Re: 60 Minutes Episode on Home DNA Testing and Genealogy Testing #dna

JoAnne Goldberg

I did not see the episode, but I am addressing privacy issues in general
(and building on Deb's excellent points):

* Even if you opt to have your individual DNA shared, no one will be
able to, for example, access your bank account or use your credit card.
No one is going to clone you.

* The affordability and accessibility of DNA testing -- and the
resulting big data -- are having a profound impact on medical research.
Someday you will be able to get  genomics-guided precision medicine,
treatments and medications specifically customized to your DNA.

* Governments are quietly assembling their own DNA databases. In the
United States, for example, the FBI manages a federal DNA database that
might already have your DNA.  Tools for DNA capture and analysis are
readily available; we can manage them to protect people but they are not
going to disappear.

On the plus side, taking one of the reputable tests (and not all of them
are) can help you solve family mysteries and track down relatives as
well as give you insights into potential medical conditions.

JoAnne Goldberg
JoAnne Goldberg - Menlo Park, California; GEDmatch M131535


Need help finding passenger manifests for KAPLAN from Lithuania or Poland ca. 1884 #russia #lithuania #poland


For nearly 30 years I have been searching for my paternal grandmother's family passenger manifests. Names: Leah KAPLAN b. 1820, son Chaim b. 1863 wife Liebe b. 1863, daughter Ettel b. 1865. Per several Minneapolis, Mn censuses arrival is 1884 for all. Ettel gets married in Minneapolis, Minnesota November 27, 1887. Don't know where the family is from. My best guess is Lithuania or Poland, which at this time all in Russia.

Now Chaim changed name from KAPLAN to COHEN by 1895 as evidenced in the Minnesota State census for that year. I don't know which surname any of them used on the ship. Ettel had 13 children and maiden name alternates between the two on her childrens' birth certificates. I don't know who came together either.

1900 census states Leah, widow, had 13 children, 5 still alive. I only know of 3 by name and children of same. Daughter Fanny came earlier married to Isaac Sugarman. 1930 Minneapolis census for Isaac and Fanny Sugarman, has them originally from Suwalki, my only clue as to where the family came from.

Can anyone help me? Thanks ever so much.

Barry Broude
Minneapolis, Minnesota
MODERATOR NOTE: Please reply privately

Re: Ethical Responsibilities of Genealogical Organizations during the Global COVID-19 Pandemic #education #guidelines

Jeffrey Mark Paull

Update (February 1, 2021): As registration for the National Genealogical Society (NGS) 2021 Family History Conference opens, NGS has made a proactive health-based decision to change from holding an in-person event, to hosting a virtual conference: "Due to ongoing mandates in Virginia in regards to COVID-19 and our concern for the well-being of our attendees, exhibitors, volunteers, and staff, NGS will no longer be able to host an in-person conference in Richmond, Virginia in May 2021."

Jeffrey Mark Paull

IGRA Show & Tell, February 8 #announcements

Garri Regev

The next IGRA Show & Tell session is coming up on Monday, February 8, 2021 at 9 pm Israel time (2 pm EST).
This time we host Megan Lewis talking about Accessing United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) Resources Online.
This talk will demonstrate the many resources USHMM has made available online such as our Holocaust Survivors and Victims Database. Additionally, many genealogists are unaware of the online resources made available by the Library and other Museum divisions and how they can be used for family research. Many of these resources apply to the FAN (Friends, Associates & Neighbors) methodology.
Megan has worked at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in different roles since 1998. Using her familiarity with USHMM resources she has spoken at many genealogy conferences and meetings. She has a BA in History and a Master's of Library Science. 
In order to participate you must register in advance: 
Garri Regev
President, IGRA  

Re: Jewish Community in Finland #general #russia

Barbara Levy

I'd love to get in touch with the woman with a web site who located info about your family. Would you mind telling me her name and the name of the web site? If you like, you can send it to me at my email address. babaabram@.... Thanks so much!
Jewish community in Hamina, Finland
My grandfather said he was born in Hamina, Finland. Does anyone know if there was a Jewish community in Hamina, Finland? Do you know if Hamina was a Russian territory or a Finnish territory in 1878, when he was born?
Barbara Levy

Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech


It might be helpful to differentiate between German as a cultural descriptor and German as a political/national one.  The German Empire came into being in 1871; before then, people might identify with one of the smaller political units that merged into the Empire: Prussians, Bavarians, etc.  The Empire didn't include all ethnic or cultural Germans, with pockets of Germans living in other political units, some of them not even near the eventual German state.  Austria-Hungary had a large German component and German was the lingua franca there.  Any of these issues could account for a Jew claiming that (s)he was of "German" origin.
Yale Zussman

Koidanov Massacre of 1941 #belarus

Are there any records of those who perished in this mass grave? Or, against all odds, survived?

