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Tombstone Tuesday - Kārlis and Katrīna Grīntāls

In this series, I am sharing photographs that I took of graves while I was in Latvia. All have death dates prior to 1945, and I have no further information on the people mentioned.

Photo taken by me, April 2012. Click to enlarge.

Top Inscription: “Še dus Dieva mierā” (“Sleeping here in God’s peace”)

Names: Kārlis Grīntāls, son [...]

WW1 Diary – August 25, 1915

Seventh installment from the diary of my great-grandfather’s sister Alise, written during the First World War. When the diary starts, she is living just a few miles from the front lines of the Eastern Front, and is then forced to flee with her husband and two young daughters to her family’s house near Limbaži as [...]

WW1 Diary – August 22, 1915

Sixth 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. If you’ve been wondering why there has been a long break from these – your answer will be found here.

August 22, 1915

We [...]

Tombstone Tuesday – Jānis Opsis, 1865-1930

In this series, I am providing pictures of tombstones from Latvian cemeteries, all with death dates prior to 1945. Usually I don’t have any more information on the people, but this time I do!

Photo taken by me, April 2012. Click to enlarge.

Top Inscription: “Savam mīļam mācītājam” (“For our dear minister”)

Name: Jānis Opsis, born February 7, [...]

Ņ is for Ņižņijnovgoroda

Wow! That sure looks like a mouthful, doesn’t it? Don’t be too afraid though. This latest edition of Family History Through the Alphabet is just the Latvian name for the Russian city and oblast of Nizhny Novgorod.

Nizhny Novgorod is located in the eastern part of “European Russia”, and the oblast straddles the Volga River. The [...]

Tombstone Tuesday – Marija Stirna (born Fabricina), 1883-1930

In this series, I am providing pictures of tombstones from Latvian cemeteries, all with death dates prior to 1945. I do not have any further information on the people mentioned.

Photo taken by me, April 2012. Click to enlarge.

Name: Marija Stirna (born Fabricina), born December 1, 1883; died September 27, 1930.

Inscription: “Klāt mūža nakts, Vairs nenāks [...]

N is for New Style

Almost caught up on the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge! Today we’re talking about dates, dates and more dates – the topic is New Style vs. Old Style!

No, we’re not talking about fashions for an evening out, but rather different calendars. Up until 1918, the Russian Empire used the Julian calendar. Most European countries [...]

Surname Saturday – Olympic Victors

Time to celebrate the Latvian medalists of the 2012 Olympics! This can fit in nicely with Surname Saturday – let’s take a look at their names, shall we?

The first Latvian medalists of 2012 were bronze medalists Mārtiņš Pļaviņš and Jānis Smēdiņš in mens’ beach volleyball!

PĻAVIŅŠ is the diminutive form of “pļava”, which means “meadow”. This [...]

M is for Manorial Estate

This is a good one for the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge, something I mention quite a lot but I’m not sure if I’ve ever really defined… Manorial Estate!

There were two types of “estates” in pre-independence Latvian society – manorial estates and social estates. Discussion on the latter to come later when we get [...]

Tombstone Tuesday – Jēkabs Dravnieks, 1869-1926

In this series, I am providing pictures of tombstones from Latvian cemeteries, all with death dates prior to 1945. I do not have any further information on the people mentioned.

Photo taken by me, April 2012. Click to enlarge.

Top Inscription: “Ģimenes kaps” (Family Grave)

Name: Jēkabs (Jānis’ son) Dravnieks, born October 21, 1869, died September 29, 1926.

Bottom [...]