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Geography and Map Reading Room, Library of Congress


  Education and Research Center
  Resources

The Museum endeavors to provide those involved in Jewish genealogical research with the tools that might assist them with their research. Educational material is also provided that will enable the Museum visitor to learn, not only about methodology and resources concerning genealogical research, but about the history of the Jewish people as well.

The Museum's Education & Research Center tries in earnest to make available information that may benefit those interested in learning more about modern Jewish history in all its many facets. It is hoped that having access to such information and resource material will encourage you and others to want to learn more about not only your own family history, but about the many contributions the Jewish people have made to the world as a whole. Learning, as well as a deep understanding and appreciation of the history of the Jewish people, is a process that one should strive for, and this interest should be shared enthusiastically between the different generations of one's family as well. Hopefully, this exciting journey of learning will inspire this and future generations to do their own research and allow them to experience the wonder of discovery and self-erudition.

The Genealogy and Family History section discusses some of the vast amount of information that is available to us and how to access it. The Center provides links and contact information whenever possible, so that those pursuing similar research might more easily find the information they are looking for.

The Museum also exhibits the beginning of an Education Department that has "thinking exercises" from children to adult. The Museum is seeking educators to present curriculum of a nature that would be suitable to young children and adults, material that could be presented online, that would both educate and inspire others to learn more about the history of the Jewish family. This educational material might, for instance, include the telling of stories of family life during one's youth, or might include a lesson in the technique of oral history, i.e. the interviewing of older family members about their life experiences.

The Education & Research Center will also provide the names and bibliographic information for various books and other printed material that might be of use or interest.

Be sure to visit the Museum's Records page to see some of the records that are available at various archives and research centers, especially those located in New York City.

Below are listed a number of exhibition and resources that can found found within the virtual confines of the Museum of Family History:
 

  The Cemetery Project
Within this project, the researcher has access to a variety of information and material relevant to the various cemeteries located in the United Sates and Canada. Here one can find the overall grounds maps to many cemeteries, contact and other information about cemeteries (mostly located in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island), unique surnames lists of those buried in hundreds of society plots, as well as photographs of the various society gates that front most of these plots.  There are also photographs of nearly two hundred Holocaust memorials located in both the United States and Canada. ►►
     
  Map Room of Eastern Europe
Displayed within the Museum's Map Room are more than one hundred topographic maps of various regions in Poland, as well as some of Belarus and the Ukraine. Most maps shown have been divided into a right half and left half, and the map coordinates are given for each.  All of the maps were drawn and produced between World Wars I and II. It is interesting to note the names of the various towns and villages in the surrounding areas as they appeared before World War II, as well as the varying topographical features within each region.  ►►
     
  The Synagogues of New York City
An important genealogical resource is a listing of the synagogues, both former synagogues and ones still in existence, that Jews attend or have attended many decades ago. In some instances they tell us where our ancestors may have lived, as many Jews, especially those who were religious, needed to live within a short distance of their synagogue (shul.) Many synagogues were also associated with certain landsmanshaftn, which were associated with certain towns and cities in Europe. Whichever the case, the Museum offers the researcher offers the following information about the synagogues of New York City: name of synagogue, address, name of "pastor," and their address, as well as the date the synagogue was established.
Also you may find some photographs of the extant synagogues of the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
►►
     
  Health and Immigration
Those who wished to enter countries such as the United States in the years of  high immigration had to pass a battery of tests in order to be allowed to immigrate.  There were a number of health conditions that were the grounds for rejecting a potential immigrant, much to their chagrin. They were most often shipped back to the country from which they came on the same ship they arrived on. Health and Immigration will deal with a number of these diseases, explaining the condition, how it was diagnosed, whether the disease was treatable, etc. The first such condition to be discussed is the disease called trachoma. ►►
     
  Genealogy and Family History
Whether as a result of a search for the manifest of a ship that a relative traveled on to come to the United States, or for a “Petition for Naturalization” or Federal Census report, it is always satisfying when one finds an answer to a vexing genealogical problem. Whether combing through birth and marriage records at a City Archives, or looking at a tax assessment photo that were taken in 1939 of an old family residence  or business, spending hours upon hours, day after day, looking through bleary eyes at records on microfilm, such diligence often provides  one with ample rewards. Here at the Museum you will be introduced to a myriad of genealogical gems, i.e. records and other documents that may provide great value to the researcher. ►►
     
  The Schools of New York City
As genealogists, amateur or professional, having access to school records or photographs enable us not only to learn more about our families, but they gives us a glimpse into what life was like in society as a whole as seen through the student biographies, a message from the principal or student body president, or the activities the students pursued during their formative years. Initially, "The Schools of New York City" features information for Thomas Jefferson and Samuel J. Tilden High Schools, as well as a searchable database for the former. For Thomas Jefferson High School, you may browse from front to back any of the yearbooks, or you may simply search by name and graduating year for any Senior. ►►
     

  banner photo: The Geography and Map Reading Room, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

 



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