My maternal grandfather was from Limbaži, in northern Latvia. All I know about his family comes from my mother and my grandfather’s sister. I have not yet been able to find any official record of the family.
However, since I know where they lived (and have in fact visited the farm), I have begun combing the parish registers for Limbaži in hopes of finding some mention of the family. My mother says the name may have been changed at some point as well.
As of yet, no luck. But when I do, I will also want to connect them to other families. As such, I have been keeping spreadsheets of the names that I’ve encountered, to make this task easier.
I’ve finished looking through the Lutheran christening records from 1900 to 1905 (except for 1904, a year for which records do not appear to exist). I’ve definitely been noticing some trends, so I will share them with you here.
In the available records of this time period, there were 641 christenings performed in the Lutheran parish. 600 were for the Latvian congregation, 41 for the German congregation. There were 20 stillbirths in total.
Of the 621 live births, I have found 114 unique first names and 293 unique surnames. The most popular names are as follows (all written in modern Latvian style):
First Names (male/female)
- 1. Jānis/Emma
- 2. Kārlis/Milda
- 3. Augusts/Anna
- 4. Eduards/Elza
- 5. Ernests/Zelma
- 6. Mārtiņš/Marta
- 7. Ermanis/Alma
- 8. Alfreds/Kristīne
- 9. Pēteris/Malvīne
- 10. Andrejs/Alīde
- 1. Maurītis
- 3. Pētersons
- 4. Alksnis
How do the names in 1900-1905 Limbaži christening records compare to the list of 15 most common surnames in 2005 that I linked to earlier? Every surname on that list bar one (Kļaviņš) appears at least once.
Do you have ancestors from Limbaži? Do you have surnames you would like me to keep an eye out for while I’m looking at records from Limbaži?