Jewish Communities

What information is available in the Jewish Communities database of Beit Hatfutsot?

The database of Jewish communities of Beit Hatfutsot contains historical abstracts in English and Hebrew about Jewish communities (cities, towns, villages) in the Diaspora. The abstract informs about the beginnings of the community, central events of its history, community institutions and organizations, synagogues, distinguished members of the community etc. The database has information about current and past Jewish communities on all continents.

I would like to receive information about a Jewish community. What should I do?

You need to click on "Search Order", fill in the search order form and submit it. The price is NIS 25.00 for up to three communities. You may also conduct a search while visiting the museum, in the study area on the entrance floor.

In what language do I need to fill out the search order?

Your contact details should be filled out in English if you reside outside Israel. Residents of Israel may fill their contact details in Hebrew. However, the names of Jewish communities you are searching must be filled out in Latin characters only.

Why is important to fill out the names of the communities in Latin characters?

Although the information is available in Hebrew as well, we need to receive the names of the communities in Latin characters in order to avoid confusions that might occur when searching for places whose names have identical Hebrew spellings - such as TARNOVO, a town in Bulgaria, and TERNOVO, a town in the Ukraine, that are spelled the same in Hebrew.

What details shall I fill out in the Jewish Communities Order Form?

The Jewish Communities Order Form contains a number of fields marked by an asterisk (*). To submit the search order successfully you need to fill out these fields. However, it is highly advisable to fill out all fields in the order form.

How do I know that my search order has been received?

After clicking on the Submit button please wait a few seconds while your order is being processed, until you see a message on your screen. Within minutes, an automatic confirmation will be delivered to the mail address you registered in your search order form.

When shall I expect an answer?

The search results of the Jewish Communities database will be delivered to the e-mail address you submitted with your search order form within a few days, but no longer than 14 business days of receipt of your request. Users of free e-mail accounts (like Hotmail, Yahoo etc.) are advised that occasionally their e-mail box will not be able to handle our reply if there is insufficient free space in their mailbox.

Is my Search Order secure?

Yes, all credit card numbers submitted to the site through our various “Search Orders Online” are encrypted using “Secure Socket Layer” (SSL) encryption. For more details about this subject click here and read our privacy policy.

Does Beit Hatfutsot have lists of community members of Jewish communities in the Diaspora?

No.

Do you have information about my family?

The database of Jewish communities does not contain information about specific families. This information may be ordered from the database of family trees of the Douglas E. Goldman Jewish Genealogy Center of Beth Hatefutsoth. Go to the white field on the left side of the screen that says "Select" -- there you will find a drop down list of the Beth Hatefutsoth databases. Select Jewish Genealogy and it will take you to the Main Page of the genealogy database. For information about the meaning and origin of family names, select Jewish Family Names from the drop down list on the left side of this screen.

Does Beit Hatfutsot have a list of Holocaust victims?

No. For information about this subject, please send your inquiry to Yad VaShem in Jerusalem. However, please note that many family trees registered in the database of The Douglas E. Goldman Jewish Genealogy Center do contain names of Holocaust victims and survivors. It is always advisable to order a search of this database, as there is a reasonable chance of discovering lost relatives.

We plan to travel abroad and wish to visit a local synagogue. Can you help us locate one?

On the menu on the left, click on "Links". There you will find a comprehensive list of useful links related to Jewish communities around the world.