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Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois

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Upcoming events

    • 12 Jun 2022
    • 11:00 AM - 6:00 PM
    • Cook County Forest Preserve, Oakton Street, west of Lehigh Avenue

    The Greater Chicago Jewish Festival is scheduled as an IN PERSON event for Sunday, June 12, 2022

    For more information, see: https://jewishfestival.org/

    FURTHER DETAILS WILL BE FORTHCOMING. 

    • 26 Jun 2022
    • 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • From the convenience of your home device
    Register

    Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois members to share discoveries and research tips on June 26, 2022:

    The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois will hold a “Kvell and Tell” session on Sunday, June 26, 2022, as part of the group’s annual meeting. Several JGSI members will take turns sharing family history discoveries and research tips. This meeting, which starts at 2 p.m. CDT, also features a brief annual report from JGSI’s co-presidents, Debbie Kroopkin and Wendy Hauser. (A separate JGSI members-only genealogy question-and-answer discussion time will start at 1 p.m.)

    Register/RSVP by clicking the button at left.

    Those who wish to share their family history discoveries and genealogy tips in the “Kvell and Tell” session as presenters should send an email to events@jgsi.org explaining their presentation topic idea and estimated time of presentation. Each presentation is to be between 5 and 10 minutes to allow more members to share their discoveries, experiences and suggestions.

    Kvell and Tell presentation topics should relate to Jewish genealogy or family history research methods, anecdotes or discoveries. Possible “Kvell and Tell” topics might include (but are not limited to) the following:

    • A notable event in your family history and how you discovered it
    • The creative way you are sharing your family history with relatives
    • A research tool that has been most helpful in learning about your family history
    • How taking a DNA test has added new perspectives about your genealogy
    • What family history mystery, puzzle or quandary are you still trying to solve
    • How to plan for a family reunion or other genealogy themed gathering
    • How to publish or otherwise share your family history
    • What did you learn about your family from the 1950 U.S. Census
    • How has a recent family history discovery or tool added previously unknown relatives to your family tree

    The most relevant presentation proposals will be accepted as time allows, and preference will be given to shorter talks. Presentations will be recorded and later made available in the members-only section of the JGSI website.

    JGSI is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping members collect, preserve, and perpetuate the records and history of their ancestors. JGSI is a resource for the worldwide Jewish community to research their Chicago-area roots. The JGSI motto is “Members Helping Members Since 1981.” The group has more than 300 members and is affiliated with the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies.

    JGSI members have access to useful and informative online family history research resources, including a members’ forum, more than 65 video recordings of past speakers’ presentations, monthly JGSI E-News, quarterly Morasha JGSI newsletter, and much more. Members as well as non-members can look for their ancestors on the free searchable JGSI Jewish Chicago Database.


    • 24 Jul 2022
    • 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
    • Details to be announced soon.
    Register

    Unindexed genealogical records to be explained by Risa Daitzman Heywood for July 24 JGSI meeting

    “The Power of the Catalog – Unindexed Records and How to Find Them” is the title of a presentation by genealogist Risa Daitzman Heywood for the Sunday, July 24, 2022, meeting of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois at 2 p.m. CDT. Registration details will be forthcoming.

    Did you know that over 75% of the records available on FamilySearch cannot be accessed by a simple records search? Did you know that Ancestry has record collections that are available to browse but cannot be searched because they are not yet indexed? While digitizing records is relatively fast and inexpensive, indexing those records is much costlier. Many online repositories have made these records available for browsing, but working with them can be a challenge. This demonstration will show you how to find and use these unindexed records to greatly enhance your family history research.

    Risa Daitzman Heywood is a professional genealogist, writer and speaker specializing in Ashkenazi Jewish research. She began researching her family over 25 years ago after inheriting a six-generation family tree, meticulously hand drawn by her grandfather on the back of a large piece of wrapping paper. The tree had only Americanized names and no dates or places, so she began learning about genealogy in order to figure out the family’s original surname and where they were from.

    Risa earned a Certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University and is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She is a past president of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Colorado and served as co-chair of JewishGen’s original Belarus Special Interest Group (SIG). Risa is currently living in Lisbon, Portugal, and can’t wait to resume on-site research trips.

    The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping members collect, preserve, and perpetuate the records and history of their ancestors. JGSI is a resource for the worldwide Jewish community to research their Chicago-area roots. The JGSI motto is “Members Helping Members Since 1981.” The group has more than 300 members and is affiliated with the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies.

    JGSI members have access to useful and informative online family history research resources, including a members’ forum, more than 65 video recordings of past speakers’ presentations, monthly JGSI E-News, quarterly Morasha JGSI newsletter, and much more.

    Members as well as non-members can look for their ancestors on the free searchable JGSI Jewish Chicago Database.



    • 21 Aug 2022
    • 25 Aug 2022
    • Details to be announced.

