August 7, 2008

If you thought that Chicago2008 would be just like previous conferences, please think again!
Here is something new and exciting that will take place:
A Fine Jewelry Silent Auction is being presented by Divine Diamonds of Chicago. The owners are experienced diamond sellers from the wholesale diamond exchanges in Chicago's diamond district.
The silent auction will be held from 8-10 pm, Sunday on the 5th floor. IAJGS will offer credit card payment after the auction closes. The bidders will use their badge #s as their bidding names, so everything is private. A bid is final and binding. A list of winner's numbers will be posted within a few minutes of the auction close, so winners can pick up their precious jewelry
Only 45 items will be presented, so attendees should be sure to look at the beautiful pieces and bid early and often.


Translation Help at the conference:  Attendees will be able to get translation help for the following languages:
French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Latin, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Ukrainian and Yiddish.
You will find the translation help schedule and sign-up sheets in the Ancestry.Com Learning Center (the Resource Room). 
Important Reminder -- Do not bring original documents. Bring copies only.

August 4, 2008

The following databases will be available on the computers in the Learning Center (Resource Room)
from ProQuest: historical newspapers; obituaries; sanborn insurance maps; historic map works; heritagequest; ancestry library edition

We thank these companies for allowing attendees to access the databases during the conference.

July 16, 2008

We are pleased to announce that Spertus Café by Wolfgang Puck at the Spertus Museum and Institute has been selected as the official kosher caterer for the IAJGS Banquet and SIG Luncheons.  Chef Laura Frankel is designing kosher menus uniquely for IAJGS.  We would like to thank Chef Nathan Duensing and Pastry Chef Cheryl Brookhouzen of the Marriott for allowing us to interview and choose the kosher caterer of our preference.

We will be selling kosher breakfast boxes, kosher lunch boxes and kosher snack boxes at one or more kiosks on the main conference floor of the hotel. The kosher breakfast and kosher lunch boxes are being prepared by The Sandwich Club, of Skokie, IL.  The kosher snack boxes are being provided by "Go-Picnic” of Chicago and the items in these boxes are all prepackaged by kosher manufacturers.

July 8, 2008

Registration for cemetery transportation is now available for those who want to visit  the Chicago area Jewish cemeteries and the non-sectarian cemeteries with Jewish sections .

How to register for cemetery transportion:
---If you have already registered for the conference, go to Registration Update 
---Or, if you have not already registered for the conference, go to Register Now:

When registering for cemetery transportation, please be careful to select the day and time you prefer, as there are multiple trips to most of the cemeteries.  Before registering
for transportation, please carefully read the following:

The transportation will be provided by Continental Air Transportation, the same company that provides shuttle service from and to O'Hare and Midway airports, in ten-passenger air conditioned vans.  The vans will pick up cemetery visitors at the Marriott and transport them to the cemetery office or, if there is no office on-site, the cemetery entrance.  Visitors will be picked up three hours later at the cemetery office or cemetery entrance, as applicable and returned to the Marriott.

For transportation purposes, the cemeteries have been grouped as follows:

South Side 
      Beverly Cemetery
      Evergreen Cemetery
      Knesset Israel Cemetery

West Side
      Jewish Waldheim Cemeteries (including Free Sons of Israel, Silverman &  Weiss, and Waldheim Cemetery Co.)
      Menorah Gardens
      Oakridge and Glen Oak Cemeteries

Northwest Side
      Montrose Cemetery
      Ridgelawn Cemetery (including Beth El Cemetery)
      Rosemont Park (including B'nai Brith, B'nai Jehoshua, Isaiah  Israel, and  Mt. Mayriv Cemeteries)
      Westlawn Cemetery and Mausoleum Association, Inc.

