JGS of CNY present "Moving Your Family Memories from Nostalgia to History" by by Dr. Samuel D. Gruber #announcements #events #education



Hello All,
Our first meeting of the year 5782  will be on Zoom on Sunday, October 17th at 1:00 P.M. We have our very own Dr. Sam Gruber, art and architectural historian here at Syracuse University (and world renowned) He'll talk on "Moving Your Family Memories from Nostalgia to History", see more detail below.
When: Oct 17, 2021 01:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada) 

Register in advance for this meeting:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Yonat Klein
Syracuse NY


Moving Your Family Memories from Nostalgia to History

by Dr. Samuel D. Gruber

Once we have populated our family tree, filled in the names and dates, what have we learned? What does it mean to know an ancestor’s name but not much more? What makes genealogy different from lepidoptery or philately (collecting butterflies or stamps)?

Genealogy is only a doorway to begin an investigation of the past. We can do this by collecting and circulating legends, hearsay, stereotypes, and biases, OR we can combine these and other tools to dig deeper to make useful history.  We can frame questions and use our genealogical research as the beginning of larger explorations about Jews and Judaism, immigration and America, economic and social castes and hierarchies, and about a wide range of cultural and social expression.

In this talk – and discussion – Dr. Gruber will review ways Jewish genealogy and family history can be expanded beyond the strictly personal.  He’ll draw on his own experience helping American Jews reconnect with places of their family origin and discuss his own ongoing research using family history sources – memoirs, letter, scrapbooks, photos, etc. – to better understand his own family histories, and how these fit in the broader immigrant and American experience. He’ll discuss how personal stories can be used to recast older narratives to have relevancy today.


Sam Gruber is an art and architectural historian who since the 1980s has been actively engaged in the documentation, protection, and preservation of Jewish historic, cultural, and religious sites around the world.  He was the founding director of the Jewish Heritage Program of the World Monuments Fund (1988-1996), Research Director of the US Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad (1998-2006) and has been President of the International Survey of Jewish Monuments since 1997.  Sam has lived in Syracuse since 1993 and is a long-time member of Temple Concord, for which he co-chaired it building centennial celebration in 2010-11. He writes frequently about Syracuse Jewish sites and history on his blog “My Central New York.”