R.I. Jewish Historical Association is keeping busy so you can too


Although Rhode Island Jewish Historical Association’s office and archives are currently closed due to the coronavirus, Executive Director Kate-Lynne Laroche and Secretary Jaime Walden have been working remotely to increase RIJHA’s digital outreach.

Working from home has given the staff an opportunity to upload hundreds of issues of the various newspapers, dating back to 1929, published prior to the current Jewish Rhode Island. Laroche and Walden are also working on the best way to upload RIJHA’s vast obituary collection – over 12,000 obits collected or donated over the years.

This work is giving the community access to some of RIJHA’s genealogical resources without the need to make a trip to the office or put in a research request.

The online genealogical and historical information has opened the door for countless family researchers to knit together their family’s stories by finding relatives and learning more about family businesses and lost or misplaced family relics.

With the stay-at-home and social-distancing requirements we are currently living under, lots of folks are turning to genealogy research now that they have the time. Making resources available for members and non-members alike to access from the safety of their own homes is a small way RIJHA can help.

So check out the RIJHA website, at www.rijha.org, and if you have a research request, or if you have a family collection you’ve stumbled upon while quarantine cleaning, and would like to donate that collection to the R.I. Jewish Historical Association Archive, send an email to info@rijha.org.

Submitted by the Rhode Island Jewish Historical Association.