North Side
      Jewish Graceland (including Hebrew Benevolent Society of Chicago and Jewish Graceland and Lakeview Cemeteries)
      Memorial Park Cemetery
      New Light Cemetery
      Rosehill Cemetery

Far North Side
      Shalom Memorial Park and Randhill Park Cemetery

If you don't see a cemetery for which you are looking in the forgoing list, it almost assuredly is a part of one of the cemeteries listed above.  Check the Chicago Metropolitan Area section of the IAJGS Cemetery Project database, which may be found at

The transportation schedule will be as follows:

South Side
Tuesday, August 19 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)

West Side
Sunday, August 17 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
Sunday, August 17 (10:00 a.m. - 3: 00 p.m.)
Monday, August 18 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
Monday, August 18 (10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)
Tuesday, August 19 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
Tuesday, August 19 (10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)
Wednesday, August 20 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
Wednesday, August 20 (10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)

Northwest Side
Sunday, August 17 (8:00 a.m. - 1: 00 p.m.)
Monday, August 18 (10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)
Wednesday, August 20 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)

North Side
Sunday, August 17 (10:00 a.m. - 3: 00 p.m.)
Monday, August 18 (8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
Wednesday, August 20 (10:00 a.m. - 3: 00 p.m.)

Far North Side
Tuesday, August 19 (10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.)

Thursday, August 21, will be reserved as a make-up day in case of  rain-outs.  Trips may be added or deleted based upon demand.  At least one trip will be made to each group of cemeteries.  If demand dictates the cancellation of a trip to a group of cemeteries, the cancellation will be made to the last scheduled trip first.  If a trip for you are registered is cancelled, you will be offered your choice of an alternative trip, if available, or a refund of your reservation fee.

Return trips should arrive at the Marriott by the return times stated above.  Return times are approximate, however, depending on traffic and other factors beyond our control.

The charge for each round-trip is $30.00 per person.  Guests are welcome, even if not registered for the Conference.  Advance reservations are required.

We strongly suggest that those wishing to visit the cemeteries contact the cemeteries NOW to obtain burial locations and, if necessary maps.

Contact information for the cemeteries may be found at

Waldheim Cemetery Company maintains a website at

with a form for requesting burial information on-line.  Please let the cemetery know that you will be visiting the cemetery in mid-August while you are visiting Chicago to attend the IAJGS
International Conference on Jewish Genealogy.

The Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois has burial information and maps for Beverly cemetery, the Jewish Graceland cemeteries, Westlawn cemetery, and some individual sections of other cemeteries at

Maps for the Jewish Waldheim cemeteries and Oakwoods cemetery may be found at

When requesting burial information, it will help the cemetery if you provide as much information as possible (family name, given name in English and in Hebrew or Yiddish, date of death or burial, names of father and mother, names of persons who may be buried adjacent to the person in whom you are interested).  Please bring the information and any response you receive from the cemetery with you when you visit.  You should not wait to contact the cemeteries, as they may not be able to help you at the last minute.

DISCLAIMER:  The International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies, the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois, the Illiana Genealogical Society, and their volunteers will not be responsible for any accident, injury, illness, or loss whatsoever occurring in a cemetery or in transit to or from a cemetery.

July 7, 2008

We are very pleased to offer Chicago Jewish Roots Tours and a docent let tour of Spertus Museum.

(1) Chicago Jewish Roots Tours

The Conference will be offering three narrated motor coach tours of historic Jewish Chicago. The tours will be led by Dr. Irving Cutler, author of The Jews of Chicago: From Shtetl to Suburb. Dr. Cutler is a founding member of the Chicago Jewish Historical Society. All three tours will include a number of stops at places of historic Jewish significance, providing an opportunity for walking, viewing, and visiting. Each tour will emphasize a different set of neighborhoods.

Sunday, August 17, 2008
Chicago Jewish Roots Tour: Overview
Have lunch on your own before embarking on this tour. The journey includes Maxwell Street, Lawndale, Humboldt Park, Logan Square, Albany Park and West Rogers Park.

