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Jewish Records Indexing - Poland


The Great Galician Indexing Race is on !

Jewish Records Indexing - Poland
Phase 2 of the AGAD Archives project

In cooperation with the AGAD Archives branch of the Polish State Archives, JRI-Poland is launching the "Great Galician Indexing Competition." There are 2010 Jewish vital record registers for 90 towns in the AGAD Archives. The map shows the locations of these 90 towns. The indexing of the records for the eleven towns in Phase 1 (Tarnopol Area) is expected to be complete by the end of April 2001.

Initially, the plan was to index the records on an area by area basis. However, many researchers have approached JRI-Poland with a specific interest in one or more towns and some have volunteered to become Town Leaders for the fundraising needed to index their town's records.

In addition, past experience indicates that there will be towns for which there will be fewer researchers to support the indexing efforts and therefore, raising funds to index the records for these towns will take much longer. Under 'area by area' indexing, these records would be left hanging, perhaps for an extended time.

Then, early in January it was learned that AGAD had taken possession of 65 additional registers (from the Warsaw Civil Records Office.) Not only are there later records for 39 towns (see updated table of available records), but for the first time, there are records for the towns of Zavalov (Zawalow) and Ivano Frankovo (Janow). Under the area by area plan, indexing of new registers for completed areas could be indefinitely delayed.

As a result, JRI-Poland sought to develop a system to simplify and expedite the entire AGAD archives project - - the Great Galician Indexing Competition.

The goal of the Great Galician Indexing Competition is to challenge researchers to ensure that their town's records are indexed as soon as possible. It's simple… indexing of a town's records will start as soon as 75% of the specific fundraising target for that town has been reached. When a town reaches the 50% mark, it will be added to the list of the NEXT towns to be indexed. (See details below as to how this works.)

The fundraising target is an estimate of the cost to index the towns records based on a detailed inventory of the available records for the town. The AGAD Archives is participating by preparing these inventories as quickly as possible.

As of March 1st, inventories have been completed for 32 of the 90 towns (includes the 11 towns in Area 1 - Tarnopol) and the years and the number of records available for indexing is detailed in the table. This table also contains the estimated cost to complete the indexing for each town, the status of fundraising, the indexing priority, and the name and email address of the Town Leader. As town inventories are completed, this table will be updated.

JRI-Poland is pleased to announce that Mark Halpern, Archive Coordinator for the initial AGAD project (Tarnopol area #1) has agreed to take on the major task of coordinating the Phase 2 - the "Great Galician Indexing Competition."

If you want to help JRI-Poland get the records for your town indexed, read all about the role of Town Leader and then contact Mark Halpern. Your name and email address will be inserted beside the Town Name in the table below.

Town Leaders who successfully lead the fundraising for their town's records will be eligible to receive an Excel file with all the indices to all the records for their town.

Researchers contributing the qualifying donation - or more - will also be eligible to receive the full Excel file for that town. Qualifying donations will be determined (by JRI-Poland and the Archive Coordinator) as a percentage of the fundraising target for each town.

The 'rules' of the competition:

  1. A town name will be added to the indexing list after 50% of the funds have been received.
  2. Indexing will NOT start on the town until 75% of the funds have been received. If the 75% mark has not been reached and it is that town's turn for indexing, it will be jumped by the next town on the list! It will maintain its second place position but can be jumped each time the town behind it reaches 75%.
  3. Large towns for which the fundraising target exceeds $3000 may be divided into two or more 'indexing units' based on type of record and/or group of years. Each unit will be considered a 'separate town' for the purpose of this competition. The indexing unit will be determined by the Town Leader in consultation with qualifying contributors but indexing will typically start with marriage records - if available.
  4. If no town has reached the 75% fundraising mark, JRI-Poland will decide which, if any town, will be next to be indexed.
  5. The town’s indices will be added to the database once 100% of the funds have been received. However, the Town Leader and qualifying contributors will have access to Excel file for that town for their own personal research.

So, if you want to see the indices to your town's records…now is the time to volunteer to be Town Leader or, if you wish, just send in your donation and encourage others to do so as well. To ensure that your contribution is credited to your town, please write "AGAD-(town name)" on your correspondence and on your check.

Copies of records

Copies of records indexed under the initial Tarnopol Area project are currently ordered through the interim U.S.-based ‘AGAD Order Service.’ This temporary system was set up by JRI-Poland at the request of the AGAD archives while AGAD is making certain changes to its administrative system in anticipation of the large influx of orders.

It is expected that the permanent Poland-based AGAD ordering system will be up and running by the time the first group of indices become available from the balance of the towns falling under the Great Galician Indexing Competition.

Copyright 2001 by Jewish Records Indexing - Poland, Inc.
Last Update: March 27, 2001
JRI - Poland WebMaster