Re: How to research Bialystok archives #records #poland

Mark Halpern

Hi Catherine:

The birth index found on the Routes to Roots Foundation website is a great new addition of data to the available resources for Jewish Genealogy. This database of over 2 million records is the result of Miriam Weiner's over 30 years of research in eastern Europe. In addition to the birth index you identified, she has an 1847 tax list which showed my great great and 3 times great grandfathers owning property. I never knew where my maternal family lived before mid 1860s. Now I know they were in Bialystok from before 1847. 

JRI-Poland has indexed all the available birth records at the Bialystok Archive covering years 1835 through 1916. All the indices are online except for 1906-1916. Not all the years have survived, so the index on Miriam Weiner's website is an important addition. However, JRI-Poland has indexed the 1863 births, but you did not find that entry. Why? Because the transliteration standards of the person who created the index register and the person creating the 1863 JRI-Poland index were different. The JRI-Poland index is for Gitel SZARYSZOWSKI, where the index from Miriam Weiner's database is for Gitla SZERESZEWSKA. If you search the JRI-Poland database using search type of Phonetically Like you will not find this 1863 birth, but if your use search type of Sounds Like (Daitch-Mokotoff Soundex) you find Gitel's 1863 birth record index entry. The moral of this story is, if you do not find the index entry you are looking for using one of these search methods, then try the other. There are many examples where once catches a spelling alternative and the other does not. 

The JRI-Poland online database includes index entries for the following years of births: 1860-1866, 1869, 1971-1872, 1874-1875, 1877-1884. You can see that Miriam Weiner's birth index database covers the missing years. The bad news for those missing years is the the original birth record has not survived. But and index is better than nothing.

I will find that birth record for you Catherine and email the images directly to you.

Mark Halpern
JRI-Poland Bialystok Area Coordinator 


On 2021-02-17 10:29 am, JUROVSKY,Catherine wrote:

I found  a reference to a birth index  which could be the one of my great grand mother on data base. How does one get about with Byalistok archives to obtain the actual birth certificate? 
Thank you for any help

Catherine Jurovsky


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