Ukrainian History and Education Center to Launch FREE Online Genealogy Series

The following announcement was written by the Ukrainian History and Education Center:

Ukrainian History and Education Center to Launch FREE Online Genealogy Series July 15; Programming to Continue throughout 2020

Genealogists with roots in and around Ukraine can continue their research during the pandemic with the launch of NashiPredky@Home, a FREE online genealogy and history series of events by the Ukrainian History and Education Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to connect generations by telling the stories of Ukraine and Ukrainian Americans through its museum and archives.

The first event in this series on Wednesday, July 15, at 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time, is a presentation by UHEC Archivist Mike Andrec, “Introduction to Archives,” which will explore the who, what, why, and how of archives, how they are different from libraries, and what kinds of interesting information can be found there. He will discuss examples from the UHEC’s archives as well as other repositories. This talk will be geared towards archives novices and will be useful for genealogists and non-academic historians of all kinds.

Next, on Wednesday, July 22, at 7:00 p.m., the Center will be holding its first monthly “Virtual Office Hours,” a monthly series that gives you a chance to get help with your historical puzzles. Do you have a document you can’t read or don’t understand, heirlooms you want to know more about, or some other conundrum related to Ukraine or Ukrainian immigrants to North America? This monthly series is your chance to have the UHEC’s Nashi Predky team help you! You must send photographs of your documents, heirlooms or other materials to at least one week before the webinar date, and we’ll select a few head-scratchers to discuss online. You are welcome to listen in even if you haven’t sent in any material to discuss.

On Wednesday, August 5, at 7:00 p.m., Mike Buryk will present Ukrainians and their Communities in the United States: 1600 – 2020, which will help you gain a basic understanding of the history of Ukraine and the conditions there that sparked emigration to the U.S. as early as the colonial period and into the 19th , 20th and 21st centuries. The five main periods of Ukrainian emigration to the U.S. will covered, and current U.S. Ukrainian community educational and cultural institutions are reviewed.

Additional monthly talks and virtual office hours are being planned through the end of 2020.

All of the above events are FREE, but registration is required. They will be held via the GoToWebinar platform. More information and registration for each event is available at

UHEC humanities programming during this difficult COVID-19 period is made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor.


Is the focus solely on Ukrainian immigrants to North America? My Ukrainian grandfather emigrated to Germany…..and alas, perished in the holocaust. Will these webinars help me in finding out more about his origin?


    Connie, While our Center is physically located in Somerset, NJ, our genealogical activities do not stop at national borders. For example, we have had presenters at a past conference from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, speaking about the vast wealth of resources available through the International Tracing Service of the Red Cross at Bad Arolsen, Germany — much, but not all, of which is now available online — which document those who lost their lives or were displaced during this tumultuous period. We offer introductory information on how to begin the search for Ukrainian ancestors, and regularly bring in speakers from the various countries in Eastern Europe where Ukrainians live or have lived to provide more in-depth programs regarding research there. So, the short answer is, some of our programming may indeed be relevant to your research. We also provide basic research guidance as a public service at no charge. You can e-mail your research inquiry to us at and we will try to help point you in the right direction.


I didn’t learn about this until today. Are past webinars available for viewing?


    June, Some of them are. This is our first foray into free online webinars and it is supported by grant funds. We do have some presentations from previous events in the “members only” section of our website, based upon whatever agreement to do so we may have with the presenter of each topic. Thanks to the grant we received, we are looking to hold a free online webinar as well as a free “virtual office hours” session each month through at least the end of this year. And if you have a specific research question, please feel free to email our family history group at and we will try to point you in the right direction at no cost.


My Ukranian family emigrated to Mexico City, Mexico.. So I have the same question as the previous comment.
Also, part of my Ukranian family members perished in Ukraine (in Lutsk). I haven’t been able to find their names in the Yad Vashem lists. So, I think they were killed in the forest near their homes. How can I find the names of those killed in forests close to their place of residence?
Many thanks,


    Rebeca, I think that my answer to Connie partially addresses your situation above. Personally I do not have as much experience with researching Ukrainians who settled in Mexico, but I have found a branch of my own Ukrainian family tree that arrived in Argentina in the 20th century and have been working to piece it together. Depending upon the time period, there are quite a few digitized records from Mexico available that I know about anecdotally, so the possibilities are there. As far as your relatives who perished in Luts’k, in addition to the pages of testimony at Yad Vashem you would do well to consult the records of the International Tracing Service of the Red Cross, if you have not done so already. An additional resource is the Institute of National Remembrance in Ukraine which is collating the documentary evidence of the various 20th century persecutions on the territory of modern Ukraine. Your relatives from Luts’k may be documented in vital records, land records, and the like which could be in archives in Rivne, Luts’k, or possibly even in Warsaw or other places. Please feel free to drop us a note at if you have specific questions about your family and we will try to help direct you.


I see that you do free webinars and I would like to view them, but the timing of them is not necessarily compatible with my schedule. Are these recorded so that they can be seen at a later date?


    Rick, I have checked with our committee. Our suggestion is to register for any free webinar that you want to see, whether you can make that time or not. We will then send a follow-up e-mail after the event to all registrants with a link to the recording which will be available free for one month after the date of the event. After that time the recording will be archived in our members-only section of the website. So even if the time is inconvenient, please register for the free programming of interest to you and you should be able to watch it at your convenience during the following month.


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