Monday, August 18, 2008
Chicago Jewish Roots Tour: North and Northwest Sides
The tour begins with a stop at Manny's Deli (for lunch on your own) and then will proceed to the north and northwest neighborhoods where Jewish life and culture flourished. The tour explores Humboldt Park, Wicker Park, Logan Square, Albany Park, West Rogers Park and Rogers Park.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Chicago Jewish Roots Tour: South Side
The tour begins with a stop at Manny's Deli (for lunch on your own) and then traces Jewish settlements from their earliest beginnings downtown and southward through communities such as Grand Boulevard, Washington Park, Kenwood, Hyde Park, South Shore, and South Chicago.

Each tour will leave the Marriott at 12 noon and will return at about 5:00 p.m. The charge for each of these tours is $35.00 per person. Guests are welcome, even if not registered for the
Conference. Advance reservations are required.

(2) Spertus Museum Tour

The world-famous Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies has just moved into an architecturally significant new home, located at 610 South Michigan Avenue, directly across from Chicago's Grant Park. The Conference will be sponsoring a one and one-half hour tour of this outstanding Jewish Museum and Educational Center, led by a docent and offering an opportunity at the end of the tour for a "Dutch-Treat on Your Own" luncheon in Wolfgang Puck's casual kosher cafe overlooking the Magnificent Mile. Spertus is the home of the Chicago Jewish Archives. In addition to its museum, archives, educational facilities, and cafe, Spertus has an outstanding Jewish book and gift shop. The Spertus tour will take place on Tuesday, August 19, 2008, beginning at 10:00 a.m.  The charge for the tour is $15.00 per person. Guests are welcome, even if not registered for the Conference. Participants will meet at the Spertus Institute.

Registration for the sightseeing tours may be accessed through
Registration Update,   for those of you who already have registered for the Conference.

And, through Register Now,  for those of you who have not already registered.

June 22, 2008

Exciting news for JRI-Poland luncheon.  A senior official of the new Museum the History of Polish Jews will be the luncheon speaker.

Nearly 80 percent of the world’s Jews can trace their roots to Poland where Jewish presence predates the Holocaust by almost 1000 years. Now, the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, a center for education and culture, dedicated to preserving the lasting legacy of Jewish life in Poland is to be opened in Warsaw in 2011.
Located in what was the heart of the Warsaw Jewish Quarter and opposite the Monument to the Heroes of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, the Museum, using the latest research and innovative exhibition design will immerse visitors in the world of Polish Jews end encourage exploration through a wide range of media, documents and artifacts.
The Museum’s representative will present the plans of the eight core exhibition galleries which trace Jewish history in Poland from 966 A.D. until the present, and discuss the initiatives undertaken by Jewish communities around the world to support the Museum

June 21, 2008

Are you ready to laugh and spend an evening you will remember for a long time? If the answer is yes, you won’t want to miss our gala Banquet on Thursday evening during the 2008 IAJGS Conference in Chicago. Join us for “Who Towed Noah's Ark? An Evening of Urban Stories which Bring The Bible to Life.” Did you know Noah's ark got towed? Even got an apple computer? Get the inside scoop on these and other stories when Lisa Lipkin entertains us for an evening of original midrashim, designed to keep you laughing for forty days and forty nights.

Lisa Lipkin is a professional storyteller, writer, and educator who has entertained audiences for years with lively and original stories. Combining her family history, personal experiences and a boundless imagination, her stories are completely unique. She has toured across America and internationally, appearing at festivals, theatres, museums, and schools and has been a featured artist on national public radio, NBC, CBS, and Public Television. Her articles and stories have appeared in the New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, New Yorker, Self, Parents, Family Fun, Jerusalem Report, and Family Circle, as well as in her monthly column for the Jewish Daily Forward. She is also a columnist with Nieuw Israelietisch Weekblad, Holland's oldest Jewish newspaper. Lipkin is the author of Bringing the Story Home: The Complete Guide to Storytelling for Parents (Norton 2000), a “how-to ” book for parents and educators with over 100 original ideas and activities for integrating storytelling into home life.

