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

Gary Mokotoff, Editor

Volume 20, Number 7 | February 17, 2019

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
Underlined words are links to sites with additional information.

Ancestry UK Allowing Free Access to Records Through Monday, February 18
Ancestry UK is allowing free access to its collection through Monday, February 18. Registration is required and the search requires both a given name and surname. Access is at

The Simple Dos and Don’ts for Preserving Old Family Photos at Home
There is yet another essay on preserving old family photos; this time by Family History Daily. Suggestions include:
   • Make copies of your old photos first
   • Store old photos in a controlled environment
   • Use the correct materials for storing your old photos
   • Be careful where you display original old photographs

The fully essay can be found at and-how-to/preserve-old-family-photos/.

MyHeritage LIVE Planned for September 6–8 in Amsterdam
MyHeritage’s second annual user conference will be held from September 6–8 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Last year’s conference was in Oslo, Norway. The conference offers attendees the opportunity to expand their knowledge of MyHeritage and learn more about researching their family history. There will be classes covering a range of subjects, including genealogy and DNA, as well as hands-on workshops.

The conference website is at

New Jewish Genealogical Society in São Paulo, Brazil
Nolan Altman, IAJGS Membership Development Committee Chair, has announced that a new Jewish genealogical society has formed in São Paulo, Brazil: The Sociedade Genealógica Judaica de São Paulo already has a Facebook page at Contact person is Richard Strimber at

The group's next meeting will be a hands-on workshop on February 21 at the Jewish Brazilian Historical Archive, part of the future Jewish Museum in São Paulo.

FamilySearch Adds Nearly 1 Million Index Records This Week
A list of recent additions to FamilySearch, nearly 1 million indexed records, can be found at This site provides direct links to the individual collections. They include records from Argentina, Mexico, Spain, and the United States (Hawaii, Illinois, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Oregon, Texas, Revolutionary War, and Utah Early Church records).

Note that at the website, announced collections may not be complete for the dates specified and will be added at some later date. Also note that counts shown in the announcement are the number added, not the total number available in the collection, which can be greater.

New Records Added by MyHeritage During January
In January, MyHeritage added more than 7 million historical records to its collection. Added collections are the 1940 Denmark Census; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Passenger Lists, 1883–1945; and the Port of New York, Index to Discharged or Deserted Crew, 1917–1957.

Fuller descriptions as well as links to the individual collections can be found at

New Collections for the Week From FindMyPast
This week FindMyPast has added the following records to their collection. A more detailed description can be found at
   • More than 23 million additional U.S. marriage records covering 46 states. These new additions span nearly 450 years of American history, containing records dating back to 16th-century Massachusetts.
   • Arkansas First Draft Registration Cards, 1940–1945 Image Browse
   • More than 677,000 new records from the Dominican Republic in five separate collections covering civil registrations, baptisms, marriages and deaths between 1666 and 1924, including:
   • British and Irish Newspapers Collection. 128,578 new pages added.

Avotaynu Business

Winter Issue of AVOTAYNU at Printer
The Winter issue of AVOTAYNU is at the printer. The lead articles focus on the very successful “Genealogy and the Sciences” conference held in Israel this past December. One particular article I found fascinating is “What Psychology Can Contribute to Genealogy and What Genealogy Can Contribute to Psychology,” by AVOTAYNU editor Sallyann Amdur Sack-Pikus who is a professional psychologist. It was one of the lectures at the conference.

MyHeritage CEO Gilad Japhet writes about his personal interest in genealogy and the origins of his company in an article titled “My Heritage.” Charles Goldenzon, president of the recently formed Jewish Genealogical Society of Rio de Janeiro, writes about the resources at the Brazilian National Archives. All told, there are 17 articles in the issue plus the usual columns: From Our Contributing Editors, U.S. Update, Ask Dr. Beider, Book Reviews and From Our Mailbox. The complete Table of Contents is at

Special AVOTAYNU Subscription Offer
Special offer. Six issues for the price of four. If you do not subscribe to AVOTAYNU, we are offering a six-issue subscription to our journal AVOTAYNU for the price of four issues. The cost of a six-issue subscription is only $38.00—the cost of a four-issue subscription—instead of $53.00, a $15 saving. Non-U.S./Canada subscribers can subscribe for only $46 instead of $65, a $19 saving. You will receive the Fall issue immediately, the Winter issue when it is in print, and all four issues of 2019 as they are published. The offer expires next Sunday. Go to to place your order.

Wanted: Brick Wall Cases for Spring Issue of AVOTAYNU
We would like to run a “brick wall” feature in the Spring issue and invite people to send us their favorite, most pesky problem. Then we will secondarily invite readers (and maybe outside experts) to offer suggestions. With so much online these days, it is easy to think that genealogy is a piece of cake, but we know the reality is that a fair number of seemingly intractable problems are still hanging around. Send your problem to

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

* Also see Russia and USSR ** Also see individual countries
Nu? What's New? is published weekly by Avotaynu, Inc.
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