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September 2016

Todd Knowles – Getting the Most Out of FamilySearch

September 25, 2016 @ 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm
at Cong. Beth El, 561 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA United States
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FamilySearch.org is the largest free genealogical website in the world. It contains the records of over four billion people worldwide and is sponsored by the Church of the Latter Day Saints (the Mormon Church). Todd Knowles will demonstrate how we can make the most of this vast resource as we search for our Jewish ancestors. In addition to the basic searches, we will learn some tricks to finding the records of our families, including the fast growing collection of online…

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October 2016

Beginners Workshop in Jewish Genealogy

October 16, 2016 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Workshop handouts: Naturalization Military Immigration Census Information Carol Clingan Carol Clingan and Debbie Lerner, who together have more than 30 years of genealogy research experience, will present a workshop tailored for beginners on the process of researching your family tree. They will describe in detail the sources and records that are most helpful to beginners and present a case study demonstrating a successful search. Their core message is that you CAN research your family tree and will be…

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Buffet Lunch

October 16, 2016 @ 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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$18

Following the Beginners Workshop on Jewish Genealogy, we will provide an optional buffet lunch at 12 noon for $18.  Advance reservations are now closed.  Lunch cannot be purchased at the event. Temple Emanuel does not allow individuals to bring in food from outside the building. Lunch will be followed at 1:30 pm by a lecture by Nolan Altman on The Genealogical Value of Jewish Burial Records.

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Nolan Altman – The Genealogical Value of Jewish Burial Records

October 16, 2016 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Jewish headstone inscriptions and burial records can provide crucial information to family historians. Hebrew name inscriptions that are based on patronymics can link together two generations of Hebrew names unlike any other source document. This can be especially helpful when trying to connect first generation American ancestors with their European families. Using photographs and case studies, Nolan Altman will explain the symbols and details found on headstones and describe how this information can provide important data and context for your family research. He…

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Workshop on Polish Records Research with Stanley Diamond (FULL)

October 30, 2016 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
Location TBA Newton, MA United States + Google Map
$15

Location: TBA (in Newton) Registration is closed for the Workshop on Polish Records Research since the 30 available places have been filled.   This is a rare opportunity to get deep inside the workings of Jewish Records Indexing-Poland (JRI-Poland), an award winning international project to create an Internet-searchable index of all surviving Jewish vital records of Poland. JRI-Poland’s founder and director, Stanley Diamond, will present an update on the current status of various indexing projects, the latest news on scanning of…

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Research Sunday

October 30, 2016 @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Reservations for expert help are now closed, but you can still examine our extensive research collection on your own or with the guidance of our librarians. Research Sundays for 2016-17 will be held on October 30, January 29, and April 30. Research Sundays are an opportunity to: Consult experienced researchers for help with your research questions in 20-minute scheduled appointments Work with a strategist to plan your next steps Get translation help with documents written in various foreign languages in 20-minute…

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November 2016

Harold Rhode – A Litvak Traces his Roots to Sicily and Ancient Israel Using Y-DNA

November 13, 2016 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Main Lecture: Forty-five years of painstaking research allowed Harold Rhode to trace his family back 2,000 years to the ancient land of Israel, Eretz Yisrael.   Rhode relied on Y-DNA analysis, documentary evidence, interviews, and family lore to discover ancestral homes in Lithuania and Sicily. He turned up a DNA connection to Maronite Christians in Lebanon, who have family traditions indicating ancient Jewish ancestry, that makes a plausible case for his family’s Jewish origins in ancient Israel. Spotlight Talk: Adventures in…

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Glenn Dynner – Yankel’s Tavern: Jews, Liquor and Life in Eastern Europe

November 20, 2016 @ 3:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Hebrew College, 160 Herrick Road
Newton Centre, MA United States
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10th Annual Lecture on Jewish Genealogy, co-sponsored by JGSGB and Hebrew College In the 18th and 19th centuries, much of the economy of Eastern Europe was based on vodka and Jews were believed to be the only group sober enough to be entrusted with its production and sale. The Jewish-run tavern, leased from the local nobleman, became the center of leisure, hospitality, business and other aspects of local life. However, as peasant drunkenness reached epidemic proportions, reformers and government officials…

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December 2016

Eric Silverman – Jewish Dress and Cultural History: What You Can Learn From Grandma’s Photos

December 11, 2016 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
at Cong. Beth El, 561 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA United States
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Eric Silverman will discuss how something as mundane as clothing can help illustrate the complex social worlds in which Jews have always lived.  For most of Jewish history, but especially beginning around the time when the ancestors of most American Jews migrated to the United States, clothing illustrated a tension between dressing Jewish and dressing like everybody else – that is, clothing communicated messages about the different ways one could be Jewish in a particular era. Prof. Silverman is a professor at…

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January 2017

Two Talks: Sharon Zane – The Art of Taking an Oral History and Fay Bussgang – How I Put Together a Memoir

January 8 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Oral histories can be a powerful tool for genealogists. This talk will present techniques of taking a good oral history: what to do and what not do, interviewing tips, how to handle sound equipment, the types of recording equipment available and how to handle them. Case studies drawn from the speaker’s own research will demonstrate how information, casual remarks, and other clues gathered in oral history interviews can lead to exciting, life-changing discoveries. Sharon Zane has been an oral historian…

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Research Sunday

January 29 @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Research Sundays are an opportunity to: Consult experienced researchers for help with your research questions in 20-minute scheduled appointments Work with a strategist to plan your next steps Get translation help with documents written in various foreign languages in 20-minute scheduled appointments Learn how to read your DNA results or decide if DNA testing is for you Examine our extensive research collection of books and maps on your own or with the guidance of our librarians This event is for…

