CLEVELAND RESEARCH TOOLS

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The Cleveland Jewish Genealogy Society Library.

The Society maintains its own research library and encourages the collection of genealogical material and family histories. The research library, open to any researcher, is housed in the Sam and Emma Miller Library of the Arthur J. Lelyveld Center for Jewish Learning at Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple, located at 23737 Fairmount Blvd. in Beachwood, Ohio.

The Library is open when the building is open (every day, all day and most weekday evenings) and researchers are welcome to visit at any time. If there is a class or a meeting taking place there, please use discretion and work quietly.(Certain exceptions may occur.) The Library is staffed by Fairmount Temple's Librarian, Julie Moss, on most Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Most of our collection is now included in the Library Catalogue, which can be accessed by Clicking Here: http://www.fairmounttemple.org/lifelong-learning/librarycatalogue/

Access Jewish Cleveland

The Jewish Federation of Cleveland maintains this website which provides access to information in many areas relevant to the Jewish community at large, including economic assistance, education, fitness and recreation, health services, and a community calendar. Of particular interest to genealogists, the site allows searches of a database of more than 70,000 deceased individuals with their names, birth, death, and interment dates,  and the location where the individual is buried, (cemetery, and section, row, and plot numbers where available). Users can also get personal assistance by calling the Access Jewish Cleveland information desk at the Federation, at 216-292-INFO (4636) from 10 am to 5 pm Monday- Thursday, and 10 am to 3 pm Fridays).

Jewish Independent Obituary Index

The Jewish Independent was an English-language weekly newspaper published in Cleveland from 1906 to 1964. Maurice Weidenthal, of the Plain Dealer, became its editor a few weeks after it was established. When he died in 1917, he was succeeded by his brother, Leo, who managed the paper for nearly 50 years.

This database is mainly composed of extracts of vital information from obituaries. Pre 1906 information mostly comes from the Jewish Review and Observer, another weekly, which began publication in 1899. Post 1964 information was extracted from The Cleveland Jewish News. This database covers about 1898-1982. It evolved as it grew - therefore not every single entry coincides with an obituary.

To get a copy of the obituary you're interested in, contact the Cleveland Public Library Microform Center, 325 Superior Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44114 (216) 623-2910. Allow 2-3 weeks for delivery.

To search this database, Click Here.

Cleveland Jewish News Obituary Database

Our member, Helen Wolf, has created a searchable index to the obituaries and death notices published in the Cleveland Jewish News (CJN) from the first issue in on October 30, 1964, to the present, which is updated semi-annually.

The database currently contains 31,278 entries, and includes information from all Obituaries and Death Notices published in the CJN through the end of December, 2013.

To search this database, Click Here.

Mayfield Cemetery Grave Markers

Member Wendy Lang has photographed nearly 800 grave markers at Mayfield Cemetery in Cleveland Heights, Cuyahoga County, Ohio. This cemetery is owned jointly by the city's two oldest congregations, both Reform: Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple and The Temple-Tifereth Israel.

To search for specific names, Click Here.

Ceramic and Etched Photos on Headstones

Approximately 3,400 photographs of the ceramic images that are found on headstones in a number of cemeteries in Greater Cleveland were provided as a genealogical act of kindness by Paul Klein, a member of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Cleveland, assisted by Vicki Vigil, another society member.

The cemeteries included in this index are: Bet Olam, Glenville, Lansing, Mt. Olive, Mt. Sinai, Ridge Road #1 (Chesed Shel Emeth), Ridge Road #2, Lincoln (Workmen's Circle), and Zion Memorial Park.

To search for photos with specific names, Click Here.

Cleveland Necrology File and Cleveland News Index

The Cleveland Necrology File was produced from a microfilmed copy of an alphabetical card file containing local cemetery records and newspaper death notices gathered by the staff of the Cleveland Public Library. It contains death notices published in the following newspapers:

  • The Cleveland Plain Dealer - 1850-1975
  • The Cleveland Herald - 1833, 1847-1848, 1876, 1878-1879
  • The Cleveland Press - 1941-1975

Note: This file is not an official or complete record of deaths in the Cleveland area during those years. It was not always customary during this time period for individuals to use paid newspaper notices. In addition, the cemetery records included in this database may not be complete.

