After the timely death of her husband, Jack Gruenberg, Margie lost (or perhaps broke) all contact with the four remaining Gruenberg brothers and their father, Mose. Only Rose Gruenberg-Lauber would continue to be a part of Margie’s life and that of her son, Merrill. Based on what she knew about Jack’s gangster brother, Al Gruenberg, Margie’s move appears to have been concerned with protecting Merrill from LA’s underworld.
Grandparents of Jack Gruenberg and his 5 Siblings:
MENDEL and BOBBIT ‘BAUBE’ KANTER/CANTER
Parents of Jack Gruenberg and his 5 Siblings:
Moyshe ‘Moses’ ‘Mose’ Gruenberg and Berthe ‘Bettie’ Canter Gruenberg
Regarding Mose Gruenberg, Pam Gruenberg Blacker has this to say:
I wish my dad [Wally Gruenberg] was alive to see this site. He would be thrilled. He never said much about his dad [Mose Gruenberg] except that he was tough. I also know he died of a heart attack while gambling. He had just remarried a week or 2 before he died.
Note that the designation ‘Imperial Russia / Romania’ refers to a change in the government of Bessarabia after World War I, when this area of ‘New Russia’ was given to Romania. These days, Bessarabia is a separate country called Moldava.
Moyshe ‘Mose’ ‘Morris’ Gruenberg (b. November 25, 1875 Imperial Russia / Romania, d. July 27, 1942 Los Angeles CA). His wife was Berthe ‘Bettie’ Canter (b. 1882 Congress Poland, Imperial Russia; / Romania d. January 2, 1916). Mose was the proprietor of a wholesale fruit business in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Together Mose and Bettie produced six children: Jacob ‘Jack’; Albert Abraham ‘Al’ or ‘Abe’; Rose; Charles ‘Chuck’ or ‘Bonnie’; Hyman ‘Herman’ or ‘Hy’; and Wallace ‘Wally’.
Bettie’s parents were also living in Minneapolis with Mose and his family before Mose and his children moved to Los Angeles during the late teens early 1920s. They are Mendel Canter (b. 1854, d. June 6, 1919 Minneapolis) and his wife Bobbit ‘Baube’ Canter (d. August 20, 1928), both of whom were born in Romania. In the 1910 US Census for Minneapolis, it is notated that Bobbit had given birth to 8 children, all of whom were still alive at that time. In the same census, Mendel is listed as a fruit peddler. Mendel’s parents were Abraham ‘Abe’ and Pearl Canter.
Bettie’s sister, Anna CANTER (born in Romania) married the immigrant, William KAUFMANN, b. abt 1888 in Romania. The 1920 census reports that William’s mother-in-law Bobbit ‘Baube’ CANTER (age 60 born in Romania) was living with him and Anna. By 1927, the Kaufmanns had moved to Los Angeles as documented in the LA city directory for that year:
KAUFMANN Wm slsmn h3815 S Harvard blvd, Los Angeles, CA
Anna and William had four children: Jerome (m. Sylvia Neiss in 1939), Norman, Daniel, and Ruth.
In addition, Mose’s mother, Bertha Pershconner Gruenberg (b. 1851, d. April 14, 1916 Minneapolis) was also living in Minneapolis; her parents were David and Hannah Pershconner.
Mose’s draft registration card for 1918 was filled out in Los Angeles where Mose had become the proprietor of a retail grocery store. He gives his son Jack (Jake), who was still living in Minneapolis, as his reference.
Obituary in the LA Times: July 28, 1942. Morris was buried in the Home of Peace Memorial Park in East Los Angeles.
Albert Abraham ‘Al’ Gruenberg
Albert Abraham ‘Al’ Gruenberg, b. May 10, 1900; d. February 21, 1967. By profession, Al was a racketeer in Los Angeles who excelled at making book and setting up illegal lotteries.
AL GRUENBERG’S 1st WIFE: (name unknown)
These four photos appear to have been set to Al by his 1st wife during the time when he was imprisoned in the St. Cloud State Reformatory. Al was sent to the St. Cloud Minnesota around January 12, 1921 to serve a 5-year sentence for first-degree robbery. Since Al later on told the FBI that he had arrived in LA in 1924, he must have received an early release date for good behavior.
