The name Rodker is mysterious: it appears to be a Jewish surname following the German "trade" style, but there is no German word like it. Two Russian surnames, Rodko and Rodka, resemble it, so perhaps Rodka was modified to make it more German. Joan tells me that her mother, Sonia, used to dance under the name Rodka. According to students of Russian names, Rodko and Rodka are diminutives of Rodion, which means "rosy".

Another theory has emerged: Rodker, perhaps Roedker, looks like a number of Prussian names. Prussia is now part of Poland, and has a mixed Germanic-Slavic population.

My own theory, which Patrick Monson, a member of the Utah Jewish Genealogical Society, agrees is plausible, is that Rodker is a name derived from a place, such as Berliner, Krakower (various spellings), etc. It turns out that there is (was) a town named Rodka (surprise!), which is now in Romania, and whose official name is now Rădăuți. Its Polish name is Radowce, and it is approx. 750 km from Warsaw. Interestingly, Wikipedia says "A Jewish community was present before the Habsburg takeover, and is attested to have been overseen by a starost. Many Jews fleeing the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria (as well as other Habsburg areas) from intense persecution and anti-Semitism during the Middle Ages settled in Rădăuţi. The community was allowed a degree of self-administration, and witnessed a period of prosperity and cultural effervescence during the 19th century." If this is the origin of the name Rodker, it would add a fascinating footnote to the family's history.

If you see any errors or omissions, please contact
J. Paul Morrison

June, 2003:
- information added on David Littlestone
- more photos added

May, 2003:
- children of Steven Hall and those of Edith Torrens added
- lots more Rinds added (thanks, David and Sally), and a few Storches
- a number of photos uploaded (thanks, Barry!)
- Lustbander corrected to Lustbader (thanks, Pamela!)

27 April, 2003:
- Hyman Rodker changed to Bill, alias Hyman
- biographical info on Bill's descendants added (from Barry Rodker)

23 April, 2003:
- Morris Rodker merged with Moses Rodker

14 April, 2003:
- information added from Sally Rose
- some photos added

10 April, 2003:
- a number of dates added
- information added on Daniel Israel's family
- information added on Judith Maccoby's grandfather, the Kamenitzer Maggid

6 April, 2003:
- 2 twins removed from Samuel and Simma's family
- remarriage applies to Devorah, not Mary Smithson


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