The Mervis Family

A photograph of Harry Mervis, c. 1945, who was in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

A photograph of Harry Mervis, c. 1945, who was in the U.S. Navy during World War II.  He loved being in the Navy, but left and returned home at his mother’s request.  He went onto become an electrician in the Jones & Laughlin steel mill.

Two sisters, Celia and Sarah Perlman Mervis who emigrated from Lithuania to Homestead.

Two sisters, Celia and Sarah Perlman who emigrated from Lithuania to Homestead.  Sarah is Harry’s mother, who was widowed when Harry was quite young and raised four children, two of whom were deaf, all on her own.

  11 comments for “The Mervis Family

  1. bernard keisler
    May 13, 2015 at 12:39 pm

    The above picture of Celia and Sarah Mervis is captioned wrong. Sarah (my grandmother) was Harry’s mother, not Celia. My mother was Miriam (Mervis) Keisler, Harry’s sister.

    • May 21, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      Thank you for the correction. My sympathies to you and your family on your loss. I’m sorry I didn’t get this post right initially.

      Look for an email from me — as you may know, we are cousins!

    • Lynne Jacobson
      September 15, 2015 at 9:11 pm

      I, too, am working on the Friedlander family tree and would love to talk to you at your convenience. My husband is Blair Jacobson, son of Sam – Gordon-Jacobson Chrysler dealers in Homestead. I have almost no information on you or any siblings, and very little on Harry’s children and grandchildren. I hope you will be willing to help me.


  2. Gwen Phillips
    May 17, 2015 at 12:50 am

    Tammy, attended your 5-14-15 presentation at the Carnegie Library of Homestead. You probably already know this, but Harry Mervis died 4-25-15. He married a Slavic Catholic woman. If I remember correctly, he owned/operated S&S Shoe Store in the 300 block of 8th Avenue. Great presentation. You’ve amassed a towering amount of information. Good job.

    • May 21, 2015 at 9:51 pm

      Thanks so much for attending my presentation, Gwen, and for taking the time to browse this site! I did hear that Harry passed from a childhood friend of his. I’m sorry I never got to meet him. He did leave behind a really great oral history, from which I can partially confirm your recollection. He said, “When I came out of the Navy, after the war was over, I managed the S&S shoe store in Homestead, do you remember the Seiavitch brothers? They had about twenty-five stores around here, I worked for them. Then I got a little tired of that, and I went into the mill. I worked for J & L, took an apprenticeship—I was an electrician the rest of my life which is the best thing I ever did in my life.”

      I’ll drop you an email shortly to followup on the conv we started last week in person!

  3. John Stock
    January 31, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    I grew up in the Homestead area. My father bought a 1954 Studebaker Champion from Mervis Motors on Eighth Ave. In 1955 they moved their dealership to Carrick. As a 14 year old I secured a position as a pin boy at Harry Glick’s bowling alley which was on Eighth above Book’s shoe store. As a boy I attended St Matthews across Tenth Ave from Rodef Shalom congregation. I appreciate the work and dedication of your website and the historical information in it adds to the history the Homestead community.

    John Stock

  4. Eddie Smith
    September 12, 2017 at 11:25 am

    I think Celia Mervis was my grandmothers older half sister. My grandmother’s maiden name was Glick, married name Goldenson.. Is this the same family?

  5. Robin Cook-Mervis
    August 16, 2020 at 2:01 pm

    My husband’s, Harvey Mervis, family was from Woodmere area of L I . His father was Arthur and his aunts wereMindy, Helen, and Sylvia. His grandfather was William, he was from Russia.

    Currently we live in Vestal, NY, next to Binghamton.

  6. August 16, 2020 at 8:02 pm

    There’s a reference to Celia Mervis, who was my grandmother’s older sister. Mervis would have been her married name. I think her maiden name was Hydewitz. She was perhaps 7 to 10 years older than my grandmother so I’m estimating she was born around 1883. I think Celia had 5 children and the family lived in Connellsville Pennsylvania, a town about 50 miles from Pittsburgh, where I grew up. Her children and their children were my cousins. If I recall their names were Charles, Lillian, Harold, Florence and Jerold Mervis.. i’ve been in Los Angeles for almost 50 years and have lost touch with all my relatives back east…

    • Myrna E Helinsky
      February 19, 2022 at 9:59 am

      Hi Eddie, I am Celias’ granddaughter, Lillians daughter Mernie. I remember aways visiting your grandmother.

      • February 19, 2022 at 4:51 pm

        Hi Mernie.. I remember coming to Connellsville on Sunday with my grandmother and you an I playing on the backyard while our grandmother’s visited one another. I’ve been in Los Angeles for 52 years. Lost touch with the east coast families. I think I saw you and your mom last at my mother’s funeral in 1987. It would be nice to catch up. My email


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