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November Genealogy Update

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  • SusanneLevitsky@aol.com
    Jewish Genealogical Society of Sacramento _www.jgss.org_ (http://www.jgss.org/) November 28, 2010 Upcoming Meetings: Sunday, December 19, 10 a.m. -- Vivian
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 28, 2010


      Jewish Genealogical Society

      of Sacramento



                                                           November 28, 2010


      Upcoming Meetings:

      Sunday, December 19, 10 a.m. -- Vivian Kahn, Hungarian Family Research

      Sunday, January 16, 10 a.m. -- Lynn Brown, Immigration Records

      Sunday, February 20, 10 a.m. -- Steve Morse -- DNA (advanced talk)


      November 21, 2010 Meeting

      In Mort Rumberg’s absence, Vice-President Victoria Fisch welcomed members and guests to the meeting.  She reminded those attending that dues -- $25 -- are now due.

      Victoria noted speakers coming up in December and beyond  (see above).

      Mort will be speaking about genealogy at Mosaic Law the evening of Sunday, Dec. 12, 7 p.m.

      Bob Wascou wanted to alert members that some have unclaimed money (bank accounts, stock dividends, estate funds, etc.) indicated on the State Controller’s  website: www.claimit.ca.gov  -- he has found the names of several of our members.


      November Program: Glenda Lloyd -- Maiden Names


      Glenda has spoken to our group many times, often on census-related topics.  She is a founder of RootCellar, the Sacramento Genealogical Society, and has taught genealogy classes for nearly 30 years.

      A general rule?  “Almost everything I tell you in genealogy should have the word ‘usually’ before it -- things vary!

      Glenda’s focus was on maiden names, and searching for women’s records.  She said the earliest published genealogies often included only male lines.

      Surname uses vary from culture to culture -- some women adopt their husband’s names, others include both.  In Scotland , women have only recently taken their husband’s surnames. 

      In Germany , women have a choice of surname, but need to declare an official family name.

      Sources that provide maiden names:

      Birth certificates, which usually include mother’s maiden name. Also watch for delayed birth certificates which are often in a separate book.

           California Birth Index -- gives you maiden name (up to 8 letters)

      Death certificates

      Marriage records -- usually available from the beginning of the county

          May be separate bride and groom index.  May find permission to marry if underage.

          Marriage license issued -- does not necessarily mean they were married -- look for a marriage return or certificate.

          You may also find a bond posted by the groom or father of the bride.

          Banns -- in England , read three weeks prior to marriage.  Book of Banns.


      Obituaries --  Sometimes mother’s maiden name, may also have marriage date.

      “I encourage you to make a list of your direct-line ancestors and get an obituary for each one of them.”

      Family Bibles --  List marriages

      Wills and Probates --

          I found in the will of a grandfather, the granddaughter’s maiden name.  Can extract names from probates that get published.

      Distribution of Estates--

      List of all heirs, married names.

      Land and Property

      After a death, some heirs may buy land from others.  When you look at a land record that says “et al,”  always read.

      County histories--

      They may give you maiden names, and even where they’re living (which could be other states).  Glenda showed a county history from Hancock County , Illinois which listed relatives in California .

      Published Genealogies --

      Most of the old ones contain no sourcing.

      Military Pension Records--

      Widow’s pension applications may be a source of information.

      Middle Names--

      Look at these, as they sometimes are family names.

      Census Records -

      Who’s living in the household, look for siblings

      The 1880 census and after given relationship to head of household.

      Check the pages before and after for other family members.

      Families often moved together.

      The 1925 Iowa State Census gives mother’s maiden name.  ( Victoria : Louisiana records as well.)

      International Genealogical Index -- IGI

                on www.familysearch.org


      -- Birth announcements, esp, in smaller papers, may list grandparents.

      -- Obituaries, death notices

      -- Always look for cards of thanks.

      --Engagement and wedding announcements

      Social Security Application

       -- filled out by the living

      Tombstones, cemetery plots

        Look for family burial plots.  Daughter may be buried with her parents.

        Check nearby plots (other may be full)

      Divorce Papers

        Usually maiden name, date and place of marriage

      Church Records

        baptism, sponsors could be relatives


      Bank Accounts -- usually ask for mother’s maiden name


       but may not have source of article

      Baby book

      For first or second child, at least .... Most have a pedigree chart.

      Internet sites:



      Ancestral File

      Pedigree Resource File

      pilot.familysearch.org   (may be beta version now)

      gencircle.com  (free site) -- people have submitted family trees, and they can do a  “smart match”

      ancestry.com -- World Connect, Family Trees  (paid site)

      (tip from Iris Bachman: If you call Ancestry and say you want to sign up but can’t afford the whole amount, they will lower the price)


      rootsweb.com  -- free site, now a part of Ancestry  -- queries put on there

      Google and other search engines -- try multiple search engines, put the name in quotes -- “I found things on two different sites that weren’t on the others.”

