New database #rabbinic
Tomer Brunner <tomerbr@...>
I have an idea for a new database, which would be of great benefit for
Rabbinical families researchers.
This database will consist on few parts:
1) There are many books, found on shelves in Israeli libraries (and probably
other Judaica libraries around the world), which contains detailed
information about rabbis.
The books description in the on-line catalogues ** does not ** list the
names of these rabbis.
Recently I visited one of the university libraries for just 2 hours and
found at least 12 books with hundreds of names and biographical –
genealogical details of rabbis.
My suggestion is that volunteers (or just anyone who happens to find an
Photocopy the front page, contents and list of sources of each book, which
will later be scanned and accessible through the database. Only translation
to English of the names will be needed to make it useful to non Hebrew
speakers (at least allowing anyone know where information is located).
2) Some libraries hold books which were donated by noted researchers and
contain handwritten notes. These notes can be “compare to [name of other
book]” or even “this is not correct” and other remarks of such nature.
I already photocopied some books (of rabbinical biographies) with notes by
Dr. Nathan GELBER (researcher of Polish Jewry. Wrote chapters in many Yizkor
books) and by Prop. Israel HALPERIN (published the Pinkas of the “four lands
council”), but surely there are more in various libraries.
These notes will be the basis of part 2 in the database.
3) In some books the authors criticize other authors of their time, saying /
proving that the other ones have mistakes, mixed similar names on family
An example I recently found is the books by F. H. WETSTEIN (published around
1900) which have criticism on the books of his contemporary, C. B. FRIEDBERG
(who wrote about the SCHOR, HOROWITZ, GINSBURG and other families).
Relying on one source without knowing of the criticism may lead to errors on
So the third part of the database contains names of books (and page numbers)
and names of other books being criticized in it.
4) Biographical notes about the authors.
These can be found in books like Rabbi Meir Wunder’s “Meorei Galicia” and
maybe other encyclopedias.
When we rely on earlier sources it’s recommended to know who wrote it.
Only this part of the database might require extra translation work.
I don’t have knowledge of internet programming so I can’t contribute in
creating the web pages, but I already have material that can be used.
Maybe this kind of database can be hosted on Rav-SIG site? (what does the
webmaster thinks ?)
If not is there any volunteer to build such a database?
I would very much like to hear >from anyone interested in creation of such a
or in contributing material.
Thanks and SHANA TOVA to all Rav-Sig members and their families!
Tomer Brunner, Israel.