Lisa also will present a session on “A Professional Storyteller's Tips and Tricks for Collecting Family Stories” on Thursday morning during the Conference. Attendees will learn how to tap into and share family secrets and stories. She will make use of her original and highly interactive techniques, helping educators, social workers, families, and individuals to find a safe and effective way to reawaken and share meaningful memories.

This is an evening no conference attendee should miss!

June 5, 2008

We are extremely pleased to announce that the opening reception at the Chicago conference will be in Susan King's honor and is being jointly sponsored by the IAJGS and Jewishgen, an affiliate of the Museum of Jewish Heritage -- A Living Memorial to the Holocaust.

This will be the perfect time for all of you to give thanks to Susan in person. As you know, Susan recently departed from Jewishgen, a website she founded and that we all have come to rely on. We will also be having a special guest-book that everyone present can sign and that we will give to Susan after the conference.

The opening reception will take place on Sunday, August 17 after our Opening Ceremony.

May 14, 2008

E. Randol Schoenberg will be our Keynote Speaker during the Opening Session on August 17 at 8:00 pm. 

In his talk, Recovering Nazi-Looted Art – A genealogist’s Tale, Randy will describe how the skills he obtained as a genealogist facilitated his highly successful pursuit of Nazi-looted art cases. He will also share with us how his family research, a passion since childhood, was of critical importance in his legal work since he was aware of available genealogical resources that could be used as supporting documentation and how his family research gave him insight into the lives of individuals who lost art. Cases he will highlight include Republic of Austria v. Altmann (involving the return of Gustav Klimt paintings) and cases involving Nazi-looted Picasso and Canaletto paintings.


Randy Schoenberg is an attorney with Burris, Schoenberg & Walden in Los Angeles, CA. During the past decade, he has litigated several prominent Nazi-looted art cases, including Republic of Austria v. Altmann. In the Altmann case, he sought return of six famous Gustav Klimt paintings to his client. After persuading the U.S. Supreme Court that Maria Altmann could sue Austria for return of the paintings, he agreed to arbitrate the dispute in Austria. In January 2006 the arbitration panel decided that the paintings, valued at over $325 million should be returned to Mrs. Altmann.  Other successful cases include winning an unanimous Austrian arbitration ruling ordering return of an $8 million Viennese building confiscated during the Nazi era; obtaining a $6.5 million settlement in a case concerning Nazi-looted Picasso painting;  and obtaining a $3 million settlement in case concerning a Nazi-looted Canaletto painting.

His passion for genealogy began when he was 8 (with a 3d grade assignment) and by the age of 11 he had a 12 foot tree, with over 300 people. When bored in school, he would practice writing out the tree from memory. 


Randy is Coordinator, Moderator and Co-founder of the Austria-Czech SIG, author of the Beginner's Guide to Austrian-Jewish Genealogy and Getting Started with Czech-Jewish Genealogy (co-authored with Julius Muller).  For two and a half years he has held the position of president of the Board of the LA Museum of the Holocaust.


April 18, 2008

Menus for Luncheons and Banquet: Get ready to enjoy wonderful food along with networking and meeting new people.


Gesher Galicia Luncheon - Monday, August 18
Mushroom and Barley Chowder

Unyuka’s Chicken Paprikash



Dessert: To be announced

GERSIG Luncheon - Monday, August 18

Marinated Tomato Salad on a Bed of Romaine Lettuce

Cider Dijon Vinaigrette

Heidelberg Meatloaf: Meatloaf Seasoned with Caraway and Rye Bread

Warm Munich Potato Salad

Braised Red Sauerkraut

Black Forest Cake with Chocolate Sauce


Hungarian SIG Luncheon - Tuesday, August 19

Hungarian Marinated Cucumber Salad on a Bed of Mixed Greens

Budapest Goulash: Braised Beef Stew with Tomatoes, Peppers and Potatoes

Egg Noodles

Dobos Torte with Caramel Sauce


ROM SIG Luncheon - Tuesday, August 19

Latvia SIG Luncheon - Tuesday, August 19

Mixed Radish Salad

Salmon Kulebyaka: Salmon Filet with Sautéed Spinach and Wild Rice wrapped in Puff Pastry

