- Jewish Genealogical Society of Sacramento www.jgss.org January 2007 Coming Attractions Our Upcoming Meetings: January -- Sunday, January 21, 10 a.m. AllanMessage 1 of 36 , Jan 7, 2007View Source
Jewish Genealogical Society
Our Upcoming Meetings:
January -- Sunday, January 21, 10 a.m.
Allan Bonderoff -- "From Shtetl to Hester Street"
February -- Sunday, February 11, 10 a.m.
Members Show-and-Tell, "Treasures from the Attic"
March -- Sunday, March 18, 10 a.m.
Steve Morse -- "De-Mystifying the Jewish Calendar"
Meeting Notes -- December 10, 2006
President Burt Hecht called the meeting to order. He mentioned that members have been sent notices for dues for the 2007 calendar year and encouraged people to send in their checks to Allan Bonderoff. Allan gave the Treasurer's report -- we have $870.57 in our account. Allan mentioned that we usually provide the Einstein Center with a $100 check; it was then approved that for the Center's 25th anniversary, we donate $200. Member Allan Dolgow generously volunteered $100 of that amount.
Art Yates reminded us that Ancestry.com is free through the end of the year (normal membership can range up to $300 annually). There are many valuable databases. Burt Hecht mentioned that for $35, a subscription to the Godfrey Memorial Library is a very good investment (http://www.godfrey.org/).
Teven Laxer brought in the CD he is donating to the library, the complete presentations and syllabus from this year's New York conference. He is also donating the New York National Archives learning standards CD. Teven said he is beta testing Steve Morse's new Gold Form on the Ellis Island Web site, and has found a few bugs he is working with Steve to correct. Steve will be our speaker in March.
Burt attended the November 20 meeting of the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society, where Valery Bazarov spoke. Mr. Bazarov works for the HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society). He said the organization is now focusing on post -1920 immigration and currently is involved in rescuing Jews from Iraq. Over the years, HIAS has been instrumental in bringing about four million into the U.S.
Vice-President Mort Rumberg gave a brief update on future speakers -- Allan Bonderoff will give a presentation, "From Shtetl to Hester Street" on January 21. On Sunday, February 11, we'll hold another of the popular "Treasures from the Attic," a chance for members to show and tell about family memorabilia. Start thinking now about what you might bring,
Sunday, March 19, Steve Morse will disuss "De-Mystifying the Jewish Calendar."
Reva Camiel: A Video for My Grandchildren
Member Reva Camiel presented the program for the meeting, a 43-minute video about her family members, past and present. She hired someone to help put it together.
Reva passed on some questions to consider before you begin putting a family video together, a production which can take at least a year.
First, who is your audience? (Grandkids, adult family, friends, etc.) How long do you want the video? Do you want to be interviewed in it? Who do you want to interview you?
Do you want to read the text with your voice, or someone else's? Do you want a professional to put it together? If so, how much are you willing to pay? Do you have the photos, audiocassettes, video clips, music, etc. that you want in the video?
Once you've answered these questions, Reva says it's time to "call a professional/nerd or a talented grandchild." Talk to that person about your goal and find out if they think they can do, and are interested in the project. You decide if you want to work with them.
Reva says make sure you have a written contract of what they will do for you and an exact charge. She ended up spending about $2000 on her video and devoted about six hours once a week for seven weeks.
When organizing your material, develop a system to gather all your photos, videos, etc. so you can easily return them to their original albums and locations. Reva pulled material from 60 photo albums for her video and noted how much of it was able to be accommodated on one DVD. "I know I won't have room for 60 albums when I end up living here at the Einstein Center, but I can take a DVD, "
Reva's video included photos and film from her Roosevelt High School days in Los Angeles, to her initial college days at UC Berkeley, to her children, grandchildren, trips to India and 20 different countries. Captions helped pinpoint the people and places in her photos. Her narration includes comments about the Japanese internment during World War II, her wish for a peaceful world, and much more.
"It's wonderful having you enjoy my family," she said after the video concluded.