Thank you,
Judy Cohen

Researching: Zawelowicz, Schneider, Kissen

Re: 60 Minutes Episode on Home DNA Testing and Genealogy Testing #dna

Debra Katz

I simply can't jump aboard the "panic about dna data privacy bandwagon", even though that seems to be a lonely road to travel these days.  I have three key comments in regard to the 60 minutes programs....
1) there is lots of talk about dangers of "big data" and "third party use of the data"---but the "danger" described isn't about anything dangerous to you physically, mentally or in terms of your freedom etc.  The "danger" is all about the idea that someone might profit from your data (either via using it for research or selling it to others).  So the issue here is money not danger.  [And when you are saved by a drug or therapy developed from DNA data analysis, you might not be so upset that your data was used.]
2) most testing companies, and all the ones I've ever used (FTDNA, 23andMe, Geno 2.0, Helix, DeCodeMe, LivingDNA, Nebula Genomics, Ancestry, to name a few.) have privacy protections in place and you have to "opt in" for your info to be used for research or law enforcement. 
3) I think the real "danger" we face is that fears about DNA testing will inhibit people from doing and sharing their DNA results for genealogical purposes and we will lose the best window into our history that has come along....EVER. 
I also found throwing in the "specter" of "the evil communist China" taking our data and dominating our healthcare was really over the top.  What is their evil plan?  Use our DNA to create a genetic Godzilla?  Devise a special disease bomb that targets American but Chinese will be immune? The "horror" they describe in the program is that Chinese will be our "dealer", pushing low-cost, highly-effective health care we won't be able to resist.  Hmmm...that sounds just awful.  And if we don't like that, we could consider developing low-cost, highly-effective health care ourselves...and we don't need their data to do it....we have plenty of our own.   (The example given of Chinese use of DNA data against the Uighers proves my point in that 99% of the ethnic cleansing actions they describe are not DNA-related so DNA data is not the big problem...China's desire to eliminate an entire ethnic group is the problem.)  Should there be reasonable regulation of DNA data?  Of course!  Just like there are regulations about all of our medical data.  Ok, off my soapbox...

Deb (Debra) Katz
Pacific Beach CA USA

Re: Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech

jack nathanson

My mother was born in a town in Buchovina named Seletin. My maternal grandmother was born in a town in Eastern Galicia named Zabie. Until WW1, both Buchovina and Galicia were in the Austrian Empire. The people there had Austrian passports and were educated in German. Even after the Second World War, Holocaust survivors from my family moved to Vienna as they considered themselves Austrian.

Jack Nathanson,

Re: Jewish Community in Finland #general #russia

Jules Levin

I have, or had, relatives from Finland.  Historically Finland admitted
no Jews--it was without Jews at the beginning of the 19th Century.  But
Jews who served honorably in the Russian army and were discharged in
Finland could remain there and send home for brides.  This was the
beginning of the Finnish Jewish community. There is a woman in Finland
with a web site.   She located info on my family.  My great-grand-uncle
served there and remained.  He had 3 children--2 are buried in the
Jewish cemetery of Turku, and one in Helsinki.   This woman would
certainly know about Hamina. My guess is that these Jews were mostly
from the Baltic areas--my family were all Litvaks.  If your relative was
born there, it means his father would have been the discharged soldier. 
The only other class of Jew permitted would have been a rabbi, which the
newly developing communities were allowed to hire and import. Perhaps
your relative's parents were originally from Latvia and decided to
return--they would no doubt have relatives already there.

Jules Levin

On 2/1/2021 11:58 AM, Barbara Levy wrote:

My grandfather said he was born in Finland, probably in Hamina,
Finland. Does anyone know if there was a Jewish community in Hamina,
Finland around 1878, when he was born? How might I find out about
this? When he was a little boy, his family moved (back?) to Riga,
which is where his family was from. Why did they move to Finland? Why
did they leave Finland and move to Latvia? I'm trying to find out all
I can about Jews in Finland. (I've looked at the general sources
available through the web.)

Barbara Levy

Re: Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech

Judy Kaufman <judykaufman7@...>

Thanks, everyone, for the very interesting stories and explanations.  It seems that Jews, I guess like any group, stereotype subgroups and find reasons to look down on the ones to which they don't belong, or to feel looked down upon.