The Cleveland News Index lists citation information for local news stories, feature articles and reviews from:

  • The Plain Dealer (1983-June 1999)
  • Cleveland Magazine (1983-2014)
  • Northern Ohio Live (Sept. 1990-June 2009)
  • Ohio Magazine (Oct. 1990-2014)

Obituaries from the PLAIN DEALER and the CLEVELAND PRESS are included from 1976 to 2014.

NOTE: This index does not provide full text access to these sources.

For full text of current obituaries, see http://obits.cleveland.com/obituaries/cleveland/.

Cleveland Area Congregations

A listing of Jewish Congregations in the Cleveland area. Every attempt has been made to make this list as complete and accurate as possible.

Cleveland Area Jewish Cemeteries

A list of Jewish Cemeteries in the Cleveland area. The Cleveland JGS maintains a stone by stone enumeration of many of these cemeteries.

Cleveland Jewish News

The Cleveland Jewish News (CJN) is an independent publication in existence since 1964 serving the greater Cleveland Ohio area. The CJN is published weekly with a paid circulation of approximately 14,000. The full text of the obituaries (and searchable full copies of every edition of the CJN) can be accessed online on their website by subscribing to their archive service. For details and prices of subscriptions to their print, on-line, and/or archive editions, Click here.

The CJN Archive can also be accessed through the Cuyahoga County Library's website. See below.

 For an index to obituaries and death notices which appeared in the CJN from 1964 - present (updated semi-annually) see the database maintained by our member, Helen Wolf.

Cuyahoga County Library

The Cuyahoga County Library system has  many genealogy resources available, primarily at their Fairview Park Regional Branch, and on-line.  The on-line resources are available to anyone with a COUNTY library card.  If you have a "Greater Access" library card issued by one of the other local library systems, such as those in Cleveland, East Cleveland, Shaker Heights, and Cleveland Heights-University Heights, just stop in to a County Library branch (such as those in Beachwood, Mayfield Heights, Orange, Solon, or South Euclid-Lyndhurst) and they can activate your card for county library online access.  Among the online resources available are the Cleveland Jewish News Archive, Fold3 (formerly called the Footnotes History and Genealogy Archives), and Heritage Quest.

Cleveland Jewish Archives at Western Reserve Historical Society

The Cleveland Jewish Archives collects and makes available for research print and non-print material that documents the history of the Jewish community of Greater Cleveland. It houses more than 200 manuscript collections consisting of personal papers of individuals and families, Holocaust testimonies, and institutional records including those of businesses, congregations, and educational, political, social, charitable, and welfare organizations.

Included in the archives, and of particular note for Cleveland Jewish genealogy research are two databases described below:

The information from these two databases is now indexed with that from many others, in the WRHS Genealogy Index, which can be accessed here: WRHS Genealogy Index.

Cuyahoga County Genweb

This website has a wealth of links to hundreds of databases and information centered on Cleveland and Cuyahoga County.

Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Civil Case Docket

A great place to find those elusive living relatives.

Cuyahoga County Naturalization Card Index

1818-1931 (mostly Common Pleas Court). An index of more than 50,000 cards became an online resource, thanks to volunteers from CAGG, the Computer Assisted Genealogy Group (Northeast Ohio).

Cleveland Jewish History

While not useful for genealogical research, this site links to information on the history of our Jewish community and its major institutions.

Computer Assisted Genealogy

Two Cleveland area groups, East and West side, can help you learn more about computer assisted genealogy methods.

The Northeast Ohio Computer-Aided Genealogy Society meets on the second Saturday morning of each month in Mayfield Village.

The Computer Assisted Genealogy Group meets on the third Saturday morning of each month at the Fairview Park Library.

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