Actual name: Salomon, Solomon, Shlomo.
Alternate spelling: Moni.

Mony Abraham was born on November 22 1889 (November 10 according to the Julian calendar in use at the time of his birth), in Ruschuk, Bulgaria. The son of Mamo Abraham and Lea Jacob, he was the youngest of four children.

Birth certificate for Haim, Moritz, Isak and Mony Abraham, Ruschuk, 1901

List of Abraham family births drawn by the Sepharadic Congregation of Ruschuk in Ladino, 1901.

Mony is the last entry, under his birth name Shlomo (Solomon).

Source: Jabotinsky Archives

Sarah Cohen Eldar: "Moni, the youngest, was given and adopted by his aunt Mazal just after he was born. (He) was adopted by the eldest sister of his mother. His mother had promised her sister while she was pregnant that she would give birth for her sister. In the family he was known as Moni Ventura, but perhaps he (later) decided to return to his biological name. Your father (Uriel) told (me) about it*."

*Note that I haven't found any other mentions of Mony's adoption, and have only seen documents referring to him as Mony Abraham.

Lea, Mony's biological mother, died of turberculosis when he was a little over two years old. By the time Mony turned four less than two years later, his father, Mamo, died of the same disease. If Mony was indeed adopted at the time of his birth by his aunt, the loss would not have affected him the way it must have affected his three brothers.

Nothing more is known about his early days.

Mony Abraham, age 7, Ruschuk, 1896

Mony Abraham, age 7, Ruschuk, 1896.


Like two of his older brothers, Haim and Moritz, Mony left Ruschuk and moved to Constantinople, although I don't know if he came with them or when.

Based on the few surviving photos taken in Constantinople, Mony's life seems to have been quite similar to his brothers', both socially and professionally. Like his brother Haim, he lived in Galata. His address was:

Salomon Abraham
Appartment Rachel #9,
Yeni Yol,


Like his older brothers, Mony was a merchant: "Commissionaire" in the Annuaire Oriental, "Comerciante" on the immigration manifest in Argentina, "negociant" on his death certificate in Nice, and "Kaufman" in the German inheritance documents.

A "Abraham Moni", a "Commissionnaire" with an office in Emin Bey Han (10, 16, 17) is listed in the 1921 Annuaire Oriental. It's not clear if this is indeed Mony, as the name is not only spelled differently, but the first and last names are reversed. If this was indeed him, the number of rooms would indicate that his business had a similar size as his brothers'.

It is possible however that it was a different person as the two parcel cards I have found were not addressed directly to him. One was addressed to Mony Abraham via the "Hungarian goods transport office" (?), in Evkaf Han, while another was addressed to Mony Abraham, care of S. & W. Hoffmann, in Emin Bey Han. Also, since I have found 36 cards addressed to his brothers' firm Abraham Freres, compared to only two for him, it is unlikely that his business could have compared to theirs.

Just a couple of parcel cards addressed to Mony survive, providing a few hints about his business. One of these parcel card is for a 5kg shipment of Iron Sulphate, a product used for inks and dyes, from the S.W. Hoffman company in Hungary. Another parcel card, also from Hungary, from 1917, is for Calcium Hydrochloride, a bleaching agent for textiles.

Bleaching powder package from Hungary, 1917

Note: the package is addressed to Mony Abraham through the "Ung. Waren verkehrsburo" (Hungarian Products (transport?) Office). The stamp on the left "Hadi Termény Részvénytársaság" is for the war-time Hungarian economic organization War Produce Company which operated in the first half of the First World War until the end of 1919, when its role was taken over by the newly established Ministry of Agriculture.

On the top of the card: "Kistel" may be a typo for "1 Kiste" = "1 box". Chlorkalk = Chlorinated lime (also known as bleaching powder)
"sajat veszelyere" likely means "dangerous".

Parcel Card for bleaching powder

Parcel card for bleaching powder from Hungary, 1917.

(Scan courtesy of Mehmet Sadettin Fidan)

Iron sulfate

Parcel Card for iron sulfate from Budapest, Hungary

Parcel Card for iron sulfate

Parcel card for iron sulfate.

(Scan courtesy of Mehmet Sadettin Fidan)

I originally deduced from these that Mony was an importer of chemical products. However an application for a trademark for a textile company made twenty years later in Argentina points to a different conclusion. Considering the primary use of both of these products, it seems that Mony's business was related to textiles, either as a fabric manufacturer, or as an importer of products used for the textile industry.


On the 1925 Buenos Aires immigration manifest, Mony's nationality is listed as Bulgarian, but on his 1938 death certificate, he is described as a Spanish citizen. I assume that he acquired the Spanish citizenship like his brother Moritz, but it's not clear whether he used multiple passports, or acquired Spanish nationality at a later date.

Social Circle

Mony probably shared the same social circles as his brothers. For example, a letter addressed to Aaron Aaronsohn in July 1916 shows that he was in contact with the agronomist and Nili spy ring leader.

