My name

It's spelled S-H-I-E-B-E-R, and pronounced shee-ber. No "c". Not "ei". Not shy-ber. Not "Schreiber", the name of my near-namesake at Harvard.

It is frequently misspelled, because it is close to being consistent with German orthography, the "ie" being pronounced as a long "e", though the initial consonant would then be spelled "sch". Nonetheless, there is no "c" in the name. Why? Because it is not a German name.

The name is an American invention, applied to my ancestors upon immigration to the US from the city Szczebrzeszyn, currently a part of Poland, and mapped below. During the immigration process, the surname was shortened from the city name, probably from its Yiddish pronunciation shebreshin. Had my ancestors not left Szczebrzeszyn, my existence would have been unlikely.

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