Below is a description of the lists currently searchable in the Names Database. As this is an ongoing effort, the inventory of lists available to the public continues to grow, with more names and documents being added periodically.
Early Remittance Lists
Early Remittance Lists: The Transmission Department of the JDC was established in 1915 to deliver personal remittances to those areas in Europe and Palestine where normal transmission agencies were incapable of functioning due to war conditions. Relatives from the West were able to deposit small amounts of money (typically $5 or $10, up to $100) for JDC to remit to their relatives overseas. The remittance lists include both the names and addresses of remitters and beneficiaries, prime genealogical material that cannot be found elsewhere. In the 1917-1920 period these remittances exceeded $6,966,195. The JDC Archives has indexed remittance lists from Poland (including the “Occupied Territory”), Romania, Palestine, and Russia. Files include:
Poland Remittances 1, 1915-1917 (PDF 1.70 MB)
Poland Remittances 2, 1915-1917 (Part I 10.53 MB; Part II 11.44 MB)
Russia Remittances, 1916-1917 (PDF 1.10 MB)
Romania Remittances, 1916-1918 (PDF 1.61 MB)
Palestine Remittances, 1918 (PDF 4.89 MB)
Remittances for Jaffa, 1918 (PDF 604 KB)
Remittances for Palestine, August 1, 1918 (PDF 736 KB)
Remittances for Palestine, July 11, 1918 (PDF 1.55 MB)
Remittances for Saffed, Palestine, 1918 (PDF 200 KB)
Remittances for Poland (“Occupied Territory”), 1918 (PDF 1.20 MB)
Poland Remittances 3, 1919 (PDF 9.29 MB)
The 1914-1921 Period
Jewish Men from Rohatyn, Poland Imprisoned in Siberia, 1916 (PDF 703 KB): A 1916 list of those from the Galician town of Rohatyn, Poland imprisoned in Siberia. The entire male population, aged 12 to 70, was imprisoned by Russian troops, leaving a community of starving women and children, to whom the JDC endeavors to distribute proper aid.
Aid to Rabbis in the Russian Empire and Palestine, 1916 (PDF 2.43 MB): Lists from 1916 detailing financial aid for prominent rabbis.
Jews from the Russian Empire Requesting Contact with Relatives, 1917 (PDF 2.25 MB): JDC representatives assisted Jews from the former Russian Empire in attempts to contact and locate their relatives in the West. JDC representatives acted as intermediaries between relatives in this 1917 list and provided aid.
Lists of Polish Jews, Grouped by Town, Requesting Assistance from U.S. Relatives, 1921 (Part I 5.93 MB; Part II 6.36 MB; Part III 11.27 MB): JDC representatives in Poland transmitted requests for affidavits, transportation funds, and other assistance from Jews overseas to their stateside relatives. JDC field representatives sent to the JDC NY Headquarters lists of Jews from a specific town in Poland, which included information on their individual needs and the details regarding their U.S. relatives. The NY office then followed up with stateside relatives. Genealogically rich materials such as Polish and American names and addresses appear on these 1921 postwar lists.
Prisoners of War Released from Siberia, 1921 (PDF 1.57 MB): This 1921 list details former Hungarian, German and Austrian Prisoners of War who received aid from JDC and the American Red Cross upon arrival in San Francisco, en route to Trieste, Italy. This list was published for the information of relatives, who could expect the arrival of their relatives in Trieste by the end of June, 1921.
Lists from the Nazi Period and its Aftermath
Refugees in Zbaszyn, Poland, 1938-1939 (Part I 16.86 MB; Part II 15.68 MB; Part III 16.73 MB; Part IV 16.23 MB; Part V 6.97 MB): A list of Polish Jews expelled by the Nazi government into this Polish border town, receiving assistance from the JDC in 1938-1939.
Polish Jewish Emigrants in Hungary, 1939 (PDF 2.18 MB): A list of emigrants from Poland receiving welfare aid from the JDC in Budapest in 1939.
Refugees on the SS. St Louis who Received JDC Aid, 1939 (PDF 2.07 MB): In May 1939, the SS St Louis ferried 907 passengers fleeing Nazi Germany to Cuba. They were denied entry into Havana, and JDC came to their aid. When negotiations between JDC and the Cuban government failed, the ship was forced to return to Hamburg. While the ship was still on the high seas, JDC won the consent of Holland, Belgium, England and France to accept the refugees, posting a $500,000 guarantee to cover support costs.
Escaped Polish Jewish Officers in Komarom, Hungary, 1939 (PDF 2.18 MB) : This 1939 list includes names of the escaped Polish Jewish officers in the camp at Komarom, Hungary. Detailed information about the officer’s city of origin and relatives relative is listed.