Al had a child by his 1st marriage (wife’s name unknown): Robert ‘Bobby’ Donald Gruenberg [Green], b. May 14, 1921, Minnesota; d. August 30, 1975, Los Angeles, CA. In 1942, Bobby was a machinist at the D&D Mfg Corp in Los Angeles.
Robert D Green, “United States, World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946”
name: Robert D Green
name (original): Robert D Green
event: Military Service
event date: 14 Jun 1944
term of enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the President or otherwise according to law
event place: Ft Macarthur, San Pedro, California, United States
birth year: 1921
education: 2 years of high school
civilian occupation: Machinists
marital status: Married
army branch: No branch assignment
army component: Selectees (Enlisted Men)
source: Civil Life
serial number: 39589565
nara publication title: Electronic Army Serial Number Merged File, ca. 1938-1946
arc identifier: 1263923
card, box and reel number: 14547.25
Virginia Cooper reported the following on December 17, 2012:
“My husband, Allen, is the son of Robert Donald Gruenberg [and Ella Kirk], and the grandson of Al Gruenberg. Robert Gruenberg and Ella Kirk divorced and Ella remarried. Allen’s new stepfather adopted him and his name was changed to Cooper to match his two half-brothers. All contact with Robert was lost. “
And on December 27, 2012:
“Ella and [her son] Allen on the form and by this time, they have changed their name to Green. I have the form that petitions for the name change from Gruenberg to Green and it has a judgment number and is signed by the Clerk of the Court for Judge Vickers, dated 15 May 1943. I believe Bobby must have reverted back to Gruenberg at some time after they were divorced because his death records show Gruenberg. Another document is for the adoption of Allen Kirk Green by Frederick Henry Cooper.”
AL GRUENBERG’S 2nd WIFE
In 1930, Al married his 2nd wife, Genevieve Hidaman who was born on August 25, 1906 in Iowa (most probably previously married to one Mr. Barlow); d. in Los Angeles on September 24, 1996.
Genevieve’s sister was Evelyn Mary Heideman, b. Iowa, February 3, 1898; d. Los Angeles, March 3, 1989 was married to one Mr. Ming who, in conjunction with his father, ran the Half Moon Produce Co. in San Pedro. The parents of the two girls were Michael Hidaman and Barbara Namer.
VIRGINIA COOPER wife of ALLEN KIRK GRUENBERG/COOPER
Virginia Cooper was raised in Santa Barbara, California and now lives with her husband, Allen Kirk Gruenberg/Cooper, in the township of Santa Ynez, a small, rural community in the Santa Ynez Valley behind Santa Barbara, California. She and Allen have three adult children and six grandchildren.
Virginia studied at Santa Barbara City College where she received a Faulkner Gallery award for her pen and ink of Eucalyptus trees; UCSB where she received a certificate in Decorative Arts including Trompe L’oeil, stencilling, faux finish, design drawing and color and design; Scottsdale Artist’s School studying figure painting with Terence Coyle; and Cal Art Institute in Thousand Oaks, California studying figure painting and landscape painting. In 2006 and 2007 she attended Angel Academy of Art, Florence, Italy studying pencil, Charles Bargue method, figure drawing, and figure painting in the Caravaggio style with Maestro John Michael Angel and participated in the annual, world reknown, student art show. Virginia has studied with private instructors as well, including Buck Paulsen and Frank Holda.
Virginia’s style was acquired through multiple studies in the fields of pencil, pen and ink, oil on canvas or panel, pastels, gilding, mural painting, faux finish techniques, and tromp l’oeil. As a nod to the romantic painting of the late 19th century, Virginia adopted the name Vergilia as her artist signature.
Murals were her main work for several years in the communities in and around Ventura, California. Virginia, and friend Carolyn Barone, painted three murals for General Motors in Thousand Oaks featuring GM historical automobiles.
Painting people in various occupations, activities and venues has become her passion and her extensive travels have provided many photos for reference.
