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The Jewish Heritage Centre of Western Canada is an incorporated non-profit multi-faceted organization involved in preserving, documenting, interpreting and sharing Jewish heritage.
Headquartered at the Asper Jewish Community Campus, the JHC includes a research library, an extensive archive collection,exhibitions of our history through artifacts and displays as well as visiting and seasonal exhibits, and a Holocaust resource and education centre.
Our mission is to be dedicated to advancing and promoting knowledge, understanding and preservation of the cultural and religious life of our people. We also serve as an advocate for tolerance and anti-racism.
We do so through our top-quality museum exhibits, research facilities, educational programs, cultural programs, and special events that our small hardworking staff and many enthusiastic volunteers design, direct, and produce.
The JHC also serves the public as a storehouse of information about the history of the Jewish people in Western Canada. We provide a place where this history can be preserved for the future, viewed through exhibitions, discussed and remembered through our various programs and speakers, and made available through our research room and our extensive archives. Our archivist on staff is available to assist you.
For those of you who can make it to the Asper Campus in Winnipeg, we invite you to view our wonderful exhibits at the Ed and Marion Jewish Museum of Western Canada, remember the Holocaust at the Freeman Family Foundation Holocaust Education Centre, and then come into our offices and browse through our historical material in our research room. If your interest is Genealogy, and you have Jewish connections in Western Canada you are researching, then our material will be of particular interest to you. You may also want to participate in the activities of our Genealogical Institute.
If you have extensive research to do, we recommend you phone first and make arrangements in advance. Our archivist can provide a limited amount of help to introduce you to our materials and help guide you to the items that may be of most use to you. There is no charge to use our reading room or to view our materials in person.
If you cannot make it to our office yourself, our archivist can do a limited amount of research via e-mail for you. If you think we can help you, contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
The JHC database consists of five tables for different media. The database was created in the 1980s for internal staff use and was recently uploaded the JHCWC website for public use. Data was entered into the system by a variety staff and volunteers and currently contains a large number of errors; researchers should contact JHCWC staff for assistance. A few tips for using the database and descriptions of the different tables can be found below.
Users can search across all of the tables by selecting “Search all tables” from the drop-down menu or search a specific table by selecting it from the drop-down. Clicking on the “?” will provide a pop-up help box with tips on using the search function. Also note that any search term must include at least four characters.
The Articles table is an index of articles in the JHCWC newspaper holdings. This data was created by volunteers in the 1990s and, notably, includes summaries of articles in the Yiddish newspapers. Not every article in every issue is included here and the descriptions vary in detail. The primary focus appears to have been information relevant to genealogical research, i.e. birth, bar mitzvah, marriage and death announcements. An ‘X’ in the ‘Photo’ field indicates that there is a photograph accompanying the newspaper article.
The Artifacts table is an index of the JHCWC museum collection. Note that not every item in the museum collection has been entered in the table and that the table does not include artifacts that are included in archival holdings.
The Books table is a catalogue of the JHCWC library collection. The collection includes books on local and international Jewish history, genealogy and the Holocaust.
The Cemetery Burials table contains information about burials at every Jewish cemetery in Manitoba and Saskatchewan and selective cemeteries in Canada and a small number from other countries. For these cemeteries there is an entry for every gravesite. The JHCWC and its predecessor, the Jewish Historical Society, photographed every gravestone in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. A small number of these are available in the database and more will be added in the future.
The Manuscripts table is an index of the JHCWC archival records. The information contained in this table is being updated and migrated to MAIN. The data in the table contains errors and often does not include contextual information about the records. Where there is discrepancy between the JHC database and MAIN, MAIN should be considered the authoritative source.
The Media table is an index of the audiovisual holdings of the JHCWC. This includes oral history audio and video recordings, LPs, DVDs and CD-ROMs. Most of these records were created by the JHCWC or Jewish Historical Society as part of various oral history projects. This table does not include audiovisual records that were not separated from archival holdings. The information in this table will be transferred to MAIN and any future audiovisual acquisitions will not be added to this table.
The Photos table is an index of photographs and other graphic materials in the holdings of the JHCWC. Prior to 2016, most photographs were separated from textual, or other related records, and assigned a JM, OS or JHS number. In some cases each image was given an individual number, in other cases a group of photos from a specific source was given one number. A very small number of scanned images are available in the table. This table does not include photographs that were not separated from archival holdings. The information in this table will be transferred to MAIN and any future photograph acquisitions will not be added to this table.