Vilna Refugees, 1940 (Part I 5.98 MB; Part II 5.45 MB; Part III 5.94 MB): Polish Jewish refugees receiving JDC aid, after they had moved eastward to Vilna, Lithuania in 1940 to escape the Nazi regime.
List of Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Tangier, 1941 (Part I 3.04 MB; Part II 1.97 MB) European refugees had been fleeing to Tangier, an international city, since 1938. Under Spanish occupation from June 1940, this became more difficult. After World War II, Tangier returned to international status. Jewish refugees came from different countries including Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland and Turkey. Many were rendered stateless. This list details monthly assistance provided to refugees by JDC.
Jewish Refugees Leaving Japan for Other Safe Havens, 1941 (PDF 8.86 MB): These lists detail refugees who, after finding refuge in Japan from Nazism, are leaving Japan for Australia, Canada, USA, Burma, South Africa, Palestine, and South America. Included are names, nationalities, dates, Japanese ports of departure and destinations. A Refugee Aid Committee was formed in Japan in 1939, with JDC migration offices opening in 1940.
German Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Japan, 1941 (PDF 1.45 MB): This is a 1941 list of German and Austrian refugees stranded in Japan. Funds for their support are drawn from the JDC Germany budget. Included are names, cities of origin in Germany, and ages.
European Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Japan, Including Information on Overseas Relatives, 1941 (Part I 7.98 MB; Part II 6.18 MB) The Jewish community in Kobe, Japan compiled this list of European refugees and their relatives overseas, so that JDC can solicit aid from family members. Included are names, ages, birth information, profession, citizenship of refugees, as well as the names and addresses of relatives abroad. In the 1940-1941 period, JDC allocated more than $158, 284 to refugees in Japan.
Yeshiva Students Receiving JDC Aid in Wartime Japan, 1941 (PDF 3.00 MB): Lists of students, organized by yeshiva, receiving JDC aid in wartime Japan. Included are the Mirer, Kamieniecer, Slonimer, Ostrów Mazowiecka, Klecker, Radiner, Telser, Nowogrodker, Lucker, Warschauer, Reverends and Lubavitcher Yeshivas. Names, ages, birth data, profession and citizenship, as well as names and addresses of relatives abroad, are listed. From 1940-1941 JDC allocated more than $158,284 to refugees in Japan.
List of Refugees Arriving in Japan and Receiving JDC Aid, 1941 (PDF 8.61 MB): These 1941 lists detail Polish and German Jewish refugee subjects, as well as refugees from other locales, arriving in Kobe, Japan in 1940-1941. Included are names, ages, birthplace, profession, date of arrival in Japan, destination and date of departure. With the heavy refugee influx, community groups turned to JDC for aid. A Refugee Aid Committee was formed in Japan in 1939, with JDC migration offices opening in 1940.
Guarantees from the Mirrer and Lubavitcher Yeshivas in Support of Students Finding Safe Havens in Canada or Other Friendly Countries, 1941 (PDF 4.76 MB): These are lists from the Mirrer and Lubavitcher Yeshiva representatives of their students and faculty who are refugees in Kobe and Shanghai. The Yeshivas are guaranteeing their support of $8/per month for each faculty member and student, and JDC is seeking countries of safe haven for these refugees.
JDC Lisbon list of Polish Jewish passengers to Cuba or Jamaica, 1942 (PDF 745 KB): A group of Polish Jews, refugees stranded without papers in Portugal, faced imminent deportation. JDC assisted them to reach out to the Polish Government-In-Exile, and an agreement was reached with the British, allowing the refugees to live in Jamaica on a temporary basis. JDC arranged for transportation of 157 Polish Jews from Lisbon to Cuba, and to a refugee camp in Jamaica. JDC covered living expenses for the refugees.
Jewish Refugee Children on the S.S Serpa Pinto, 1944 (PDF 2.06MB): This 1944 list details Jewish refugee children who were helped by JDC in Barcelona. The JDC then assisted with their emigration from Lisbon on the S.S. Serpa Pinto, sometimes referred to as the Serpa Pinta. The Serpa Pinto carried up to 800 passengers per sailing, and in the course of World War II bore more refugees across the Atlantic than any other single transport. The JDC financed or shared in the financing of over a dozen sailings from 1941-1944.
Refugees Receiving JDC Aid in Camp Fadhala, Morocco, 1944 (PDF 899 KB): This is a list of 853 refugees in Camp Fadhala, a transit camp for refugees who arrived from Spain. With most doors closed to European Jewry, JDC helped recruit refugees to the safe haven near Casablanca, providing support for care and maintenance, as well as equipment. Residents of the camp were from Greece, Yugoslavia, Tripoli and Malta, and the camp harbored both Jewish and non-Jewish refugees, including a Roma minority.