Rose Gruenberg Lauber
Rose Gruenberg Lauber, b. May 10, 1902, Minneapolis; d. September 28, 1981 Orange County CA. m. Max Lauber, a grocer (b. abt. 1897; d. February 1929)
In the US Census of 1930 for Los Angeles, Rose is listed as the manager of the Flat Building. Her husband, Max Lauber, had already died.
Children of Rose Gruenberg and her husband, Max Lauber:
MARVIN LAUBER. b. November 2, 1922, Los Angeles CA; d. June 29, 1971 Los Angeles CA; m. FLORENCE WEINBERG (b. New York.) Children:
MARSHA SUSAN LAUBER. b. August 18, 1949 Los Angeles CA; m. KAUFMAN
DAVID L. LAUBER. (twin of Donald) b. January 22, 1927, Los Angeles CA; d. October 14, 2005; m. SHIRLEY WEINBERG (b. New York) in 1948 Los Angeles
ANDREA LAUBER. b. October 23, 1952
Andrea wrote the following to Chick Lehrer on May 14, 2015
My father was Al Gruenberg’s favorite nephew, BUT my Dad was not apart of Al’s infamous activities. Rose lost her husband, my grandfather Max, when he was just 32 years of age and David, my Dad, and Donald, his twin brother were just two years old. Rose, having a difficult time raising three boys, had one of her brothers help her to send Donald and David into the Navy (during WWII) at the age of 15. Donald became an anesthesiologist and Dad went on to become an electrical contractor and a custom home builder here in the exclusive communities of Beverly Hills, Encino, Universal City, and Woodland Hills, California.
Both of my Dad’s brothers died at the age of 50, and thank God my Dad lived a good life until he was almost 80. He passed away on October 14, 2005. Dad was really close to Robert ‘Bob’ Gruenberg — the son of Wally and Peggy Gruenberg. They were close buddies and he was my favorite ‘Uncle Bob’ — we talked all the time. Interestingly, family gatherings and holidays will never be the same without the two of them– Bob and Dad — engaging in their ‘heated’ discussions. I am the only child of Shirley Weinberg Lauber and David L. Lauber.
I became an Artist/Designer and an Entrepreneur –owned several businesses, which included 3 Baskin-Robbins stores. I am an educator and a counselor and possess two Master’s Degrees. I was married 3 times and I am passionate about kitties and doggies finding loving homes. My Mom, as well as I, live in the San Fernando Valley, CA.
DONALD JACK LAUBER, M.D. (twin of David) b. January 22, 1927, Los Angeles CA; d. March 25, 1976 Orange County CA. m. IRENE SLIVINSK. Children:
CYNTHIA A. LAUBER, RN. b. October 14, 1956, Los Angeles CA.
MARTIN A. LAUBER, MD. b. January 20, 1958, Los Angeles CA
MAXINE A. LAUBER CLARK, LVN. b. February 2, 1965, Orange County CA. Daughter:
Charles ‘Charlie’ / ‘Chuck’ / ‘Bonnie’ Gruenberg
Charles ‘Charlie’ / ‘Chuck’ / ‘Bonnie’ Gruenberg, b. May 3, 1904 Minneapolis, Minnesota; d. December 27, 1964 Los Angeles.
1st wife: Bettie; one child: Bettie Charlene.
2nd wife: Helen
OBIT: Los Angeles Times, 29 December 1964, Page B13:
GRUENBERG, Charles, beloved husband of Helen GRUENBERG, fond brother of Rose LAUBER and Albert and Herman GRUENBERG. Services Wednesday, 12 noon, at Mount Sinai Memorial Park. Groman Mortuary, directors.
Hyman ‘Herman’ / ‘Hy’ Gruenberg
Hyman ‘Herman’ / ‘Hy’ Gruenberg, b. March 14, 1906 Minneapolis, Minnesota; d. February 9, 1991 Los Angeles CA.
wife: Blanche ‘Bonnie’ Gruenberg; daughters:
Paula Ann Gruenberg Rogers, b. 1925
In the 1930 US Census for Los Angeles, Hy is listed as a pressman for a daily newspaper. At that time, Hy was single and a lodger living at 219 Hope Street in Los Angeles. Married Iva June; Divorced January 17, 1936.
