Events 2004

Research and Genealogical Networking Day

Sunday, December 5, 2004 — 1:30-4:00 PM
Temple Reyim, Newton

Join other members who are researching family roots from your ancestral areas in one-hour roundtable discussions. Discover the ancestral towns and family names your fellow members are researching. Share your successes and get advice from others on how to overcome obstacles in exploring your roots and connecting with living relatives. Roundtables will be set up to cover the following Special Interest Groups: Belarus, Bohemia-Moravia, Galicia, German, Litvak, Poland, Ukraine, and the U.S.  Other roundtables will be formed if there is interest.

After the roundtable discussions, genealogical books, including some brought in from our collection at AJHS, will be available for your perusal. Translators will be on hand to help decipher those difficult documents you’ve been waiting to interpret.

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton.  The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21.  Click here for directions..


Insights into Rabbinic Genealogy — Myth Buster!  flyer

Neil Rosenstein

Sunday, November 14, 2004 — 1:30-4:00 PM

Join us in hearing Dr. Neil Rosenstein, the internationally known author and speaker in the sphere of rabbinic genealogy. Dr. Rosenstein was born in Cape Town, South Africa.  As a result of almost four decades of investigative research, he has accumulated a vast matrix of material on Jewish genealogy, especially in the field of rabbinical dynasties.  He was the founder in 1977 and the first president of the Jewish Genealogical Society of New York.

He is the author of many works on Jewish genealogy.  His most recent publication, The Lurie Legacy: The House of Davidic Royal Descent was published by Avotaynu in May 2004.  He has also written, in 1976 and 1990, The Unbroken Chain, two volumes of genealogy on the Katzenellenbogen family, The Gaon of Vilna and his Cousinhood, 1997, and produced a CD-ROM with the indexed obituaries of the first Hebrew weekly, HaMagid (1856-1903).  Dr. Rosenstein’s biography is included in Who’s Who in World Jewry, 1987, and Marquis’ Who’s Who in America, 52nd edition, 1997-2004.

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton.  The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21.  Click here for directions.


Beginner’s Workshop in Genealogy  flyer

Nancy Levin Arbeiter

Sunday, November 7, 2004 — 1:00-5:00 PM
Lasell Village, Auburndale (Newton)

Cost of $25 includes light refreshments and extensive handouts.

Please register by mailing in the form at http://workshop.jgsgb.org/, with your check payable to “JGSGB”, postmarked no later than November 1, 2004.

Lasell Village (2nd floor ballroom in “Town Hall” Bldg.), 120 Seminary Ave., Auburndale, MA


The Center for Jewish History: Resources for Genealogy   flyer

Robert Friedman

Sunday, October 17, 2004 — 1:00-4:00 PM
Temple Reyim, Newton

The new Center for Jewish History in New York has been heralded as the diaspora’s “National Archives of the Jewish people.”  The Center’s five partners — American Jewish Historical Society, American Sephardi Federation, Leo Baeck Institute, Yeshiva University Museum, and YIVO Institute for Jewish Research — collectively house 100 million archival documents and half a million books.  The Genealogy Institute’s director, Robert Friedman, will explain the services offered by the Center and will help you identify and access items of interest.  Learn about the variety of resources available and how to prepare in advance for an efficient and rewarding research experience.

A native New Yorker, Robert Friedman has a BA in Anthropology from Columbia, an MS in Environmental Health Science, and an MS in Library Science with an Archives and Records Management Certificate.  His family history research, begun eight years ago, focuses on Hungary, Transylvania, eastern Slovakia, and the former Suwalki Gubernia in Russian Poland.  Active in H-SIG, Bob also participated in the IAJGS Cemetery Project and JewishGen Yizkor Book Project, and he has served on the Executive Council of JGSNY.

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton.  The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21.  Click here for directions.


The Role of HIAS in the Rescue of Jews During World War II  flyer

Valery Bazarov

Sunday, September 12, 2004 — 1:30 PM
Temple Reyim, Newton

Following the German invasion of France in 1940, the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS, part of the former HICEM) moved its European headquarters to Lisbon, Portugal. The unique geographical and political position of neutral Portugal made Lisbon the only European port of departure for North and South America. Records of the refugees who were saved are contained in the HICEM/HIAS collection of 171 microfilm reels at YIVO in New York. They are arranged by the refugees’ last names and include ship passenger lists, travel document requests, departure cards, family search requests, and camp survivor lists.

