Thursday, January 10, 2019

RootsTech for Jewish Genealogists

It's almost that time of year--RootsTech is coming!  And while Utah isn't the first place one would think of for Jewish genealogy, there's so much that RootsTech offers the Jewish genealogist.

(Note:  If you're coming or thinking about coming, keep reading to learn about a dinner for Jewish genealogists.)

Just a tiny portion of the HUGE exhibit hall

I'm giving two talks, both of which will be of interest to those doing Jewish genealogical research.

On Wednesday afternoon, I'm speaking on "Jewish Genealogy--How to Start, Where to Look, What's Available."  It'll be a comprehensive overview of the types of resources you can use to research your Jewish family.

And then on Thursday afternoon, you can hear me speak on "Success In--And In Spite Of--Endogamy."  You'll learn why Jewish (and others' from endogamous communities) genetic genealogy is harder--but also learn some techniques to still have successes.

Thanks to the RootsTech organizers for making sure that my talks weren't scheduled on Friday afternoon or Saturday!

On Thursday morning, Schelly Dardashti is giving a talk on Sephardic resources.  If your research tends to be more Ashkenazi-focused (like mine is, since most of my family's been in what's now Ukraine for as far back as I have traced), this is a great way to learn about Jewish genealogy resources that I might not have used before.

There are hundreds of other talks that, while not specifically focused on Jewish genealogy, are very applicable to Jewish research.  There are talks on genealogical methodology, DNA and various sorts of resources that could be applicable to your research.  There are classes on how to record and tell your family's stories.  And sometimes I just go to talks that are completely not relevant to Jewish genealogy, and I learn about incredible resources available in other countries and see the kinds of logic that people use in their research.

And one of the highlights for Jewish attendees at RootsTech is an informal (kosher!) Friday night dinner that we have held for the past three years.  It's a great chance to start Shabbat with other Jewish genealogists.  We spend a few hours eating, drinking, talking (mostly genealogy), and hanging out.  We span the religious spectrum from Orthodox to not-at-all-religious.  If you're going to be in town, please let me know so we know how many to expect.  The dinner is held on North Temple Street, just north of the Salt Palace Convention Center, so it's nice and convenient.

So go register!  See you in Salt Lake City!

(Note:  I am a RootsTech Ambassador.  This means I get some perks like free registration--which I'd get anyways since I'm speaking.  And it means I periodically write posts about RootsTech.  Plus, I may get more people to know about our dinner.)

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  1. Looking forward to seeing you again this year at RootsTech Hopefully, we will have a little bit more time to chat than at a crosswalk. ;)

    1. Definitely! We should set a time to make sure it happens.

  2. Not this year, but someday...Otherwise, hope to see/hear you in Cleveland!!

    1. I spoke in Cleveland in July and plan to attend the IAJGS conference there this summer as well.

  3. Hello Lara, I really need to learn more about Jewish genetic genealogy and fast. I'm familiar with determining non endogamous paternity, but would love to learn tools for JGG. I'm sorry I missed this in SLC. Any online webinars you can recommend?