Sunday, July 23, 2017

IAJGS2017, Day 1

(I'll be blogging about IAJGS2017 all week.  You can see all IAJGS2017 posts here and posts for all IAJGS conferences I've attended here.)

Today got off to an early (6:15AM) flight to Orlando.  We were at the hotel by 9:30, and then it was off for registration and to start the day!
All Registered!

I started off by listening to Janette Silverman speak about "Personalizing History."  She discussed how in genealogy we sometimes have a hard time separating ourselves from family stories from what the documents are telling us.

When we learned Jewish history in school, Janette felt that we learned about oppression and timelines but didn't look at things from the context of history. We didn't look at discrepancies across records.   And family members often zone out as we discuss our genealogical research.  We need to better engage people and can do that by making genealogy more personal.
Janette Silverman speaking

Janette looks at what there about each record that makes her feel more connected.  Is it just a point on a timeline or is something different happening?  Is there a story?  What was happening historically that day?  Many things happened each day; which is most relevant to you?  Finding that can make history become more personal.  She gave many examples from her own family where she was able to take documents and make them come alive.

Then I helped at at the Ukraine SIG table at the Share Fair for a while--and I saw lots of old friends while sitting there.

And then it was time for my talk.
I spoke about endogamy--why people get the types of results they do when they are Jewish and also how despite that they can have successes.  I think it went really well--there was some laughter and there were some good questions.

Then it was off to a meeting for JewishGen SIG leaders, and then to the JGS presidents' reception (where I was able to have a diet coke thanks to no kosher food).

And then I went to the opening keynote.  I may or may not have been wearing a penguin hat, as I am a founding member of the Antarctic Jewish Genealogical Society.  (It's really cool to be a member; we're really chill.)  Ron Arons even wore a full penguin suit.
Ron Arons leading the march of the penguins

Adam Brown (conference organizer) and Marlis Humphries (IAJGS president) opened it.  For those who are interested, next year's conference will be in Warsaw, Poland from August 6-10.  Then Daniel Horowitz spoke about MyHeritage (sponsor for the evening).
At the IAJGS2017 Opening Keynote

The main keynote was given by Robert Watson:  "Alexander Hamilton, the Jews, and the American Revolution."
Opening Keynote
He gave a very interesting and entertaining talk--and I think my nieces would have appreciated it more than I since they are huge fans of the Hamilton musical.  (Did you know Hamilton attended Hebrew school?  He was essentially raised by a Sephardic community.)

I'm exhausted, and tomorrow is starting early!

Note:  I'm on Twitter.  Follow me (@larasgenealogy).

Want to get future blog posts emailed to you automatically?
Enter your email address:

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like you re off to a VERY busy start! I look forward to hearing more . . .