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ONLINE GENEALOGY WORKSHOP: Unlock Your History! Workshop II with the Heinz History Center

November 20, 2020
9:45am - 12:00pm

Calendar Event Photo

Have German roots? On Friday, November 20th, the Ohio County Public Library will present a free online genealogy workshop. Hosted by the Senator John Heinz History Center, this half-day virtual program helps attendees explore their German roots and personal immigration history.

Pam Israel and her brother Stephan Israel of "Unlock Your History!" assist with the translation of German-language documents. Instruction in hands-on collections care is provided by the Heinz History Center's Robert Stakeley. The program also features archival artifact and collection analysis and a "Virtual Show & Tell" from the audience.

Please note that space is limited for the workshop and attendees must RSVP. Please email [email protected] to reserve your spot today. 

Check the OCPL website or our Facebook event page for future online broadcast details.


Pamela Israel grew up surrounded by a family immersed in genealogy. She also has a passion for exploring and discovery. After years of marketing and product launches in the corporate and start-up worlds, she spoke to her linguist brother and brought these interests together. She created Unlock Your History, specializing in genealogical translation of all Germanic languages to help others discover what is locked in their family letters, postcards, certificates, diaries, wills, and more.

Pamela speaks frequently on the intersection of family artifacts, history, and genealogy. She is a member of numerous genealogical associations, including APG (Association of Professional Genealogists) and is on the board of the Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society.

Stefan Israel started translating old family letters in German and Danish back as a college student, and picked up the old German form of cursive as a teenager.  He majored in German, and went on to earn a Ph.D. and become a professor in Germanic Linguistics, focused on German and its dialects, Dutch, and all the Scandinavian languages. 

His years abroad have included southern Bavaria, Freiburg near the French and Swiss borders, Kiel in northern Germany and Schleswig near the Danish border, as well as Finland and Iceland.  He has worked specifically as a translator since 2002.  And he enjoys it greatly.


The History Center Affiliates Program (HCAP) includes more than 125 regional historical societies and organizations dedicated to preserving local history. Affiliate Program members include history, genealogy, and library organizations located primarily within the counties of Western Pennsylvania, but also extending into the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia (including local organizations like the Ohio County Public Library, Oglebay Institute, Cockayne Farmstead Historic Preservation Committee). Membership in the program brings the extensive expertise and resources of the History Center’s staff to these organizations, especially in the areas of museum and archival work that enable each affiliate organization to reach its goals.

For more information about the History Center Affiliates Program, or to become a member, please contact Robert Stakeley at 412-454-6359 or [email protected].

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