Computer Workshops

Register now for computer workshops.

We have scheduled seven workshops for family researchers with beginning to advanced computer skills to learn how to make the most efficient use of your time online and to give you some useful new tools.

Participants must bring their own computers to a classroom with free WiFi to follow the instructor’s lead on a projection screen. Sessions cost just $25 each, and space is limited, so check out the offerings and make your selections as soon as possible.

Subjects include how to get the most out of resources available at JewishGen, FamilySearch, the Israel Genealogy Research Association, Jewish Records Indexing-Poland, and a new website on Jewish heritage in Krakow and Western Galicia.

For those with skills beyond beginning, a session will show you how to build maps showing places where your ancestors lived using information from such sources as grave locations, land registries, old maps from different time-frames (cadastral maps), and current mapping services. Another will guide you in the use of online tools such as JewishGen’s Viewmate and Google Translate to get translations of your documents and gravestone photos in Hebrew or Cyrillic characters or in Polish, Lithuanian, Italian, and German, if your mysteries lie there.

For more details, see below or go to the complete Conference program and schedule (available here).

How to Sign Up

If you have already registered for the Conference, go to the Attendee Service Center under the REGISTRATION tab. Sign in with the email address you used for registration and the password from your confirmation message. On the welcome page, click “Update Your Info”, then click “Edit” and continue through the registration form. (This would be a good time to update or add information and to review your family surnames and historical towns.)

On the “Fee-Added Events” page, make your selections and continue through to payment and confirmation.

The Fine Print

You must be registered for the Conference to buy a workshop ticket. No refund will be issued for a cancellation, but the paid fee may be applied to another computer session, if space is available, or to any other fee (e.g., a meal), subject to availability.

Workshop Details

MONDAY, August 6

8:00 am – 9:30 am
Introduction to JewishGen
Debra Kay-Blatt, Jane Tobias

Beginners. An introduction to the use of the JewishGen website, including familiarization with search functions; databases, including the All-Country Databases; use of the Family Finder; and introduction to KehilaLinks pages.

9:45 am – 11:15 am
Integrating Information from Different Sources to Build Map Applications
Zbigniew Stattner

Intermediate. I will introduce computer programs and online services useful in mapping your family history. I will show how to join information from various sources (grave locations, land registries, etc., locations written in gedcom files) with old maps from different time frames and current mapping services in order to build beautiful and informative map applications showing places where your ancestors lived. Examples used during the workshop will be based on maps of Galicia from different periods (19th century cadastral maps, Austrian military surveys, Polish military maps from 1930s), but the techniques and applications are applicable anywhere else as well. I will also tell where to find (also online) maps for current Polish territory as well as for Western Ukraine and Belarus. Participants will have a chance to work on their own towns during the workshop.

11:30 am – 1:00 pm
JewishGen Viewmate, Google Translate, and Other Online Tools
Celia Haupt

Intermediate. This will be a computer workshop on various translation tools including the JewishGen Viewmate community, Google Translate, and social media, as well as others on the Internet. Referrals to sites with translation hints for vital records and tombstone translations will be provided. We will also cover how to capture text in alphabets such as Cyrillic and Hebrew. Bring samples (pdf or jpeg) or transcriptions of items (word, notepad) you would like to translate, or use my examples. Workshop examples could be in Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian, Polish, Lithuanian, Italian, and German, but many of the tools demonstrated will not have language limitations. Handouts include step-by-step guides and all website links.

1:30 pm – 3:00 pm
Making the Most of FamilySearch for Jewish Research
W. Todd Knowles

All skill levels. FamilySearch ( is the largest free genealogical website in the world, containing over 6 billion records. This workshop will teach the participants how to make the most of its collection for their personal research. All aspects of FamilySearch will be discussed.

3:15 pm – 4:45 pm
Introduction to New Genealogy Website:
Jakub Czuprynski

All skill levels. A workshop on how to use a new genealogy website on the Jewish community of Kraków and Western Galicia. The website was developed by the Jewish Community Centre in Kraków using a now defunct web page The workshop is aimed at providing information on how to use the website, especially its new functionalities, such as interactive maps for family historians who do their research in former Galicia.

Tuesday, August 7

8:00 am – 9:30 am
Making the Most of IGRA Resources
Garri Regev

All skill levels. Israel Genealogy Research Association now has over one million records available to the public. In addition there are resources covering a variety of topics and countries. Strategies will be discussed on making the most of these resources and what to do when vital records may not be available. We’ll look at the variety of databases and the kinds of information you may be able to find to fill out your family story. Mention will also be made of resources to consider in addition to those on the IGRA website that could add to your research.

9:45 am – 11:15 am
Jewish Records Indexing-Poland Computer Workshop
Hadassah Lipsius

Beginners. This hands-on beginner’s workshop will explore the JRI-Poland website and allow the participant to practice initiating basic searches in the database. The goal of the session will be to familiarize the researcher with the JRI-Poland search screens and help understand the search results. The workshop will explore narrowing techniques for managing large results and provide hints for effectively using the two-stage results screen. Experience using the Internet is recommended, but no experience with the JRI-Poland database is necessary. Note: All participants must have a JewishGen ID and know their password. To obtain an account, please go to and register.


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