Mony wrote:

I am surprised that I haven't heard from you since your departure. Do you have so little time that you can't spare a moment for your new friends? [...]

My business isn't bad - financially things could be better, but I can't complain, times are tough. [...]

In the meantime give my best regards to Sarah (*).

* Sarah Aaronsohn, the NILI spy who was married to Mony's brother, Haim Abraham.

Aside from confirming that Mony's business was separate from his brothers' ("my business"), and offering some vague assessment of the wartime conditions for business ("times are tough"), this letter is intriguing because the Mony's address on this letter is "Hotel Rubin, Pera, Constantinople, Tepe-Baschi".

Why did Mony reside in a hotel? Was he living in Germany by then, and only temporarily in Constantinople on business? Or was this a permanent arrangement? His brother Haim had relocated to Germany during the war, so it's quite possible that Mony did the same.

The other interesting detail is that this letter was sent in July 1916, four months after Sarah had left Haim, suggesting that it was still believed that Sarah's departure was not definitive and that she would be returning to her husband Haim.


Mony married Elfriede Mädi Wertheimer from Bucharest, Romania, in Constantinople ("Cospoli") in 1917.

Mony and Mädi

Mony and Mädi Abraham in Constantinople.

Mädi in Constantinople, 1917

Mädi in Constantinople, 1917.

"Souvenir from my stay in Constantinople - 1917."

Note: this photo was taken in the same studio as the portraits of the Datnowsky siblings dressed in "Oriental" costumes in 1910.

Chief Rabbinate Marriages 1887-1999 - Istambul
Groom surname Groom given name Given name of groom's father Bride given name Given name of bride's father Bride surname Date Reference number
ABRAHAM Salom. Haim Elfrida Yzidor VERTHAYMER 1917 82-166
Medi in Erenkeuy near Constantinople, 1919.

Medi in Erenkeuy near Constantinople, 1919

In 1923, Mony and Mädi adopted a daughter, Irene ("Reni"), born the same year. (Alternate name on hand-written tree: Ira.)

1924 - Düsseldorf

Gisy, Reni and Uriel. Germany, 1924

Reni surrounded by her cousins Gisi and Uriel Abraham in Düsseldorf, 1924.

This photo was taken while Mony and his family were visiting his brother Moritz in Düsseldorf. I don't know if they were vacationing, had left Turkey and were living in Germany, or were on their way to the South America. They would immigrate to Argentina at the end of the following year.


Mony, Elfriede and Irene immigrated to Buenos Aires, Argentina in December, 1925.

Retrieved from

S = Singular = Single
C = Casado = Married.

Manifest / Immigration Registry
Last Name First Name Age Civil Status Nationality Place of Birth Occupation Arrival Date Ship Port
Abraham Mony 36 C Bulgarian Rustshouk Merchant 1925/12/02 SS Cap Polonio Hamburg
Abraham Elfriede 32 C Romanian Bucharest "Labores" (worker? or homemaker?) 1925/12/02 SS Cap Polonio Hamburg
Abraham Irene 2 S Turkish Constantinople 1925/12/02 SS Cap Polonio Hamburg

Why did Mony and his family immigrate, and why Argentina? Did they leave Turkey because of the ongoing turmoil and the newly created Kemal republic? Or was it purely out driven by economic reasons - looking for better opportunities in a new country? The Spanish language made Argentina a popular destination for Sephardic Jews looking to immigrate to the New World.

Another likely draw may have been the presence of relatives from Ruschuk or Constantinople who would have preceded them in Argentina. In the immigration manifests, there are several people from Rushtshuk named Abraham, although they are either laborers, tailors or bakers, so probably not from the same family of merchants.

One entry however seems like a possible connection based on the similar merchant occupation: Named Isaac, and born around 1883 based on the age in the manifest, this could either be Mony's brother Isak, a relative, or a simple coincidence.

How many people named "Isaac Abraham", born in or around 1883 in Rushstshuk and with the profession of merchant could there be? On the other hand, I'm not aware that this Isak emigrated to Argentina, or that he was ever married. But this can't be completely rulled out as I have very little information about him.

Manifest / Immigration Registry
Last Name First Name Age Civil Status Nationality Place of Birth Occupation Arrival Date Ship Port
Abraham Isaac 33 C Rushtshuk Merchant 1916/11/14 Malte Santos

In December 1929, Mony's daughter Irene reappears on an immigration manifest, but not her parents. I assume that the family had travelled, maybe to Constantinople or Germany, then came back. Why are her parents not included on the immigration list? It seems hard to believe that a six year old child would have travelled without her parents across the Atlantic.

Retrieved from

Manifest / Immigration Registry
Last Name First Name Age Civil Status Nationality Place of Birth Occupation Arrival Date Ship Port
Abraham Irene 6 S Turkish Constantinople Unknown 1929/12/06 SS General Osorio Hamburg
Mony, Mädi and Reni in Buenos Aires, 1931.