    The 42nd IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy is scheduled for Aug. 21–25, 2022, as an in-person event in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    For more information, see: https://www.iajgs2022.org/ 

    FURTHER DETAILS WILL BE FORTHCOMING. 

Examples of Past Events

22 May 2022 “Getting the Most from Revision Lists” by David R. Brill
24 Apr 2022 “Conflict Management: Evaluating Evidence of Identity” by Emily H. Garber
27 Mar 2022 “Ich bin ein Berliner: (Re)uniting 5 Half-siblings from 4 Different Mothers” by Michael Tobias
27 Feb 2022 “What Can We Learn about Our Ancestors from Jewish Surnames Adopted in Eastern Europe?” by Alexander Beider
23 Jan 2022 “Navigating Your Jewish DNA Results” by Adina Newman
14 Nov 2021 “Resources for Jewish Genealogy in Chicagoland—What’s New” by Mike Karsen
24 Oct 2021 “Here Comes The 1950 Census: What To Expect” and “Finding Difficult Passengers on the Ellis Island Manifests” by Joel Weintraub
07 Oct 2021 "Researching Belarus Records for Genealogy" by Paul Zoglin and Dave Feldman
29 Aug 2021 “What the Genealogist Needs to Know About Jewish Family Names” by Sallyann Amdur Sack-Pikus
25 Jul 2021 “A History of Jewish Name Changing in America” by Kirsten Fermaglich
27 Jun 2021 JGSI annual meeting with 'Kvell and Tell' talks
23 May 2021 “Journeys from Shtetl to Shtetl” by Eli Rabinowitz
25 Apr 2021 "Three Guides, Four Countries: A Daughter of Holocaust Survivors Travels to Their Ancestral Villages" by Deborah Long
21 Mar 2021 “Finding Your Kaplans” by Mindie Kaplan
21 Feb 2021 “Clued-In: Interpreting Real Photo Postcards from the Diaspora” and photo analyses by Ava Cohn
24 Jan 2021 “JRI-Poland Update and More” by Stanley Diamond
22 Nov 2020 “Using FamilySearch for Jewish Research” by W. Todd Knowles
25 Oct 2020 “Resources for Jewish Genealogy in Chicagoland—What’s New” by Mike Karsen
30 Aug 2020 “Out of the Whirlwind: Finding Your Family Lost in the Holocaust” by Deborah H. Long
26 Jul 2020 "Comparing Jewish Resources on Ancestry.com, FamilySearch, Findmypast, MyHeritage and JewishGen” and “What Would Nancy Drew Do in the Quest for Missing Family" by Ellen Kowitt
31 May 2020 “A Case Study in Getting Past a Genealogical Brick Wall” by Martin Fischer
03 May 2020 "When DNA or Documents Reveal Life-Altering Origin Secrets” by Steven Flack
23 Feb 2020 “Unique Aspects of Jewish Genealogy” by Debbie Kroopkin
26 Jan 2020 “Family History Resources from the Library of Congress” by Tina Beaird
17 Nov 2019 “Using Periodical Literature for Genealogical Research” and “More than Surname Surfing: Best Practices for Using the Internet for Genealogy” by Curt B. Witcher
27 Oct 2019 “Resources for Jewish Genealogy in Chicagoland—What’s New” by Mike Karsen
15 Sep 2019 “A Guide to Sephardic Genealogy” by Sarina Roffé
25 Aug 2019 “More Stories about Things I’ve Learned from Doing Genealogy” by Zalman Usiskin
02 Jun 2019 DNA: Tests, Tools and Tales -- A one-day conference
06 May 2019 “A 3-D View of Immigration" by Susan Weinberg
28 Apr 2019 “Three Hershberg Mysteries” by Barry Finkel
07 Apr 2019 “Resurrecting Grandpa’s Store” by Scott Meyer
24 Mar 2019 “The Margarine Moonshiners from Minsk” and “Conducting Story-Driven Research” by Tammy Hepps
03 Mar 2019 “Who Was B. Berman? A Case Study in Getting Past a Genealogical Brick Wall” by Martin Fischer
24 Feb 2019 “Write It! Tips for Saving and Sharing Family History" by Martin Fischer
27 Jan 2019 “Courthouse Finds” by Tina Beaird
Pre- and post-pandemic:  Monthly Meetings are usually held at Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Rd, Northbrook.  Please check for any changes in venue by reading the event details.  The Temple will open at 12:30 pm for the help desk and library. JGSI members will be available to help answer genealogical questions, help with Internet searches, and help in the library. Scheduled programs will begin at 2:00 pm.

LINK TO FAQ: How to add the event to your calendar.
© 2021 JGSI | P.O. Box 515, Northbrook, IL 60065-0515 | 312.666.0100 | info@jgsi.org
JGSI is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.