JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: family trees from existing databases #general


Ron Kaminker suggests:
"Could there be a way to 'link up' the records in JRI-Poland so that as opposed to
receiving just a list of records, you would be able to see family trees like in

And Avigor Ben Dov replies:
"I believe I may have posed a similar question much earlier in this forum, but it
boiled down to "who will do it?" or perhaps, is there some PC program that can
"digest" the data and convert it into relationships without too much human

Above are two selections >from a developing thread on the possibility of creating
a family tree >from the listings in the Jewish Records Indexing-Poland database.

As someone who has been involved with JRI-Poland for many years, let me add some
caveats about using the database alone as a "shortcut" to create family trees.

As JRI-Poland points out every chance we get, the listings in our database are a
first step to Polish Jewish research. In almost all cases, the listings in the
database are index listings, which enable researchers to obtain copies of the
actual records cited in the index. In some cases, the listings are extended
indices, which contain the first names and surnames of mothers and fathers, but in
other cases, the index listings contain only the information in the internal index
created by the clerk in Poland more than 100 years ago.

Most importantly for this discussion, the year listed in the JRI-Poland database
is the year the event (birth, marriage, death) was recorded. This can often be just
a few days after a birth, for example, took place. But it can also be years
afterward. If you see four or even five births with the same surname and same
father's name registered with consecutive numbers in the same year, the odds are
great that you have not discovered quadruplets or quintuplets -- only a case
of multiple delayed registrations.

There is no substitute for trying to obtain the actual records referenced in the
JRI-Poland database -- not only for your direct line but also for the sisters and
brothers of your grandparents, great-grandparents and great-greats. You will find
information about occupations and other facts that can put some substance on your
family chart. And you can discover family connections far greater than those you
might make simply using the index listings in the database.

Judy Baston,
San Francisco, CA, USA
Member of the Board of Jewish Records Indexing-Poland

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