EventsSFBAJGS - Calendar of Genealogical Events


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Brainstorming with the Mavens

Time and Place:
Noon to 2pm
Jewish Community Library
1835 Ellis Street
San Francisco, CA
Free parking: enter parking garage from Pierce Street
Map  

Volunteers from the SFBAJGS will be on hand to help individuals with their family history research. The session includes group brainstorming, suggestions for problem solving, and research using the Jewish Community Library's extensive reference collection and Internet connections. Bring your materials and questions. Registration is requested but not required at (415) 567-3327, ext. 704.


December 2014

No Membership Meeting in December


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Brainstorming with the Mavens

Time and Place:
Noon to 2pm
Jewish Community Library
1835 Ellis Street
San Francisco, CA
Free parking: enter parking garage from Pierce Street
Map  

Volunteers from the SFBAJGS will be on hand to help individuals with their family history research. The session includes group brainstorming, suggestions for problem solving, and research using the Jewish Community Library's extensive reference collection and Internet connections. Bring your materials and questions. Registration is requested but not required at (415) 567-3327, ext. 704.


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and everyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 1pm, Program begins 1:30pm
Rhoda Goldman Plaza Map
2180 Post Street, San Francisco 94115
Parking Information: Rhoda Goldman Plaza has a private, locked garage on Sutter, between Pierce and Scott.  It is in the middle of the block and large writing on the building says "Parking for Rhoda Goldman Plaza".  Pull up to the gate, press the RGP button on the box on the driver's side, say you are there for the genealogy society meeting, and the gate will be opened.  Then drive down the ramp to RGP's visitor parking.  Take the RGP elevator to the first floor, then make a right and a quick left turn, and walk down the hallway to the lobby.  There you register and the front desk staff will direct you to the Olive Room on the same floor.
 
Topic:
Writing Your Family History
Speaker:
Heidi Lyss

As genealogists we spend time collecting family information and organizing it into trees and notes. In what additional ways could you communicate your information? We will discuss how to enhance sharing your research by writing narrative family stories, or histories. These histories can be about your own experiences and/or stories of your relatives, and may be as short as a paragraph or as long as a book. We will consider how to choose whom to write about, identify your audience, structure your work, deal with information gaps, and include photos and documents. We will also review examples of family histories, and note some key factors regarding the sharing of your creation in print or electronically.

Heidi Lyss has an MFA in Creative Writing and a certificate in the Teaching of Creative Writing from Antioch University in Los Angeles. She has taught creative writing in Sierra College's Community Education program and English composition at a Bay Area digital arts college, and has presented to many genealogy groups on family history writing. She has received awards for two of her short stories, and her published pieces also include creative nonfiction, poetry, and trade/academic articles. Heidi started her genealogical research in 2009 and is a board member of the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society.


Sunday, February 1, 2015

Brainstorming with the Mavens

Time and Place:
Noon to 2pm
Jewish Community Library
1835 Ellis Street
San Francisco, CA
Free parking: enter parking garage from Pierce Street
Map  

Volunteers from the SFBAJGS will be on hand to help individuals with their family history research. The session includes group brainstorming, suggestions for problem solving, and research using the Jewish Community Library's extensive reference collection and Internet connections. Bring your materials and questions. Registration is requested but not required at (415) 567-3327, ext. 704.


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
Family History of Klezmer Music
Speaker:
Gerry Tenney

Gerry Tenney will present a history of klezmer music, through both early and modern recordings, as well as live performance. He will also discuss his family's relationship to the klezmer tradition. Gerry is a long-time klezmer musician and Yiddish singer whose paternal bubbie (grandmother), Regina Shpielman, came from a long line of klezmorim from the town of Kolymea, Galicia. He is the leader of California Klezmer, a long-time local favorite band. He is also the president of KlezCalifornia, http://www.klezcalifornia.org, a Bay Area group that promotes Yiddish culture and klezmer music. Gerry was singing Yiddish before the klezmer revival and was an important participant in its early stages nationwide.


