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Jewish Genealogy Society
of Cleveland

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We research and support programs by renowned genealogy experts and offer free monthly educational programs. We meet on Zoom (and occasionally in-person following COVID regulations) typically on the first Wednesday of the month at 7 pm ET.  Advance registration is required for all programs and must be posted by noon on the day of the program.  Please contact our Vice President for Programming to discuss speaker opportunities and program ideas.

You can also check out the IAJGS Calendar for a listing of Jewish Genealogy Events.

Upcoming events

    • 02/08/2023
    • 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
    • Zoom

    This program addresses issues of care and preservation of your paintings, and any framing concerns you might have. Participants may virtually share a painting for discussion in this program that will be led by ICA’s Paintings Conservators Andrea Chevalier and Wendy Partridge.

    Register here in advance for this meeting.  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

    For additional information or to get on the ICA's email list, contact:

    Holly Witchey, PhD

    Director of Education & Outreach

    ICA-Art Conservation


    New Address: The Pivot Center, 2nd Floor

    2937 W. 25th St., Cleveland, OH 44113

    • 03/01/2023
    • 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
    • Zoom

    Finding and Understanding Bubbe and Zayde’s Galician Vital Records with Mark Halpern

    Date & Time:  March 1, 2023 at 7:00 - 8:30 PM ET

    Location:  Zoom

    Program:  A great many Galician researchers have acquired copies of family records from repositories in Poland and Ukraine or online images provided by a State Archive or a Genealogical organization. Over the past twenty years, the work of Jewish Records Indexing - Poland and Gesher Galicia has made these records more readily available to all Galician researchers. This session offers an in-depth examination of Galician vital records along with a strategic framework to help researchers in acquiring records to further their research. A historical perspective covering the regulations that governed Jewish recordkeeping in Galicia will be provided. Most importantly, this talk will make sense of the regulations covering civil marriages that impacted the legitimacy and surnames of children. Close examination of sample birth, marriage, and death records will reveal the information contained in the records, identify the records having the most genealogical value, and uncover surprises found in many of these records.

    Speaker:  In 1996, while on business in Poland, Mark Halpern visited Bialystok, his mother’s birthplace. Upon his return home to Philadelphia, Mark dove down the rabbit hole searching for his Galician and Polish roots. Now retired, Mark works with JRI–Poland, JewishGen, IAJGS, and Jewish Genealogical and Archival Society of Greater Philadelphia (JGASGP) helping others research their roots. Mark is on the Board and Executive Committee of JRI-Poland, the founder of BIALYGen – the JewishGen Bialystok area research group, and past President of JGASGP. Mark chaired the program committees for the 2009 and 2013 IAJGS Conferences, served on the Program Committees of the 2018, 2020, and 2021 Conferences, and served as advance coordinator for the 2018 Warsaw Conference. Mark was honored in 2018 with the IAJGS Lifetime Achievement Award.

    • 03/02/2023
    • (MST)
    • 03/04/2023
    • (MST)
    • Salt Lake City, UT and online

    Hosted by FamilySearch International, RootsTech welcomes millions of people worldwide to celebrate family at the world’s largest family history conference and year-long learning platform. With thousands of classes, inspiring speakers, meaningful activities, and joyful connections, RootsTech brings the human family together like no other event. In 2023, the conference will offer an in-person event in Salt Lake City, Utah, to complement its virtual experience. RootsTech online will be free in 2023. For those who want to come in person and attend in Salt Lake City, passes are $98 USD. Learn more at

    Register Here

    • 03/29/2023
    • 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
    • Zoom

    • 04/22/2023
    • 04/23/2023

    JGSC in partnership with the North East Ohio Genealogy Round Table will present a series of programs with Daniel Horowitz including:

    Reuniting Holocaust Survivors ... Not Mission Impossible

    Thousands of people think all their family members died in the Holocaust and there is no one left, all was lost, and no records survived. Today is proved this is not the case and people and records did survive. Based on real success stories of families being reunited, come to discover the vast world of Holocaust resources available to find your relatives.

    Research Israel Genealogical Resources from your Couch

    Looking for ancestors who lived in, passed through, or died in Israel? The Internet contains many rich repositories where you can learn about them — and these resources, which can be searched in English and in Hebrew, are growing each day. In this session, you’ll learn how to access these resources and receive the tools you need to make the most of them.

    Speaker:  Dedicated to Genealogy since 1986, Daniel was the teacher and the study guide editor of the family history project "Searching for My Roots" in Venezuela for 15 years. He was a board member of The International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS) for 10 years, now is involved in several crowdsource digitization and transcription projects, and holds a board-level position at The Israel Genealogy Research Association (IGRA). Since 2006 Daniel has been working at MyHeritage liaising with genealogy societies, bloggers, and media, as well as lecturing, and attending conferences around the world.

    Additional programs, times, program format/locations, and registration information to be announced.  Stay tuned ...

    • 04/26/2023
    • 04/29/2023
    • Kalahari Resort and Convention Center, Sandusky, Ohio

    The Ohio Genealogy Society will hold its 2023 Conference, "What Brought Them Here," with national and international speakers presenting sessions for the beginner to the more advanced researcher.  This conference is recognized for being innovative and for embracing diversity among the speakers and sessions.

