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Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois

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The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois (JGSI) is a non-profit, volunteer-driven organization established in 1981 and now with over 300 members. JGSI is a member of IAJGS, the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies.

We help members collect, preserve, and perpetuate the records and history of their ancestors and serve as a resource for the worldwide community to research their Chicago area Jewish roots. JGSI hosts our monthly meetings with informative speakers and expert genealogy volunteers to answer your questions about Jewish genealogy.

JGSI hybrid meetings feature easy access to useful research library and genealogy help desk

The JGSI meeting facilities at Temple Beth-El in Northbrook, Illinois, open at 12:30 p.m. before each monthly hybrid meeting. This allows individuals to utilize genealogy library materials, seek assistance with genealogy websites, or pose genealogical questions before the main program commences at 2 p.m.

During every in-person JGSI monthly meeting, our "help desk" operates from 12:30 to 1:50 p.m. Member volunteers will access online databases and address genealogical questions one-on-one for both members and visitors, as time permits. The JGSI research library boasts over 600 volumes catering to Jewish family historians, including a diverse selection of historical and contemporary maps. All books and maps are available for perusal from 12:30 to 1:50 p.m. at each regular monthly meeting.

More details and registrations for JGSI events are on the Programs page.

JGSI's April 14 in-person meeting features 'share fair' poster session with genealogy help desk and Library

The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois will host its first-ever “Share Fair” poster session Sunday, April 14, 2024, at Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Road, Northbrook, Illinois. This special in-person-only event is designed to allow members to share their genealogy research discoveries and tips with members and guests.

The JGSI meeting facilities at Temple Beth-El will open at 12:30 p.m. Central Time for those who want to use genealogy library materials, get help with family history websites or ask genealogical questions at the help desk or JGSI library before the poster session begins at 2 p.m. For this special program, these services will remain open the entire afternoon. The “Share Fair” itself will run from 2 to 3:45 p.m. CDT.

More details and registration information are on the Programs page.


Upcoming events

Mark your calendar now for our future events, which are listed on the Programs page of this website. Also, sign up for Burbio.com, a free website and mobile app that lists events from local organizations in one online calendar.


The Chicago Jewish Post and Opinion newspaper (August 1962-December 1981) is now available as part of the Illinois Digital Newspaper Collections thanks to the University of Illinois and a bequest to the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois from the estate of Peggy Morrow, z''l.  Search at

JGSI Jewish Chicago Database (JJCD)

The JGSI Jewish Chicago Database (JJCD) includes information compiled from cemeteries, obituaries, memorial plaques, retirement homes, and other Jewish organizations.

Mystery Photos

Mystery Photos... If you would like to help us identify these people, please click here.

© 2024 JGSI | P.O. Box 515, Northbrook, IL 60065-0515 | 312.666.0100 | info@jgsi.org
JGSI is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.