All posts by Banai Lynn Feldstein

Banai is the Treasurer, Webmaster, and Past President of UJGS. She is a professional genealogist living in Salt Lake City, Utah specializing in Jewish and European research.

24 Hours of Genealogy Webinars

MyHeritage is hosting a 24 hour marathon of webinars at Legacy Family Tree Webinars, on March 12th and 13th.

The webinars begin at 3pm today, March 12, and conclude the tomorrow.

You can see the list of webinars, the times, and register on their web site. Registration is for the full day, but you can log in for only the webinars you want to see. Additionally, the webinars will be available for free for a week, so if you miss the one at 2am, or even at 2pm, you have a week to catch it before you’ll have to pay to see it.

There are webinars on Swedish, Dutch, Belgian, Australian and New Zealand records, as well as evidence and proof, name-changing ancestors, several on DNA, US census, and more.

Be sure to check out the list to see which ones apply to your own research and don’t miss your chance for more genealogy education.

We meant to send this message out earlier, but even if you don’t make it to the live version, you still have a week to watch.

RootsTech Live Streaming – Free

You probably already know that RootsTech is this week. Some of our members may be attending. Some are working in the Expo Hall.

But if you haven’t bought a ticket to the conference, you can still enjoy some of the sessions. RootsTech is live streaming, as in previous years, and you can watch from home.

The schedule is on their web site: RootsTech Live Streaming.

The live stream will probably be right on that page, or they’ll provide a link from that page. They will stream all of the keynotes, this year called “general sessions”, along with many other presentations

Be sure to check the schedule so you don’t miss something you might want to see. Also, RootsTech usually shares those videos after the conference, so you’ll have another chance to watch them for free later. (Some keynotes in previous years were not shared later, so try to catch them live if you can.)


Call To Meeting Reminder – February 24

Our first meeting for 2020 is coming up on Monday, February 24th at 6:30pm in the main floor classrooms of the Family History Library.

Daniel Horowitz will present Israeli and European Records Available on MyHeritage.

Don’t forget that dues is due, $10 per person or $15 per couple. We can take credit cards in person as well as cash or check, or pay in advance online by credit card at Square.

See you next week.



Call To Meeting – February 24

Daniel Horowitz
Daniel Horowitz

It’s almost time for Utah JGS’s first meeting of the year. We will be meeting on Monday, February 24th at 6:30 pm in the main floor classrooms at the Family History Library.

Our speaker is Daniel Horowitz, the genealogy expert at MyHeritage, and he’ll be telling us about Israeli and European Records Available on MyHeritage.

This meeting takes place the same week as RootsTech. Whether you are planning to attend or not, in past years, the Expo Hall has been free to visit, and probably will be again. You can meet with the vendors and learn about the products and technologies they offer to assist with your genealogy research. We recommend a visit one day.

And because this is our first meeting of the year, it’s time to pay your dues: $10 per person or $15 per couple. You can pay in person (cash, check, or credit card) or by credit card online at Square.

See you there!

USCIS Fee Hike

If you have a certain number of genea-friends on social media, you may have already seen this, but we want to inform you about something that is currently going on in the genealogy world.

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS, formerly the INS) has proposed an outrageous fee increase, raising the fees for a $65 search and the follow-up $65 record retrieval to $240 and $385 — a 492% increase.

What files does the USCIS have?

  • Naturalization Certificate Files (C-Files), September 27, 1906 to March 31, 1956
  • Alien Registration Forms (Form AR-2), August 1940 to March 1944
  • Visa Files, July 1, 1924 to March 31, 1944
  • Registry Files, March 1929 to March 31, 1944
  • A-Files, April 1, 1944 to May 1, 1951

These are records that cannot be found anywhere else. NARA should have already received some of these files, which would make them easier for genealogists to access, but they have not been passed along as they should have been. And no genealogy organization has access to them or even to the indexes.

The USCIS has provided an opportunity for us to comment on the proposed rule that dramatically impacts the USCIS Genealogy Records Program.

