

Florence Horwitz

Female 1896 - 1967  (70 years)

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  • Name Florence Horwitz 
    Born 25 Sep 1896  Horwitz Family Residence, Rezekne, Latgale, Latvia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Per cenus records in Latvia she may have been one year older than Bessie and named Bluma when she lived in Rezekne.
    Gender Female 
    Yiddish Name Bluma 
    Died 16 Feb 1967  Inglewood, CA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • California Death Index, 1940-1997 record indicates dates of death as 16 Feb 1967 in Los Angeles.
    Notes 
    • The following notes have been contributed by Bernie Dorin:

      Florence, and her twin sister Bessie, were the youngest of the Horwitz children and the last to immigrate to the United States. They arrived in about 1909, making them about 13 years old. The twin girls were accompanied on their journey by their older sister Ida (abt 23) and brother Morris (abt 25) (we think). (Dates and ages must be considered as approximate.)

      Ida and Morris may have been mature, but the twin girls were certainly very young for such a trip. It is difficult to imagine the thoughts and emotions of these uneducated Jewish children as they left their rural home near the Baltic Sea for “the other side of the world”. Not to dwell on it, but the context of this all important trip must have been the frightening experience of a lifetime. Did they, as rural Jews in the Russia at the beginning of the Twentieth Century, experience the persecution associated with the pogroms? Probably!

      While the motivation for emigrating from Latvia was undoubtedly for religious freedom, to escape persecution, and for economic opportunity, unhappiness with their stepmother was also a factor for this band of four. Separation from the security of home into an alien and probably hostile appearing world of unfamiliar people, languages, and customs could well have been the material for fantasies and nightmares for years to come. Will the streets really be lined with gold? Will a man in a uniform (a Cossack) separate me from my family and send me back, alone? Will we find our brothers in some strange place called Chicago?

      Do we have the empathy, secure in our twenty first century lives, to put ourselves in the shoes of those children? The questions of a lifetime are the ones I didn’t ask. In retrospect, the story of the journey is just a small part of a full, rich story of a life that starts at a time and in a place I know almost nothing about. As I write this, I see my mother’s face and sense her always gentle and comforting presence. She was not a story teller; with five boys to look after she seemed to always be concerned with the “here and the now”. At least that’s how it seemed to a young boy who took it all for granted.

      I don’t know the port of embarkation to the “new world”, so I don’t know how my mother got there from her village of Resekne, Latvia. Whether it was by train or horse drawn conveyance, it was probably a new, exciting, and frightening experience. The ocean leg of the journey was almost certainly in steerage class, by all accounts very unpleasant accommodations. I don’t know the time of year she and her siblings set out, but I hope the trip across the Atlantic was not in the winter. The North Atlantic can be a nasty place in the winter.

      I have been told that her older brothers preceded this little, last band of the Henoch Hirsh Horwitz family, entering North America through Canada and settling in Chicago. I assume that Florence, Bessie, Ida, and Morris entered this country through Ellis Island. I made this assumption because I do remember being told that the girls worked in a glove factory on the lower East Side of New York. They worked very long hours for very little pay in what is now referred to as a “sweatshop”. The idea, of course, was to accumulate the money to complete the trip to Chicago and family. I have done some research of the information in the Ellis Island website, but I did not find any reference to my mother or her brothers or sisters.

      We have no details about what her new life was like for Florence, newly arrived in Chicago. I assume that given her young age she must have lived with one of her brothers. I do know that she had a social life beyond her immediate family. I heard references to, and saw pictures of, women she called her “girl friends”. I also don’t know if she worked outside of the home.

      In due course Florence met Isadore (Issie) Dorin, a recent arrival from Poland. I don’t know how they met or how long they “courted”, but these two “greenhorns” (my father’s term) married on November 25, 1917. Isadore was a baker, having apprenticed at the age of nine in Warsaw. His father had already left for America, so his grandfather arranged for the apprenticeship, with the explanation that “you will always have something to eat”. That prediction was accurate. Isadore always had work and was able to provide a good home and education for their five sons.