Seasonal Vegetable Medley

Romanian Apple Cake


Ukraine SIG Luncheon - Wednesday, August 20

Litvak SIG Luncheon – Wednesday, August 20

Sour Cherry Soup

Chicken Kiev

Rustic Potato Casserole

Haricot Vert

Layered Honey Soaked Cake with Apricot Sauce


Belarus SIG Luncheon – Thursday, August 21

Jewish Resources in Argentina and Venezuela Luncheon – Thursday, August 21

Mediterranean Salad with Hearts of Palm, Artichokes, Kalamata Olives, Red Onions and Shaved Parmesan on a Bed of Romaine Lettuce

Israeli Style Three Cheese Eggplant: Breaded Eggplant Stuffed with Parmesan, Ricotta and Mozzarella Cheese


Dessert: To be announced


Banquet Dinner Choices



Bibb Lettuce Salad with Dried Pears and Cranberries, Goat Cheese and Candied Walnuts

Sherry Vinaigrette

Salonika Chicken Marinated with Olive Oil, Garlic, Lemon Juice and Herbs

Fingerling Potatoes with Roasted Tomatoes, Green beans, Kalamata Olives, Red Onions and Roasted Fennel

Dessert Trio: including panna cotta and chocolate bomb; third item to be announced



Bibb Lettuce Salad with Dried Pears and Cranberries, Goat Cheese and Candied Walnuts

Sherry Vinaigrette

Eastern European Braised Beef Short Ribs with Balsamic Demi Glaze

Smoked Shallot Whipped Potatoes

Seasonal Vegetables

Dessert Trio: including panna cotta and chocolate bomb; third item to be announced



Bibb Lettuce Salad with Dried Pears and Cranberries, Goat Cheese and Candied Walnuts, Sherry Vinaigrette

Iberian Seared Halibut with Papaya Mango Relish

Wild Rice Almandine

Seasonal Vegetables

Dessert Trio: including panna cotta and chocolate bomb; third item to be announced


Kosher meals: a meal as close to the other selections as possible.

VegetarianChef''s Choice


Friday Shabbat Dinner, Saturday Welcome Dinner and Breakfast menus to be announced.

* Menus subject to change without notice.




April 17, 2008

Conference attendees may obtain the following travel discounts:


AMTRAK offers a 10% discount off the lowest available rail fare to Chicago between the dates of August 14, 2008 and August 25, 2008 for conference attendees.

To book your reservation call Amtrak at 1 (800) 872-7245 or contact your local travel agent. Please refer to Convention Fare Code X59S-936 when making your reservation a 10% discount has been approved. This offer is not valid on the Auto Train. Offer valid with Sleepers, Business Class or First Class seats with payment of the full applicable accommodation charges. Fare is valid on Amtrak Regional and Acela service for all departures seven days a week, except for holiday blackouts.


CONTINENTAL AIRLINES offers special discounts for conference attendees. The amount of discount depends upon the one-way published fare, excluding tax, and whether the ticket is for coach, business, or first class.  This discount will only apply if twenty (20) conference attendees utilize the codes given below. The valid dates are August 13, 2008 –August 24, 2008

You may book online at and enter the offer code ZE8JD7BE6V in the Offer Code box when searching for your flights.

 If booking through a travel professional or MeetingWorks at 800-468-7022, please give them the following information: Agreement Code: D7BE6V; Z Code: ZE8J

Outside of the United States, please call your local Continental Airlines Reservation Office.


