JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Interesting aid to finding elusive people #general

Dick Plotz <Dick@...>

It's sometimes frustratingly difficult to locate relatives whose
contact information is unlisted in the usual sources. Locating their
friends and acquaintances can be a useful first step to getting a
genealogical query to them. I've just learned of a database that can
be helpful in a select group of these cases, where the lost person
attended Harvard College. It seems likely that similar databases are
available for other schools.

The database is called "Dorm History Search". It lists the occupants
of Harvard freshman dorms by room and year. It's been maintained by a
series of undergraduates for several years, and can be searched by
name and room number. If you look up your relative, you'll find their
freshman room number. You can then search for all occupants of that
room and neighboring rooms. It's likely that a freshman roommate will
have more recent information about your relative, and will be easier
to find, especially if they have a more unusual name.

This database is of particular interest because Harvard College's
student population in the postwar years has been about 20-25% Jewish,
although the percentage may have decreased a bit in recent years due
to competition >from Asians.

The database may be accessed at

Dick Plotz
Providence RI USA

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