Martin Shames has traced his ancestors back to the early 19th century. He believes others can do the same if they have the tools and knowledge.
To help get people on the road to finding their roots, Shames will be one of several speakers at a seminar on Nov. 18 by the Jewish Genealogical Society of Broward County, where he serves as president.
The group's members will offer presentations at the Soref Jewish Community Center in Plantation in the program Jewish Genealogy 101: A Four-Hour Route to Your Roots. The topics should help novices kick-start their search, as well as provide new techniques to experienced genealogists, said Shames, of Hollywood.
"There is focus on areas of Jewish interest, but the information is useful to people of all faiths and cultures," he said.
Originally an annual event, the program will now be presented twice a year.
Shames will share his personal experiences on finding loved ones who perished in the Holocaust; the society's founder, Bernard Kouchel, will offer a beginner's guide, while other members will present information on organizational skills, interviewing and finding data.
Shames has been searching his roots for 40 years and says that attendees will learn many techniques and resources.
The society, which will celebrate its 19th anniversary in December, maintains a 300-volume reference library.
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