Revitalizing JewishGen Ukraine SIG – Part 1 of 3 #ukraine
Ronald D. Doctor
Revitalizing Ukraine SIG
A Presentation at the Ukraine SIG General Meeting
Annual IAJGS Conference, Washington, D.C.
Ronald D. Doctor, Coordinator, Ukraine SIG
15 August 2011
This is a slightly modified version of the presentation I gave at the
Ukraine Special Interest Group General Meeting on 15 August 2011,
during the Annual Conference of the International Association of
Jewish Genealogical Societies in Washington, D.C. It has been modified
for posting on the Ukraine SIG Discussion List. The presentation is
divided into three parts to accommodate the Discussion List format.
The original presentation, including PowerPoint slides, is available
on our website: http://www.jewishgen.org/ukraine.
Beginning now, we are going to change the way our SIG operates. We
will be more active in seeking out records, translating them,
processing them and making them available to you. To achieve this
objective, I will propose some changes in the way the SIG works and in
how the SIG is governed, but first let me describe the territory that
JewishGen has assigned to us.
WHAT TERRITORIES DOES UKRAINE SIG COVER?
Our territory covers these nine guberniyas of the former Russian
Empire: Chernigov, Ekaterinoslav, Kharkov, Kherson, Kyiv, Podolia,
Poltava, Taurida, and Volhynia.
As you know, national boundaries in this part of the world have
shifted >from time-to-time. As a result, JewishGen has assigned some
areas that are in modern Ukraine to other SIGs. This includes a large
swath of western Ukraine which JewishGen's Database Sharing Committee
has assigned to Gesher Galicia, Hungary SIG and Romania SIG. These are
the areas that are NOT included in Ukraine SIG:
* Sub-Carpathia (Hungary SIG)
* Western Ukraine lands that were in Galicia during Interwar period
* Most of Bukovina (Romania SIG)
(For an explanation of these assignments, see
This means that we cannot initiate projects that include towns within
these areas. Although we cannot "initiate" projects for these areas,
JewishGen includes in our Ukraine Database any data generated by other
SIGs for towns that currently are in Ukraine. In addition, we will
work cooperatively with other SIGs on data generating projects that
include these areas.
COMPONENTS OF THE SIG
Our SIG has four ways of interacting with you: personal communications
between the Coordinator, Board Members and researchers; our website;
discussion list; and the JewishGen Ukraine Database (previously called
the All-Ukraine Database). Our Website and Discussion List are the
primary ways we can communicate with each other. The Discussion List
currently has more than 2,600 registrants. Chuck Weinstein, Linda
Cantor, and Freya Maslov are moderators of the List. Hilary Henkin is
our webmaster. They will continue in those roles.
The JewishGen Ukraine Database
(http://www.jewishgen.org/databases/ukraine) is a master index to all
data that we and others generate to help you do your research. The
Ukraine SIG 'Board' is new. In the past, we had an Advisory Committee,
but over the years this committee fell into disuse. As part of our
revitalization, I'm appointing a Board to help govern the SIG and
manage our projects. This Board will be a 'working Board'. Each member
will have a specific assignment and responsibility. We'll discuss the
Board and its functions below.
Besides our SIG, JewishGen provides these resources to help you
research your ancestors >from Ukraine.
* 62 Shtetlinks websites (renamed KehilaLinks at the IAJGS Conference)
* 220 Yizkor Books for 187 towns
* Yizkor Book Master Name Index (YBMNI) **
* 63 towns in Necrology database **
* About 60 Cemeteries in JOWBR **
* Holocaust database **
* Family Tree of the Jewish People (FTJP) * and JewishGen Family
Finder (JGFF) **
(Items followed by ** are included in JewishGen Ukraine DB)
Shtetlinks focus on particular towns, and sometimes regions. Sixty-two
of us have created Shtetlinks websites for our Ukraine towns. We have
packed these web pages with data and names, yet most of these names
have not found their way into the JewishGen Ukraine Database. One
project the SIG can initiate quickly is to work with Shtetlinks web
page owners to get their data into the master database.
Yizkor Book translations also contain many names. JewishGen recognized
this a couple of years ago and created the "Yizkor Book Master Name
Index" (YBMNI). It includes names >from the few books that have
indexes. However, most of the translated Yizkor Books are not indexed.
Our SIG can change this by helping Yizkor Book Translation Project
Leaders create name and place indexes for their books. To get some
idea of the value of this effort, consider that the Hebrew portion of
the book "Pinkas Kremenets" has more than 1,500 name entries in its
index. If other translated books are similar we should be able to
extract several hundred thousand names >from them.
These are only two easily accessible resources that can quickly
improve our research base. I?ll discuss others in the second part of
Ron Doctor (email@example.com)
Coordinator, JewishGen Ukraine SIG
Researching DOCTOR (DIOKHTER), VARER, AVERBAKH, KORENFELD ... all from
Kremenets, Oleksinets, Yampol, Vishnevets
and KAZDOY (KOSODOY), DUBINSKI, DUBOWSKY ... all >from Kiev, Uman, Odessa