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F is for Flight of the Wild Geese

Some of you may look at the title for this Family History Through the Alphabet challenge post and wonder if you’re on the right blog. After all, what does an Irish Jacobite army have to do with Latvia?

As it turns out, quite a bit. I won’t go into all of the specifics of the Flight […]

Wordless Wednesday - Latvian Composers and Song Festival

(click image to enlarge)

Monument to Latvian composers at Viesturdārzs (“Viesturs Park”) in northern Rīga, also the oldest park in the city (1711). It was the site of the first Latvian Song Festival, at the end of June, 1873. The monument was built in 1973, at the 100th anniversary of the song festival, and modified in […]

WW1 Diary – June 27, 1915

Second installment from the diary of my great-grandfather’s sister Alise, written during the First World War, just a few miles from the front lines of the Eastern Front. For the background, see here.

June 27, 1915

My thirtieth birthday. Already!! I haven’t lived in vain. I am at peace in my life. There is enough of everything. […]

Mention in Family Tree Magazine!

A few weeks ago, I was looking at my blog statistics, and I found that people had clicked on links from the Family Tree Magazine website to get to my blog. I’d never seen links from there before, so I went over to investigate… and discovered that I’d been named one of the Top 40 […]

WW1 Diary - June 24, 1915

When visiting a great-aunt of mine (my maternal grandfather’s sister) in Latvia, she shared with me a real family treasure – the wartime diary of her aunt, written during the First World War. I photographed all of the pages, and am now slowly transcribing and then translating the content. It provides a fascinating view into […]

Ē is for Ērģeles

So what does the third Latvian letter of the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge get us? Ērģeles!

I’ll admit, this one is a bit of a stretch. But there aren’t many Latvian words that start with Ē (a long E sound – not like the “ee” in “feet”, but rather an elongation of the “e” […]

E is for Emancipation

On to letter E of the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge!

E is for Emancipation

To many Westerners, particularly Americans, “Emancipation” means the freeing of slaves from slavery, more specifically black slaves in the American South, during the Civil War. But this is not the Emancipation we are discussing today, though this Emancipation takes place around […]

D is for Denmark

It is time for the letter “D” in the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge!

D is for Denmark

After the Second World War, there were thousands of Displaced Persons (DPs) across Western Europe, having escaped the Soviet takeovers of their homes. A large number of these DP camps were in Germany, and they get the most […]

Č is for Čigāns

Continuing with the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge, we’ve come upon our second Latvian letter…. Č!

This was a tough letter! There are not many Latvian words that start with “č” (pronounced “ch”), and even fewer that could relate to genealogy in some way. But I’ve found one – “čigāns”. This is Latvian for Gypsy […]

Remembering June 14, 1941

As with other years, I’m doing a commemorative post for June 14, 1941. This is the day when tens of thousands of Latvians, Estonians and Lithuanians were deported from their homelands by the Soviets to the far reaches of Siberia. Men, women, children, the elderly, the rich, the poor… people of all walks of life.

This […]