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Pinkus Fränkel Ehrlich Genealogy Research Collection

Identifier: AR 25807

Scope and Content Note

The Pinkus Fränkel Ehrlich genealogy research collection focuses on the genealogical research of Elizabeth Brody and John Peters of the related Ehrlich, Fränkel, and Pinkus families. The collection primarily contains correspondence; as well as: genealogical notes, family trees, photographs, a small travel diary, and papers relating to Elizabeth Brody's trip to Europe in 2010.

The first folder consists of correspondence between Elizabeth Brody and John Peters. The letters eventually evolve into email correspondence after 2002. The exchange between the two begins with John's letter of introduction sent in 1989. From there, the two try, within the context of the letters, to link their family relation and construct a family tree, using Paul Ehrlich as a starting point. Aside from trying to create an extensive family tree, the correspondence between the two is primarily a casual conversation about their personal lives and families. Some letters mention enclosed family trees, however all genealogical notes are found in Folder 3, as originally organized by the donor.

Parallel to her correspondence with John Peters, Elizabeth Brody connected with other people to trace the family history of the Pinkus, Fränkel, and Ehrlich families. Letters between Elizabeth and these individuals can be found in Folder 2. They include: Stephen and Jo Fraenkel; Anthony Peters; Helen Hoffman; Dr. Robert Horning; and Walter Pinkus. Some letters in the folder have accompanying photos that were included with the original letters in envelopes.

Folder 3 contains documents pertaining to genealogy that have been originally part of the correspondence. The papers have been chronologically arranged, with the exception of undated materials. This folder tracks the progression of Elizabeth's genealogy research that includes the Pinkus, Fränkel, and Ehrlich families. There are a few handwritten notes about family relations based on letters in the correspondence folders. Other documents include family trees and genealogy tables, printed pages from genealogy websites, and a photograph of Marianne Landau (née Ehrlich) and Stefanie Schwerin (née Ehrlich) with unidentified family members. The identification of individuals on the back of the photograph by the donor is incorrect. A similar photograph with Marianne Landau and Stefanie Schwerin can be found in the LBI Archives of the Pinkus Family Collection, AR 7030.

Folders 4 and 5 contain papers and photographs relating to Elizabeth Brody's travels in March 1990, after having gotten in contact with John Peters the year before. There are a few photographs and a small travel diary in Folder 4 from Elizabeth's trip to Germany and Switzerland, where she met John and his partner, Peggy Plinius. The travel diary chronicles the daily itineraries and tasks of the trip with a few notes about money she spent during the trip towards the back of the booklet.

The papers and photos in Folder 5 are from Elizabeth's trip to Europe in 2010, where she visited Upper Silesia and many cities related to her genealogy research. A printed itinerary annotated by Elizabeth in red ink specifically details each city visited on the trip. Photos are arranged in envelopes depending on location and may have original envelopes with notes from the donor about people or places attached. Email correspondence between Elizabeth and various recipients about the trip that were sent subsequent years after the trip can also be found in the folder. There are undated loose-leaf pages at the end of the folder with notes from Elizabeth about arranging and sharing photos taken on the trip.


  • Creation: 1989-2018


Language of Materials

The collection is in English, with small amounts of German and Polish.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Readers may access the collection by visiting the Lillian Goldman Reading Room at the Center for Jewish History. We recommend reserving the collection in advance; please visit the LBI Online Catalog and click on the "Reserve" button.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

Leo Baeck Institute, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011


Biographical Notes

Elizabeth Ruth Brody (née Schoenberg) was born on September 17, 1931 in Chicago, Illinois to Isaac Jacob Schoenberg and Charlotte "Dolli" Landau, a granddaughter of Paul Ehrlich, the Nobel Prize-winning German chemist. Elizabeth Schoenberg, an attorney-at-law in New Jersey, married Warren Brody, a New Jersey appellate court judge in 1953. They had two daughters.

John Peters, born Hans Josef Pinkus, was born on May 17, 1922 in Neustadt in Oberschlesien, Germany (now Prudnik, Poland) to Hans Hubert Pinkus and Mathilde Anna Elfride von Vietinghoff. He is the grandson of Max Pinkus, the brother of Hedwig Pinkus who married Paul Ehrlich in 1883. In 1939, the Pinkus family emigrated to the United Kingdom and in the early 1940s, he officially changed his name to Howard John Roy Peters. He is often referred to as John Peters and by his initials, H.J.R. Peters. He lived in Verbier, Switzerland. John and his wife, Marianne "Toni" Pollak had three children: Margaret Dinah (1945-1953), Helen Judith, and Anthony David Max.


0.25 Linear Feet


The collection focuses on the genealogical research of Elizabeth Brody and John Peters of the related Ehrlich, Fränkel, and Pinkus families. The collection primarily contains correspondence; however it also includes: genealogical notes, family trees, photographs, a small travel diary, and papers relating to Elizabeth Brody's trip to Europe in 2010.


Items within folders are arranged chronologically, and the folders are alphabetically arranged in one series.

Related Material

The LBI Archives holds the following archival collections related to the present one: the Pinkus Family Collection, AR 7030; the John Peters Pinkus Family Papers, AR 25520; and the Marianne Landau Collection, AR 11066.

Separated Material

A CD-ROM containing 203 images from Elizabeth Brody’s trip to Poland in 2010 has been placed in the LBI Audio Visual Collection. The photos on the CD depict a walking tour and the dedication at a monument of Paul Ehrlich in Strzelin, Poland. An envelope in Folder 5 has some printed photos that can be also found on the CD.

Processing Information

During processing, similar materials were grouped together within folders. Seven duplicate photographs from Brody’s trip to London in 2002 and the trip to Europe in 2010 were removed from the collection. A CD-ROM was placed in the LBI Audio Visual Collection.

Guide to the Pinkus Fränkel Ehrlich Genealogy Research Collection AR 25807
Processed by Victoria Fernandez
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Edition statement
This version was derived from Pinkus_Fraenkel_Ehrlich_genealogy.xml

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States