Jewish Genealogy: 101 Resources for Finding Your Jewish Ancestors

A Comprehensive Collection of Jewish Genealogy Resources

Researching your Jewish ancestry can be a much different venture than that of studying your Irish, Russian, German or African roots (to name just a few). In addition to surname research, vital records, archives and gravestones, there are a few other topics you’ll want to look into when conducting Jewish genealogy research. Because Judaism has been described as a religion, race, culture and nation, the Jewish people are like one big, extended family — making Jewish genealogy quite popular. Due to the large number of people who are studying their Jewish ancestry, there are many fantastic Jewish genealogy resources available on and offline to help you fill in your family tree with some newly discovered family stories.

Jewish Genealogy Resources

Photo credit: Yossi Nevo via Wikimedia Commons

From Jewish surname databases, to Holocaust resources, synagogue records and Jewish genealogy blogs, you’re sure to find some long lost ancestors while utilizing our list of 100+ Jewish genealogy links.

Resources for Discovering your Jewish Ancestors

Jewish Libraries, Archives, Databases, Museums & Research Projects

Jewish Census Records

Jewish Military Records & Information

Synagogue Records

Jewish Birth, Marriage & Death Records

Jewish Immigration Records

Holocaust Resources & Registries

Jewish Cemeteries, Gravestones & Obituaries

Jewish Name Search & Surnames

Jewish Newspapers, Newsletters & Publications

Jewish Genealogical Societies & Organizations

Jewish Genealogy Blogs & Additional Resources

Are there additional Jewish genealogy resources missing from our list? Let us know in the comments!

10 thoughts on “Jewish Genealogy: 101 Resources for Finding Your Jewish Ancestors

  1. Rose

    The Israel Genealogy Research Association is the most active group in Israel in the area of building databases that can be searched in both Hebrew and English. Within the 3 years of its existence it has over 440,000 records online from 215 databases. The databases start with the mid 19th century (the Ottoman Empire) through the British Mandate Period and includes the State of Israel. The databases are based on documents found in many different archives in Israel including the Israel State Archives and the Central Zionist Archives and many local archives. With half of the Jewish population of the world living in Israel and many of those abroad have roots in Israel. This is a very important website, and constantly growing.

  2. Rose Feldman

    The five censuses conducted during the 19th century in Eretz Israel can now be searched in both English or Hebrew. They span 1839-1875 and there is one census for Alexandria in 1840. This is one of the most comprehensive databases for the Jewish population in Eretz Israel at this time.

  3. Ava Cohn

    One often overlooked source for learning about our ancestors is the analysis of family photographs including portraits. As Sherlock Cohn, The Photo Genealogist, I analyze photographs to learn the date, the place and other information helpful in fully realizing what life was about for those who cane before us. As a leader in exploring Jewish photographs, I am an expert in clothing styles and other objects found in photos. In addition to analyzing photographs, I lecture on how to make the best use of Jewish family photos in genealogical research.

  4. Tanya Elder

    Hello,
    I am the Senior Archivist at the American Jewish Historical Society. Thanks for including us in this list of genealogical resources! I would like to point out that the AJHS has several collections that would fit under your “Jewish Military Records & Information” listing, including: records of the North American Jewish Welfare Board, collections I-249 National Jewish Welfare Board military chaplaincy records, undated, 1917-1983. [bulk dates 1940-1974] and I-52 National Jewish Welfare Board Bureau of War Records, undated, 1940-1969 (bulk 1943-1946). I-52 documents almost every Jewish soldier who served during World War II. I-249 documents the military Rabbi Chaplain process and I-337 contains records of Rabbis who served during World War II through Vietnam. We also have earlier NJWB records from World War I, I-9 American Jewish Committee, Office of Jewish War Records, records 1918-1921.
    Best regards,
    Tanya Elder

  5. Mark Halpern

    Jewish Records Indexing – Poland is an independent organization that indexes Jewish records of Poland including areas that one were part of Poland. The resulting database has about 5 million entries and is the largest online repository of information for Jews searching their Polish roots. It is said that over 75% of Jews have ancestors who once lived in Poland. The exclusion of this organization from your website is a significant oversight.

  6. Philip Trauring

    Thank you for sharing my blog. I do think both Gesher Galicia and JRI-Poland should be added to the list. JRI-Poland has the largest database of Jewish records from Poland, and Gesher Galicia has a growing database of their own, and a very important map room online.

  7. Ashley Odell

    The Jewish Genealogy Portal is a big oversight. It has three major branches:

    – Jewish Genealogy Portal on Geni: http://www.geni.com/projects/Jewish-Genealogy-Portal-A-Guide-to-Jewish-Projects-and-Resources-on-Geni/13121

    Close to 1,000 dedicated genealogists working on hundreds of relevant projects. Geni has, by far, the largest and most meticulously researched and sourced collaborative Jewish tree on-line, so you kinda *have* to be on it if you want to fully benefit from what the Internet has to offer. The curator team there includes some of the most prominent names in Jewish genealogy and they will never charge you for their help. Join (it’s free) and get involved; you won’t regret it.

    – Jewish Genealogy Portal Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/JewishGenealogyPortal

    40,000 people following daily news, resources, and discussion

    – Jewish Genealogy Portal Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/641559152559001

    Open discussion and networking group with about 6,000 users…incredibly useful

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