Jewish Genealogy Society of Cleveland


Upcoming Programs

At the present time, all programs will be scheduled as virtual meetings.
We will post updates if there are any new developments.




October 7, 2020
7:00 pm

Web Based
Why you should examine original records, and how to find them
Russ Maurer

As an experienced researcher, volunteer translator, and Coordinator for Records Acquisition & Translation for LitvakSIG, our speaker is all too familiar with the ways that a translated record may not fully or accurately reflect the original. In this talk he will show you what you might be missing if you don't examine original records. He will also offer some tips for locating online records if they are not directly linked to an index.

In addition to his other activities, Russ is a member of the Jewish Genealogy Society of Cleveland and serves as a member of the Board and Research Chair.

This program will be free and open to the public, but space may be limited.
Priority will be given to members of the Jewish Genealogy Society of Cleveland.
We will be using the Zoom app, so you may watch, listen and participate from the comfort of your own home.
Preregistration will begin in mid-September.

Russ Maurer

November 15, 2020
1:30 pm

Web Based

Why Cleveland? Finding Answers in the Industrial Removal Office Records
Renée K. Carl
Co-sponsored by Siegel Lifelong Learning of CWRU

About The Lecture

Wondering why your immigrant ancestor chose to live in Cleveland instead of Pittsburgh? Little Rock, not Los Angeles? Memphis, not 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.

Records of the IRO, housed at the American Jewish Historical Society, include ledger books, case files and correspondence, as well as reports by local agents on the newly settled immigrants. Ohio, and specifically Cleveland, played outsized roles in the history of the IRO, and the talk will provide an Ohio-focused angle.

The presentation examines the history of the IRO and its records. The presentation will, using a case study, demonstrate how to use the online index, and how to navigate to find immigrant case files, correspondence, and reports.

About Renée K. Carl

Born in St. Louis, raised in Chicago, now living in Washington, DC, Renée left the public policy world for professional genealogy, finding that researching dead people is easier than working with Congress.

Renée’s business and blog can be found at She serves private clients, other researchers, journalists, and others. Renée worked as a researcher for Season 2 of PBS’ Genealogy Roadshow, and served as lead researcher for Season 3. She is a regular at the National Archives, Library of Congress and US Holocaust Memorial and Museum, and partners with researchers in Europe, Australia and Israel. Renée graduated Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Cultural Anthropology and is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, Jewish Genealogy Society of Greater Washington, the Latvia Research Group at JewishGen, and the Ukraine Research Group’s town leader for Medzhybizh.

December 6, 2020
1:30 pm

Web Based

Annual Meeting & Board Election

Music for the Khasene: Traditional East European Jewish Wedding Music of our ancestors
Presented by Steven Greenman