Here's some information that might be useful to many people who are researching family members who came to New York City through Ellis Island in the early 20th century.
While researching Ellis Island records for my father's family from Belarus (that is; WEINER from Shchedrin and Rechitsa, and EINBUND / AINBUND from Shchedrin and Parichi) I kept coming across the destination addresses: 390, 391 and 392 Grand St. in New York City. Sometimes these addresses included the note "c/o Oppenheim".
For quite a while I assumed that 391 Grand St. was a home address. I thought it was safe to assume that all the WEINERS who listed the address as their destination were siblings, spouses, etc. Not so.
I bagan noticing the same addresses, "c/o Oppenheim", listed for dozens of people who had no connection with my family. I Googled the addresses and "Oppenheim" and found a New York Times article dated January 4, 1903 in the Times Archive. The article's headline is "Societies To Plead For Immigrants; Public Protest Against Increase in Deportations Planned." According to the article it was common practice for new immigrants to list their destination using the
addresses of various "small banking houses, numerous on the east side" of New York. "Henry Oppenheimer's banking house" at "392 Grand street" is specifically cited.
For my own research the real significance of the "fictitious" NYC address is that I've had to revise my family tree a bit. Since discovering the significance of the "c/o Oppenheim" I've started noticing other c/o addresses on manifests. I think that quite a number of family trees could be affected.
Here's the article's URL. You may need to register at the NY Times site (free) to see the PDF file.http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9A02E4DF1F3DE...