Jewish Refugees in Spain who Received Visas to Canada, 1944 (PDF 2.54 MB): List of European Jewish families who had escaped the Nazis and were living in the Iberian Peninsula in1944. The refugees were aided by JDC. These lists include families who had received visas to Canada with JDC assistance.
Refugee Children in Spain and Portugal whom JDC is helping to Emigrate, 1944 (PDF 225 KB): JDC is attempting to connect Jewish refugee children with their relatives overseas, to secure age affidavits for the children to facilitate immigration. Included are names, place and date of birth, parents’ names, and names and addresses of relatives overseas.
Beneficiaries of JDC’s Free Parcel Service in the Soviet Union, 1943-1945 (Part I 3.13 MB; Part II 3.24 MB; Part III 3.07; Part IV 2.87 MB; Part V 3.15 MB): These 1943-1945 lists contain the names and addresses of Jews receiving JDC parcels in the Soviet Union and the liberated territories. Included are refugees who had previously fled eastward to escape the Nazis.
European Jewish Refugee Arrivals from Havana to Miami, 1944-1945 (PDF 2.70 MB): These 1944-1945 lists detail European Jewish refugees from Havana, Cuba, arriving in Miami, Florida in the postwar period, where they were assisted by JDC and the National Council of Jewish Women. Descriptive material such as full names, relatives, ages, birthplace and wartime location are listed.
Jewish Orphans from Buchenwald brought to France by JDC, 1945 (PDF 505 KB): This list contains names of 535 Jewish orphans from the Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany. Joseph Schwartz, JDC’s Overseas Director, negotiated their entry into France and agreed to cover transportation costs. In June 1945, the children reached Paris and were sent to two JDC-supported homes run by OSE, a French childcare organization. In July 1945, 173 journeyed to Palestine on the S.S. Mataroa, a trip financed by JDC.
Jewish Refugees in Italy Receiving Aid, 1946 (PDF 3.98 MB): This 1946 list details JDC’s monthly financial support of individuals in the Naples, Florence, Torino, Genova, Modena and Pisa Jewish communities.
Rabbinical Students in Shanghai I, 1947 (PDF 282 KB): This is a 1947 list of rabbinical students living in Shanghai who fled Poland after the Nazi invasion. JDC funded their transportation eastward via Siberia and Japan. On this list, JDC is arranging affidavits for their immigration to the U.S. All told, some 16,000 refugee Jews survived the war in Shanghai with JDC aid, with JDC expending some $7,434,000 between 1938-1979 for their relief and resettlement.
Rabbinical Students in Shanghai II, 1947 (PDF 1.26 MB): A 1947 list of rabbinical students living in Shanghai who are refugees from the Nazi invasion of Poland. Finding temporary refuge in Lithuania with JDC support, the rabbinical group then moved eastward via Siberia and Japan, with JDC funding their transportation costs. Most were shipped by the Japanese authorities from Japan to Shanghai in the wake of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. JDC covered the costs of their support during their entire sojourn in the Far East. In this document, the JDC is arranging documentation and affidavits for their migration to the U.S. All told, 15,000 refugee Jews survived the war in Shanghai with JDC aid. Between 1938-1979, the JDC expended some $7,434,000 for the relief, rehabilitation and resettlement of Shanghai refugees.
Shanghai Clients Registering for Emigration to Canada, 1948 (PDF 4.02 MB): A 1948 list of Displaced Persons in Shanghai who are registering for emigration to Canada. The JDC advocated on their behalf, and the Canadian government is accepting some and refusing visas to others. The Shanghai Joint Distribution Committee and its predecessor organization guided refugee aid and emigration activities, including running kitchens that fed 10,000 people a day. All told, 15,000 refugee Jews survived the war in Shanghai with JDC aid. From 1938-1979, the JDC expended some $7,434,000 for the relief, rehabilitation and resettlement of Shanghai refugees.
Ezras Torah Fund, 1948 (PDF 4.88 MB): A 1948 list of needy Orthodox rabbis and scholars, who, along with their families, received financial aid from the JDC in Europe and Palestine in the postwar period. The Ezras Torah Fund was organized in 1915 by the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of the U.S. and Canada.
Polish Jewish Repatriates Following World War II, 1948 (PDF 1.77 MB): This 1948 list from the JDC Location Service details Polish Jewish citizens repatriated from Russia back to their home country in the post World War II period. The Polish Jews on the list had spent the war years in Russia.
Jewish Refugees in Latin America receiving JDC Assistance, 1948 (PDF 5.20 MB) : These 1948 lists detail monthly reports from the JDC Latin America office on World War II refugees. The refugees immigrated to Paraguay, Cuba, Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador and were sponsored by JDC. The lists were submitted by Jewish Welfare Committees in each of the aforementioned countries.
