Mystery of box filled with family documents found in north London


An appeal has been made to locate the owner of a box of family documents – written in English and Hebrew – after it was thrown into a back garden in north London.

Ivan Dodd, from Highgate, found the metal box in his garden last week. The box’s lock had been prised open and, inside, he found passports, marriage certificates, bank statements and wills dating back half a century – all pertaining to different members of the Mandell family.

A birth certificate, dated 1903, belonged to David Mandell, born in Mount Pleasant, Liverpool. Other documents included Mr Mandell’s marriage certificate to Adelaide Samakasky in 1925 and his will in 1955. The couple were married at the Liverpool New Hebrew Congregation.

One building society document referred to an address in Muswell Hill Road, north-west London.

“I can only assume that someone stole the box in a burglary, and had no use for it so threw it away,” Mr Dodd said.

Mr Dodd has reported his find to the police, and is hoping to reunite the box with its owner – most likely, descendants of the Mandell family.

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