IAJGS

The Eastern European Mutt is going to…

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…Cleveland! I’ll be speaking at the 39th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy, July 28 – August 2, 2019.*

My talk, titled Why Cleveland? Finding Answers in the Industrial Removal Office Records starts with the question many of us ask. Why did our immigrant ancestor chose to live in Cleveland over Pittsburgh? Little Rock over Los Angeles? Memphis over Miami? The answers might lie in the records of the Industrial Removal Office, a scary name for a good organization. The IRO, founded in 1901, assisted immigrants in finding employment and better living conditions, and helped assimilate them into American society. IRO agents, often working in partnership with B’nai B’rith or other Jewish fraternal groups, spread around the USA securing jobs, and then immigrants would be sent to those locations to establish a new life.

The session will examine the records of the IRO, housed at the American Jewish Historical Society, including ledger books, case files and correspondence, as well as reports by local agents on the newly settled immigrants. Using case studies, the presentation will demonstrate how to use the online index, and how to navigate to find immigrant case files, correspondence, and reports. The talk builds off a previous blog post, New York Minute.

I’ll also have a few minutes during the LatviaSIG meeting to speak about the records of the U.S. Consulate in Riga, housed at the National Archives in College Park.

Will I see you in Cleveland? Early Bird Registration ends 30 April 2019.

The Eastern European Mutt is going to…

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…Eastern Europe! I’ll be speaking at the 38th IAJGS International Conference on Jewish Genealogy in Warsaw, Poland, August 5–10, 2018.*

Did You Know Your Grandfather was a Twin? and Other Questions I’ve Asked My Mother is my talk on how the translation of the 1897 Census of Dvinsk sent me on a quest to learn about my great-grandfather’s previously unknown twin sister and her family. The story winds through many different record sets in the US and Latvia, as well as Yad Vashem and the US Holocaust Memorial Museum. It also looks at how oral history can help, and how sometimes the brickwalls we encounter are of our own making.

The talk builds off a previous blog post, titled Pages of Testimony. Will I see you there? Early Bird Registration ends 28 April 2018.

*Date and time of talk TBD