JMM Volunteers Record 10,000th Birth!

Posted on October 22nd, 2014 by

The JMM library is always humming with activity. Each month researchers schedule appointments to meet with JMM staff and volunteers to explore our manuscript and photograph collections or to learn more about their family’s history. Sometimes, our education staff uses the library for archival exploration activities in which kids gather around tables to view authentic primary sources –newspaper articles, letters, photographs, scrapbooks and more – relating to such topics as synagogues in Maryland, immigration history, and African-American and Jewish relations. In addition to those who come to use our library for research purposes, on any given day of the week the library also plays host to JMM volunteers who perform invaluable tasks that help ensure our collections are accessible to researchers.

If you visit the library on Tuesdays and Thursdays you will see two dedicated JMM volunteers, Vera Kestenberg and Marty Buckman, typing away at one of our computers.

Marty & Vera

Marty & Vera

Each week they comb through volumes of The Jewish Times (the JMM owns copies of every edition, including the early ones that can be accessed through microfilm) searching for birth announcements.

Birth announcement in the pages of the JT - lucky number 10,000!

Birth announcement in the pages of the JT – lucky number 10,000!

They then careful transcribe each announcement into an excel spreadsheet creating a comprehensive database of birth records that has become a valuable genealogical resource.

Information included in the database includes the child’s first and last name, date of birth, names of both parents, place of birth (including hospital and city/state) as well as which edition of the JT contains the announcement. The database can be accessed from the JMM website along with many other resources such as burial listings at many local Jewish cemeteries.

I was thrilled to learn that after several years of work on this project, Vera and Marty recently crossed a major milestone as they added the 10,000th name to the database! Mazel Tov to both on this incredible accomplishment!

To learn more about Vera and Marty as well as many other talented and dedicated JMM volunteers, be sure to check our volunteer coordinator, Ilene Cohen’s monthly volunteer profile. 

deborahA blog post by Assistant Director Deborah Cardin. To read more posts from Deborah click HERE.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




Volunteer Spotlight on: Naomi Harans!

Posted on October 6th, 2014 by

Naomi greets visitors with a smile!

Naomi greets visitors with a smile!

Naomi Harans has been volunteering at the JMM for almost 7 years.  She came to her position as a Front Desk Receptionist with plenty of work experience.  She previously did temporary employment as an office worker and volunteered as such at the JCC.  Her favorite part about greeting visitors to the JMM is learning about them.  She is a good listener and has always been interested in people.  She has met folks from many different countries who have searched out the JMM, and is always surprised when local Baltimoreans come in for the first time and say, “I never knew this place was even here.”  She also enjoys learning about the information presented in our temporary exhibits.

In her spare time she’s enjoyed bowling with Beth Tfiloh and the Covenant Guild.  She was fond of traveling with her husband and since he passed away she enjoys traveling with her two daughters, son, their spouses, and her grandchildren.  Some of her favorite destinations have been Spain, Hawaii, Israel and the train ride across Canada.  Next on her agenda is a cruise from Shanghai to Sydney – she departs next week!  We wish Naomi a bon voyage and look forward to welcoming her back to the JMM in November and learning about her latest travel experience.

 

ilene cohenA blog post by Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen. The first Monday(ish) of every month she will be highlighting one of our fantastic JMM volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering with the JMM, drop her an email at icohen@jewishmuseummd.org or call 410-732-6402 x217! You can also get more information about volunteering at the Museum here.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




Volunteer Spotlight on Marty Buckman

Posted on September 8th, 2014 by

Marty Buckman has been volunteering at the JMM for almost 2 years.  His perseverance is admirable—he has been working on one project the entire time!  He is building a database of birth announcements from the Baltimore Jewish Times dating from 1929 to present.  To date, he has reached the issue dated June 6, 1952 and has entered 9,500 births.  An important factor is that he is not only including the baby’s names but the parent’s too.  He averages data entries of just over one year for each month he volunteers, he jokes that he hopes the project doesn’t outlive him!  He has observed that the birth announcements used to average 10 per week, in comparison with today’s Baltimore Jewish Times, where there might only be 1 or 2.  The most exciting aspect of this project is that he now recognizes Bar Mitzvah, engagement and wedding announcements for the names he entered as births!   He also enjoys reading the old advertisements – it creates a sense of nostalgia.  One of the most surprising announcements he came across was a wedding announcement for his wife’s first marriage!

photo 1

A little surprise history!

Marty joined the volunteer corps at the JMM after a 28 year career in advertising.  In particular, he was the Advertising Director in charge of packaging development in the food service industry.  He now likes to spend time on the golf course with a foursome of players who are all 25 years younger than him, and with his 12 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren.  He also works on a photo history project for the Buckman family, which includes working with over 3,000 family photos he came across 5 years ago.

Marty in the JMM library

Marty in the JMM library

Marty says that he likes the experience of volunteering at the JMM. He feels it gives him something worthwhile to do and that it is important to perpetuate Jewish identities.  We are in total agreement and appreciate his hard work.

 

ilene cohenA blog post by Volunteer Coordinator Ilene Cohen. The first Monday(ish) of every month she will be highlighting one of our fantastic JMM volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering with the JMM, drop her an email at icohen@jewishmuseummd.org or call 410-732-6402 x217! You can also get more information about volunteering at the Museum here.

Posted in jewish museum of maryland




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