Tracing Family Members Lost in the Holocaust
AICE is frequently contacted by individuals seeking to find friends and family who they lost contact with during World War II. In some cases, people have simply lost contact, in others they were separated by circumstances. Many individuals are still trying to learn the fate of those who disappeared during the Holocaust or were sent to camps. AICE does not have any independent information, but the following web sites and organizations may be helpful.
1. The American Red Cross Holocaust Victims Tracing Center — The Holocaust and War Victims Tracing Center is a national clearinghouse for persons seeking the fates of loved ones missing since the Holocaust and its aftermath. The center assists U.S. residents searching for proof of internment, forced/slave labor, or evacuation from former Soviet territories on themselves or family members.
2. The U.S. Holocaust Museum — The U.S. Memorial Holocaust Museum maintains a registry and lots of other valuable information on tracing family lost in the Holocaust, but you have to go there to use it. You can even use their computer while you visit the Museum to find people who have registered with them. For more information, contact:
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
3. Yad Vashem — The Israeli memorial keeps a central registry of Holocaust victims in Jerusalem. The Pages of Testimony at the Hall of Names documents more than 3,000,000 Holocaust victims and is a good resource. A database has been created and is expected to be online in the near future to search their records. For now, you can contact them at their site:
Or send a letter with request for research to:
They will need the family name, place and, if possible, date of birth and any other pertinent information you may have. If you know of victims of the Holocaust that are not registered, you can register them.
4. DNA Shoah Project — The DNA Shoah Project aims to establish a genetic database of Holocaust survivors and their immediate descendants in an effort to reunite families torn apart by the Shoah. DNA is collected painlessly, with a simple cheek swab and there is no cost to participate.
5. Jewish Geneology — A number of sites are listed in our bibliography of web sites for searching geneological records. JewishGen is particularly good for searches related to the Holocaust. They offer a Holocaust Registry that allows you to search your family name and any town you think they may have lived in. You will also get contact information on the researchers that have found and registered the information you recovered. See also the JewishGen Yizkor Book Necrology Database, which indexes the names of persons in the necrologies — the lists of Holocaust martyrs — published in the Yizkor Books appearing on the JewishGen Yizkor Book Translation Project. This database is only an index of names; it directs researchers back to the Yizkor Book itself, where more complete information may be available.
6. Search and Unite — David Lewin's Search and Unite web site attempts to help the many people who suspect that, despite the passage of so many years, someone may still exist somewhere “out there.”
7. Nation's Memory Institute — A public institution, created by the Act of the National Council of the Slovak Republic to disclose documents about the persecutions, carried out by the Nazist or communist security agencies to individual applicants.
Ústav pamäti národa
Fax: +421 2 556 44 054
Source: Cybrary of the Holocaust