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Genealogy Guide: Israel

Brief Historical Background


This guide provides information about Jewish genealogical sources in Israel. Many Jewish genealogists can track a branch/es of their families living in Israel or who lived in Israel in the past.  Your research depends on the time period that the records cover. The records from Israel that are available to Jewish genealogists are generally divided into two periods: the “Old Yishuv”(היישוב הישן) and the “New Yishuv”(היישוב החדש) periods. The “Old Yishuv” refers to the Jewish community in Eretz Yisrael until 1880, and the “New Yishuv” refers to the Aliyah period from 1882 until 1948, which includes the five legal Aliyot and the illegal Aliyot which followed them. Palestine was under the Ottoman Empire until 1918, and the British ruled over Palestine from 1918 until 1948.

Note: Websites in Hebrew only may be translated with reasonable accuracy using the Google Chrome browser. However, most searches must be done in Hebrew.