In the discussion which followed, member Victoria Reed mentioned that a friend of hers, Minette Siegal, produces videos, is inexpensive, and great to work with, even for those with a small budget. She can be e-mailed at minettesiegel@...; people can also check out her Web site at http://www.ino-sieg.com/home.shtml
Our next meeting is Sunday, January 21, when Allen Bonderoff will present "From Shtetl to Hester Street' about immigrations paths to this country.
Internet Translator Site -- thanks Allan Dolgow:
Limitation is 1000 characters at a time. Seems to be a reasonably good translator and it is free.
From Avotaynu's Nu? What's New, E-zine e-mailed newsletter -- (free if you're not already a subscriber): http://www.avotaynu.com/nuwhatsnew.htm.
Nu? What's New? Survey Provides Interesting Results
The first Nu? What's New? survey completed. More than 3,200—47% of the 7,200 subscribers—participated. Some stereotypes of a Jewish genealogist were confirmed and others were not. Here are some observations based on the results:
- Most Jewish genealogists are relatively new to the hobby—more than half have been researching their family history for less than 10 years.
- Jewish genealogists rely on the volunteer efforts of others—68.8% of the respondents claim they do not volunteer for genealogy projects.
- We are a computer-oriented, high-speed Internet-oriented group, but this appears to be true of all genealogists.
- Jewish genealogists are well educated—47.7% have advanced (masters/doctorate) degrees.
- Are we "little old ladies in tennis sneakers"? Unfortunately, an important question was accidentally left out of the survey—What is your gender (male/female)? But the survey did ask age and, remarkably, the typical Jewish genealogist is nearly seven years older (61.2 years) than the non-Jewish genealogist (54.6).
Many Wikipedias for Genealogy
Jean-Pierre Stroweis, past president of the Israel Genealogy Society, notes that there are now three Wikipedias for genealogy; one each for English, French and Hebrew. They are located at:
English: 4,757 articles at http://genealogy.wikia.com
French: 44,688 articles at http://www.geneawiki.com
Shoah Victims' Names Database Grows and Grows
Since the Shoah Victims' Names Database went online in November 2004, Yad Vashem has added more than 500,000 additional records and has plans to add one million more in 2007. Yad Vashem is using a variety of sources such as yizkor books, which account for half of the names added since 2004.
The Archives director says that during the past few months, Yad Vashem has begun to systematically enter data from its archival collections (as opposed to Pages of Testimony or list projects done by others). Each personal record contains information about the individual and also about the document in which it is found, the file, and the collection. The first group of entries is the reports of the Soviet Extraordinary Commission; the first 150,000 or so of these records should go online soon.
A book of interest:
Member Marilyn Amir would like to bring to the attention of the JGSS a newly-published book which tells about Jewish history during the Holocaust relating to the Sephardim in North Africa as well as Middle Eastern Jews. It’s “Among the Righteous” by Robert Satloff. She notes that as we're aware, Askenazim were not the only ones affected by the Holocaust.
Reaching Youth About Genealogy-- Summer Program:
(From Kimberly Powell, About Genealogy):
Many of us are concerned about how to convey the importance of genealogy to young people. The Center for Jewish History in New York has an excellent summer genealogy program for students in grades 9-12.
The Samberg Family History Program, co-sponsored by the American Jewish Historical Society, is seeking outstanding high school students to receive attendance fellowships, with full scholarships, for this academic summer program to run July 2-27.
No previous genealogical experience is required. Among featured benefits for participants is learning while having fun, standing out on college applications, embarking on a personal journey from past to future, visiting the city's historic institutions, creating personal family trees and learning about Jewish history. For more information, e-mail samberg@....
Genealogy Logic Puzzle
Take a break from those perplexing ancestors and try your hand at this logic puzzle -- it is a fun diversion from your genealogy brick walls.
On June 1st, five couples who live in Trumbull will celebrate their wedding anniversaries. Their surnames are Johnstone, Parker, Watson, Graves and Shearer. The husbands' given names are Russell, Douglas, Charles, Peter and Everett. The wives' given names are Elaine, Joyce, Marcia, Elizabeth and Mildred. Keep in mind that no two couples have been married the same number of years. From the clues, determine the husband and wife that make up each couple and the number of years they have been married.
