Gary Mokotoff, Editor
Volume 17, Number 24 | July 24, 2016
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 http://www.avotaynu.com/nu.htm
Underlined words are links to sites with additional information.
Not Attending Conference?
Two Choices to Benefit from Lectures
If you cannot attend the IAJGS 36th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy to be held in Seattle from August 7–12, there are two options that permit you to benefit from the more than 235 sessions.
LIVE! This provides live streaming of sessions by some of the more popular speakers—but not all. You can watch the sessions live on your own computer as they are being presented. If you subscribe to LIVE!, after the conference is over, you will have 90 days to access the session “on demand.”
Audio Recordings. Purchase the audio/slides recording of almost all the sessions. (Note: Some presenters do not have their slides being recorded, in which case, the recording of that session is only audio.) You will receive the whole package a few weeks after the conference is over and be able to listen to the presentations and view the slides at your leisure. Not all presenters on LIVE! are having audio recordings made.
Consider Audio Recordings Even If Attending. There are as many as seven concurrent sessions. If there are conflicts in attending two or more sessions, consider purchasing the audio recordings to benefit from all the lectures.
To purchase LIVE! and/or the audio and slides, you must navigate the conference website. Go to http://www.iajgs2016.org/. Then, under the Registration tab, select New Registration; Click “Go to Registration Form (for starting out)” near the bottom; Click the gray New Registration button; Enter your personal information and click Continue; Select 5. Full LIVE! only (not attending in Seattle) or 7. Full LIVE! & Full Audio/slides (not attending in Seattle) and continue to the end.
Joint Distribution Committee Names Index Continues to Grow
The Joint Distribution Committee Archives has announced that information regarding more than 3,000 Polish and Soviet Jewish families assisted by JDC in Vienna and Rome in the years 1969–1975 have been added to its Archives Names Index at http://archives.jdc.org/ archives-search. A cadre of four volunteers began indexing work in January 2010. Six years later, joined by other volunteers, the Names Index now includes more than 500,000 names and has opened a window into the past for many family researchers.
The Polish/Soviet announcement can be found at http://tinyurl.com/JDCSovietPolish.
CanadianHeadstones.com Reaches 1.5 Million Records
CanadianHeadstones.com has now surpassed 1.5 million records. The mission of this project is to capture digital images and the complete transcription of headstones in Canada. Searching at the site is by province. For example, Ontario includes records for people named “Cohen” in the following cemeteries: Capital Remembrance Garden Cemetery, Holy Blossom, Lambton Mills, Prospect Cemetery & Mausoleum, Roselawn Avenue, Streetsville Public and Temple Anshe Sholom Cemetery
The website is at http://www.CanadianHeadstones.com.
MyHeritage Adds SuperSearch Alerts Feature
MyHeritage continues to demonstrate that it is the most technically innovative of the large genealogy companies. Its latest feature is called SuperSearch Alerts. With this feature any previous search made by a MyHeritage user is repeated to seek new results that did not exist at the time of the original search. When new results for those previous searches are found, the user is sent an email with links to view the records. Additional information is at http://blog.myheritage.com/2016/07/new-supersearch-alerts.
Ancestry Earnings Demonstrate Popularity of Genealogy
Ancestry has announced that its revenue for the last four quarters has reached $750 million. Second quarter 2016 revenues were $211.4 million, up 25% from last year. During the second quarter, the AncestryDNA database surpassed 2 million samples, after reaching 1 million less than a year earlier. Subscribers of Ancestry websites totaled nearly 2.5 million as of June 30, 2016, up 9% compared to June 30, 2015.
The complete announcement can be found at http://tinyurl.com/Ancestry2Q2016.
USCIS Webinar on Subject Index Planned
Marian Smith of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will again discuss her work to update the 1999 finding aid to the “Subject Index to Correspondence and Case Files of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1903/6 to 1957” (NARA microfilm publication T-458). The webinar in on Friday, July 29, at 1pm Eastern. In this webinar, Smith will present a new section of guidance explaining how the index references USCIS C-Files, and will identify the various C-Numbers used for naturalization, derivative citizenship and repatriation C-Files in USCIS custody.
To attend the session, go to https://www.uscis.gov/HGWebinars and click “Your Questions” Webinar. Note at the site the other history and genealogy webinars planned for future dates.
Staten Island Newspapers Now Online
The New York Public Library has posted online four newspapers from Staten Island (the New York City borough of Richmond) at https://sites.google.com/a/nypl.org/staten-island-papers. They have plans to add another 14 Staten Island newspapers to the collection. Currently included are:
• Richmond County Advance 1886–1910
• The Staten Island Leader 1866–1928 (80 issues, with large gaps).
• The Staten Island Magazine 1888.
• The Richmond County Mirror 1837–1839.
The announcement can be found at http://tinyurl.com/SINewspapers.
Field Guide to Jewish Cemeteries (for Poles) Planned
Witold Wrzosinski, co-founder and co-director of the Foundation for Documentation of Jewish Cemeteries, is writing a Field Guide to Jewish Cemeteries, mainly aimed at local Poles. In an article at the Jewish Heritage Europe site, Wrzosinski explains, “In recent years, a huge increase of interest in the Jewish past has taken place in Poland and elsewhere in Eastern and Central Europe. It has taken many forms, ranging from thousands of private genealogy projects, to preservation and digitization efforts, to museums, TV shows and conferences, to a notable growth in heritage tourism.
One of the outcomes is that, after years of silence, local people are being put in touch with the memory of local Jewish history in their own towns, cities and villages — and they also witness researchers or descendants of prewar Jewish residents coming to these places to explore.”
Read the entire article at http://tinyurl.com/FieldGuideForPoles.
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