JewishGen Weekly News Nosh December 18, 2022 #JewishGenUpdates

Phil Goldfarb



The Weekly News Nosh

JewishGen Weekly E-Newsletter

Phil Goldfarb Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA, Editor

Date: December 18, 2022 

“A Family Without The Understanding Of Their Past History, Foundation And Ethnicity Is Like A Tree Without Roots”


A Happy, Healthy and Enjoyable Hanukkah (or Hanukah, or Chanukkah, or Chanukah) to all. Did you know that according to the Oxford English dictionary, there are 24 different spellings for Hanukkah? 

Enjoy this week’s Nosh!




1.      JewishGen is offering the following course in January: Fundamental Series I: Fresh Start. Dates: January 5th-29th   Instructor: Nancy Holden. Tuition: $150. If you are just starting out or want to start again, this class is for those who want to move beyond an interest in family history to working with a tutor, mentor, and coach to learn the tips, tools and techniques of United States Jewish Genealogy. Bring the past alive. Fresh Start will move you though the major steps in genealogical research so that you can find the story behind the facts. It includes sources and methods: from getting organized to how to best use the fundamental databases to find census, passenger records, vital records and former places of residence. To read more, to enroll and for questions go to: To check on a course special discount for JewishGen supporters contact Nancy Holden: education@...


2. adds millions of pages. If you are a subscriber to and your newspaper research has taken you to the United Kingdom, you may have noticed 25 million new pages of UK content this year, with another 20 million coming over the next six months. See the story from their blog: Millions of New Pages from the United Kingdom! - The official blog of Editor Note: there is a major difference in content with adding to an Ancestry subscription verses ordering alone. Many more papers to choose from when subscribing to the web site alone.


3.      Worldwide Holocaust Memorial Monuments Digital Database Launched.  The new database which is still in a developmental stage has been created to collect and preserve digital documentation about Holocaust memorial monuments worldwide, including standardized mapping, photography, description, and historical research. It also includes a growing bibliography on Holocaust and memorial monuments. The database records searchable and comparative information for educational, public policy, and academic use. Read more at: Center for Jewish Art (


4.      National Security Archive Launches Newly Designed Russian Pages. The National Security Archive relaunched its platform of Russian-language primary source featuring a new search engine that allows researchers to perform full-text searches of thousands of documents in Russian and a new design that makes pages easier to read on mobile devices. To read more see: Thanks to Jan Meisels Allen, Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee for this story.


5.      Recently Added and Updated Collections on 30 new or updated record collections on Ancestry. To view go to: Recently Added and Updated Collections on Ancestry


6.      Find My Past (U.K.) adds new records this week. Explore thousands of new records, from Surrey to the States. This week's release uncovers different slices of history across the globe. Go to: Explore thousands of new records, from Surrey to the States | Blog |


7.      Free Download! The 2022 Chanukah Companion is now available! The JewishGen Chanukah Companion 2022/5783 which contains a small collection of historical and inspirational vignettes about Chanukah that are accessible on the JewishGen site is now available. To download, go to:


8.      Since we are Celebrating Hanukkah…9 Things You Didn’t Know About Hanukkah. Lesser-known facts about the Festival of Lights. Hanukkah is one of the most widely celebrated Jewish holidays in the United States, but that doesn’t mean there is nothing new to learn about this eight-day festival. Read the story from My Jewish Learning: 9 Things You Didn't Know About Hanukkah | My Jewish Learning


9.      Speaking of Hanukkah…How to Play Dreidel. Learn how to play this Hanukkah game with a video and written instructions. The Hebrew word for dreidel is sevivon, which, as in Yiddish, means “to turn around.” Dreidels have four Hebrew letters on them, and they stand for the saying, Nes gadol haya sham, meaning A Great Miracle Occurred There. Read the story and see the video from My Jewish Learning: How to Play Dreidel | My Jewish Learning


10.  History and Meaning of Dreidels along with Eight Interesting facts. Dreidels symbolize deep spiritual concepts and have a fascinating history. Dreidels are a beloved part of Hanukkah celebrations the world over. And they're far from being simple playthings; dreidels symbolize deep spiritual concepts and have a fascinating history. Here are 8 little-known facts about them (along with some great pictures of ancient Dreidels). Read the story from Aish: History and Meaning of Dreidels: 8 Interesting Facts -


11.  Yet, even more on Hanukkah… ‘Sunday Night Football’ to feature first-ever Hanukkah menorah lighting. When the New York Giants and Washington Commanders face off on “Sunday Night Football” this weekend, there will be two extra lights inside the stadium. Sunday is the first night of Hanukkah, and for the first time ever, the National Football League’s marquee game will feature a menorah lighting. Read the story from JTA: ‘Sunday Night Football’ to feature first-ever Hanukkah menorah lighting - Jewish Telegraphic Agency (


12.  Rare home movies show rural Jewish life before the Holocaust. Movies donated to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, captured images of a man’s doomed neighbors in Poland.  Louis de Groot was the only member of his immediate family to survive the Holocaust. After liberation, he retrieved film footage his father had taken of their family before they separated and went into hiding. Read the story and watch the video: The Home Movies — United States Holocaust Memorial Museum ( Thanks to Bruce Drake for bringing this story to my attention.