Wallace ‘Wally’ Gruenberg
Wallace ‘Wally’ Gruenberg, b. July 21, 1908; d. March 18, 1958 Santa Clara CA.
In the Los Angeles Directory for 1929, Wallace Gruenberg (listed as a driver by profession) is living with his wife, Peggy Anne Wolyns at 4340 W. 28th Street. In the same directory, three additional members of the Gruenberg family are residing at 1932 W. Pico: Moses (aka Mose, the father), Hyman ‘Herman’ ‘Hy’, and Charles ‘Bonnie’.
m. Peggy Anne Wolyns b. July 6, 1908; d. August 26, 1956.
In the 1940 US Census for Los Angeles, Wallace is working as a Salesman in Retail Dairy.
Son of Wallace Gruenberg and Peggy Anne Wolyns:
ROBERT ‘BOB’ WILLIAM GRUENBERG, b. April 9, 1929 Los Angeles CA; d. April 3, 2011 Redondo Beach CA.
1st wife: m. Joan Beverly Gawthrop b. February 26, 1933; d. March 18, 1980. (prior marriage with two daughters) divorced Robert William Gruenberg c. 1969.
son: ROBERT WALLACE GRUENBERG: b. July 15, 1959. Professional gambler
daughter of Robert William Gruenberg and Joan Beverly Gawthrop:
PAMELA GRUENBERG BLACKER b. February 22, 1961.
1st husband: m. Dirk Marley December 1986; divorced 1996.
Jenna Rae Marley b. January 30, 1988; m. Michael Susterich May 2011
son: Michael Anthony Susterich b. January 2014
Danielle Marley b. July 1991
2nd husband: m. John Robert ‘Bob’ Blacker 2004
2nd wife: m. Gloria in the late 1970s (lasted 6 months)
3rd wife: m. Sallie Reese 1980; divorced 1990.
Pam Gruenberg Blacker’s memories of the Gruenbergs as reported to Chick Lehrer on November 23, 2014:
The last time I saw my Uncle Hy Gruenberg was at my wedding in 1986. He told me at that time that one day I would be sorry that I never learned about the Gruenbergs. He was always trying to get me interested in our family.
I never met my Uncle Charlie Gruenberg, but both my parents told me what a wonderful man he was. My mom was not liked by most of the Gruenbergs as she was not Jewish. That is, except for my Uncle Charlie, of whom mom said was one of the nicest men in the world.
I remember Aunt Rose being at her son David Lauber’s house. My dad stayed close with David until the latter’s death.
I do have a memory of going to my great-grandmother, Babe Canter’s house. I remember going past her bedroom and seeing a wooden leg. I think my dad said she was in a car and had been hit from behind and into a train.
Sadly, both of my dad’s parents, Betty and Mose Gruenberg, had died before I was born.
My dad never mentioned Jack’s suicide or why he was only in touch with Charlie, Hy and Rose. Honestly, I cannot be sure that he was in touch with them.
I do not know what my Uncle Charlie did for a living. I do not remember him at all. I wish my sisters were alive. They both loved him as did my mom. I do remember his wife. I don’t remember much except she had bright red hair and scared me a little.
I do remember my Uncle Hy being hard of hearing. My dad told me it was because he worked at a newspaper and the machines were so loud . Uncle Hy also told me a story of him going to a hockey game and getting hit in the head with a puck. It was because of him that they started putting fencing around the rink.
ADDITIONAL PHOTOS OF THE LAUBER FAMILY
from the Collection of Margie Steinman, wife of Jack Gruenberg
These Lauber Family photos feature a group of four girls arriving or leaving on the Steamship Avalon from/to Catalina Island. Rose Gruenberg Lauber, her husband, Max Lauber, and her brother, Jack Gruenberg, all wear straw hats for the occasion. These photos are dated: Labor Day, September 6, 1921. Jack Gruenberg had arrived in Los Angeles from Minneapolis in May of that year.
PHOTOS OF HELEN
An Acquaintance of Jack Gruenberg