Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois Program March 29, 2015 - The Photo Genealogist, Ava Cohn will speak on "Clued-In: The Stories are in the Details" #general


The Jewish Genealogical Society Of Illinois
Program: Sunday, March 29, 2015
Program starts 2:00 p.m. at Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Road, Northbrook.

Ava Cohen will speak on "Clued-In: The Stories are in the Details"

Ava Cohn, an internationally known genealogist and expert on Jewish family
photographs, will speak on "Clued-In: The Stories are in the Details" at the
Sunday, March 29, 2015, meeting of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois
at Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Road, Northbrook.

Cohn, AKA Sherlock Cohn, The Photo Genealogist, will explain how to
differentiate between a clue that is useful and furthers our study of genealogy
and one that gives little or no usable information.

The JGSI meeting facilities at Temple Beth-El will open at 12:30 p.m. to
accommodate members who want to use or borrow genealogy library materials, get
help with genealogy websites, or ask genealogical questions before the main
program begins at 2 p.m.

For more information, visit or phone 312-666-0100.

Among the questions that Ava Cohn considers are the following: "How often have
you looked at a family photograph and wondered how much more you could learn
about your family >from this photo? Beyond who is in the photo and when it was
taken, are there more subtle clues that give us a deeper appreciation of the
people who came before us. What are the relationships of the people in the
photos? What were their personal and religious choices? Why was this photo
taken? What messages were they trying to convey when they sat before the

According to Cohn, there is a wealth of information to be gleaned >from the
visual records of our mishpocha. Coupled with handed-down family oral
traditions and found documentation, these photo discoveries can become the
basis for our family stories. But, she asks, is the detail found in the photo
what she calls a bisl (something to ignore) or the gantze megilla (something
that tells us a story)?

Ava Cohn brings a lifelong experience with heirloom photos and a
multidisciplinary approach to photo dating and interpretation. A native
of upstate New York, currently residing in the Chicago area, she has a
degree >from Brandeis University with coursework in decorative arts, art
history, and costume history at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
Recognizing the need for accurate dating of Jewish family photographs,
combined with specialized knowledge of immigrant and Eastern European
culture and traditions, she devotes her work, almost exclusively, to
Jewish family photographs. Cohn is a speaker and writer whose articles
have appeared in many Jewish genealogy publications.

Submitted by Sandra Schon Kiferbaum
JGSI Publicity VP

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