my grandmother and the last of her family emigrated to the US! We've always had some sketchy details about when and how, but as of last night, I have the real information!
I'm a member of a few Jewish Genealogy listservs and last night I just happened to notice an email about the Port of Bremen's ship manifest information being available in an online database. I thought that was where my Grandmother had sailed from, so I clicked on the link, intending merely to bookmark the page. When I got to the page, there was a line to enter in a last name. I had a few moments, so I figured what the heck. Not two minutes later, I was staring at a passenger list that showed my grandmother, her parents, her sister and two brothers. They left the port of Bremen on January 12, 1927 and set out for America, leaving all they'd ever known behind. Of the 6 older children, 5 were already living in America, having been sent over with cousins, aunts and uncles. 1 of my grandmother's sisters stayed behind because she had married a Russian officer who would/could not leave. They never heard from her again after WWII.
When they arrived in America, they found that the older children were Americanized and had made full lives for themselves here, marrying and having children. In fact, the oldest siblings had never even met the two youngest brothers who came over with my Grandmother!
I find it interesting that my family has come full circle in many ways -- once again, a Russian child steps forward and leaves behind all they ever knew to step into new life in America, joining family they've never met and hoping for a better life. It all worked out pretty well last time around; I hope we are once again blessed with success.
ATTENTION - 12pm addition: Obviously I wrote this too early in the morning, before I'd had my coffee! We are NOT yet in the process for a daughter (although I'm still hoping to be) and I didn't mean to make it sound that way! I'll revise this post later when I have a chance. Sorry to excite everyone!