My grandfather changed his name. We don’t know his birth name.

+1 vote
112 views
I’m hoping to find Minsk birth record by date.  

My grandfather took the name of the man who took him in, Samuel Sacks.  I don’t know if my grandfather had to file a request for name change; if so, is there a file for this for this for the New York City Area?  His naturalization paper states his birth information as April 15, 1888 in Minsk, Russia.

I’m hoping to find his family name.
in Genealogy Help by Donna Sacks G2G Rookie (160 points)
Was your grandfather naturalized?  If so, his naturalization papers should include his birth name.
I wish it were that easy! His name on the naturalization papers is listed as Samuel Sacks,  but this wasn’t his birth name.

Thanks for the idea though, Kathie.
Have you searched the Ellis Island records?  Do you know when he arrived?  You can search ships' manifests for his first name since you know where and when he was born.  He couldn't have changed his name before he arrived.  His acctual application for citizenship (not the naturalization paper) should show his birth name, also.
You should perhaps consider a simple change to Sacks from something such as Sachs, or Kossachs/Kossacks.  Often (but not always) people went for new names that either reflected their original names, or that used the same initials.
Hi Kathie,

I didn’t think of searching Ellis Island records. I can try, if they are available by  date.  That is a great suggestion. Thank you.

My grandfather took an entirely new name after he came to the US.  We don’t know anything about his Russian name.
Samuel Sacks was the name of the man who took my grandfather in, and my grandfather must have taken the same name.
Hi Melanie,

Samuel Sacks was the name of the man who took my grandfather in, and my grandfather must have taken the same name.

Thank you for the idas.

1 Answer

+2 votes
Does he have any direct male descendants who can take a y-dna test? That should give some ideas, I think.
by Dennis Wheeler G2G6 Pilot (537k points)
Hi Dennis,

That is a good suggestion.  Thank you.  I can ask my brother.

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