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February 2017

ChaeRan Freeze – Everyday Jewish Life in Tsarist Russia

February 5 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Brandeis professor and author, ChaeRan Freeze will talk about the subject of her latest book, Everyday Jewish Life in Imperial Russia. This book makes accessible—for the first time in English—declassified archival documents from the former Soviet Union, rabbinic sources, as well as previously untranslated memoirs. They provide a new perspective on the history of the Jews of Russia from the beginning of the nineteenth century to World War I. These sources focus on religion, family, health, sexuality, work, and politics,…

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March 2017

Jewish Genealogy:
Discover Your Family History

March 1 @ 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Hebrew College, 160 Herrick Road
Newton Centre, MA United States
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Register here The Jewish Genealogical Society of Greater Boston, in conjunction with Hebrew College, is offering its award-winning course on how to research your Jewish family history. Eight Wednesday evenings March 1 - April 26, 2017 (excludes April 12) 7:00 - 9:30 pm at Hebrew College in Newton Tuition $250. Class limited to 24 students.         "Terrific course. Lots of great info useful to all levels of researchers... All the lecturers were well-prepared, engaging and stimulating... I loved…

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Glenn Kurtz – Three Minutes in Poland: Discovering a Lost World in a 1938 Family Film

March 26 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Traveling in Europe shortly before World War II, the speaker’s grandfather captured three minutes of ordinary life in the small, predominantly Jewish town of Nasielsk. These few minutes of home movies have become a memorial to an entire community and culture annihilated in the Holocaust. Glenn Kurtz will show his grandfather’s film and present his own four-year search to locate survivors worldwide and reconstruct his grandfather’s town. Glenn Kurtz described his journey in Three Minutes in Poland: Discovering a Lost…

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Shai Carmi – The Genetic Ancestry of Ashkenazi Jews

March 26 @ 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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What can we learn from genetics about the origins of Ashkenazi Jews?  Where did we come from?  Are we all related?  What has been discovered about our founding population?  Can DNA analysis tell which people are Ashkenazi Jews?  Why is it so hard to find our relatives using DNA?  What are the medical consequences?  Shai Carmi will share answers, uncertainties and myths relating to these and other questions. Dr. Shai Carmi is on the Faculty of Medicine at The Hebrew…

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April 2017

Megan Lewis – Holocaust Research: Online Resources at the U.S. Holocaust Museum

April 23 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Megan Lewis of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum will present the museum’s genealogical resources and how to access this information, much of which is online. The collections include original source material from the personal collections of Holocaust survivors and victims including letters and official documents such as passports and diplomas; an extensive photograph archive; and oral histories. A database with names and data of Holocaust victims and survivors is also searchable online. Megan Lewis is a well-known reference librarian at the…

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Research Sunday

April 30 @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Signup  Deadline..Thursday, April 27, 2017 Research Sundays are an opportunity to: Consult experienced researchers for help with your research questions in 30-minute scheduled appointments Work with a strategist to plan your next steps Get translation help with documents written in various foreign languages in 20-minute scheduled appointments Learn how to read your DNA results or decide if DNA testing is for you Examine our extensive research collection of books and maps on your own or with the guidance of our…

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May 2017

Genie Milgrom – From the Spanish Inquisition to the Present: My Search for Jewish Roots; and How to Trace Your ‘New Christian’ Ancestors (2 lectures)

May 7 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm
at Cong. Beth El, 561 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA United States
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Born in Cuba to a Catholic family, Genie Milgrom has brilliantly  traced her maternal lineage back 600 years to the Jews of pre-Inquisition Portugal and Spain. In her first talk, she will present her amazing personal journey to uncover her Jewish origins. In her second talk, she will describe the Catholic, notarial and Inquisition records that led to her discovery and ultimately persuaded Rabbinic authorities to recognize her Jewish identity. Genie Milgrom served as President of the Society for Crypto…

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Jonathan Shea – Polish Records: I Found It! But What Does It Say?

May 21 @ 2:00 pm - 4:30 pm
Framingham Public Library, 49 Lexington Street
Framingham, MA 01702 United States
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This program is co-sponsored by the JGSGB and the Polish Genealogical Society of Massachusetts 19th Century records from Poland written in Polish or Russian can be difficult to translate. Formats vary and grammatical features often confuse English speakers. Various types of vital records will be reviewed and a sample record will be examined in depth. Templates can be used to identify key information. Phonetic features of Polish surnames will be identified to help explain common misspellings when names are translated…

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June 2017

Family History Books and Heirlooms Fair

June 11 @ 12:30 pm - 4:00 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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You are invited to participate in our 2nd annual Family History Books and Heirlooms Fair at our monthly program on June 11th at Temple Emanuel. Please bring: Family history books, booklets and scrapbooks you’ve created to be viewed by and to inspire your fellow genealogists! Family heirlooms that have connected you to your ancestors, along with explanatory captions. On June 11th: Drop off your items between 11:30 am - 12:30 pm, and reclaim them from 4 - 5 pm The…

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Judy Baston – Researching Your Lithuanian Roots

June 11 @ 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
at Temple Emanuel, 385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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Presented in Partnership with the Vilna Shul Annual Meeting and Elections Will Precede Lecture Did your ancestors come from Lithuania?  Do you want to know more about your Litvak heritage?  Judy Baston will present an overview of the LitvakSIG website and related resources, including the All Lithuania Database (with its 1.5 million translated records), district research groups, JewishGen and Yad Vashem.  Learn how to determine what records are available, how best to access the information, and how to optimize searches…

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