Nu? What's New?
The E-zine of Jewish Genealogy From Avotaynu

Gary Mokotoff, Editor

Volume 15, Number 12 | March 23, 2014

Every government puts value on preserving its history. That is why we have national archives. Genealogy preserves history; the history of a family. It cannot be done without access to records, just as historians cannot preserve a nation's history without access to records. It is a greater good than the right to privacy. It is a greater good than the risk of identity theft.

Past issues of Nu? What's New? are archived at
Additional Comments on European Union Approval of “Right To Be Forgotten”
The last issue of Nu? What’s New? noted that the European Union Parliament has approved a regulation that includes the controversial individual’s “right to be forgotten.” Jan Meisels Allen, chairperson of the IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee, notes that the EU is bicameral, and it takes both the EU Parliament and the EU Council to approve a new law or regulation. She reports that the New York Times and the Bloomberg BNA both have articles expressing similar thoughts that the Council may not necessarily pass the Data Privacy Regulation in the same context as did the Parliament. That means there might be additional compromise negotiations between the legislative bodies. The articles are at takes-steps-toward-protecting-data.html?emc=eta1&_r=0 and

MyHeritage Encouraging JGSs To Photograph Local Cemeteries
Using the argument, if we can do it, so can you, MyHeritage is encouraging Jewish Genealogical Societies to photograph the tombstones of local cemeteries. Recently 80 employees of MyHeritage staff photographed the 51,000 gravestones at the Segula Cemetery in Petah Tikva, Israel. Each photo was uploaded to—a MyHeritage partner—along with metadata that included the precise latitude and longitude where the photograph was taken.

MyHeritage states that the content will be available at no charge to the public at the site and on the MyHeritage site as well at

Individuals can participate in the project. To take part requires a "smart phone" (iPhone or Android). Then register and download the app at

More Regarding New York State Restrictions on Access to Probate Files
The March 9, 2014, edition of Nu? What’s New? stated that the New York State Chief Justice has issued an order restricting public access to records included in probate files. Previously they are treated as public documents. A report posted to the JewishGen Discussion Group stated that a genealogist went to the Kings County (Brooklyn) Surrogate's Court where he was told there is no change in the rules for access to files earlier than 2009. There might be a question about whether certain documents in the file, such as a death record, might be redacted.

IAJGS Requests Nominations for Annual Awards
The International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS) is now accepting applications for their annual awards. They include:
   • IAJGS Lifetime Achievement Award
   • Outstanding contribution to Jewish Genealogy via the Internet, Print or Electronic Product
   • Outstanding Publication by an IAJGS member organization
   • Outstanding Programming or Project that Advanced the Objectives of Jewish Genealogy

All four Awards must be nominated by IAJGS member organizations although it is not uncommon for individuals or other organizations to provide letters supporting the nomination. Deadline for nominations is May 15. A full explanation of the Awards and the nomination process can be found at

Reminder: Renewal Time for AVOTAYNU
If you received a yellow sheet with your Winter issue of AVOTAYNU, it means it is time to renew your subscription to the publication. Note that if you renew before March 31, you are entitled to participate in a drawing for a free copy of ANY book published by Avotaynu. Subscribers outside the U.S. may not yet have received their Winter issue but it should arrive shortly. We are already working on the Spring issue. If you are not a subscriber, you can do so at

Archives of Australia and New Zealand Create “Discovering Anzacs” Website
As part of the fever over the 100th anniversary of the start of World War I, the National Archives of Australia and the Archives of New Zealand have joined forces to create a new website called “Discovering Anzacs.” This website will have a unique profile of every Anzac who enlisted in World War I linked to their service record. People are being encouraged to tell their personal stories during the war by building on profiles and adding their own family stories, photos or details of their service. Additional information is at

1910 Tarnopol Census of the Jews Online
The Galician Special Interest Group, Gesher Galicia, has announced that the 1910 Census of the Jewish population of Tarnopol is available on the All Galicia Database. There are approximately 14,000 names, almost half of the total population of the town. The All Galicia Database can be searched at To limit the search to the Tarnopol records, after searching for a particular surname/given name, scroll down the left column to "Record Sources” and select "Tarnopol Jewish Community Census 1910.” Information includes date of birth, town of record, community where registered, resident in Tarnopol since and other items.

Bessarabian Directories Now Online at
Seven Bessarabian directories are now full-text searchable at They are:
   • Five Bessarabia Guberniya Address-Calendars, namely for the years 1902, 1906 (partial), 1909, 1910, and 1913
   • Chishinau and Bessarabia Directory for 1924 (Anuarul Orasului Chisinau si al judetelelor din Basarabia si cu Calendarul)
   • Chisinau Directory for 1940 (Anuarul Chisinaului). More will be added in the coming weeks.

Searching with default parameters will include all 1400 sources available at the site. Restrict your search to only these directories by changing the "Any Place" option to "Moldova." (Note that Bessarabia is also included in some directories with wider scope, such as the entire Russian Empire, which will not be included if you restrict your search.)

The Bessarabia Guberniya directories are written in Russian, the 1924 directory is in Russian and Romanian, and the 1940 directory is in Romanian. If you enter a search term (e.g., surname) in Latin letters, Russian transliterations will automatically be searched for, too, with the default "Add Latin -> Cyrillic" option. Alternately, use Cyrillic in your search term.

To browse the directories, rather than searching, follow the links at For updates about new searchable sources, subscribe to the email list at

Avotaynu Anthology of Jewish Genealogy
 All back issues of our journal AVOTAYNU from 1985–2011

    • 27 years   • 105 issues   2,900 articles  • 7,000 pages 
 Google Custom Search engine
 Download or print articles

 Cost is $35 (one-time charge).

 Additional information at

Number of articles in Anthology by topic:

Algeria 8
Argentina 21
Australia 36
Austria 17
Austro-Hungary 7**
Belarus* 26
Belgium 24
Bermuda 1
Book Reviews 289
Brazil 25
Bulgaria 5
Burma 1
Canada 94
Caribbean 9
Cuba 3

China 10

Computers 21
Conferences 52
Costa Rica 1
Croatia 3
Cyprus 1
Czech Republic 33
Denmark 2
DNA 25
East Europe– Gen’l
Egypt 11
England 125
Estonia* 5
Europe-General 25
Finland 1

France 102
Galicia 20
General 233
Germany 173
Gibraltar 1
Greece 12
Holland 83
Holocaust 177
Hungary 46
India 6
Iraq 3
Iran 5
Ireland 2
Israel 125
Italy 14 
Latvia* 26

LDS 29
Libya 1
Lithuania* 71
Methodology 84
Moldova* 5
Morocco 18
New Zealand 13
North Africa 2
Poland 118
Portugal 21
Rabbinic 57
Romania 33
Russia 46** 
Scotland 27
Sephardic 42
Serbia 2

Slovakia 1
South Africa 22
South America 1
Spain 13
Sudan 1
Sweden 5
Switzerland 27
Syria 3
Tunisia 3
Turkey 22
Ukraine* 57
United States   227
USSR 92**
Venezuela 1
Zimbabwe 1

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