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Tracing Your Jewish Ancestors (Kindle)

A Guide for Family Historians

Family History

By Rosemary Wenzerul
Imprint: Pen & Sword Family History
Series: Tracing your Ancestors
File Size: 3.5 MB (.prc)
ISBN: 9781844689804
eBook Released: 14th July 2008

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Rosemary Wenzerul's lively and informative guide to researching Jewish history will be absorbing reading for anyone who wants to find out about the life of a Jewish ancestor. In a clear and accessible way she takes readers through the entire process of research. She provides a brief social history of the Jewish presence in Britain, with descriptions of the principal communities all over the country. She gives a concise account of the history of genealogy and looks at practical issues of research - how to get started, how to organize the work, how to construct a family tree and how to use the information obtained to enlarge upon the social history of the family. She describes, in practical detail, the many sources that researchers can go to for information on their ancestors, their families and Jewish history. Vivid case studies are a feature of her book, for they show how the life stories of individuals can be reconstructed with only a small amount of initial information. Her invaluable handbook will be essential reading and reference for anyone who is trying to gain an insight into the life of an ancestor or is researching any aspect of Jewish history.

For many tracing your family history is something you might do of a weekend inspired perhaps by the program Who Do You Think You Are, however most people may not be aware of the Jewish ancestry present in the family tree. Tracing Your Jewish Ancestors provides a guide to the process of uncovering these links, describing the history of genealogy and how to organise what you uncover into a family tree. With a brief social history of the Jewish presence in Britain also provided, the book also covers interesting topics such as marriage and divorce, the armed forces and the holocaust and how these can be utilised effectively to trace your ancestors. Rosemary Wenzerul is aptly positioned as the author of the book having been a council member and trustee of the Jewish Genealogical society of Great Britain and it is this experience which allows the book through concise text and revealing images to come alive.

John (Customer Review)

Her valuable handbook will be essential reading and reference for anyone who is trying to gain an insight into the life of an ancestor or is researching any aspect of Jewish history.

Expert Genealogy

This is an excellent book suitable for beginners and the more advanced researcher in the rapidly growing field of Jewish genealogy and Family History.

Journal of the Isreal genealogical Society

'This book is surely the definitive for a long time to come'.

Vera Bangs, Cockney Ancestor

research is plentiful and exceptional... very user-friendly

BBC Who Do You Think You Are Magazine - October 2008

Well rounded.... A definitive reference work

Your Family Tree - November 2008

a thorough and comprehensive guide

Ancestors

..an excellent guide suitable both for beginners and the more advanced researcher.

Avotaynu

I am a comparative newcomer to the field of family history research and this book is ideal for one such as myself. The amount of information packed into the 198 pages is amazing, but at the same time it is presented in such a way as to be a very easy and interesting book to read.

It starts with a brief history of the Jews in England and how they settled in various parts of the country.The book touches on education, the work undertaken by the immigrants and gives a little information about schools and synagogues.

As a newcomer to this subject it can be difficult to know where to start and this is where the author is a great help. She tells you how to begin and then goes on to give lots of tips on how to arrange your family tree and details the organizations and archives for research. Her own family is used to illustrate the many points she makes.

The names and addresses of organizations are not confined to the UK. The list includes archives and libraries all over the world to help with your research. There is an extensive index which is an enormous aid because just browsing through it will often point you in a direction of research that you may not have thought of.

I have no hesitation in recommending this book. Every Jewish home should have a copy on the bookshelf.

Martin Wise

This is an excellent guide suitable both for beginners and the more advanced researcher in the rapidly growing field of Jewish genealogy and Family History.

Rosemary Wenzerul has improved and added to her previous publications, which included A Beginners Guide to Jewish Genealogy in Great Britain, Genealogical Resources in the Jewish Home, Jewish Ancestors: A Guide to Organising Your family History Records, and other works.

She starts with a brief Social History of the Jews in England, and deals with London, the east end and the Provinces. This type of summary is difficult to encompass yest Rosemary has managed to make the subject lively and very relevant to the sections that follow. The next chapters deal with practicalities; how to begin, how to draw family tress and to use genealogy programmes to do this, a variety of internet links and then goes onto detail specific archives,public record offices, libraries and museums that have both general records and more specifically, Jewish records.

The subsequent chapters are on the minutiae and specifics of marriage and divorce records, death and burial records, and the deciphering of tombstones (the Hebrew text with transliterations is very useful).

Additional sections are on extending the family history, Jews in the Armed forces and how to obtain these records, and Jewish names and naming patterns.

Out of the ordinary areas of research, and of use to non-Jewish researchers, are the chapters on medical profession and Heraldry.

Very useful areas are the UK connections and Overseas connections. Unfortunately the latter omits the Carribean and Latin America, but this does not detract from its usefulness.

The book ends with useful illustrative case studies based around her own ancestors.

All in all this attractive and compact publication is very well laid out and illustrated. It is properly referenced and the bibliography, although succinct, is most useful.

There is certainly no equivalent publication to date in the U.K. I have no hesitation in recommending it to all who have even the remotest interest in the topic.

Saul Issroff
Hon Vice President
Jewish Genealogy Society of Great Britain

Saul Issroff
 Rosemary Wenzerul

About Rosemary Wenzerul

Rosemary Wenzerul is passionate about family history and has traced her family back to c.1750 in England and c.1725 in Holland.
For many years she was a council member and trustee of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Great Britain and played an active role in its educational and family history work. She was the author/editor of most of the Society's 'Jewish Ancestor' series of Guides on Family History which, in 2008 the Society won the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Society's Outstanding Publications Award for this series.

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