AMERICAN AIRLINES offers conference attendees a 5% discount from all markets where American Airlines, American Eagle, AmericanConnection Service and all oneworld Alliance Partners provide service for the US/Canada, Puerto Rico, USVI, Bahamas, Bermuda, the Caribbean, Europe, Pacific, Mexico and Latin America point of sale only.

For assistance with reservations and ticket purchase, call the Meeting Services Dest at 1-800-433-1790. The authorization Number is A3988AN; the FB Code is GMT05.


April 8, 2008

The Chicago History Museum, located at 1601 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL cordially invites conference attendees to visit the museum and conduct research in their Research Center.


During the week of our conference, The Research Center hours will be:


Tuesday, August 19, 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Wednesday, August 20, 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Thursday, August 21, 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Friday, August 22, 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.


(Note: The Research Center hours differ from the Museum's)


Research Center staff members are available to help researchers at any time during open hours. Please note that the reading room is relatively small, and their genealogical resources limited enough, that they will not be able to help more than ten of attendees at one time.


Among their collections are the papers of the Jewish Home for the Aged. Case files are arranged by death date, and then alphabetically by name. Records created prior to 1933 are available for public searching. Records from 1933 forward must be searched by Research Center staff who will search for and summarize the information available on a particular individual. In order to perform this service, they MUST receive your name two weeks in advance of the conference. If you are interested in those documents, please call far enough in advance to set up the time for your visit. Call: 312.642.4600 or online at


Researchers may also search their online catalog ARCHIE for relevant material. With rare exception (and that will be noted on the catalog description), the materials will be available for use when a researcher visits.


There is a $5.00 daily fee charged for admission to the Research Center



March 23, 2008

Film Festival Update:

Chicago 2008 will mark the third year we have held a Jewish film festival as part of the IAJGS conference week.  This year we will include several lectures focusing on the themes of these films, with introductions and Q & A from producers and directors.   The entire schedule will be posted in a few weeks, but I will periodically announce details on this list as the films are confirmed.

We will reprise popular favorites from previous years, such as “Hollywoodism: Jews, Movies and the American Dream,” which profiles the fascinating history of Jewish involvement in the entertainment history and its relationship to the immigrant experience,  and “Everything is Illuminated,” the slightly tilted, but incredibly evocative, portrait of a magical mystery tour-like return to one’s ancestral shtetl.

For Litvaks, or anyone interested in stories of Holocaust heroism under extraordinary circumstances, we will screen “Sugihara: Conspiracy of Kindness,” the remarkable story of Chiune Sugihara and the Jewish refugees that he helped to save, along with “Hiding and Seeking: Faith and Tolerance After the Holocaust,” about Menachem Daum’s return to Poland to search for the farming family that hid his father-in-law during WWII.

We will also premiere several films including “Tovarisch: I Am Not Dead,” a new documentary by two-time British Academy award-winning director, Stuart Urban, about Urban’s father, who was a survivor – not a victim – of both the Holocaust and Gulag.  Born in Stanislawow (Galicia/Ukraine) in 1916,  Garri Urban overcame adversity through a mixture of charm, aggression, and chutzpah.   Using video diaries that were made over a 14 year quest into Garri’s KGB records and the fate of his family in the Holocaust, Urban traveled with his father in 1992 to the former Soviet Union to continue unraveling the truth about his father’s amazing life, including the fact that he was still listed as an “international spy” on the KGB most-wanted list.  As Stuart Urban cautions: “Sometimes people hear about Tovarisch and they are amazed it is not a catalog of massacres and suffering. It is as much about triumph and the strength of personality. It is about survivors. Who do they leave behind? Who do they love? How do they find them again? And what is the price of survival?"

