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2017
January, 2017
Speakers: Lewis Polishook, Jamie Cotel Cemeteries and gravestones are an important resource for genealogical research. Lewis A. Polishook, Director of the New York State Division of Cemeteries, and Jamie Cotel, Executive Director of the Community Alliance for Jewish-Affiliated Cemeteries (CAJAC), our speakers, will discuss the sometimes complicated issues surrounding cemetery regulation, oversight and maintenance, from both a governmental and community perspective. Mr. Polishook’s Division is part of the NYS Department of State in the executive branch. CAJAC represents the organized Jewish community’s efforts to preserve and rehabilitate at-risk cemeteries. They will also answer our questions regarding the preservation and management of ...
February, 2017
Speaker: Jonathan Boyarin, PhD What do we mean when we talk about Jewish families? From the stories of Abraham, Sarah and their children, through the Middle Ages and on to modern Jewish communities, the family has been considered key to transmitting Jewish identity. But what we call "the Jewish family" has varied greatly through the times and places where Jews have found themselves. This talk will look at some big questions: How did Jewish family patterns compare to those of their non-Jewish neighbors? What is at stake for us in the present when we recall or reconstruct families from the past? ...
March, 2017
Program: Intended for everyone -- both novices and experienced researchers – interested in Jewish genealogy, this full-afternoon program, to be held at the JCC in Manhattan, features workshops led by experienced genealogists in two simultaneous tracks: a fundamentals track for beginners and those wishing to review the basics; and a track on special subjects for more advanced researchers. The Jewish Genealogical Society, in partnership with the JCC, presents this program intended for all those interested in researching their Jewish roots.    Track 1 – Family Research Fundamentals – 3 sessions - Getting started: Finding and interpreting census and vital records - Randi Koenig ...
April, 2017
Speaker: Dr. Jeffrey Mark Paull Co-Sponsored by JewishGen.org at the Museum of Jewish Heritage The history of the adoption, regulation, and use of Jewish surnames in the Russian Empire is quite complex. There were a myriad number of ways by which Jewish surnames were created, assigned, or adopted, while tight restrictions were placed on changing or altering surnames. As a result of Russian laws and mandates, many non-related Jewish individuals acquired the same surname, while many related family members acquired different surnames. This situation has created many challenges for genealogists who try to trace the ancestry or locate descendants of a particular ...
May, 2017
Speaker: Dr. Libby Garland In 1921 and 1924, Congress passed legislation intended to reduce the influx of immigrants to the U.S. These laws allocated only small quotas for southern and eastern Europe, and banned almost all immigration from Asia. Their purpose was to limit the number of foreigners considered inferior and a threat to the nation. Jews, heavily represented in early twentieth-century immigration to the United States, were among the prime targets of the laws. In this talk, Dr. Libby Garland discusses the responses of Jews both in the United States and abroad to these new restrictions on immigration, including the ...
June, 2017
 Meeting of Gesher Galicia members and friends from the New York area. Please join us for an overview of new genealogy-focused projects and online tools available through Gesher Galicia. 
Speaker: Andrew Zalewski The talk Galician Portraits: The Story of Jews, Gentiles, and Emperors brings to life the Jewish community of Galicia. The speaker’s personal genealogical discoveries are intertwined within a larger historical context. Coming from outside of the Jewish community, the imperial edicts are both stifling and inspiring — the laws about Jewish marriages, surnames, secular schools, military service, and land ownership bring a dizzying pace of changes but also plenty of controversies. Coming from inside the Jewish community of Galicia, which is more diverse and vibrant than typically acknowledged, there is a wave of the Jewish Enlightenment — biting ...
September, 2017
    Speaker: Jeffrey S. Gurock   In this lecture, Jeffrey S. Gurock, Libby M. Klaperman Professor of Jewish History at Yeshiva University, recalls Jewish Harlem, a neighborhood that was once home to the second largest Jewish community in America. Using periodicals, memoirs, interviews and genealogical materials, Professor Gurock will describe the forces that brought several generations of Jews to settle there, as well as its subsequent decline in the 1920s and reemergence in the 21st-century.   A life-long New Yorker with family roots in Harlem dating back more than a century, Jeffrey S. Gurock is the author or editor of eighteen books, including the recent ...
October, 2017
  Speaker: Emily H. GarberCo-Sponsored by JewishGen.org at the Museum of Jewish Heritage / Lucille Gudis Memorial Lecture When several communities in Eastern Europe have similar names and their names have been changed over the years, it may be difficult to unambiguously identify one's family’s shtetl of origin. Considering the investment in time and energy in researching one's family shtetl, it is imperative that one get it right. Yet we do not often apply rigor in identifying our family’s communities of origin. The genealogical proof standard requires rigor in our research methodology. With its application and a well-designed research plan, we assure ...
November, 2017
Woman knitting outside Majdanek concentration camp, wartime forced labor and killing center. Most of the camp’s original buildings and grounds remain intact. The camp-museum is open to the public. Lublin, 1975. ©Chuck Fishman Special Jewish Genealogical Society, Inc. Event on November 5th, from 1:30 – 3:00 pm: Roots, Resilience and Renewal: A Portrait of Polish Jews, 1975-2016, by Chuck Fishman.   Join us for a private exhibition talk for Jewish Genealogical Society, Inc. members and guests, by photographer Chuck Fishman on Sunday, November 5, at the Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection at Hebrew Home in Riverdale, located at 5901 Palisade Avenue in the Riverdale section of ...