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Year-end Program on Ellis Island Features Reenactment and Two Talks by Joel Weintraub

June 10, 2018 @ 1:30 pm - 4:00 pm EDT

at Temple Emanuel


At its program year end, JGSGB is putting on a special two-part program unlike anything we’ve ever done before: a reenactment of the immigrant experience of our ancestors! The event will take the viewer from getting tickets to filling out paperwork to boarding a steamship and then pick up at Ellis Island with the various hurdles an immigrant had to overcome to be admitted to America.

Joel WeintraubWhat Really Happened at Ellis Island?
Did your ancestors come through Ellis Island?  Does your family story include a name change by an immigration inspector?  Joel Weintraub will review the evidence of name changes and the procedures that were followed in the processing of newly arrived immigrants.  These include the legal documents that accompanied immigrants and official documents that were generated in the course of detentions at the station.  Note: be prepared to avoid deportation by Inspector Weintraub!

Finding “Waldo” at Ellis Island
Have you tried and failed to find your ancestors’ names on immigration manifests from Ellis Island?  Using a case study, Weintraub will demonstrate nine different strategies to help you locate the records of your elusive immigrant ancestors.  You’ll see how difficult it is to accurately transcribe and index the manifests, which may provide clues to finding the names that were mangled in the process.

Joel Weintraub volunteered for nine years at the National Archives (NARA), during which he created search tools that are available online for federal and NYC census records. He is now working with Steve Morse to develop tools for the release of the 1950 census in 2022.  Weintraub is a Professor Emeritus at California State University, Fullerton.

A short annual meeting and elections will precede the lectures.

Special Interest Group (SIG) Meetings

Pre-lecture: 12:30 pm – 1:20 pm
Bessarabia, Poland, Litvak and Ukraine SIGs are cancelled.

Post-lecture (approx. 3:30 pm)
Belarus  SIG

Admission is free for members, $5 for non-members. Refreshments will be served.


June 10, 2018
1:30 pm - 4:00 pm EDT
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at Temple Emanuel
385 Ward Street
Newton Centre, MA 02459 United States
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