Fellow gen-blogger Dan Ruby - who also attended the Chicago 2008 conference - has a post on some interesting sessions he attended, focusing on migration.
In Dan's "Two takes on the migratory narrative," he covered "Litvak Migratory Decisions in the 19th Century and Their Consequences," by University of Klaipeda Professor Ruth Leiserowitz, and gave a pointer to her Jews in East Prussia online exhibit.
He also covered my dear friend Valery Bazarov's presentation on "HIAS Archives: What Can and Cannot Be Found There." Valery, originally from Odessa, is a HIAS historian and also works with the relocation service. He has contacted Talalay relatives still in Russia for me and is a fascinating guy.
Valery is well-versed in the HIAS files, in 150 worldwide branches and he still finds hidden boxes; files may be in different places and not indexed.
Do read Dan's complete post at the link above.