Valery Bazarov was born in Russia and immigrated to the United States in 1988. He joined HIAS that year and over the next decade aided the arrival of more than 200,000 Jewish refugees. Valery is currently responsible for the HIAS “Location and Family History Service,” helping immigrants find family members and friends with whom they lost contact. He is especially committed to finding and honoring the heroes who rescued European Jews during the Holocaust. Valery also researches the history of HIAS.

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton.  The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21.  Click here for directions.


Revolutionary Jews: Their Genealogy and Contributions to Colonial and Revolutionary America
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Dr. Joseph L. “Joel” Andrews

Sunday, June 13, 2004 — 7:00-9:30 PM
Hebrew College, Newton Centre

A joint evening meeting with the American Jewish Historical Society.  This will also be our Annual Meeting with elections.  American Jewish Historical Society Open House at 7:00 in Rae and Joseph Gann Library, followed at 7:30 by Program and JGSGB Annual Meeting in Berenson Hall.

Commemorate the 350th anniversary of the 1654 arrival of the first Jews in the future United States with Dr. Joseph L. “Joel” Andrews.  Jews settled in the five most tolerant colonial cities of Newport, New York, Philadelphia, Charlestown, and Savannah.  Though few in number, Jews, both as soldiers and supporters, contributed disproportionately to the patriotic cause.  The American Revolution was one of the first wars since antiquity in which Jews were actively allowed to participate.

Dr. Andrews, now semi-retired, has been on the medical staff of Lahey Clinic, New England Deaconess Hospital, and Harvard and Tufts Medical Schools.  Tracing his ancestry to Haym Salomon, the major financier of the Continental Army, and to Col. Isaac Franks and Major Benjamin Nones, officers under General George Washington’s command, he is the only Jewish member of the Massachusetts chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.  Fascinated with history, Dr. Andrews founded and directs the Concord Guides Walking Tours and writes books and articles about the history of the colonial and Revolutionary eras.

Hebrew College is located at 160 Herrick Rd. From Centre Street in Newton Centre, turn east onto Beacon Street, and immediately bear right onto Union Street.  Take the first right onto Herrick Road.  Near the top of the hill, bear left into the Hebrew College campus.


A Cemetery Research Project – On-site in West Roxbury   flyer

Jane Salk, Executive Director, Jewish Cemetery Association of Massachusetts

Sunday, May 23, 2004 — 1:00 PM

This will be a new kind of program, one that combines our usual educational activity with a special project.  We will begin by gathering in the Dana Chapel on the grounds of the Adath Jeshurun Cemetery, 350 Grove Street, West Roxbury, where Jane Salk will introduce the history of the Jewish cemeteries of Boston.  She will also tell us about the Jewish Cemetery Association of Massachusetts (JCAM) and its growth from managing five cemeteries in Boston to overseeing nearly one hundred throughout the state.  The focus will then turn toward preparing us for our project of gathering tombstone data for the JCAM and JewishGen databases.  This project will provide us the opportunity to express our gratitude to the members of the genealogical community who have gathered and made available to us such data from other places all over the world.

After Jane Salk’s talk, we will take a five-minute drive to the nearby Centre Street Hill Cemetery, where we will help create a map of the grounds and begin photographing and recording data from the tombstones.  Those who will participate in the project should wear hiking boots or sturdy shoes, long pants, and a hat.  A water bottle is also recommended.  Please bring the following items if you have them: pens/pencils, clipboard, digital camera, GPS receiver.

For further information, including maps and driving directions, please visit our web page at http://cemetery.jgsgb.org.  If it is raining on May 23 — or if there was a lot of rain in the preceding days — the program will be postponed two weeks to June 6.  In case there is any doubt, call our telephone on the day of the program for a recorded announcement.