- Joyce has not been married as long as Charles or the Parkers, but longer than Douglas or the Johnstones.
- Elizabeth has been married twice as long as the Watsons, but only half as long as Russell.
- The Shearers have been married 10 years longer than Peter and 10 years less than Marcia.
- Douglas and Mildred have been married for 25 years less than the Graves who, having been married for 30 years, are the couple who have been married the longest.
- Neither Elaine or the Johnstones have been married the shortest amount of time.
- Everett has been married for 25 years
You can view the entire puzzle plus a Logic Grid to help you solve it at www.genealogyworldwide.com.
Sacramento Spring Genealogy Seminar
The Spring Seminar 2007 is set for Saturday, March 31, 2007 at the Fair Oaks
Presbyterian Church. Paula Stuart-Warren, who has written numerous genealogy books, will host the daylong conference. More information will follow. (Editor's note: I went last year when John Philip Colletta was the featured speaker. )
Ukraine Synagogues and Sites
Allan Dolgow reports receiving a copy of JEWISH CEMETERIES, SYNAGOGUES, AND MASS GRAVE SITES IN UKRAINE. "It's worth sending away for, not only for the information it contains but the photographs." To get a copy send an e-mail to uscommission@...
- March 5, 2014 Upcoming Meetings -- Sunday, March 16, 10 a.m. -- Frederick Hertz, Finding David Blumenfeld Sunday, April 20, 10 a.m. -- Lynn Brown -- U.S.Message 36 of 36 , Mar 5 7:19 AMView SourceMarch 5, 2014Upcoming Meetings --Sunday, March 16, 10 a.m. -- Frederick Hertz, Finding David BlumenfeldSunday, April 20, 10 a.m. -- Lynn Brown -- U.S. Citizenship RecordsSunday, May 18, 10 a.m. -- Leon Malmed, Secret Story: Hiding in France Under the German OccupationSunday, June 15, 10 a.m. -- Steve Morse, The Julian Calendar and Importance to GenealogistsLocation: Einstein Residence Center, 1935 Wright Street, SacramentoNotes from February 16, 2014President Victoria Fisch welcomed members and guests and shared information about upcoming genealogy presentations at the Sacramento Central Library, including free consultations. For details, go to www.saclibrary.org.Gerry Ross wanted to thank members again for donating the Netflix subscription to Einstein residents. The showing of "Captain Phillips" last night drew great attendance.Teven Laxer and Mort Rumberg brought in cards to sign for Bob Wascou, who is recuperating in the hospital following surgery. Bob can't yet have calls or visitors but does appreciate cards.Judy Persin has graciously agreed to take over as interim treasurer, filling in behind Bob.Teven also noted that the Jewish Film Festival is coming up at the Crest Theater March 6-9. You can preorder tickets -- this is the 14th year.February Speaker -- Heidi Lyss"Writing Family History"Heidi teaches creative writing and has an MFA in creative writing/fiction. Her day job is working for Kaiser in Oakland.She asked the group, "What do we mean by a family history?" She said we can focus on one person and part of their life, or a family cluster, or include a blend of fact and fiction.