CARE Packages to DP (Displaced Persons) Camps I, 1946-1948 (Part I 7.62 MB; Part II 7.66 MB) The Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe (CARE) program was founded in 1945 by America’s 26 leading volunteer agencies, one of which was the JDC, to rush life saving CARE packages to survivors of World War II in a safe, non-profit channel. More than 100 million packages reached people in need in the 2 decades following the war. These 1946-1948 lists detail relatives from South Africa and Shanghai, China who sent packages of food or blankets to their relatives in DP camps in Europe. Detailed geographical information of both the remitter and the recipient of aid is included. When the program first began, ten dollars bought a CARE Package, with a guarantee that the recipient would receive it within four months.
CARE Packages to DP (Displaced Persons) Camps II, 1946-1948 (PDF 490 KB): The Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe (CARE) program was founded in 1945 by America’s 26 leading volunteer agencies, including JDC, to rush CARE packages to survivors of World War II. More than 100 million packages reached people in need in the 2 decades following the war. These 1946-1948 lists include the beneficiaries of parcels, as well as the date of package delivery.
JDC Shanghai Refugee Client List, 1950 (Part I 7.88 MB; Part II 7.34 MB;Part III 8.47 MB; Part IV 7.99 MB; Part V 8.06 MB):A 1950 list of JDC’s Shanghai Case Files of Jewish refugees assisted by JDC during the World War II years and thereafter. Lists are organized according to end destination, e.g. U.S., Canada, South America, Europe, Israel and Australia. Included also are names of family members and case file numbers. Shipment of the files out of Shanghai was first approved by the Chinese Communist authorities, but later rejected. These files remain in the hands of the Chinese government.
JDC Emigration Office: Munich and Vienna cards, 1945-mid 1950s: This is a collection of registration cards of Jewish survivors who registered with the Emigration Department of JDC in Munich and Vienna after World War II for help in emigrating to countries other than Israel. The database includes individual cards from 1945-mid 1950s for 51,554 Displaced Persons in Munich and 25,374 Displaced Persons in Vienna.
Barcelona Refugee Case Cards, 1943-1945: After the fall of France, tens of thousands of Jewish refugees seeking to flee Nazi Europe streamed into Spain from France. JDC set up an office in Barcelona and provided support, housing and emigration assistance to these refugees. JDC also assisted refugees waiting for emigration papers and passage on transatlantic vessels. This collection contains index cards from 1943-1945 for 8220 refugees supported by JDC.
Transmigration Bureau Records, 1940-1956: The Transmigration Bureau was established by JDC in New York to help refugees emigrate from Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Holland, Belgium and Luxembourg, primarily to the U.S. Its primary role was to accept deposits from friends or family overseas towards the travel costs of Jews emigrating from Europe. Included are deposit cards for 37,732 individuals who emigrated from 1940-1956, with the bulk from 1940-1942.
Jewish Refugees Arriving in Australia via Melbourne, 1946-1954: This was indexed through a Project of Jewish Care (Melbourne, Australia) and the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 2004.The database provides an index of names and available personal data taken from passenger lists sent to the Australian Jewish Welfare and Relief Society in Melbourne 1946 -1954. Before the departure of ships (mostly leaving from Genoa in Italy or Marseilles in France), HIAS and the AJDC mailed a list of Jewish passengers under their sponsorship to the Federation of Jewish Welfare Societies. This enabled family sponsors to be contacted andarrangements to be made for accommodation for those not being met by family. In addition to these shipping lists there are a few lists of refugees who arrived by plane whose fares were paid by family or friends.These lists, along with thousands of personal files relating to requests for landing permits and search requests for missing relatives are stored in the archives of Jewish Care, the major Jewish social service organization in Melbourne, and in the Archives of JDC and HIAS. In 2003 an agreement was drawn up to permit the USHMM to have access to refugee files dating from 1938 for microfilming.
Transmigrant Records from 1956 Onwards
Hungarian Refugee Registration Cards, 1956-57: With the outbreak of the Hungarian Revolution in 1956, more than 18,000 Jews fled to Austria. JDC helped emigrants waiting for resettlement, housing some 11,000 refugees in hotels, private dwellings and camps. JDC also supported two kosher kitchens in Vienna and furnished medical and religious supplies. While some stayed in Europe, refugees emigrated to the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Israel and Latin America.
Transmigrants Assisted by JDC in Rome, 1969-1973: In Vienna and Rome, JDC developed programs to assist transmigrants, Jewish refugees in transit to other countries, who faced a waiting period of several months for their papers to be processed and were not eligible for work permits. The JDC’s caseload fluctuated in response to political developments in Eastern Europe and elsewhere. The Jerusalem Archives of JDC holds tens of thousands of case files for these transmigrants.