There will also be a thread on the Jewish relationship to food.  We’ll be showing Aussie, Lesley Sharon Rosenthal’s “Buboolah Bagela,” which examines our love affair with the bagel, and “888-Go-Kosher,” which follows a day in the life of New York’s only rapid- response kitchen koshering service. Operating out of his office in Brooklyn, Rabbi Lebovic helps those in need, answering calls and snapping into action with his full-service team to kosher kitchens across the New York area. 888-Go-Kosher offers a light-hearted portrait of this unique service, and demonstrates the relationship of kashrut to Jewish identity.

Stay tuned for more details on our special program on the history of Jews in Chicago, with the film: "Maxwell Street: A Living Memory, The Jewish Experience in Chicago," with director Shuli Eshel, and a reading from the book, "Jewish Maxwell Street Stories," by noted local author, Roger Schatz.

Remember…. this is just the tip of the (cinematic) iceberg.  We will screen approximately 40 films over the 5 1/2 day period, covering Jewish genealogical, historical and cultural topics.  Something for everyone!  This is also the first year we will be providing a “film festival only” conference registration option for those of you attending the conference with spouses or friends who don’t share your obsession with genealogy, but are film buffs.  These registrations can also be purchased by Chicago residents and students on a weekly or daily basis.  Details are on the registration website:

March 18, 2008

Computer workshops available at the conference are now open for registration.  Each workshop lasts one hour and 45 minutes. 
The registration fee is $25.00 per person. 
Attendance is limited to 25 individuals per workshop (note: many of the workshops offered at last year's conference sold out). 
You can sign up for a computer class when you register for the conference.
These workshops offer wonderful opportunities for attendees to enhance their computer and internet skills. 

Sunday, August 17, 2008
Creating Your Family Newsletter with Banai Lynn Feldstein (10:15 am-12:00 noon)
A Genealogical Tour Through the World Wide Web with Elise Friedman (2:00-3:45 pm)
Using WORD & WORD Tables for Genealogy & Other Computer Shortcuts with Phyllis Kramer (4:00-5:45 pm)

Monday, August 18, 2008
Introduction to JewishGen with Debra Kay Blatt (8:15-10:00 am)
Adobe Photoshop: Elements with Ceil Wendt Jensen (10:15 am-12:00 noon)
Spreadsheets: A Powerful Tool in Genealogy Research with Susan Weinberg (2:00-3:45 pm)
Adobe Photoshop for Beginners and Int ermediate Users with Ceil Wendt Jensen (4:00-5:45 pm)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Adobe Photoshop for Advanced Users with Ceil Wendt Jensen (8:15-10:00 am)
FamilyTree Maker for Beginners and Intermediate Users with Duff Wilson (10:15 am-12:00 noon)
Adobe Acrobat and Acrobat Reader with Ceil Wendt Jensen (2:00-3:45 pm)
FamilyTree Maker for Advanced Users with Duff Wilson (4:00-5:45 pm)

Wednesday, August 20, 2008
FamilyTree Maker for Beginners and Intermediate Users with Duff Wilson (Repeat) (8:15-10:00 am)
JewishGen Database Computer Workshop with Nolan Altman (10:15 am-12:00 noon)
Jewish Records Indexing-Poland Database Search Techniques Workshop with Hadassah Lipsius (2:00-3:45 pm)
Family Tree Builder with Daniel Horowitz (4:00-5:45 pm)

Thursday, August 21, 2008
Using the Yad Vashem Central Database of Shoah Victims' Names and the  Avotaynu Consolidated Jewish Surname Index with Gary Mokotoff (8:15-10:00 am)
Building and Using your own Digital Map Collection with Daniel Schlyter (for Intermediate and Advanced Users) (10:15 am-12:00 noon)
MyHeritage Research--Genealogy Search Engine with Daniel Horowitz (2:00-3:45 pm)
Each workshop lasts one hour and 45 minutes.  The registration fee is $25.00 per person. 

March 13, 2008

Two genealogy librarians from Indiana will be available in the Resource Room on Wednesday, August 20 to assist attendees researching ancestors/relatives who lived in Indiana. Autumn Gonzalez is the Genealogy Division Librarian, Indiana State Library and Diane Sharp is the Genealogy Division Supervisor, Indiana State Library. We thank them for sharing their time and expertise.