      The family lived on the west side of Chicago until about 1935, when we moved the northwest side. That was to be the family home for more than the next quarter of a century. All five boys went to elementary and high school in Chicago. We survived the Great Depression in good shape, but with three sons in the military during the war, WWII was a time of constant worry and anxiety for Ma and Pa Dorin. All three returned safely.
    Person ID I347  Complete
    Last Modified 11 Oct 2006 

    Father Henoch Hirsch Horwitz/Gurevitch/Gurvich,   b. 1838, Horwitz Family Residence, Rezekne, Latgale, Latvia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 18 May 1909, Horwitz Family Residence, Rezekne, Latgale, Latvia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 71 years) 
    Mother Basheva/Basseva Joffe,   b. 1857, Druya, Disna District, Belarus Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Abt 1904  (Age 47 years) 
    Photos
    Dave Howard on Barona Street, Rezekne, Latvia in Octoer 2003
    Dave Howard on Barona Street, Rezekne, Latvia in Octoer 2003
    Horwitz Family Home in Rezekne, Latvia was on Barona Street per 1897 All Russia census the family of Henoch Horwitz lived on this street at house number 11.
    Documents
    Birth Record for Abe and Notte Horwitz
    Birth Record for Abe and Notte Horwitz
    Maryana Panyarskaya (MaryanaP) wrote: Jun 3, 2011
    Hi, David!
    While checking Your tree I found the writing about the birth of your grandfather
    http://img1.lvva-raduraksti.lv/rabinati/005024-0001-000255/LVVA-005024-0001-000255-0061-M2.jpg
    May be You have it.
    There under the numbers 20 and 21 there are twins Aba Rafael and Nata.
    They were born on 2 March 1880
    Their parents were the philistine of RĒZEKNES Gener-Girshov Leiserovich (fathers name) Gurvich and his wife Baseva.

    This town was not very far from the town where my great-great-grandparents lived.

