Join us for two talks. The first is “Finding Your Family in Online Newspapers, One Character at a Time,” by Janeen Bjork.
Bjork shows how searching through newspapers can augment our genealogy research. She explains how newspaper searches are done and how to manipulate your query to find results. She presents a very useful and often under-appreciated tool that researchers can use.
TV researcher and genealogy teacher Bjork has been obsessed with the information historical newspapers contain ever since she found a story about the 1894 murder of her great-great-grandfather, William Strutz, in a Syracuse, N.Y., newspaper. She’ll share her search methodology via several case studies that illustrate how anyone (you!) can find and preserve family items from online newspapers.
This talk will be followed by a spotlight talk on “Finnish Jews: Strangers in a Stranger Land,” by John Simon.
The first Jews came to Finland as soldiers with the Russian army, when Finland (formerly part of Sweden) became a grand duchy of the Russian Empire in 1809. Although the rights of Jews were restricted for over a hundred years, during WWII, Finnish Jews as citizens openly served in the Finnish army, even fighting under German command.
In his book, “Strangers in a Stranger Land: How One Country’s Jews Fought an Unwinnable War Alongside Nazi Troops…and Survived,” Simon follows three generations of Finland’s small Jewish community exploring the historical, psychological and moral implications of the extraordinary circumstances into which these Jews were thrust.
Simon grew up in Pleasantville, N.Y., and studied at Hamilton College, Cambridge University, the Sorbonne and the University of York. In 1973, he founded a program serving at-risk youth in Manhattan, described in his book “To Become Somebody.” In 1984, he moved to Finland, where he worked for KONE Corporation as a communications officer.
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