March 8, 2008

We are pleased to announce that we have added another Lunch to the Registration page.  It will be Jewish Resources: Argentina & Venezuela Q & A w/ Rabbi Victor Mirelman and Daniel Horowitz, Experts, on Thursday August 21, 2008 (12:30 PM-02:00 PM). If you have already registered, please update your registration to include this informative lunch.  If you have not yet registered, be sure to sign up for it to learn more about this important topic.

March 6, 2008

The Chicago Jewish Archives at Chicago’s Spertus Institute of Jewish Study will kindly offer extended hours during the conference. Very important notice: you are required to call first for an appointment: 312-322-1741.  

February 28, 2008

We are very pleased to announce the schedule for SIG lunches and Breakfasts with Experts. 

SIG lunches. Sign up when you register

Sunday, August 17 --- JRI-Poland   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Monday, August 18 --- Ger SIG   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Monday, August 18 --- Gesher Galicia  [12:00 PM -01:45PM]

Tuesday, August 19 --- Hungarian SIG  [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Tuesday, August 19 --- Latvia SIG   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Tuesday, August 19 --- Rom SIG   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Wednesday, August 20 --- LitvakSIG   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Wednesday, August 20 --- Ukraine SIG   [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Thursday, August 21 --- Belarus SIG  [12:30 PM-02:00 PM]

Breakfasts with Experts.  There are two (2) each morning from 07:00 AM - 08:00 AM.  Sign up when you register.

Monday, August 18
Nancy Levin Arbeiter, Expert: Beginners Q & A. If you are a beginner, this will be the perfect time to ask questions and get useful advice. Nancy has long focused on helping beginners with her very successful beginners sessions presented at numerous previous conferences.

Mike Karsen, Expert: Chicago Resources Q & A. Mike is the creator of the on-line Guide to Jewish Genealogy in Chicagoland. If anyone knows about research opportunities in Chicago, Mike is the one!  Mike will help to find records while here in Chicago or when you return home. 

Tuesday, August 19
Mark Halpern, Expert: JRI-Poland Q & A.
Mark has been involved in Polish research and with Jewish Records Indexing-Poland (JRI-Poland) for many years. His knowledge and expertise will be of great value to those who are researching ancestors from Poland.

Jeff Malka, Expert: Sephardic Research Q & A.
Jeff has written an excellent book on Sephardic Research and started Jewishgen’s Sephardic SIG and the website You will learn a lot from him as he answers your questions about Sephardic research.

Wednesday, August 20
Fred Blum, Expert: Philadelphia 2009 conference Q & A.
Fred is the President of the JGS of Greater Philadelphia and will answer all your questions about research opportunities and more in Philadelphia where the 2009 IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy will be held (co-hosted by the IAJGS and JGDGP).  This will be the perfect time to find out what resources are available so you can get a head start on preparing for your research.
Gary Mokotoff, Expert: International Tracing Service Q & A.
Gary, publisher of Avotaynu magazine, will have made two trips to the ITS archives by the time of the conference. His knowledge about holocaust research, and ITS specifically, will be extremely helpful in enhancing your ability to find information about relatives who perished.

Thursday, August 21
Judy Frazin, Expert: Translating Polish Documents Q & A.
Judy has written an extremely important and useful guide to Polish civil registration documents. Her answers to your questions will be of great benefit in helping you learn more about how to translate and understand Polish documents.

Schelly Talalay Dardashti, Expert: Blogs Q & A.
The JTA news agency asked Schelly to write "Tracing the Tribe - The Jewish Genealogy Blog;" it is now independent. If you have questions about gen-blogs and why they are so popular, which are the most useful gen-blogs, wonder whether you should create your own blog to communicate with family, or any other blog questions - then this is definitely the breakfast for you!