Prior to 2022, I thought that Mordekhl was my oldest known ancestor.  However, I am now pretty sure that he was my 4th great Uncle. If you read the Isaac page, you will see why we are pretty sure that Isaac was the father of my Ber and that Mordekhl was Isaac’s brother.

Morkdkhl was born somewhere between 1790 – 1805 based on various documents that we found. Iudel was his father.

1828 Family List for Mordekhl

By 1808 he was married to Fruma.  They lived in Old Zagare in the Siauliai, Kaunas region of Lithuania. They eventually had the following children: Zundel, Ber, Hirsch, Leib, and Pesa.

Based on the naming of his grandchildren, we believe Mordekhl died around 1853. In Ashkenazi Jewish tradition, children were named after deceased relatives.

Mordeklh’s branch is very well-documented.  Because we have so much information and photos from this branch, I have given each of Mordekhl’s children their own page.  Below is a brief summary about each one of them.

  • Rev Zundel married Nettie.  Their branch mostly settled in the Louisville, KY area, although some settle in South Africa. 
  • Ber – we do not yet know anything about Mordekhl’s Ber
  • Hirsch  (Tsvi Hirsch) married Dora Dvora  and applied for a passport to leave Latvia in 1900 (see Riga Passport and Travel Documents Registration List 1900) . He eventually settled in the United States.
  • Leib  married Leah Zagorsky and had  3 children.  This branch has changed the most with this update.  Prior to 2022, we thought Leib was married to his cousin, Leah Blieden.  With new research, we now know this was not correct.  We therefore, had to do additional research to confirm the children born to Leib and Leah.
  • Pesa – married Aaron Nieburg.  They had 6 children.

Thank you to:

  • Mort Kaplan – In early 2019, I discovered a family tree with Tsvi Hirsch on That started some nice email exchanges with his great-grandson, Mort.
  •  Ben Lipkowitz, for among other things, discovering Pesa, a female Blieden descendant
  • Schamroth Rapeport N. The Rapeport Meyer family sojourn in South Africa. 2014