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My father was born in Fes, Morocco in 1936. He left to go to Israel in the 1950's. Does anyone know what type of records were kept in that time period or earlier? Were any kept at all? I don't really know much about his parents and nothing of his grandparents.

I'm assuming the Moroccan records, if there were any, were in either French or Arabic. How could I access these?

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There's some description of the very limited historical records in Morocco on Geneawiki (in French). May be out of date by now, and as it's a French site it makes no mention of the former Spanish areas.

In short: before 1912, few records, except consular records from their home country for Europeans.

1912-1956, records are in France. France Diplomatie (in French) has listings of some microfilms, but nothing is online. It appears none of the data they list there is recent enough for you, but you could contact them to see if more recent état civil (birth certificates) are available.

From 1956, you need to contact the specific commune (local authority) in Morocco (plus consular records are still useful for Europeans).

There is also the Association Généalogie Algérie Maroc Tunisie (in French) who may have access to other records.

4

In talking about jewish sephardic genealogy, seems visiting the Sephardic Genealogy site is a must.

There you can read about what to expect in finding vital records for Morrocan Jewry.

I began recently researching my wife's side, which introduced me to Sephardic genealogy. I am mostly familiar with the Ashkenazic one.

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    I like to see websites mentioned by name in the text of the answer instead of being labelled with "this" so for clarity -- the website is Sephardic Genealogy and the page referenced is the page for Morocco: sephardicgen.com/morocco.htm – Jan Murphy Apr 12 '15 at 15:11
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Most of the records are not digitized. They are housed in the Moroccan municipality and/or Ministry of Justice archives, perhaps.

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There are some books that have the records of the Jews of Morocco and Portugal. It's called Genealogía Hebraica - Portugal e Gibraltar and is available via FamilySearch.

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