    See Conference Details

    • 05/03/2023
    • 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
    • Zoom

    Moving Your Family Memories from Nostalgia to History with Samuel Gruber, PhD

    Date & Time:  May 3, 2023 at 7:00 - 8:30 PM ET

    Location:  Zoom

    Program:  Once we have populated our family tree, filled in the names and dates, what have we learned? What does it mean to know an ancestor’s name but not much more? What makes genealogy different from lepidoptery or philately (collecting butterflies or stamps)?

    Genealogy is only a doorway to begin an investigation of the past. We can do this by collecting and circulating legends, hearsay, stereotypes, and biases, OR we can combine these and other tools to dig deeper to make useful history. We can frame questions and use our genealogical research as the beginning of larger explorations about Jews and Judaism, immigration and America, economic and social castes and hierarchies, and about a wide range of cultural and social expression.

    In this talk – and discussion – Dr. Gruber will review ways Jewish genealogy and family history can be expanded beyond the strictly personal. He’ll draw on his own experience helping American Jews reconnect with places of their family origin and discuss his own ongoing research using family history sources – memoirs, letter, scrapbooks, photos, etc. – to better understand his own family histories, and how these fit in the broader immigrant and American experience. He’ll discuss how personal stories can be used to recast older narratives to have relevancy today.

    Speaker:  Samuel D. Gruber is an internationally recognized expert on Jewish art, architecture and the historic preservation of Jewish sites and monuments and has been a leader in the documentation, protection, and preservation of historic Jewish sites worldwide for thirty years. He is president of the not-for-profit International Survey of Jewish Monuments.

    Sam received his BA in Medieval Studies from Princeton University, his Ph.D. in Art and Architectural History from Columbia University and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Rome, where he won the prestigious Rome Prize in Art History. He has lived in Syracuse, NY since 1993, and has taught part-time at Syracuse University in the Jewish Studies Program, and Departments of Religion and History of Art since 1994. During the pandemic, he has been sorting, cataloguing, transcribing, and otherwise considering family papers and memories.

    Dr. Gruber is an expert in synagogue architecture about which he writes and lectures frequently. He is author of American Synagogues: A Century of Architecture and Jewish Community (2003) and Synagogues (1999) and scores of published reports and articles. Since 2008, he has written the blog Samuel Gruber’s Jewish Art and Monuments. During the pandemic, Sam has curated two on-line exhibitions: Romaniote Memories for Queens College under the auspices of the Government of Greece, and Synagogues of the South for the College of Charleston, for which he previously curated Life of the Synagogue. Beginning in 2021, Sam is a planner and lead researcher on the Holocaust Memorial Monument Database project based at the Canter for Jewish Art at Hebrew University which is supported by the Claims Conference.

    Sam was founding director of the Jewish Heritage Program of World Monuments Fund, has consulted on cultural heritage projects for numerous organizations and institutions around the world. He served as Research Director of the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad from 1998 through 2008 for which he organized and published over a dozen countrywide surveys of historic sites and monuments of Jewish and other ethnic and religious minorities in Europe.

    • 05/21/2023
    • Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery (Ridge Rd #1), 3740 Ridge Road, Cleveland, OH 44144

    Volunteers needed for the cemetery cleanup.  Time and details to be announced.

    • 06/18/2023
    • 06/23/2023
    • Zoom

    Genealogists of all levels will find the GRIP week-long courses to be of interest whether novice, intermediate, advanced, or professional.

    WANT TO LEARN MORE about SCHOLARSHIPS? The various opportunities described need you to apply this year for awards for next year. Do not delay – Deadline for the Donn Devine Memorial Scholarship is January 30!

    GRIP TO BE HELD June 18-23, 2023, on Zoom and July 9-14, 2023, in-person! To see the title of the courses offered each week, download the 2023 GRIP Flyer.

    Registration for the institute opens on February 22nd.

    • 07/09/2023
    • 07/14/2023
    • LaRoche University, Pittsburgh, PA

    Genealogists of all levels will find the GRIP week-long courses to be of interest whether novice, intermediate, advanced, or professional.

    WANT TO LEARN MORE about SCHOLARSHIPS? The various opportunities described need you to apply this year for awards for next year. Do not delay – Deadline for the Donn Devine Memorial Scholarship is January 30!

    GRIP TO BE HELD June 18-23, 2023, on Zoom and July 9-14, 2023, in-person! To see the title of the courses offered each week, download the 2023 GRIP Flyer.

    Registration for the institute opens on February 22nd.

    • 07/30/2023
    • (BST)
    • 08/03/2023
    • (BST)
    • London, England

    The International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies regulates the annual conferences on Jewish Genealogy, and the ever-increasing quality of these meetings has proven to be a boon to those researching their Jewish heritage by bringing together those interested in Jewish Genealogy to learn, to research, and most importantly, to share.  Visit the conference website for more information on the 2023 IAJGS Annual Conference scheduled in London, England.

Copyright 2023.  The Jewish Genealogy Society of Cleveland, Inc. (JGSC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization (EIN: 34-1648203).  All Rights Reserved.