Guidelines for Commenting

1. Please do not post the same item on multiple posts. You only need to post once for it to be seen.

2. Please include a working email address - if your comment is related to your own personal family history, rather than Latvian genealogy in a more general sense, I prefer to respond by email to maintain your privacy.

3. I don't sell email addresses or send anything to them besides responses to your comments. I am the only person who has access to them.

Genealogy Goals for 2010

[This post is written for the 87th edition of the Carnival of Genealogy, hosted by Creative Gene.]

While not new to genealogy, I am new to both genea-blogging and having information about my family such that I can conduct meaningful research. Most genealogical research that I have done has been for other people, and any efforts [...]

Expanding Family Knowledge

Before I went to Latvia and started conducting my research in the archives, I was purely a genealogist. I wanted names, dates and places. While at the archives, a transformation occured: I became a family historian as well. Rather than spending most of my time stretching back further into history, I concentrated on finding out [...]

Merry Christmas! Priecīgus Ziemassvētkus!

A very happy holiday to one and all!

The Latvian Ziemassvētki is an ancient celebration, a pre-Christian solstice celebration as in many European cultures. The Latvian name of the holiday never changed to reflect the new religion, however – “Ziemassvētki” means “Winter Holiday” or “Winter Celebration”.

Perhaps this is because Christianity came relatively late to the Baltics [...]

Surname Saturday – Radziņš

Today I’m featuring one of the new surnames I’ve discovered in my family tree – Radziņš (feminine form Radziņa, the surname of one of my great-great-grandmothers.

Marija Radziņa was born on November 16, 1856. I am not sure yet where she was born, but she married Pēteris Celmiņš sometime before 1878, when their first child was [...]

Tombstone Tuesday - Alma Kalniņa

When the Soviets invaded Latvia during the Second World War, they deported and/or murdered thousands of people from all walks of life.

One of these people was Alma Kalniņa. Her grave marker is in the town cemetery of Jēkabpils. She was 34 years old. She is buried alongside five others who were also murdered by the [...]

Mysteries Revealed – And Created

So today was my second day, and first full day, at the Latvian State Historical Archives.

I was able to view the passports I mentioned in my previous post, belonging to Pēteris Celmiņš and Anna Celmiņa (born Liepa), and confirmed that they are the correct individuals, and thus able to add their information to my family [...]

First Day at the Archives

So I have arrived in Latvia, and today I made my first trip to the Latvian State Historical Archives.

And I may have already found something!

Since it takes them a few days to find and bring out the requested documents, for the most part today was just filling out the forms to request the items I [...]

Tombstone Tuesday - Cemetery of Non-Existent Cemeteries

Another slightly unusual “Tombstone Tuesday”. Today I’m deviating somewhat from the “Latvian” part of this blog, because what I came across here while visiting Gdansk, Poland, really spoke to me.

This is the memorial stone at the “Cemetery of Non-Existent Cemeteries” – a memorial built to commemorate all of the destroyed cemeteries in Gdansk, and the [...]