Death Records for Genealogical Research
- Speaker: Phyllis Kramer
- Lecture Date: 06-23-2019
Learn how to access genealogical resources and other useful online databases available in Israel to find your relatives. Every day more genealogical, historical and other types of useful databases are released on the Web. Israel has a number of websites and digital resources that can be searched via the Internet in English and Hebrew. A fast introduction to the Hebrew language, the keywords needed and the translation tools available will help you find information on people who were born, lived or died in Israel.
Daniel Horowitz was the teacher and study guide editor for 15 years of the family history project "Searching for My Roots," in Venezuela. Working at MyHeritage since 2006, he is currently the Genealogy Expert, involved in the areas of product development and public affairs, lecturing in conferences around the world. Dedicated to genealogy since 1986, he coordinates multiple transcription projects and holds board level positions at the Israel Genealogy Research Association (IGRA) and the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS).
Jonathan Brent, Executive Director and CEO of The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, will speak to us about the Edward Blank YIVO Vilna Collections Project, an international initiative, begun in 2015, to conserve and digitize YIVO’s entire prewar library and archival collections located in New York City and Vilnius, Lithuania, and reunite them though a dedicated web portal. The project will also digitally reconstruct the historic, private Strashun Library of Vilna, one of the greatest prewar Jewish libraries of Europe In 2017 YIVO discovered more than 170,000 additional documents in Vilnius, which for over 70 years were thought to have been destroyed by the Nazis during the Holocaust. The new phase of the Project will include the digitization of these documents. The entire Vilna Collections encompass some 12,200 rare books and approximately 1.1 million original documents from the Jewish world of Eastern Europe.
The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research was founded in Vilna, Poland (now Lithuania), in 1925. During World War II, its extensive archive and library was looted by the Nazis. Much was destroyed, but soon after the war some of the materials were recovered by the U.S. Army in Germany and sent to YIVO in the United States. However, much also remained hidden in Lithuania.The Edward Blank YIVO Vilna Collections Project is a partnership between YIVO, the Lithuanian Central State Archives, the Martynas Mažydas National Library of Lithuania, and the Wroblewski Library of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, and includes the cataloging, conservation, and digitization of documents and books in both New York and Vilnius.
Jonathan Brent is a historian, publisher, translator, writer and teacher. For eighteen years (1991-2009) he was Humanities Senior Editor then Editorial Director at Yale University Press where he established the Annals of Communism series. His books include Stalin’s Last Crime (2003); and Inside the Stalin Archives (2008). Brent has translated poems of Joseph Brodsky and Vladimir Mayakovsky and teaches history and literature at Bard College. He is currently writing a biographical study of the Russian writer, Isaac Babel, and finishing a novel.
In 2009, Brent became Executive Director and CEO of The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research where he initiated The YIVO Vilna Collection Project in 2014, an international project to conserve and digitize all of YIVO’s pre-WW II collections in New York City and Vilnius, Lithuania. In 2018, Brent initiated development of the YIVO Digital Museum of East European and Russian Jewish Life.
Brent lectures and publishes widely on Jewish, Soviet and East European history. He has made three documentaries about his work: Stalin’s Last Plot (2009); Stalin: Man of Steel (2003); and Declassified: Stalin (2006). His articles have appeared in The New York Times, Commentary, The American Scholar, The New Republic, The New Criterion, The Chronicle of Higher Education and numerous other journals and newspapers. He is now participating a documentary on the life and disappearance of Raul Wallenberg. His books have been translated into French, Swedish, Spanish, Russian, Chinese, and Polish.
Co-Sponsored with the American Sephardi Federation and the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society
Sarina Roffé, author of Branching Out From Sepharad, outlines the history of Jews in Spain, the 1492 Expulsion, their history in Syria, and their immigration to the Americas. She will discuss the ancestry and significance of the Kassin rabbinic dynasty, which dates to the 12th Century, and the 50-year leadership of Chief Rabbi Jacob S. Kassin, who led the Syrian Jewish community in Brooklyn. At the same time, she solves a Converso mystery. Rabbi Kassin's ancestor arrive in Aleppo in 1540. Sarina solves the mystery of the time gap from 1492-1540.
Sarina Roffé is a professional genealogist, editor of DOROT, and founder of the Sephardic Heritage Project. She is also the author of Backyard Kitchen: Mediterranean Salads, a cooking app called Sarina’s Sephardic Cuisine, available in the Apple Store, as well as hundreds of articles. She is responsible for the translation and databasing of marriage and brit milah records on JewishGen. While on the Board of Governors of JewishGen, she acquired several databases of Sephardic records including cemetery records from Mexico, Venezuela, Cuba and Argentina. Sarina presents often at IAJGS Conferences and has completed over a dozen genealogies, through her genealogy consulting business, Sephardic Genealogical Journeys. She is Co-chair of the Brooklyn Jewish Historical Initiative, the first organization to document Brooklyn’s Jewish past.