Horowitz Surname Genealogy

Horowitz family has been one of the most
illustrious rabbinic families in Jewish history.
A family tree has traced
Horowitz origins back to the 12th century.
The Sephardic surname of this family was BenVeniste. This later changed to Horowitz after their
expulsion from Spain and their subsequent immigration in the 16th
century into
the small town of Horovice near Prague in the then German province of
Bohemia. From that time forward rabbis
of this family were to be found in Jewish communities in Germany,
Austria-Hungary and the Russian Empire.
There have been
numerous spelling variations of this surname.
The three most to be found in America have been Horowitz,
Horwitz, and

Horowitz Resources on

Horowitz Ancestry

patriarch of the Horowitz family line is considered
to be Aaron Meshullam Horowitz,
founder of the Pinkas Synagogue in Prague, who lived in Horovice and
Prague in
the early 16th century. He had eight
sons who began to spread this rabbinical family more widely in the
diaspora in Europe and also into Palestine.

There is one Rabbinic Horowitz line that is not
related on the male side. This is the
extensive family of Rabbi Naftali Zyi Horowitz, founder of the Ropshitz
dynasty in Poland in the early 1800’s. His mother was a Horowitz
by birth and
he adopted her maiden name.

Horowitzes started arriving in America in the
late 19th century.

America. The breakdown of Horowtizes
in America by
point of origin was approximately:

  • 44%
    from the Russian Empire
  • 44%
  • and
    12% from Germany.

rabbinical streak was brought to
America by Rabbi Pinchos D. Horowitz, the seventh generation descendant
Rabbi Shmuel Shmelke Horowitz the Nikolsburger Rebbe.
He had come to Boston in 1915 during the
turmoil of the First World War and had been asked to be their Jewish
leader. He was succeeded as the Bostoner
Rebbe by his sons Rabbi Moshe Horowitz and Rabbi Levi Yitzchok Horowitz
and by
his grandson Rabbi Naftali
Yehudah Horowitz

from Kiev in Russia first came to America in 1928 to
perform at
Carnegie Hall in New York. He settled in
the US in 1939 and became an American citizen in 1944.
He is widely considered as one of the
greatest pianists of all time.

There were earlier Horowitz arrivals. Jacob
arrived on the Lower East Side of New York with his
family from
Hungary in 1883. He started making
Passover matzohs for the local Jewish population. His
descendants, the
Horowitz-Margareten family, became well known for their matzohs and
Passover products.

The Horwitz spelling also occurs, notably in the Chicago
area. Jacob Horwitz (originally Gurvitz)
came to Chicago as a young man in 1906.
In 1924 he started a company of personal injury trial lawyers
continues today with the third generation of Horwitzes.
Meanwhile Reuben Horwitz (originally
Gurwitch) made the journey from
to Chicago
in 1907.

Some Horowitzes arrived in America and changed their
name to something more anglophonic like Howard.

Howard, the professional
name for Moses Horwitz, was the leader of the farce comedy team The
Stooges that first toured the vaudeville circuit and then starred in
films and

Then there were one or two that adopted the Horowitz name.
Louis Tomchin came to New York from Minsk in
Russia in 1903 with his young son who became known as Sol Horowitz. Sol’s son Michael Horowitz was in the 1960’s
a close associate of the psychedelic drug promoter Timothy Leary and is
father of the actress Winona Ryder

Horowitz Miscellany

If you would like to read more, click on the miscellany page for
further stories and accounts:

Horowitz Names

the Matzoh bakery on the Lower East Side of New York in 1884.
Rabbi Pinchos D. Horowitz
began the
family line of Bostoner Rebbe on his arrival in Boston in 1915.
Vladimir Horowitz
who first came to
America in 1928 is widely considered as one of the greatest pianists of
David Horowitz
grew up in New
York in the 1950’s in left wing radical circles and subsequently became
one of their fiercest

Select Horowitzes Today

  • 200 in the UK (most numerous
    in London)
  • 8,000 in America (most numerous in New York)



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