2010 IAJGS Conference Update

Posted by Pamela Weisberger

Our short conference video is now online on the JGSLA 2010 conference website home page. If you have friends that you think might want to attend the conference, tell them to take a look at the video. It’s an entertaining seven minutes! Here is the video:

Need a place to park your horse cart before attending the Market Square Fair? Conference parking information is now on our webpage here. You’ll see that there are lots of different pricing options located close to the hotel for day-trippers or long-termers.

Sunday Offerings are Multiplying!

We’ve recently added some exciting talks on Sunday, July 11, our opening day. Not only can you listen to the klezmer stylings of Hot Pstromi (a.k.a. Yale Strom) in the afternoon and evening, but also now you can discover the history of the other “hot pastrami” in the morning.

Were you born in the Year of the Pickle?
At 9:30 AM on Sunday, comedian Seth Front will offer “The Jewish Zodiac: A Culinary History of Jews in America (Based on the Astrological Signs of the Delicatessen)”, in which he tells the history of the Jewish deli in America, from its origins on the Lower East Side at the turn of the 20th century, its adaptation to American tastes, its assimilation into mainstream American culture and its challenges for survival in the 21st century. Among the many questions he tackles are: What foods did Jews bring with them from Eastern Europe? What’s the difference between a deli and an appetizing store? How did Broadway entertainers help popularize deli, and how did deli culture help ease Jewish entry into mainstream American society?

And a Branch Shall Grow Out of His Roots: What Can We Know About the Descendants of King David?”

Since so many of our conference-goers claim to be descended from King David, we though it fitting to invite an expert to explore these roots a bit deeper. Join noted author Jonathan Kirsch at 1 PM on Sunday for a special lunch and learn lecture (which means grab some food at our kiosk and dine to a scrumptious talk) as he deconstructs "And a Branch Shall Grow Out of His Roots: What Can We Know About the Descendants of King David?”, based on his biography of the single most crucial and controversial figure in the Hebrew Bible, King David: The Man Who Ruled Israel. It shows David to be a compelling but disturbingly complex man who was also a voracious lover, a troubled father, and a merciless warrior as well as a strikingly modern figure who prefigures Shakespearean tragedy, Machiavellian politics, and Freudian psychology.

The Intricate Tapestry of Iranian Jews

At 3:30 PM on Sunday, UCLA professor Nahid Pirnazar will weave tales of “The Intricate Tapestry of Iranian Jews.” She’ll discuss the paradoxical survival of the Jews of Persia through twenty-seven centuries of obscure history to the present time. Despite the mass emigration of Jews in 1978-1979, Iran still holds the largest Jewish community among the Islamic countries of the region. What happened to the Jewish community of Babylonia, those who stayed behind choosing not to go back to Jerusalem? What happened to those Jews who, throughout centuries, so greatly impacted the formation of Iranian culture and Identity?

Day/Evening Passes
Tell your friends who may be new to genealogy about attending the conference on opening day, Sunday, July 11. A full day of lectures, entertainment, classes, exhibits, films, the Market Square Fair, the Daniel Mendelsohn keynote and a dessert reception. $105 buys a day pass for all the offerings, or an evening pass starts at 6:30 PM for the nighttime events.

Yizkor Books at the IAJGS Conference – Put Your Requests in NOW
Thanks to a special arrangement made with two repositories – The Simon Wiesenthal Library at the Museum of Tolerance and the AJU Ostrow Library – conference attendees will be allowed to request that Yizkor (Holocaust memorial) books from their collections be brought to the conference resource room for viewing there. No need for you to travel to view these books! But you must request the ones you want ahead of time.

Below are instructions on how to search in both of their online catalogs for your towns of interest. If you find a book you want to request, please write to Ellen Mark with the details copied exactly (details on how to contact her are below). The book will be held at the resource room for you for the duration of the conference. We will have copy and scanning machines at the conference to make images from the pages of interest to you, or you can digitally photograph them. Make sure when you request a book to note the language it is in; many Yizkor books are not in English, but in Hebrew or Yiddish. Also note that many Yizkor books are now online at the New York Public Library and can be viewed in their entirely on their website here: http://legacy.www.nypl.org/research/chss/jws/yizkorbookonline.cfm

How to find Yizkor books from the MUSEUM OF TOLERANCE/SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER Library and Archives

To perform a search and make specific requests for Memorial (Yizkor) Books through the SWC Library catalog, click here, then:
  1. Under “What’s Here for You?” click on on-line catalog
  2. Click on Search the Library Catalog (books and media)
  3. In the “Library Catalog Search,” under “Subject or Keyword” use the term MEMORIAL BOOKS when searching for Yizkor materials.
  4. If you like, you can combine multiple search terms using “&” (an ampersand); e.g. Lodz & Memorial Books
  5. Click the Submit Inquiry button (you may need to scroll down) or hit ENTER
How to find Yizkor books from AMERICAN JEWISH UNIVERSITY (formerly University of Judaism and Brandeis-Bardin Institute) OSTROW LIBRARY:

To perform a search and make specific requests for Yizkor Books through the Ostrow Library catalog, click here:
  1. Enter the search terms “genealogy” or “memory books” (for Yizkor books). BE SURE TO CHECK THE “LIMIT SEARCH TO AVAILABLE ITEMS” box.
  2. Holding the control key, for location select “Main Stacks” and “Reference Stacks.”
  3. Select “Printed Material” for material type.
  4. Select language, holding control key to select more than one.
  5. Select year range, which refers to date of publication, if you wish to limit your search in this manner.
Please contact Ellen Mark at ellenmark93@gmail.com as soon as you have selected the Memorial Books you want. All items will be available in the JGSLA Conference Resource Room from Sunday, July 11, through Thursday, July 15, from 9 AM - 6 PM, except for Thursday when we close at 5 PM. Books are for use in the Resource Room and can be viewed ONLY at the Yizkor book viewing desk for security reasons. (These books are very valuable!) Please bring either a passport or government ID to leave while you view the books. This is an absolute requirement.

Ellen must have your Yizkor book requests by July 5 at the latest. If you have trouble searching or have any questions, please contact her at: ellenmark93@gmail.com (If you want to volunteer to translate documents and vital records in the resource room during the conference, please contact Ellen as well, via email)

For and From Our Mac Mavens…
Doris Nable wants to alert everyone: whether you are an experienced Mac & genealogy aficionado, a newbie, or are considering switching to a Mac, I encourage you to attend our Mac Users BOF (Birds of a Feather) meeting, on Monday, July 12 from 6:15 PM to 7:15 PM.

Our unique BOF meeting slot, a first, is a window without concurrent session conflicts. Given the possible desire for dinner at this time, we need to communicate PRIOR to arriving so that food options are available for those interested. Please contact Doris as soon as possible before the meeting so that she will be able to update you about food options. If you are interested in joining our BOF meeting, but will not be in Los Angeles, please contact Doris directly. Her e-mail is: Moidame@comcast.net

More Macs Please!
And due to popular demand we’ve added another MacLab: Reunion for Beginners at 5:05 PM – 6:20 PM on Sunday, July 11, with the always-entertaining instructor Jordan Auslander. These Mac labs are going like hotcakes… or perhaps we should say like hot pastrami sandwiches. Sign up soon or all the spots will be gone!
Finally, we have a CORRECTION from our previous newsletter: Dr. Harry Ostrer’s “Legacy” talk about Jewish genetics will be on the evening of Monday, July 12.

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