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Jewish Genealogical Society of Buffalo Records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MS-0200-0007

Scope and Contents

The papers of the Jewish Genealogical Society donated over 2009 to 2011 include a wide range of research and display materials. Series I, includes an extensive series of panels relating to the history of Jewish Buffalo told through the lens of Buffalo Jewish synagogues. The contemporary photographs featured on these panels were taken by various JGSB members. This exhibit was held at the Bunis Family Gallery at the Benderson Family Building, from October 20 to December 27, 2002 with a smaller, partial exhibit, at the Holland Family Building Gallery from October 20 to November 24, 2002 as part of the 36th Annual Jewish Community Book Fair. Much of the documentary materials assembled for the display panels are photocopies, and often form the only copy of these materials, the originals having been returned and subsequently lost. Series II is a collation of Muriel Selling’s clippings and documentary research used for the 2002 Buffalo Jewish synagogue display and other related research. Series III includes a handwritten flip poster chart list of former Jewish organizations, businesses, professions, synagogues and schools attended arranged by neighborhood, provides information with names. This series also contains materials relating to the 50th anniversary celebrations of Israel, and includes a scrapbook in Hebrew and English with polaroid photographs, as well as photographs of the events, the JGSB role as an organizational participant. Series IV consists of an original oversized confirmation photograph. Subseries maintain donation source and creator origins.


  • 1996-2003
  • Majority of material found within 2002-2003


Terms of Access

The organizational papers of Jewish Genealogical Society of Buffalo Records, 1996-2003 (bulk 2002-2003) are open for research. There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of this collection.


Copyright of papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and the University Archives before publishing quotations from materials in the collection. Most papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures unless otherwise specified.

Historical Note

The Jewish Genealogy Society of Buffalo (JGSB) was founded in May 1986 by Ferne Mittleman and Muriel Selling to facilitate Jewish genealogical research. The all volunteer group organizes programs, fieldtrips and workshops for the benefit of members and non-members. Field trips have included the genealogy collections at the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, Grosvenor room and the Buffalo Historical Society. Workshops have included those provided by the Family History Library at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints provided workshops, Ancestry, and the JGSB board members. A member of the Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies and later the International Association of Genealogical Societies, the JGSB has also submitted data to the JewishGen Online Worldwide Burial Registry (JOWBR), based on cemetery surveys that they also maintain privately. Meetings have been held in synagogues, member homes and the Jewish Community Center, as well as other workshop venues. The society maintains an extensive genealogical library within a member’s home. In 2002, the Jewish Genealogy Society of Buffalo presented a photographic display of Buffalo Jewish History through the histories of area synagogues at the Jewish Community Center.


10.04 Linear Feet (6 boxes (3 oversize 31x23x3, 1 flat oversize 20x16x1, 1 triangular tube, 1 standard manuscript box))

Language of Materials



Personal and organizational papers documenting aspects of Jewish community in Buffalo collected and created by Jane Fischman, Renata Lefcourt, and Muriel Selling. Material includes newspaper clippings, newsletters, a scrapbook, displays and photographs.


This collection is arranged in four series as follows:

  1. Buffalo Jewish History Exhibit Panels
  2. Jewish Community Research
  3. Activities and Events
  4. Oversized Photograph

Acquisition Information

Jewish Genealogical Society of Buffalo Records were donated by board members: Muriel Selling in 2009 and 2011, Jane Fischman in 2010 and Renata Lefcourt in 2010. The papers were arranged in April 2016 and it was deposited at the University Archives, Special Collections by the Jewish Buffalo Archives Project in April 2016.

The Jewish Buffalo Archives Project was founded in late 2007 under the auspices of the Bureau of Jewish Education of Greater Buffalo with a seed grant from the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies. The Archives Project collects mainly 20th century documentation relating to the diverse histories, religious traditions and cultures of Jewish communities within the Greater Buffalo area of Western New York, encompassing the geographic areas of Erie and Niagara Counties and partners with the University Archives at the University at Buffalo to make these records accessible.

The arrangement and description of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Buffalo Records, 1996-2003 (2002-2003) was made possible by funding obtained through the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies.

Accruals and Additions

Accruals are expected to this collection.

Related Resources

Processing Information

Collection was processed by Chana Revell Kotzin in April 2016. Finding aid encoded by University Staff, May 2016.


Finding Aid for the Jewish Genealogical Society of Buffalo Records
Finding aid prepared by Chana Kotzin.
April 2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository

420 Capen Hall
Buffalo New York 14260-1674 US
716-645-3714 (Fax)