Monday, February 23, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 7pm, Program begins 7:30pm
Congregation Beth Am Rm. 5/6
26790 Arastradero Road
Los Altos Hills, CA
Map
 
Topic and Speaker:
To Be Determined


Sunday, March 1, 2015

Brainstorming with the Mavens

Time and Place:
Noon to 2pm
Jewish Community Library
1835 Ellis Street
San Francisco, CA
Free parking: enter parking garage from Pierce Street
Map  

Volunteers from the SFBAJGS will be on hand to help individuals with their family history research. The session includes group brainstorming, suggestions for problem solving, and research using the Jewish Community Library's extensive reference collection and Internet connections. Bring your materials and questions. Registration is requested but not required at (415) 567-3327, ext. 704.


Sunday, March 15, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and everyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 1pm, Program begins 1:30pm
Rhoda Goldman Plaza Map
2180 Post Street, San Francisco 94115
Parking Information: Rhoda Goldman Plaza has a private, locked garage on Sutter, between Pierce and Scott.  It is in the middle of the block and large writing on the building says "Parking for Rhoda Goldman Plaza".  Pull up to the gate, press the RGP button on the box on the driver's side, say you are there for the genealogy society meeting, and the gate will be opened.  Then drive down the ramp to RGP's visitor parking.  Take the RGP elevator to the first floor, then make a right and a quick left turn, and walk down the hallway to the lobby.  There you register and the front desk staff will direct you to the Olive Room on the same floor.
 
Topic:
Book 'em, Dano! Publishing Your Family's Story
Speaker:
Jeff Lewy

Learn how to create and publish the stories of your family history without having to become a professional author first. Jeff Lewy will explain how he wrote down the family stories he acquired from others, added old photos, filled in some of the gaps with his own research, and used an online publisher/printer to create an inexpensive book his relatives are buying and telling others about. This can be helpful for your research: documenting the family history, attracting other family members to share what they know, and sparking interest among younger family members to learn about their family history through storytelling.

Jeff Lewy is the treasurer of the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society. He became interested in genealogy to make sense of family photos going back four generations in the U.S. and Europe and to learn about the people in the photos. Most of his family lines arrived in the U.S. in the 1840's and 1850's, mostly in Alabama, before settling in Chicago by 1870. His family tree now includes seven or more generations for most of his family lines, and lots of interesting stories about many of his forebears.


Monday, April 13, 2015

Special Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
Using the Holdings of the U.S. Holocaust Historical Museum
Speaker:
Megan Lewis

More Information to come.


Monday, April 13, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 7pm, Program begins 7:30pm
Congregation Beth Am Rm. 5/6
26790 Arastradero Road
Los Altos Hills, CA
Map
 
Topic:
Using the Holdings of the U.S. Holocaust Historical Museum
Speaker:
Megan Lewis
 
More Information to come.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
Using Historical Online Jewish Newspapers for Genealogy Research
Speaker:
Janice M. Sellers

Many historical Jewish newspapers are now available online, with more being added regularly. Most are on free sites. This class gives an overview of what is online and where it is, suggests access strategies, discusses what to do if you don’t read Hebrew, and shows sample search results.

Janice M. Sellers is a professional genealogist specializing in Jewish, newspaper, and forensic genealogy research. She edits three genealogy journals, including ZichronNote and The Galitzianer (for Gesher Galicia). She is vice president of the SFBAJGS and is a board member of the African American Genealogical Society of Northern California and California State Genealogical Alliance, and a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, Council for the Advancement of Forensic Genealogy, Genealogical Speakers Guild, California Genealogical Society, and Gesher Galicia.


Sunday, June 14, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
Social Media for Genealogists
Speaker:
Meredith Sellers

Social media are valuable tools for connecting and communicating with relatives, potential cousins, and fellow genealogists. Navigating various social media platforms and understanding their privacy controls can be daunting, however. As a member of the Web-savvy“Millennial Generation”, Meredith will provide case studies illustrating how social media can complement your current research endeavors. She will also address the pros and cons of different social media platforms and outline ways for you to maintain a secure,
controlled online presence.