          You can also do a “google alert” with names, towns or other terms.

      Periodical Literature Index

      At the library -- Survey of American Genealogical Research Index

                               Index to Kentucky Genealogy -- Clift

                                American Genealogy and Biographical Index

                                PERSI -- Periodical Source Index, done by the Allen County Library in               

                                           Fort Wayne

      Tip from Sid Salinger -- Oral histories -- he found one that mentioned a family member in the Allen County Library.

      Other tips from Glenda:

      “If you’re stuck, go sideways -- research the brothers and sisters through obituaries, death certificates, cemetery plots.”

      “The Social Security Death Index is really the only national index we have.”


      “If you don’t want any skeletons in your family, don’t do genealogy.”



      From the Avotaynu E-Zine, November 28:

      Avotaynu Newsletter Archives Searchable:  Nu? What’s New? is in its 11th year of publication. All back issues are archived at http://www.avotaynu.com/nu.htm with a full-word search engine. If you missed a recent issue or want to determine if some previously published item will assist in your research, use the archives

      FamilySearch Site Adds 15 Million Indexes
      FamilySearch indicates it has recently added 15 million indexed records and 2.5 million images to their site at http://beta.familysearch.org. Many of the additions are church records, but those that might be of interest to researchers with Jewish ancestry include:

         Belgium Marriages, 1563-1890
         Belgium, Antwerp Police Immigration Index and Images, 1840-1930
         Canada, Ontario Births, 1869-1912
         Germany, Bremen Passenger Departure Lists, 1904-1914
         U.S., Arkansas County Marriages, 1837-1957
         U.S., Georgia –Death Records, 1928-1930
         U.S., Index to Naturalizations of World War I Soldiers, 1918
         U.S., Louisiana, Eastern District Naturalization Petitions, 1838-1861
         U.S., Maryland, Naturalization Indexes, 1797-1951
         U.S., Maryland, Naturalization Petitions, 1906-1931
         U.S., Massachusetts Naturalization Index, 1906-1966
         U.S., New York State Census, 1905 for selected counties
         U.S., New York, Eastern District Naturalization Petitions, 1865-1957
         U.S., New York, Western District, Naturalization Index, 1907-1966
         U.S., Rhode Island, State Census, 1905

      The complete list can be found at

      Library and Archives Canada
      Library and Archives Canada reports that the original microfilming in the 1950s of immigration records (passenger and border entry lists) was not up to archival standards. Also the original documents were often of poor quality. To assist in reading these records, the column headings from various immigration forms from 1865 to 1935 have been transcribed. They are available at http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/genealogy/022-908.012-e.html. A complete list of indexes to their immigration collection can be found at http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/genealogy/022-908.013-e.html.

      Czech Archives to Digitize Vital Records
      It was reported on JewishGen that the Czech National Archives is digitizing their collection of vital records. It is expected that the registers of the Jews of Bohemia and Moravia—births, deaths and marriages—will be available online next year.

      Passaic County (New Jersey) Naturalization Images Online
      The Passaic County (New Jersey) Clerk’s Office has placed an index and digitized images of naturalization records online at
      http://records.passaiccountynj.org/press/indexPassaic.aspx. Documents as recent as 1987 are included. Searching with a partial surname will provide a list of all persons whose surname starts with the partial name. This may assist in allowing for spelling variants. Major cities in this county include
      Clifton, Passaic and Paterson.


      2013 IAJGS Conference in Boston

      The 33rd IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy will be held at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel from August 4-9, 2013. This conference is being co-hosted by the IAJGS and the JGS Greater Boston.

      is rich with history and sights to visit, including noteworthy Jewish places of interest.  Although some Jews settled in the area earlier, a permanent Jewish community did not get established until the mid-19th century.

      Hotel guest rooms for attendees will be $189 (plus taxes) for singles or doubles and this cost will apply for three days before and after the conference.

      (The 2011 conference will be in Washington, D.C.; the 2012 conference in Paris.)

      Belarus Cemetery
      The Forward has an article on the remains of the Jewish Cemetery in Gomel-Jewish cemetery of Senno. Belarus lacks a law on the restitution of community property, and by law, cemeteries can be reclaimed for other use 50 years after the last burial. In most cases involving abandoned Jewish cemeteries, the last burial was 69 years ago. Of some 90 abandoned Jewish cemeteries in Belarus, 17 have been restored, seven of them by Belarusians. The article includes a video about the Belarusians and the restoration by the Minsk Hillel and others. To access the article go to: http://forward.com/articles/133423/.


      From the newsletter of the JGS of Ventura/Conejo Valley:


      State by state listings of the best genealogy websites as compiled by Family Tree Magazine: http://tinyurl.com/28nlgcn



      An additional 18,754 records from 1927 have been added to the existing Czernowitz directory database. The total is now 109,509 and may be

      accessed at http://czernowitz.blogspot.com/.


                                                             See you at the next meeting, December 19!

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