09 August 2010

Oregon: A visit to Portland

Portland, Oregon is a great city.

I've spoken to the Jewish genealogical societies in both Portland and Willmette Valley, met the recently-retired Portland Jewish Federation head Charlie Schiffman several times over the years.

The first time I met Charlie was when our daughter attended a Middle East Studies summer program at Portland State University during her university years. We still talk about the wonderful lunch we had with him so long ago.

Daniel Horowitz also stopped this summer in Portland. The MyHeritage.com genealogy and translation manager was the subject of an article by Paul Haist in the Oregon Jewish Review.

The story touched on Daniel's life in Venezuela, the family's transplantation to Israel and his early involvement in Jewish genealogy, although the main focus was his work at MyHeritage.com, which helps make family connections possible, as well as company partnerships with Beit Hatfutsot (the Museum of the Jewish People) and JewishGen to help grow Jewish family trees online.
He came to professional work in genealogy out of a personal interest in genealogical research and after he wrote a curriculum in Hebrew history that called on his students to research their own family histories.

He called the curriculum and the classroom project “Searching for My Roots.”

“The kids researched their own family. We studied—in effect—Jewish history for the last 100 years in a multicultural community.”

The Venezuelan community was richly diverse with strong representation in both Sephardic and Ashkenazi traditions.
Read the complete article at the story link above.

Interested in learning more about Oregon's Jewish community?

Click here to read the 60-page Shalom Oregon Guide.

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