"What do we mean by narrative?" It could be a spoken or written account of connected events, and challenges faced."Why write?" It's a natural way to share information --people think in story frames. And in writing in narrative form, we often discover gaps in our research.Heidi said young adults are not interested in a snapshot approach -- they often want one topic, one story.Heidi said you should know who your audience is. It's important to what details you include. Is the audience family, friends, specialty groups, local/regional people, the general public?Who are you writing about? Start with whatever intrigues you or inspires you the most.How to get started -- With a person, family object, or time period/event.Then collect information, read stories, especially from that time period. Create an outline if that helps you.If it involves conjecture, you may want a disclaimer, such as saying this is how you imagined it.You can do a timeline of historic events (the person arrived at the battle of Fort Sumter …)You can arrange original texts in sequences, can also write as poems.Non-fiction examples:recipes, photos, documents, family treesWhat was life like in the home?Other ways to structure your story -- family items passed down through generations, religious or secular holidays and how they were celebrated, maps and places, journeys, letters/journal entries. Or pose a larger question-- maybe there's something you want to know about your family.Drafts -- do different drafts, set aside, get feedbackSharing the story is more important than revising and revising.Most of the time the final beginning is written well after you've done the first draft.What's in a story?People -- do they seem like real people?Heroic journey -- call to adventure, mention trials, successes and failuresPoint of view -- 1st, 2nd, 3rd personSensory detailHistorical writing -- setting, characters and experiences, voices and use of languageRead contemporary writings on daily life (Mark Twain in Virginia City)Language -- hone on subsequent drafts-- show rather than tell-- search for where you can use strong verbs-- replace cliches with fresher language-- check dialogue and make sure it's necessaryLapham's Quarterly --excerpts on writing about a topic across time. Can find at Barnes and Noble.Back up files -- also email to yourself. Print out copies from time to time, store in two or more places.If you sell your book, get an ISBN number.On copyright questions, websites can help you, such as one from Cornell University.Heidi concluded: "Just start writing -- writing something and it will be a value to someone."~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Some articles that may be of interest:Inmates Stay Busy at Davis County Jail by Indexing Records for Mormon Genealogy DatabasesBy Ben Lockhart, Standard-ExaminerFARMINGTON, Utah — Several months ago, Davis County Deputy Chief Kevin Fielding met with a representative from a nearby school who expressed concerns about being so close to the county jail.Fielding, who oversees all operations at the jail, took the concern in stride."Come on," he told her, "let me show you our facility."After meeting a young lady who was an inmate in the prison and speaking with her briefly, the woman from the school seemed visibly shaken."She could hardly even talk to me," Fielding said.After some prompting, the woman choked out: "She seemed so normal."Fielding earned a hearty laugh with that anecdote as he shared it Feb. 26 with county jail volunteers, an audience familiar with inmates and able to compare public perception to what they see on a weekly basis.Fielding was encouraging volunteers, attending their annual training session at the Davis County Justice Center, to remember precisely who their service was being rendered to."The vast majority (of inmates) are pretty decent people, and they want these programs," Fielding said. "Most of them just made a couple mistakes."More than 150 volunteers attended the meeting, receiving both praise for their work with prisoners and training for the coming year. Others will attend their mandatory training later this week; in all, 216 people volunteer at the jail, excluding contracted employees. Volunteers largely consist of religious instructors, substance abuse prevention supervisors and education counselors."These programs really do reduce recidivism," said Deputy Scott Manfull, who supervises each of the programs, noting Davis County holds more such activities than any other jail in the state."Every (program) I've asked for, I've got," Manfull told those gathered. "That's because of you guys and I really appreciate it."The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is now offering a family history indexing course at the jail in addition to its typical ministry work there. Instructors ask inmates to sift through records up to hundreds of years old and determine names as part of the religion's genealogy work.The LDS Church proposed the unique program to the Utah Sheriff's Association in 2012 and worked to provide laptops and other equipment. Fielding said a large concern was restricting live internet access to the genealogy records themselves, and that the classes took off in 2013 after that security precaution was finalized.2,255 names were catalogued by Davis County inmates in 2013, and 174,939 were completed throughout the state. The LDS Church said it expects that figure to balloon to about 2 million statewide in 2014.The volunteer couple for the indexing course in Davis County, Brent and Chris, asked that their last name be withheld for security purposes. They have been working on indexing with inmates since August in once per week sessions of no more than 90 minutes. They typically have between six and 12 students attend the sessions; no more than sixteen inmates are allowed in one classroom at a time."We emphasize to them that they're doing a service, that anybody can access the names" once they're catalogued, Chris said. "There are several of them that really get into it. It breaks up the monotony."Records from the United States or Great Britain are typically used, but the names have not been restricted to English speaking countries. Inmates work hard to decipher some Spanish and Italian spellings, and the very oldest English records are also difficult to work through, Brent said."With some of this Old English you get to where you don't recognize some of the letters," he said. "Some are very hard to read."Kane County inmates indexed the majority of genealogical names in Utah during 2013, completing 138,147. Inmates at Weber County's jail and work release locations indexed a combined 6,115 in that time.
See you Sunday, March 16!