Dr. Meredith Sellers holds a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and works as a Senior Engineer at Exponent Failure Analysis Associates. Meredith has leveraged social media since 2008 to assist her personal genealogical research in New York City, St. Louis, Eastern Europe, and the British Isles. Before relocating to the Bay Area, Meredith volunteered and taught for organizations including the Champaign Family History Center, Champaign County Genealogical Society, and Olive Branch Cemetery Restoration.


Monday, June 22, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 7pm, Program begins 7:30pm
Congregation Beth Am Rm. 5/6
26790 Arastradero Road
Los Altos Hills, CA
Map
 
Topic and Speaker:
To Be Determined.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and everyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 1pm, Program begins 1:30pm
Rhoda Goldman Plaza Map
2180 Post Street, San Francisco 94115
Parking Information: Rhoda Goldman Plaza has a private, locked garage on Sutter, between Pierce and Scott.  It is in the middle of the block and large writing on the building says "Parking for Rhoda Goldman Plaza".  Pull up to the gate, press the RGP button on the box on the driver's side, say you are there for the genealogy society meeting, and the gate will be opened.  Then drive down the ramp to RGP's visitor parking.  Take the RGP elevator to the first floor, then make a right and a quick left turn, and walk down the hallway to the lobby.  There you register and the front desk staff will direct you to the Olive Room on the same floor.
 
Topic:
20th Century Immigration and Naturalization Records
Speaker:
Marisa Louie

The National Archives maintains a wealth of records relating to immigration and naturalization in the 20th century. This includes more than 400,000 Alien Case Files or "A-Files" at its facilities in San Francisco, California and Kansas City, Missouri. Created beginning in 1944, these files relate to noncitizen alien residents of the United States and are a potential wealth of genealogical information. At this presentation, you'll discover more about what's in A-Files, who is documented in them, and how to find them at the National Archives. We’ll also explore other unique records relating to naturalization and the stories of Jewish refugees detained at Angel Island Immigration Station.

Marisa Louie is an avid researcher and genealogist who specializes in federal records. She formerly worked as an archivist at the National Archives at San Francisco and is co-author of the article "The A-Files: Finding Your Immigrant Ancestors", published in the Spring 2013 issue of Prologue magazine. She is knowledgeable about the A-Files and other types of immigration case files maintained by the National Archives, having served as a research assistant for the book Angel Island: Immigrant Gateway to America. A fifth-generation Chinese American, Marisa first delved into federal records as a college sophomore researching her own family's history in the United States. She holds a B.A. in American Studies and Environmental Studies from the University of California at Santa Cruz and is a past participant in the "In Search of Roots" program.


Sunday, August 16, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
Bring Your Own Brick Wall
Speaker:
Panel of experienced SFBAJGS researchers

Stuck on a genealogy problem while the Mavens are on summer hiatus? Bring your problems, questions and documents (copies, please, no originals), and a panel of experienced researchers will provide information and suggestions that will show your next steps and may help you solve some family mysteries.


Monday, August 17, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 7pm, Program begins 7:30pm
Congregation Beth Am Rm. 5/6
26790 Arastradero Road
Los Altos Hills, CA
Map
 
Topic and Speaker:
To Be Determined.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and everyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 1pm, Program begins 1:30pm
Rhoda Goldman Plaza Map
2180 Post Street, San Francisco 94115
Parking Information: Rhoda Goldman Plaza has a private, locked garage on Sutter, between Pierce and Scott.  It is in the middle of the block and large writing on the building says "Parking for Rhoda Goldman Plaza".  Pull up to the gate, press the RGP button on the box on the driver's side, say you are there for the genealogy society meeting, and the gate will be opened.  Then drive down the ramp to RGP's visitor parking.  Take the RGP elevator to the first floor, then make a right and a quick left turn, and walk down the hallway to the lobby.  There you register and the front desk staff will direct you to the Olive Room on the same floor.
 
