In memoriam

Philip and Sophie Korn

Philip and Sophie Korn were married in New York City on March 20, 1932.

Philip Korn was born Raphael Korn on March 3, 1898 in Borowa, Mielec County, Galicia, Austria-Hungary (now Poland). His father, Jakob Korn of Borowa, a cattle driver, was born in 1862. His mother, Feiga (née Butterman), was born in 1864 in Szczepanowice, Tarnów County, Galicia, Austria-Hungary (now Poland), and had previously been married to Salamon Fleiszer of Dabrowa, who died young.

Philip had five older half-siblings: Yakob Kopel, Perl, Aaron, Isidor and Bezatel Fleiszer (or Fleischer); two older full sisters, Rosa (who died in 1936) and Dora Korn; and three younger full brothers, Chaim (Hymie), Leibisch (Ari) and Fiszel (Fred) Korn. As “Rafael Korn,” he immigrated to America on Aug. 4, 1914 aboard the USS George Washington. It was one of the last ships to leave Europe before the outbreak of World War I. Philip settled in New York City and became a waiter.

Sophie Blum was born in Manhattan, New York City, on May 9, 1902 (she later “changed” the date to 1905), the daughter of Abraham (Abe) Blum, a tailor who made children’s coats, and Minnie (née Toborisky or Tobor). She had two brothers, Benjamin and Samuel, and two sisters, Rikka (Rae) and Henrietta (Hennie).

Philip’s mother, Feiga, died in 1936, and his father Jakob died in the Holocaust around 1942. Philip’s grandparents were Gerszon (Gershon Halevi) and Ruchel Korn of Borowa, and Kopel and Chaja Butterman of Szczepanowice. His great-grandparents included Abraham Leib Butterman and Cypra (Tziporah) of Szczepanowice, and his great-great-grandparents included Abraham Butterman and Fradle (née Drilichow), and Lipe Butter and Feiga (née Drillich).

Sophie’s father, Abe, was born in the Russian Empire, probably in present-day Belarus, in 1871, and arrived in America on Feb. 3, 1884. He died in New York City on Oct. 30, 1903, before the birth of his daughter Henrietta in 1904. Sophie’s mother, Minnie Toborisky (aka Taborisky or Toberisky or Tobor), was born around 1874 and arrived in America around 1893. They were married around 1895 or 1896. After Abe’s death, Minnie married Morris Heller in 1921, and they moved to Brooklyn. They later moved to Washington, D.C., where Minnie died in 1948. Sophie’s grandparents were Saul Blum and Shiphra (née Cohen) and Baruch Toborisky and Esther (née Fishkin) of Vilna.

Sophie and Philip moved to Washington, D.C., a year after their wedding and set up a grocery store. They had two children: Allen Gilbert Korn and Phoebe Rose Korn (who was born on Sept. 22, 1937 and whose picture appeared in many newspapers and the Oct. 11, 1937 issue of Life magazine because she was born with two teeth). Allen married Goldie Idella (“Idie”) Wood. They had two children, Gary and Greg, and later moved to San Antonio, Texas. Phoebe married Samuel R. Silver on Valentine’s Day, 1966. They had two children, Stephen and Sharon (who died shortly after her birth), and eventually moved to Concord, California, in 1985.

Philip was bold and had dashing good looks. He was also very sensitive and cried easily. Sophie was a voracious reader. Neither had much formal education, but they could perform mathematical calculations quickly in their heads. Their marriage ended tragically when Sophie was murdered on Jan. 22, 1965. Philip later moved to Miami, Florida, then returned to the Washington, D.C., area in 1983. He died on June 22, 1991 in Arlington, Virginia.

Philip and Sophie are lovingly remembered by their grandson, Stephen Aaron Silver, his wife, Shoshana, and their children, Samuel Jared “Sammy” Silver and Sophie Jerusha Rose Silver.