The Award-Winning Searchable Database of Indexes to Jewish Records of Poland
JRI-Poland is an independent non-profit tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.
 ANNOUNCEMENTS                             בעברית   en Francais   en Español   po Polsku   in Deutsch

JRI-Poland featured in Avotaynu - The International Review of Jewish Genealogy

Polish State Archives & JRI-Poland Sign Historic Agreement Expanding Access to Records

JRI-Poland plays important role in Canadian Episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?"

JRI-Poland introduces new Surname Distribution Mapper tool to graphically follow families in the records of Poland

JRI-Poland adopts Log-In system for database searches

JRI-Poland invaluable to US Television Series "Who Do You Think You Are?"

Jewish Records Indexing - Poland / Museum of the History of Polish Jews Announcement

 Polish State Archives & JRI-Poland Sign Historic Agreement Expanding Access to Records

On Friday, Feb. 15, the Polish State Archives (PSA) and Jewish Records Indexing-Poland (JRI-Poland) entered into a new multi-year agreement that will expand access to Jewish records for thousands of family historians.


Polish Consul General Andrzej
Szydło and Stanley Diamond

Director Władysław Stępniak &
Intl Dept Head Ania Krochmal

Video of the Official Signing

The agreement will enable JRI-Poland to rapidly expand its current online database of indices to five million records. With the support of researchers from the hundreds of towns with records in the JRI-Poland database, indices to more than one million additional records are expected to become available within a year.

The agreement reflects a resumption of cooperation between the PSA and JRI-Poland, whose landmark agreement from 1997-2006 resulted in the indexing of more than four million records whose listings are searchable in the JRI-Poland database.

JRI-Poland and the PSA will institute a new Order Processing System to vastly simplify the process of obtaining copies of archival records. JRI-Poland will have the administrative responsibility for processing orders for records from branches of the Polish State Archives. Researchers will be able to place orders by clicking on record index entries of interest in the JRI-Poland search results and paying by credit card via the JRI-Poland website.

In a statement reflecting the strong significance of these records and their importance to family historians around the world, the PSA announced that they are beginning a massive effort to digitize all vital records in their more than 30 Regional Archives. These will be available — free — on their National Digital Archives and Regional Archive websites.

JRI-Poland will serve the research community and PSA by linking its search results to the PSA’s digital images of the Jewish records. As a result of the massive indexing undertaken by JRI-Poland since 1995, the indices to Jewish records will form the bulk of all digital image linking on the PSA website.

The Order Processing System will eventually be phased out as digitized records become available online.

PSA General Director, Professor Władysław Stępniak observed: "The signing of this agreement will open a new phase in the cooperation between JRI-Poland and State Archives in Poland. I am convinced that the results of our mutual efforts will be helpful for many people interested in centuries-old Polish-Jewish relations, shared history and family history research."

To reach this milestone took the combined and diligent efforts of the JRI-Poland executive committee, Judy Baston, Stanley Diamond, Mark Halpern and Michael Tobias, and former committee member Hadassah Lipsius, and the invaluable input of our board members. We also would like to thank those JRI-Poland Archive Coordinators and Town Leaders who continued to carry out their responsibilities and serve researchers around the world during the years leading up to this new agreement.

Additional information will be posted as we move forward.

Stanley Diamond, Executive Director
For the Board of Jewish Records Indexing - Poland

See the full text of the Jewish Records Indexing - Poland agreement News Release.

Read the announcement on the Polish State Archives website.

 JRI-Poland plays important role in Canadian Episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?"

"Who Do You Think You Are?" is a genealogy series in which well known Canadians set out to discover their family roots. Each half hour episode combines the intimacy of observational documentary and the revelation of a well told detective story.

The Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) is re-running its 13 part episodes of Who Do You Think You Are? - first aired in 2007.

Steven Page, former lead-singer, guitarist and principal songwriter for the internationally acclaimed pop band, the Barenaked Ladies (BNL), grew up in Scarborough, a suburb of Toronto, feeling that being the only Jew in the neighborhood made him an outsider. His search into his ancestry reveals family tragedy, oppression and a connection to a musical dynasty.

The key to the success of each episode is extensive genealogical research. Steven Page's voyage of discovery took him to Jewish Records Indexing Poland. JRI-Poland Executive Director Stanley Diamond was a consultant for this episode. With leads from the JRI - Poland database of records from the Polish State Archives, Page became the first in his family to take an individual journey deep into his family's past in Nowa Slupia, Lagow and Rakow (towns in the Opatow district of Poland).

Click here for a description of the episode.

The Steven Page episode, by Toronto director/writer David Langer, aired on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation network on October 1, 2012.

The episode can also be viewed online here.

 Surname Distribution Mapper

Jewish Records Indexing - Poland has introduced the "Surname Distribution Mapper" - a tool designed to help researchers graphically understand where their family names first appeared in the 19th century records and visualize how the family spread throughout Poland by decades from the early 1800s into the first part of the 20th century.

Using modern mapping technology provided by Google Maps, the Surname Distribution Mapper allows users to graphically display their search results using a tree icon to indicate the number of entries found for a surname in a town's vital and other records. By running the cursor over each tree icon, a user can view a popup window displaying the number of vital record entries found in various towns in the JRI-Poland database. Clicking on the balloon brings the user to the familiar JRI-Poland search results for detailed viewing of a town's entries.

Additionally, and especially exciting for researchers, the Surname Distribution Mapper can display results for specific decades or in a "progressive mode," where tree icons appear successively by decade to give the researcher an idea of the movement of their family around Poland and the Western Ukraine.

The Surname Distribution Mapper enables a researcher to experience visually much of what we can only do conceptually. Our goal is to quickly determine where a person should spend their research energy to obtain results beyond what the family's oral history might recollect.

The Surname Distribution Mapper search form includes a FAQ to answer your questions and suggest the most effective ways of using this valuable new research tool.

 JRI-Poland adopts Log-In system for database searches

The Executive Committee of Jewish Records Indexing - Poland has decided to institute a log-in system to access our database. This decision was taken for a number of reasons, including future system enhancements and the concerns of our data donors.

As most of you know, JRI-Poland is an independent organization and our database is hosted by JewishGen as a convenience to researchers. To simplify the login process, JRI-Poland is using the secure JewishGen log-in system.

Please use your JewishGen researcher number and password to log-in to the JRI-Poland database.

If you are a subscriber to the JRI-Poland discussion group, you already have a JewishGen researcher number and password.

If you are not already logged in to JewishGen when you start your search of the JRI-Poland database, you can do so here. Otherwise you will be prompted to do so after the first stage results are displayed.

If you do not have a JewishGen researcher number and password, you can register here.

 JRI-Poland invaluable to US Television Series "Who Do You Think You Are?"

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow's ancestral search was featured in an episode of NBC's "Who Do You Think You Are?" Her roots go back to a long line of rabbis named Paltrowicz from northeastern Poland.

The show's researchers were able to tap into JRI-Poland's online database as the starting point in documenting Paltrow's ancestry. They stated, "JRI Poland is a wonderful resource for anyone researching Jewish Polish ancestry and was invaluable during the research for the Gwyneth Paltrow episode." Click here to read the full story.

To watch this episode online, click here

WDYTYA - Gwyneth Paltrow

Listen to JRI-Poland Executive Director Stanley Diamond discuss this episode on the Canadian Broadcasting Company.

JRI-Poland is an independent non-profit tax-exempt organization
 under Section 501(c)(3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code.

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