John compiles Preston history

FORMER librarian John Cowell is undertaking an ambitious project.

A Chorley, Lancashire, resident, Mr Cowell, who teaches family history in Southport, is compiling a history of the Preston Jewish community.

He hopes to tell the story of the community, with family history information, pictures of some of the pioneers in the 1890s, a list of officers, and details of where people came from and where they moved to.

There will also be details of the former synagogue, now used as a Hindu temple, as well as previous meeting rooms.

Mr Cowell - chairman of Preston Branch of the Lancashire Family History and Heraldry Society and a member of the Jewish Genealogical Society - would especially like to speak to descendants of members of the community, or to anyone who remembers such shops as Moore's outfitters, Sandall's furriers and silk mercers, Percy Goldberg's giftshop or Jacobson's silk mercers, both in Miller Arcade.

There were also Marx Goodman's glass, paint and oil business, various tailors who must have made suits for most of the other inhabitants of Preston between 1910 and 1960, and some small drapers and market traders.

The community seems not to have been conspicuous in the life of the town because of its small numbers, though Alderman Rita Lytton became Mayor in the early 1970s, and the town had a Jewish MP from 1945 to 1950.

A very large proportion of the town's doctors were Jewish between the wars and for many years after the Second World War.

Contact John on 01257-460208 or email

ALAN Hertzberg of the Wirral is writing his family history.

Members he wants details on are: Tevel Davies of Liverpool and Southport; Hannah Davies, nee Yaffe, of Liverpool, both members of Princes Road Synagogue; Harris Hertzberg of Liverpool; Dina Hertzberg, nee Morris, of Whitechapel,London and Liverpool; Ben Harris of Liverpool who was a member of Princes Road shul; Maurice and Leah Quest of Liverpool and their son Dr Ivor Quest.

Write to Quarry Bank, 48 Shalmarsh Road, Higher Bebington, Wirral, Cheshire CH63 2JZ

SHLOMO Fischer of Brooklyn is looking for Rabbi Herbert Richards who was a chaplain in the army or his relative.

His mother, Miriam Richards, died in 1971. She was a daughter of Rabbi Joseph Berger.

Email or telephone 001718-851-8828 or 718-851-3570

ALEXANDRA Shilkoff of Sheffield would like to hear from anyone who knew of Samuel Shilkoff (also known as Samuel Salkovitz) and Esther Alexander.

Samuel was originally from Belarus and lived in Liverpool as a cabinet maker from the early 1900s.

He moved to Stoke-on-Trent after World War One. Esther was the daughter of Alexander's the cabinet makers in Liverpool.

Esther was born in Liverpool but her parents were Polish.

Esther and Samuel were married at the Great Synagogue in Liverpool.

Alexandra believes that there are relations to the Shilkoffs in Manchester, Liverpool and London.

Write to 26 Coombe Place, Crookes, Sheffield S10 1FJ or email

JULIA Pascal needs help finding Ilse Berlowitz/Henson (Hirschbaum) and her daughter Ruth Henson.

Ilse was born in 1917 in a border town of East Prussia. She and her family later lived in Berlin. She was the only one in her family who escaped death by reaching England late in the 1930s.

Her father Siegbert Saul Berlowitz, born 1885, and mother Julia (nee Ehrenwert, born 1889, were transported to Minsk and shot by a Latvian firing squad in 1941.

Ilse married Alfred Hirschbaum. who changed his name to Henson. Their daughter Ruth was born on September 12, 1943 in Manchester.

In the 1950s the Henson family lived at 6 Middleton Road, Brandwood House, Crumpall, Manchester 8.

Write to 35 Flaxman Court, Flaxman Terrace, London WC1H 9AR, telephone 020 7383 0920 or email

To make an appeal, email MIKE COHEN at Please include your home address.

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