13.  Regina Jonas. How one of the first female rabbis was almost forgotten. Regina Jonas, the first woman to be ordained as a rabbi, was killed in Auschwitz in October 1944. From 1942-1944 she performed rabbinical functions in Theresienstadt (also known as Terezin). Read the story from My Jewish Learning: Regina Jonas | My Jewish Learning


14.  Materials from the Augusta Jewish Museum documenting more than two centuries of Jewish life, culture, and tradition now available online. The collection contains historical materials dating from 1850 to 2022 that come from a diverse group of Jewish creators. Read more from their blog at:


15.  2,200-year-old coin hoard gives hard proof of Book of Maccabees, say archaeologists. Trove of silver coins – two months’ average salary – documents bloody persecution preceding the famous Hanukkah revolt when Jews fled to the desert, as written in I Maccabees 2:29. incredibly preserved wooden box holding 15 silver tetradrachma coins was discovered in a cave in the Darageh Stream Nature Reserve. The coins were minted by Ptolemy VI, king of Egypt, and date to up to 170 BCE, which is just before Seleucid King Antiochus IV Epiphanes began handing down harsh measures against Jews’ freedom of worship. Read the story from the Times of Israel: 2,200-year-old coin hoard gives hard proof of Book of Maccabees, say archaeologists | The Times of Israel


16.  The Dorot Jewish Division of the New York Public Library is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. Opened just two years after the New York Public Library itself, the collection, housed in the library’s main building on Fifth Ave., boasts over 250,000 materials from all over the world, with the earliest ones dating back to the 13th century. Read about the top 10 treasures from the collection: 10 treasures from the New York Public Library’s 125-year-old Jewish collection - Jewish Telegraphic Agency (


17.  New Museum to provide comprehensive look at Albanian Jewish life. The Jewish population of Vlore totaled approximately 2,600 in the 1500s, when the city was a trade hub. Today, the figure has dwindled to 50-100 Albanian-born Jews. Vlore, the third-largest city in Albania, was the historic home of Albania’s biggest Jewish community. The city now plans to build a Jewish Museum to commemorate this history. Read the story from JNS: New museum to provide comprehensive look at Albanian Jewish life  -


18.  Danish Jews celebrate 400 years of existence since the king at the time invited the first Jews to live in the country. A story of tolerance and antisemitism. The embassy in Israel brought together Danish Holocaust survivors, historians and the First Lady of Israel for a special event in Tel Aviv. Read the story from Jewish News UK:  Danish Jews celebrate 400 years of existence: A story of tolerance and antisemitism | Jewish News


19.  Proof of biblical kings of Israel, Judah deciphered on Jerusalem rock inscriptions. Detailed inscriptions of 8th-century BCE Judean King Hezekiah discovered in ‘monumental’ archaeological discovery. What a University of Haifa professor of biblical studies and ancient history has called “one of the most important archaeological discoveries in Israel of all time” – five monumental, new royal inscriptions of King Hezekiah of Judah, which together include dozens of lines and hundreds of letters – have now been deciphered. Read the story from The Jerusalem Post: Proof of biblical kings of Israel, Judah deciphered on rock inscriptions - The Jerusalem Post (


20.  Morocco’s Jewish golden era comes back to life. An Israeli historian has published a fascinating study of how Hebrew culture bloomed among Morocco’s Jews between 1912 and 1956. Moroccan Jewry during the period under review was in the midst of a process of secularization that had begun in the 19th century but gained momentum at the start of the 20th as a Westernized elite emerged. Read the story from The Forward (may require a subscription):  Morocco's Jewish golden era comes back to life – The Forward



21.  Finally…. Pray and Pickle. A pickleball court in a synagogue.  Pickleball, the subject of countless breathless articles calling it the fastest growing sport in America, is essentially tennis for people with terrible knees. I am one of them (with two knee replacements) playing 2-3 times a week! For you pickleball enthusiasts, read the article from NY Jewish Week:


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