Bernard started with pointers about Polish language, pronunciation, and its influence on Yiddish, English, and Hebrew. He then gave the group a historical tour of Poland from 1795 (the 3rd Partition of Poland) to the present, illustrating this history with biographies of his family drawn from his extensive genealogical research and knowledge of the Polish language.
Mark covered the basics of interpreting DNA test results for all the major testing companies. He explained how each one will give different results. He explained that everyone should test either at Ancestry or 23andMe and then upload your data to as many other testing services as you feel comfortable doing. Ancestry and 23andMe are the only two sites where you cannot download your data to another site. He also showed the group examples of the different features of all of the testing sites.
He then covered some of the 3rd party tools that bring specific benefits to working with test results.
Unfortunately Marion Werle had a medical issue and was unable to address our organization.
In her absence two of our Board members gave the group some helpful information and everyone offered help on research for anyone in need.
Aileen Goldman, our President, presented how social media is a helpful key for doing research and how she organizes her information on her computer. She showed the group a form that she uses to document information and many of the group members asked to have a copy. We are posting it here for everyone's use.
Michelle Sandler, our VP - Programming told the group about two wonderful books that are well forth reading.
Getting Started in Jewish Genealogy by Gary Mokotoff and From Generation to Generation by Arthur Kurzweil who is considered the grand master of Jewish Genealogy. She gave a brief explanation of what is in the books and reminded the group that the association has a wonderful selection of books in our library that are available to all.
Susan who is an artist, writer and genealogist based in Minnesota gave us a 3-D view of immigration which included personal experience, genealogy documents and immigration laws.
She told the group about her Jewish Identity and Legacy Project and how it got started. Then she gave the group details on the various immigration acts and how they impacted people coming to America.
She also showed the group videos of interviews of Holocaust survivors she had taped as part of her Project.
Jane told the group that her talk was going to be very emotional for her as she was sharing with us her own family stories. She first explained all of the tools she used to learn information on researching the fate of long-lost relatives and the challenges to finding the information. The resources she covered included using JewishGen, the Holocaust database, the U.S. Holocaust Historical Museum in Washington DC, Yad Vashem in Jerusalem, Yizkor (memorial) books, newspapers, and more.
Sharon shared with the group that being the daughter of a Holocaust survivor inspired her to visit Poland and learn about Radom where her father came from. She told us about her first visit to Radom and how surprised she was that there were no plaques showing the historical sites. She was determined to correct this and through her efforts her quest for plaques was realized.
She goes there on a regular basis and shared several other wonderful stories about her visits and all of the things she has been able to accomplish.
We also want to welcome Sharon to our local Society as she lives in Orange Country and has joined our group.
Below are a few of the handouts she gave everyone to help with research.
Sunday everyone got together to enjoy our Annual Party. We started with a short film on the History of Ellis Island, enjoyed Latkes and sweet treats. Here are some pictures from our event.
Warren Blatt, the Managing Director of Jewish Gen gave the group a presentation on how to navigate the Jewish Gen site. He explained that Jewish Gen in 2003 became a part of the Holocaust Museum. He went on to explain about the two main projects on Jewish Gen - the Yizkor Books and the KehilaLinks and the information that they contain. His slide presentation showed the group all the different parts of the website which included the Discussion Groups, Tools, and the Databases. He also told the group about ViewMate where you can upload documents and members help to translate as well as how to search for names and towns using different techniques. He also informed the group about the various Education Programs available through the site.
Below are some of the slides from his presentation.
Michelle Sandler, one of our own Board Members, was originally scheduled to present how to research. She surprised us yesterday by having Dick McFarlane a Past Director of the Orange Family History Library give us a presentation on how to navigate the website in preparation for our visit to their library.
He started by explaining you must first have an account with them and showed the group how to register.
He then walked the group through all aspects of the website.
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