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The present recorded history of the Freidin family of Zelva extends back to the late 18th Century. Much of this history has been constructed from the family's own process of oral transmission from one generation to another. Written evidence of the family's existence is more rare, being largely restricted to a handful of published scholarly works.

Beginning in 1975, Jack S. Berger, a Freidin Family member of matrilineal descent, undertook to codify the history and genealogy of his mother's family. During the course of the past three decades, a significant amount of material has been accumulated, both in written and photographic form. As part of this process, Jack also translated The Zelva Memorial Book, first published in Hebrew as Sefer Zikaron Zelva, into English. This document serves as a monument to the lost members of the Jewish community of Zelva that was destroyed in the Holocaust.

Early in 2001, The Freidin Family Newsletter first debuted online, and in 2005, Jack's daughter, Sharon A. Javer, became our webmaster.

The site is roughly divided into two segments:

1. The Freidin Family Genealogy

2. Historical Information about Zelva



The Family Chronicler is:

Jack S. Berger
12 Janice Court
Mahwah, NJ 07430-1515
e-mail: JSBerger@Sigmaxi.net

You are all encouraged to write to Jack directly, every time there is a family transition (birth, marriage, death). Jack is ably assisted by the following family members:


Shoshana Freidin
58 Ben Gurion St.
Tel Aviv 64589

e-mail: shoshanafreidin@yahoo.com

Odded Ritz




Our Webmaster is:
Sharon A. Javer 


Our 'Virtual' Spiritual Leader

Rabbi Dr. Zalman Kossowsky

The last Rabbi of Zelva was Rabbi Mikhl Kossowsky, who barely escaped from Zelva, with his family, when the Russians first invaded Poland in 1939. Today, His son, Rabbi Dr. Zalman Kossowsky, carries on his family Rabbinical tradition, and has consented to serve as the 'Virtual Chief Rabbi' of Zelva in cyberspace.

Click here to read the full biography of Chief Rabbi of 'Virtual Zelva' Zurich, Switzerland.

e mail: rabbi@kossowsky.net