In conversation with a first cousin, I learned that she was always told that our grandfather was Austrian, not German.  He was indeed from a town in the Austrian Empire.  So now I think that my mother turned her father, "Austrian Jew," into "German Jew" and elevated that above a Russian Jew, for reasons that were probably derived more from family dynamics than anything else.
Judy Kaufman
Irvine, CA

LEIDERMAN (Khashchuvatye)
WEINSTEIN (Sokolow-Malopolski)
RASKIN (Chernigor)

Anyone know places called Kajankow and street Richeliewsca - Odessa #ukraine


Dear all,

I saw on a document written by my great grand-father who was applying in 1936 for the French Nationality that his father VERBA Isaac was born in a place called Kajankow but I can find nothing with that name,
Would someone know which city that would refer to?

On that same document he wrote that before leaving to France he lived few years in Odessa exactly Richeliewsca Street, is this street still existing now? What about he  kind of place it was in 1907?

Many thanks for anyhelp,

Sébastien TORIO

Jewish Gen SIG meeting #announcements

Peter Straus

I don’t know where the epicenter for Jewish Gen is, but a later time on the US West Coast for such meetings would sure be appreciated.

--peter straus/SF

Re: Why was I told my mother's family were German Jews when they weren't? #austria-czech

Abuwasta Abuwasta

I have in my maternal family from Galicia some relatives who left to Germany prior to WW1 and escaped to Palestine or Argentina after Hitler came to power.  They always spoke of themselves as Yekkes and distanced themselves from the Ostjuden(The East European Jews regarded as less civilized). Needless to say that at the beginning it hampered my research before I realized that they were Galitzianers in disguise.

Jacob Rosen


Jewish Community in Finland #general #russia

Barbara Levy

My grandfather said he was born in Finland, probably in Hamina, Finland. Does anyone know if there was a Jewish community in Hamina, Finland around 1878, when he was born? How might I find out about this? When he was a little boy, his family moved (back?) to Riga, which is where his family was from. Why did they move to Finland? Why did they leave Finland and move to Latvia? I'm trying to find out all I can about Jews in Finland. (I've looked at the general sources available through the web.)

Barbara Levy

Re: 60 Minutes Episode on Home DNA Testing and Genealogy Testing #dna

Jx. Gx.

It is very tempting to give away your DNA in exchange for a list of potential distant relatives and for data that purports to shown where one's ancestors may have once dwelled. 

The 60 Minute episode only touched on some of the risks associated with giving out one's DNA.  Once it is given you have no control of who has access to it and how it can be used. It is likely to stay around forever and we can't even begin to imagine how it can be used for nefarious ways in the future, especially if it is linked to other bits of data about ourselves gleaned from other sources. I had to laugh when the CEO of 23andMe said her company has policies in place to protect how the DNA data is stored and used, but then admitted that all companies are susceptible to hackers.  Policies are not laws and can change the minute a new CEO is installed or if the company is bought by another firm that has no hesitation about selling your DNA. " CAVEAT EMPTOR (Buyer Beware). 

Jeffrey Gee
Arizona, USA

Re: Why these two naturalization cards? #general

Sherri Bobish


The card with the soundex code B452 in the upper left-had corner is from Index to Naturalization Petitions.

The card with number 5122602 in the upper-right hand corner is from Naturalization Index.  This should refer to the final nat papers.  The "A.R." number in the lower-left corner is his Alien Registration number.

Hope this helps,

Sherri Bobish

January 2021 Summary of IAJGS Records Access Alert #general #jgs-iajgs #records

Jan Meisels Allen

As mentioned previously, every month I post a listing of the IAJGS Records Access Alert topics from the previous month for you to see the variety of issues…some were posted on this discussion group but most were not—   all postings are included below.  The following are the summaries for the month of January, 2021.  In order not to miss out on important information it is worthwhile for you to be subscribed to the Records Access Alert.

Without records, genealogists cannot do genealogy –making certain that we retain access and gain access where it is impaired is every genealogists' responsibility.


•             60 Minutes Episode on Home DNA Testing and Genealogy Testing

•             Ancestry Announces Appointment of Mark Thompson as Chairman of the Board of Directors

•             Ancestry Files Motion to Dismiss Yearbook Photo Misappropriation Law Suit

•             Apple vs Facebook on Privacy Online

•             (Australia) Google Threatens To Leave Australia Due to Proposed Media Law and Link Tax

•             BCG Releases New BCG Application Guide and Revised New-application Rubrics


•             (European Union) CJEU Advisor Recommends Data Protection Agencies in Any EU County Can Take Legal Action

•             (European Union) Council Releases Draft of E-Privacy Regulation

•             (European Union) Macron Tells Tech Companies to Get on Board with EU Regulations; EU Urges US to Draft Joint Rule Book on Tech Companies

•             (European Union) President of EU Commission Writes About Digitalization And What They Want Regarding  Digital Rulebook

•             FamilySearch Family History Library Launches New Webpage

•             (France) French Police Surveillance Dossiers of Interwar Period -Online Index