    Maryana
    July 5- 1882- to Genech-Girsh- son of Getsel-Leizer Gurvitch- citizen or Rezekne- and wife Baseva- daughter of Morduch- born son Yeruchim
    July 5- 1882- to Genech-Girsh- son of Getsel-Leizer Gurvitch- citizen or Rezekne- and wife Baseva- daughter of Morduch- born son Yeruchim
    Recordings
    Aunt Bessie Remembers Her Father 0:23
    Aunt Bessie Remembers Her Father 0:23
    Her father came from Moscow, a section of Riga along the shore of the river which was where many Jewish people lived. He was in the timber business with his father and brothers. He died at age 71 when Bessie was about 10.
     Life was not so good in Europe 0:59
    Life was not so good in Europe 0:59
    Story of Florence falling in the River 0:49
    Story of Florence falling in the River 0:49
    This story is well known in the Horwitz family of the time the twins, Bessie and Florence, had gone down to the river to watch the women do the laundry. There was a crowd around and Florence was knocked into the river. Bessie called for help and Florence was saved. But they made Bessie take her dry clothing off for Florence. Bessie was cold and naked. They were both about 10 years old. The year would have been about 1906, one year before they came to America.
    Notte Returns Home Unexpectedly 1:37
    Notte Returns Home Unexpectedly 1:37
    This is a great story about Bessie encountering her brother Nottie (Nathan) in the back of their home. He was an identical twin to Abe. When Florence refused to go out back to lock the barn door Bessie obeyed and went out back. Nottie was just arriving on a sleigh. She thought he was Abe. She asked if it was Abe and he said he was Nottie. She was so excited she passed out in the snow. The whole town was so excited about Nottie's safe return that they stayed up all night to celebrate.
    Bessie Remembers Her Older sister Sara 0:47
    Bessie Remembers Her Older sister Sara 0:47
    The area where the Horwitz family lived the homes had Saunas (Spitz Bath) in the back by the "barn" and outhouse. Sara stayed in Europe and had five children. As far as we know they all perished in the Holocaust.
    Albums
    Rezekne Museum
    Rezekne Museum (31)
    Photos Taken Inside Rezekne Museum by Dave Howard in October of 2002
    Family ID F426  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Isadore Dorin,   b. 15 Jun 1896, Poland Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Sep 1976, Torrance, California Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 80 years) 
    Married 25 Nov 1917  Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Robert P Dorin, MD,   b. 6 Sep 1918, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 5 May 2014  (Age 95 years)
    +2. Harold C Dorin, MD,   b. 27 Sep 1919, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 19 May 2019  (Age 99 years)
    +3. Stuart Dorin,   b. 9 May 1924, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1958, California, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 33 years)
    +4. Living
    +5. Jack Dorin,   b. 6 May 1932, Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Jan 1989, Torrance, California Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 56 years)
    Photos
    Isadore and Florence Dorin- Wedding Photo
    Isadore and Florence Dorin- Wedding Photo
    Florence & Izzy Dorin with sons Hal (younger)- and Bob (standing).
    Florence & Izzy Dorin with sons Hal (younger)- and Bob (standing).
    Florence & Isadore Dorin family- sans 1- 1939.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin family- sans 1- 1939.
    Florence- Izzy- Jack and Bernie Dorin. Visitors' day at boot camp. Bernie notes that there was no hair under his hat.
    Florence- Izzy- Jack and Bernie Dorin. Visitors' day at boot camp. Bernie notes that there was no hair under his hat.
    Florence Horwitz Dorin family photo- 1966.
    Florence Horwitz Dorin family photo- 1966.
    Family ID F383  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 25 Sep 1896 - Horwitz Family Residence, Rezekne, Latgale, Latvia Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 25 Nov 1917 - Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 16 Feb 1967 - Inglewood, CA Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Photos At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Horwitz Brothers and Sisters: Morris, Florence, Ida and Bessie with their older brother Nathan just before the they left Europe for America.
    Horwitz Brothers and Sisters: Morris, Florence, Ida and Bessie with their older brother Nathan just before the they left Europe for America.
    Bessie and Florence Horwitz- young single women.
    Bessie and Florence Horwitz- young single women.
    Florence Horwitz- before she was married sitting.
    Florence Horwitz- before she was married sitting.
    Florence Horwitz- sitting hands in lap
    Florence Horwitz- sitting hands in lap
    Florence Horwitz- when she was single wearing the fashion of the times.
    Florence Horwitz- when she was single wearing the fashion of the times.
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Florence & Bessie Horwitz with ??
    Florence & Bessie Horwitz with ??
    Florence & Abe Horwitz- they were both single at the time. Was this at Bessie's wedding? They were very well dressed.
    Florence & Abe Horwitz- they were both single at the time. Was this at Bessie's wedding? They were very well dressed.
    Florence Horwitz Dorin- is this her dress for Bessie's wedding?
    Florence Horwitz Dorin- is this her dress for Bessie's wedding?
    Florence Horwitz- Young Sitting- Showing ring on third finger of left hand
    Florence Horwitz- Young Sitting- Showing ring on third finger of left hand
    Florence & Isadore Dorin with unknown couple
    Florence & Isadore Dorin with unknown couple
    Gutta Horwitz Family Club- pose #1. The brothers and sisters are in the chairs.
    Gutta Horwitz Family Club- pose #1. The brothers and sisters are in the chairs.
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Horwitz first generation husbands and wives. From Left to Right Simon- Morris-Bessie- Max- Florence- Reuben
    Horwitz first generation husbands and wives. From Left to Right Simon- Morris-Bessie- Max- Florence- Reuben
    Florence & Isadore Dorin at Gutta gathering.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin at Gutta gathering.
    Florence & Izzy Dorin. Bernie adds that Ma had two rules for photos - no smile and she had to have a purse.
    Florence & Izzy Dorin. Bernie adds that Ma had two rules for photos - no smile and she had to have a purse.
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin caught kissing.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin caught kissing.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin family photo at Hal Dorin home.
    Florence & Isadore Dorin family photo at Hal Dorin home.
    George Hurwitz Family
    George Hurwitz Family
    Top-Down L-R- Max Hurwitz- father of George- and his sister Florence Horwitz Dorin- Celia Hurwitz- George Hurwitz- Ted and Victor Hurwitz
    Florence Horwitz Face
    Florence Horwitz Face
    Florence Horwitz and Isadore Dorin Wedding Photo.
    Florence Horwitz and Isadore Dorin Wedding Photo.

    Documents
    History of Horwitz Surname
    History of Horwitz Surname
    Article on Horwitz Surname by Dr. Alexander Beider