I have an extensive tree but can find nothing at all about my grandfather. He was Newman Rosenthal, and the only thing I know is that he died in London in 1948.

I’d welcome something suggestions on where to look for more information. So far, I’ve looked in census records and birth records, all through MyHeritage.

  • 4
    Start with what you know - which helps formulate specific questions from there. You know he died in 1948 in London, but there is no entry in the GRO death indexes for a Newman Rosenthal who died in that year. So the first question to answer is, did he actually die in 1948? If so, was he under a different name? There is no point in jumping to birth or marriage or census or any other records until you can establish if what you know is actually true.
    – Harry V.
    Mar 24, 2018 at 23:41
  • What is the source of the information "that he died in London in 1948"?
    – PolyGeo
    Mar 25, 2018 at 0:09
  • I remember my mother telling me he died a few months after I was born
    – ICL1901
    Mar 25, 2018 at 3:14

3 Answers 3


I did some hopefully-not-too-creepy sleuthing, but starting with your birth index record it was relatively straightforward to establish your mother's name, her marriage, and find her birth record.

In the GRO Index (free account required):

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Turning to the 1939 Register shows your mother living with her parents in Stepney. The index shows the following people in your mother's household (I recommend you take a look at the original image):

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On FreeBMD you can locate Jacob Rosenthal's marriage to Elizabeth Nerden in 1894 in Mile End Old Town district:

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The 1939 Register gives Jacob's date of birth as 6 Jan 1873. This leads back to his likely birth record in the GRO Index:

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And most likely his death in 1949, a year later than you expected:

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Now, where does the name Newman fit into this? He shows up in a number of London directories and electoral rolls as Newman Jacob Rosenthal. For example, this 1922 electoral roll in Mile End Old Town:

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I don't have a good answer as to where the name Newman fits in, but it does not appear to be his birth name. Perhaps it could be as simple as he just did not like Jacob, and preferred to go by Newman.

In any case, it is a relatively straightforward matter to trace Jacob (Newman) through the censuses, so I won't include them all here. Let us know if you have trouble locating him.

The above records are all just index records. I would strongly recommend you start with a few birth, marriage, and death certificates to establish facts. It would be good to start with your mother's birth certificate, so see how her father's name is recorded, and then possibly her father's birth and death certificates. You can order these certificates directly from the GRO Index website.

  • This is brilliant, and none too creepy ;) I cant thank you enough. My grandfather had another name -- who would have thought! Many thanks
    – ICL1901
    Mar 25, 2018 at 11:51

These may (or may not) be three records for your grandfather. They were found by searching the free FamilySearch for anyone named Newman Rosenthal who died between 1943 and 1953.

  • In the 1901 Census:

    "England and Wales Census, 1901," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:X9DX-9X8 : 8 April 2016), Newman Rosenthal in household of Rose Rosenthal, Whitechapel, London, Middlesex, England; from "1901 England, Scotland and Wales census," database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing Goodmans Fields subdistrict, PRO RG 13, The National Archives, Kew, Surrey.

  • In the 1911 Census:

    "England and Wales Census, 1911," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XWGB-GQ2 : 1 August 2017), Newman Rosenthal in household of Sarah Rosenthal, Bethnal Green, E, London, England; from "1911 England and Wales census," database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing PRO RG 14, The National Archives of the UK, Kew, Surrey.

  • Marrying Annie H Cowen:

    "England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:26J4-5B7 : 13 December 2014), Newman H Rosenthal and null, 1918; from “England & Wales Marriages, 1837-2005,” database, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : 2012); citing 1918, quarter 3, vol. 1B, p. 664, Islington, London, England, General Register Office, Southport, England.

With the additional information that you expect Newman to have been aged about 40 in 1911 there is another record in the 1891 Census at FamilySearch that may be worth reviewing:

"England and Wales Census, 1891," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:31TG-4MM : 11 December 2017), Newman Rosenthall in household of Harris Rosenthall, Whitechapel, London, England; from "1891 England, Scotland and Wales census," database and images, findmypast (http://www.findmypast.com : n.d.); citing PRO RG 12, London county, subdistrict, The National Archives of the UK, Kew, Surrey.

  • 1
    These are kind of random guesses based on the name being the same. I would be careful jumping to these records without any supporting evidence that they are actually the person of interest.
    – Harry V.
    Mar 24, 2018 at 23:44
  • @HarryVervet I think they are more targeted than random guesses because they would appear to match name, approximate age and approximate geography, but of course I take your point that the identity of the man/men in these records and the Newman Rosenthal who "died in London in 1948" needs to be established.
    – PolyGeo
    Mar 25, 2018 at 0:01
  • He's certainly a possibility but the problem is we don't even have an approximate age
    – Harry V.
    Mar 25, 2018 at 0:05
  • Thanks for the tips. The surrounding info seems ok (location), but the age is not. My mother was born in 1911, and her dad (Newman) was about 40, not 19-20. This is where I've gotten stuck. I'll keep pressing..
    – ICL1901
    Mar 25, 2018 at 3:18
  • Thanks to all of you for your help, tips, and suggestions.
    – ICL1901
    Mar 25, 2018 at 15:35

The mother's name is listed as Rose Rosenthal on 1901 Census for White Chapel, London and is listed as Sarah Rosenthal, as already listed above, on the 1911 Census, however the children appear to be the same. There is a Newman Rosenthal born c.1875 who died in White Chapel, aged 13 in 1888. There is a Newman Jacob Rosenthal 1899-1900 on the Electoral registers, City of London. A burial is listed of Nymann Rosenthal in 1936 in Edmonton, London, bough of Enfield, Greater London, Edmonton Federation of Synagogues Cemetery, which may be of interest to you to consider further.

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