Preserving Cemetery Information in Eastern Europe   flyer

Thomas Fischer Weiss

Sunday, May 2, 2004 — 1:30-4:30 PM
Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington St., Newton

The Jewish cemeteries of Eastern Europe were ravaged during World War II and have been neglected ever since with the absence of Jewish communities to maintain them.  Tom Weiss and family members traveled to Eastern Galicia, now located in Western Ukraine, in 2000 and 2001.  He visited a number of cemeteries and will describe their conditions and the factors that continue to degrade their genealogically important content.  He will also describe the methods used to photograph all the remaining and legible gravestones in the cemeteries of two towns (Buchach and Rozhnyatov) and to make maps of the cemeteries.  The photographs of the gravestones and the translations of the inscriptions are being placed on a JewishGen web site to make their content widely available.  The talk will include numerous photographs and video clips.

Tom Weiss has been researching his family history for 6 years.  He has been a member of JGSGB for two years and a member of the JGSGB Board for one year.  The family surnames he is researching are Abraham, Apfelberg, Buchhalter, Fischer, Frnkel, Frenkel, Fruchter, Katz, Klepetar, Meisels, Orlk, Rubin, Siegelmann, Turteltaub, Vodicka, Weissglas, And Zarnicer.  His paternal family is from Bohemia; his maternal family from Vienna/Galicia.  He can be reached at tfweiss @ mit.edu.

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton.  The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21.  Click here for directions.


Research the National Archives New England Branch

 

Tuesday, April 20, 2004 — 6:00-9:00 PM
National Archives, New England Region, 380 Trapelo Road, Waltham, MA.

Two concurrent programs at 6:30:

  • Introduction to the archives, by Al Luftman.  For those who have never done research at the National Archives, JGSGB member Al Luftman will introduce the resources available and how to access them.  Learn how to look up census records, passenger arrival records, Canadian border crossings, New England WWI draft registrations, naturalization records, and much more.
  • At the same time, a NARA staff member will give an update of what’s new at the archives, for the more experienced NARA researcher.

Experienced researchers will be able to use the entire three hours for research.  JGSGB members will be available to assist those needing help.  This is a members-only program.

Directions: From Route 128 take Exit 28 (Trapelo Road). Head east (toward Waltham and Belmont) on Trapelo Road for 2.75 miles. The National Archives is on the right down an incline, and the entrance road is beyond the building.  If you are coming from Belmont, head west on Trapelo Road, 0.75 miles past Waverly Oaks Road. The National Archives is on the left.


Genealogy Roundtables: Special Interest Groups   flyer

February 15, 2004, Sunday — 1:30-4:30 PM
Temple Reyim, West Newton

Join members who are researching family roots from your ancestral areas in two roundtable discussions, each lasting one hour. Learn the ancestral towns and family names that your fellow members are researching. Share your successes and obstacles in connecting with living relatives and in discovering your roots. Roundtables will be set up to cover the following Special Interest Group areas: Belarus, Galicia, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Sefardic areas, Ukraine, and the United States (for those seeking current roots in the U. S.).

The meeting will take place at Temple Reyim, 1860 Washington Street (Route 16), West Newton. The Temple is near Newton-Wellesley Hospital and the Woodland Stop on the Riverside Green Line, as well as a short ride from Route 128 at Exit 21. Click here for directions.


Brandeis University Library: On-site Tour of Genealogical Resources &
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James Rosenbloom

January 18, 2004 — 2:00-4:00 PM
Rappaport Treasure Hall, Goldfarb Library, Waltham, MA

Did you know that Brandeis University offers a treasure trove of resources for Jewish genealogical research?  James Rosenbloom, Judaica Specialist at Brandeis University, will meet us in the Rappaport Treasure Hall of the Brandeis University Library to introduce the genealogical resources available at Brandeis. Following the orientation, we will be given a tour through the Judaica area and shown the library’s extensive collection of Yizkor books and microfilms of newspapers and periodicals.

James Rosenbloom has worked in the Judaica Department of the Brandeis University library system since 1976.  He now oversees the entire collection of Judaica, including the Bible, rabbinics, Jewish thought, all periods of Jewish history, contemporary Jewry, and Hebrew and Yiddish literature.