You can read more about the rule proposal at https://www.recordsnotrevenue.com/ as well as see samples of some documents you may get from USCIS.

We encourage all of our members and friends to then follow through and comment on how you feel about this fee increase at https://www.regulations.gov/comment?D=USCIS-2019-0010-0001. They have already received over 11,000 comments and you can leave a comment until the end of December.

Movie Screening – October 2

Announcing a screening of the award-winning film, Children of the Inquisition, followed by a discussion with the film’s director, Joseph Lovett.  The film follows people in their journey of self-discovery through genealogy research and the stories of their ancestors who survived the Inquisition.  Children of the Inquisition won the Grand Prize for the “Hearts, Minds, Souls Award:  Celebrating Films that Reflect the Jewish Experience” from the Flicker’s Rhode Island International Film Festival.

The event will take place at the Gould Auditorium, Marriott Library, at the University of Utah from 5:30 – 8:00pm on October 2nd. It is being sponsored by Friends of the Marriott Library, the Marriott Library Special Collections, and the Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library. Free refreshments will be provided.

More about the film and the trailer can be found at: https://childrenoftheinquisition.com/.

There is a parking lot west of the library for $2 per hour, or several TRAX or UTA bus stops on campus. The library provides directions and more information.

Robert Neu, 1940-2019

UJGS is sad to report we’ve just learned about the death of Robert Neu on 16 March 2019.

Robert was the founder of our society in 2002, serving as president from that time until he left for an LDS mission in 2007. Upon his return in 2008, he remained an active member until about 2012. He continued to attend sporadically until his last meeting in 2015. He moved to Minnesota soon after.

Robert contributed regularly to Atsmi Uvsari, our newsletter (2003-2010), including as the editor for about a year. His book reviews can be found in many of the old issues, along with other stories.

In 2005 (Issue 10, page 7), Robert gave the following still-relevant advice to our members:

“Don’t give up. Get to know ALL the records from the area you are researching. Help others as you gain knowledge.”

Robert was buried at Fair View Cemetery in Middletown, New Jersey, where he has other family members. He was 78 years old. His obituary can be read online.

UJGS sends its condolences to his many family members and friends.

Call to Meeting – May 21

It’s time for another Utah JGS meeting.

As usual, it will be on Tuesday night, May 21st, at 6:30pm in one of the main floor classrooms along the back wall of the Family History Library.

This month, we’ll be learning from our own Josh Perlman and Banai Feldstein as they teach us about Jewish Gravestones: What To Look For And How To Understand Them.

Need help with some gravestones? Bring along your pictures. We always have some time after the meeting to help out our members with their genealogy research, and this month would be appropriate to help with gravestones. Or if you have some other brick wall in your research, we’ll be happy to help you try to bust through it. Just bring whatever details you already have and we’ll give it a go.

See you there!

Call to Meeting – March 19

Hello geneafriends.

We have a whole bunch of new people joining our UJGS mailing list from RootsTech. Thank you for stopping by the IAJGS booth and signing up.

Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, March 19th, at 6:30pm. We meet at the Family History Library in the main floor classroom B or C — we’ll be in one and the other is usually empty.

Parking is free behind the museum next door beginning at 4pm. The entrance is accessible when heading East on North Temple between 200 West and West Temple. (If you’re driving West, there’s a median so you’ll have to U-turn.)

Many of you had questions about your research and DNA results. Bring your genealogy problems and we’ll try to help.

See you then!

Call to Meeting Reminder – February 26

Just a reminder that our first meeting of the year is next Tuesday at the FHL at 6:30pm in our usual place, the classrooms on the main floor.

Daniel Horowitz will be telling us about 10 Things You May Not Want to Know About MyHeritage. This is a great opportunity to learn about some of the features that site has to offer.

As always, since we meet at the library, you are free to do research before and after the meeting, and if you need some help with your research, we’ll do what we can to help you.

We’re also taking this opportunity to remind you that, since it’s the first meeting of the year, dues is due. It’s just $10 per person or $15 per couple. You can pay at the meeting by cash, check, or credit card, or pay online by credit card at our Square Store.

See you next week.