Topic:
Lithuanian Research
Speaker:
Judy Baston

More information to come.


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 12:30pm, Program begins 1pm
Oakland Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA
Directions and Map
 
Topic:
JRI-Poland: Go for the Record!
Speaker:
Robinn Magid

Jewish Records Indexing-Poland (http://www.jri-poland.org) has the motto "Go for the Record!", and its day has truly arrived. Now you can not only search its online index of approximately 5 million Jewish vital records housed in Poland today, but in many cases, it's possible to click a button, view, and even download your ancestors' vital records without charge. JRI-Poland makes genealogy dreams come true, and this presentation will show you what may be possible for your family from Poland, Galicia/Ukraine, and even Belarus and Lithuania if your ancestors' vital records survive in Polish archives today.

Robinn Magid is a long-time member of the SFBAJGS, a board member of JRI-Poland, and a compulsive genealogist since her retirement from Management Consulting with an international CPA firm in 1991. In 2001 she realized her childhood dream of visiting Poland and “walking a mile in her grandmother’s moccasins.” She has four children, a loving husband, and a bachelor’s degree in economics from UCLA. Her family genealogy research includes tracing Jews in Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, Lithuania, and Galicia.


Monday, October 19, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and anyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 7pm, Program begins 7:30pm
Congregation Beth Am Rm. 5/6
26790 Arastradero Road
Los Altos Hills, CA
Map
 
Topic and Speaker:
To Be Determined.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Membership Meeting

Meetings are free and everyone interested is welcome.
Time and Place:
Doors open 1pm, Program begins 1:30pm
Rhoda Goldman Plaza Map
2180 Post Street, San Francisco 94115
Parking Information: Rhoda Goldman Plaza has a private, locked garage on Sutter, between Pierce and Scott.  It is in the middle of the block and large writing on the building says "Parking for Rhoda Goldman Plaza".  Pull up to the gate, press the RGP button on the box on the driver's side, say you are there for the genealogy society meeting, and the gate will be opened.  Then drive down the ramp to RGP's visitor parking.  Take the RGP elevator to the first floor, then make a right and a quick left turn, and walk down the hallway to the lobby.  There you register and the front desk staff will direct you to the Olive Room on the same floor.
 
Topic:
San Francisco's Own Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico
Speaker:
Joseph Amster

A Jewish businessman originally from England and South Africa, Joshua Abraham Norton arrived in San Francisco in 1849 with $40,000, which after some shrewd investing increased to $250,000 (about $3 million today). After losing his fortune to a bad rice investment, Norton disappeared, returning to San Francisco in 1859 and declaring himself Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico. In any other city, he would have been dismissed as a madman, but the people of San Francisco embraced his reign. He ate for free in restaurants and had the best seats in the theater, the police saluted him, and he even printed his own money, which was accepted as legal tender throughout the city. He issued numerous proclamations, calling for a bridge to be built across San Francisco Bay—in the exact spot where the Bay Bridge stands today. Other proclamations called for the founding of a league of nations to promote world peace, and the United Nations was founded in San Francisco in 1945; the erection of a Christmas tree in Union Square, where one has stood ever since he called for it; and banning use of the word "Frisco", punishable by a $25 fine. When he died on January 8, 1880, he was given the biggest funeral the city has seen to this day.

Amster, a displaced journalist with an acting background, wanted to create a walking tour with a twist, offering his patrons a unique experience. “I decided early on that I wanted to do my tour in character and researched the historical figures from San Francisco’s past,” says Amster. “The more I read about Emperor Norton, the more fascinated I became with him.” After completing his research, Amster took on the character of Emperor Norton, complete with uniform, beard, and plumed top hat. He now offers his tour to anyone with an interest in history (http://www.emperornortontour.com).


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