Although my family has no Jewish heritage that I’m aware of, my sister recently found a sampler embroidered in Yiddish and Hebrew, tucked behind a family picture. Dated 1891, the sampler presented us with a research challenge: what did the words mean, and how did it get behind our picture?
To get a translation, I posted a plea for help on the mailing list of JewishGen, along with a URL picturing the sampler. Within hours I had more than 50 replies from all over the world, translating the Yiddish and Hebrew characters. Included in many of those e-mails were suggestions for other Jewish-related genealogy searches. I’d like to share some of those with you:
This site includes information files, mailing lists, ancestral towns in Eastern Europe, a surname database and calendar conversion (convert a civil date into the equivalent date on the Hebrew calendar).
• Jewish Genealogy Home Page
Created by the Dallas Jewish Historical Society, this site includes an excellent guide to doing long-distance Jewish research. For beginners, don’t miss the Jewish Genealogy FAQ.
• Jewish Genealogy Links
200 links to Jewish genealogy sources, including archives, databases, genealogical societies, orphanages, and telephone directories.