•             (France-US) US Suspends French Tariffs Over Digital Services Tax

•             International Data Privacy Day  January 28

•             myDNA Merges with FamilyTree DNA

•             (Netherlands)  Council of Ministers Modernizes Old Archives Act

•             (Netherlands) Records That Became Public As of January 2021

•             (Scotland) Scotland's People Adds 250,000 Birth, Death and Marriage Entries

•             Secrecy in Death Records: A Call to Action

•             (UK) 2021 Census Changes Gender Question

•             (UK) World War ll Veterans' Memories for New Welsh Archive


•             (US) 2020 Census Geographic Products Available

•             (US) Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf To Step Down

•             (US) Census Bureau Says' President Trump's Push to Exclude Undocumented from Census Count is Dead

•             (US) 2020 Census Delays Affecting Redistricting Nationwide

•             (US) Chairman of Federal Trade Commission Stepping Down ; Supreme Court FTC Case

•             (US) Commerce Department Trying to Get 2020 Census to President by January 15

•             (US) Federal Records Management: Digitizing Permanent Records and Reviewing Records Schedules

•             (US) Historians Tape Together Records that President Trump Tore Up

•             (US)  Music Modernization Act Final Rules-Copyright

•             (US) Presidential Executive Order Regarding 2020 Census Counting All Residents Regardless of Immigration Status

•             (US) Section 230 60 Minutes Program

•             (US) US House of Representatives Proposed Rules Seek to Erase Gendered Terms

•             (US) US Senate Votes to Override President's Veto of Annual Defense Bill and Maintaining Section 230 of Communications Act

•             RE: (US) US Senate Votes to Override President's Veto of Annual Defense Bill and Maintaining Section 230 of Communications Act

•             (US) USCIS Posts Notice of Preliminary Injunction Regarding  Final Rule

•             (US) USCIS Proposed Rule Change Form I-942

•             (US-MA) Boston Globe Launches "Fresh Start" Similar to Right to Forget

•             (US-Maine) Bill Addressing Birth, Marriage and Death Certificates

•             (US-Maine) Bangor Daily News Taking Requests to remove Old Crime Stories- Right to be Forgotten

•             (US-NY)  Privacy Legislation Regarding Biometric Information  AB 27

•             (US-PA)  Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act

•             MORE (US-PA)  Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act

•             (US-WA)  Litigation To Stop Plan Moving Pacific NW National Archives

•             (US-WA) WA State SSB 5062 Substitute Privacy  Bill

•             USHMM Makes Available War Crimes Nuremberg Trial Recordings Available 


The IAJGS Board of Directors approved opening the Records Access Alert to anyone who is interested in records access. This was announced previously.  We now have subscribers from many genealogical organizations not

previously able to subscribe. To be on top of what is happening I encourage you to register for the Records Access Alerts to receive the information in a timely manner.  If you are interested in any of the above items, please

register for the IAJGS Records Access Alert and look at them in the archives.  To register for the IAJGS Records Access Alert go to: and follow the instructions to enter

your email address, full name and which genealogical organization you belong to-a society, SIG  or a subscriber of JewishGen, Avotaynu, Legal Genealogist  etc. You will receive an email response that you have to reply to,

or the subscription will not be finalized. The alerts are archived and once you register you may access the archives at:


The IAJGS Records Access Alert is not a daily announcement list. Depending on what happens worldwide, there may be no postings for several days and other times there may be several in one day.


These are listed alphabetically not chronologically.  Each month the locales covered differ.


Jan Meisels Allen

Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee



Holocaust Database Announcement - Rovno, Poland Community Fee Contributions (February 1939) #JewishGenUpdates #announcements #holocaust

Nolan Altman

In February of 1939, Równe, was part of Poland.  Subsequently, the town was part of the Soviet Union and today is known as Rivne, in Ukraine.  (For more information on the town, please see JewishGen’s Community Database at and the KehilaLinks page at

According to the source document, the town included a Jewish population of approximately 30,000 of which 2,685 households made “community fee” contributions of approximately 75,700 Polish zlotys.

The database includes 2,686 households in Rovno that paid community fees in Feb 1939 and include surname, given name, street address, occupation in Polish), and amount paid. To assist researchers, you can use (JewishGen’s InfoFile for Polish to English occupation translations).  The full introduction for this dataset can be found at

Nolan Altman

Director of Data Acquisition - Holocaust Database

February 2021


Holocaust book written by a grandson about his grandfather #holocaust


A heartfelt loving tribute by a grandson to his grandfather who survived the Holocaust.  The story is amazing, surviving both the killing fields of Romania and the Russian army.

Joseph Weiss

8561 - 8580 of 663779