It is said that all genealogists are equal, but, in fact, as you know,
GerSigers are more than equal. I just want to make sure that you are aware
of the wealth of information which GerSigers will find if they come to the
August IAJGS conference in Washington, information which is not available to
you at home or on the web.
The largest new source, of course, is the International Tracing Service
collection. The collection is not only valuable for determining the fate of
Holocaust victims, many of whom are not in the Gedenkbuch, but also for its
unique collection of information on survivors and what happened to them.
Less known, but also important for anyone researching German Jews, is the
Residentenliste, an attempt by the Bundesarchiv to collect information on
about 600,000 Jews resident in Germany in 1933. Due to Datenschutz this
valuable hodgepodge of information is unlikely to become publicly available
for many years.
There is also the tried and true 1939 census. At present you can only
search this by location. However, the digitized version of this collection,
which the USHMM is barred >from sharing on the web, permits you to search the
entire database by family name, or even given name, place of birth, date of
birth or any other information breakdown. There are gaps in this
collection, e.g. Thuringia, but these gaps can be closed using books
available at the USHMM.
Finally, and there are many other sources of information, there are the
Quellen zur Geschichte der Juden in den Archiven der neuen Bundeslaender and
Quellen zur Geschichte der Juden in Polnischen Archiven. The first of this
series identifies all holdings of material relating to Jews in archives
located in the former East Germany, while the second does the same for
material held in archives which were German until 1945 but are now Polish.
Both of these reference series can be searched by locality (Ortsregister) or
family name (Personenregister). This does not give you the material itself
but identifies where it is located. A small example --I found that my
father before he left Germany had donated the Lande family history to an
archive in Berlin. I already had this but what if I, or you, didn't know
that such a family history existed.
The moral of this story--come to Washington.
Peter Lande, Washington, D.C. email@example.com