Mony, with his daughter Reni and (first? second?) wife. Buenos Aires, 1931.

By December 1931, his address was: 1381 Alsina, Buenos Aires.

Zionist Activities

Although I haven't found signs of Mony participation in Zionist groups in Ruschuk or in ConstantinopleLike like his brothers Haim and Moritz, Mony did get involved at least while in Argentina. In 1933, he was one of the active founders of the "Sephardic Zionist Center". In the 25th anniversary issue of the weekly magazine "Israel" published in Buenos Aires in 1941, he is mentioned as having been the president of the Sephardic Zionist Center until his death.

Magazine "Israel" Buenos Aires, 1941.

Weekly magazine "Israel", 25th anniversary issue: no. 973/4 (29 August, 1941)

From Judaica collection at University of Florida

Despertar Del Desierto

In 1936, Mony Abraham registered the trademark "Despertar Del Desierto" ("Desert's Revival" ?) and logo for a fabric company.

Despertar Del Desierto - Trademark and Logo, 1936

Boletin Oficial de la Republica Argentina (Official Gazette of the Argentine Republic) August 21, 1936. Patent and trademark management.

July 27, 1936. - Mony Abraham and Co. - [this trademark] To distinguish cloth and fabrics in general, knitwear, table linen and lingerie, of class 15. - Notice no. 3.430.

Retrieved from: Boletin Oficial Republica Argentina, 1936

Second Marriage

According to a hand-written family tree, Mony wed in a second marriage Regina Witner.

By 1938, Mony resided at 5058 rivadavia in Buenos Aires.

Death in Nice

On June 8th, 1938, Mony died in Nice, France, at the age of 49.

According to Sarah Cohen Eldar, Mony was "visiting his parents' friends."
There is a possibility that he was instead visiting relatives of his parents, and not just friends. See the Covo genealogical tree which shows one Joseph Coenca, born in Istambul 1870, who married a Rica Covo and was the father of one Flore Coenca, and died in Nice 1942. Although purely hypothetical, this seems to be a more credible scenario.


After his death, disputes arose around his inheritance, involving, I believe, land in Argentina. According to my father, it was however "all for nothing: in the end they realized the land wasn't worth anything."

A document from the District Court of Haifa, Israel, shows that Moritz started legal proceedings regarding Mony's succession in Mandate Palestine in the Spring of 1940.

Haifa District Court Notice, 1940, re Mony Abraham succession.

Haifa District Court Notice, 1940, re Mony Abraham succession.

Retrieved from


In the matter of MONY ABRAHAM of Buenos Aires, Argentina, deceased.
Petitioner: MAURICE ABRAHAM, represented by DR. ASHER MALLAH, represented by RIVCA DANON, advocate.
Let all persons take notice that MAURICE ABRAHAM of Paris has applied to the District Court of Haifa for an order declaring the succession to MONY ABRAHAM, deceased, and that the said application will be heard at the District Court on the 19th day of April, 1940, at 9 a.m. All persons claiming any interest must appear at the said place and time, otherwise such order will be made as to the Court seems right.
Dated this 18th day of March, 1940. J. I. HABIBY Registrar, District Court, Haifa

By then, Moritz's remaining brother, Haim, lived in Haifa, which probably explains the location of this legal proceeding. What was at stake however is not clear. Also not clear is why this act only involved the two surviving brothers, since Mony's wife was apparently still alive in Argentina. (According to later depositions by Ronya, Elfriede died in 1953.)

Note that Moritz was represented in Haifa by Asher Mallah, his (and Haim's) brother-in-law.

Mony's succession would drag on for over a decade. A letter from the Israeli Ministry of Justice addressed to "Mr. Abraham" from January, 1954, asked:

"I would be very much obliged if you would inform me whether you intend to apply to an Israeli Court for an Order of Succession in respect of the estate of the late Mr. Moni Abraham."

According to handwritten notes from Ronya, Mony's wife, Elfriede, died in Buenos Aires in 1953, "leaving no children". Does this mean that Mony's daughter Irene (Rene) had died at a young age? Also, according to my old handwritten notes, Mony was remarried to a Regina Witner. Why was her name not mentioned by Ronya? Was there no second marriage? Or was Ronya either confused, or not being entirely forthcoming?

Special thanks:
Mehmet Sadettin Fidan for graciously sharing documents and information related to Mony Abraham's professional activity.
References and Publications:
Article from "Israel" weekly magazine, Buenos Aires, Argentina. 25th anniversary issue : no. 973/4 (29 August, 1941) Publisher: Z. Levy
Judaica collection at University of Florida
Argentina Immigration manifests retrieved from Centro de Estudio Migratorios (C.E.M.L.A.)

This family history project started September 2009.
All photos and documents belong to the author and are © Daniel Abraham, except for maps and where indicated.
Please have the courtesy to ask before copying any content.

This is a work in progress. Please contact me if you have any more information to contribute.

Last Modified: Monday, February 14, 2022