What Are Your Goals?

This is why I advocate the “Barnyard”, “Garden” and “Farmstead” approaches when it comes to Latvian genealogy. Documents are such that while you might not know about a lot of ancestors, you can get to know a lot about the ancestors you do find. You can trace migration patterns, you can trace who lived on which farm and when, you can see if families traveled together. You can learn about the histories of certain parishes and estates, about the officials and barons that managed them, and thus be able to find out what kind of lives the peasants may have had. You can trace the impact that events such as the 1905 Revolution had on your ancestors’ communities, or the policies of different czars. You can read old newspapers from all over Latvia and see what kind of events your ancestors might have been talking about, or even participated in. All of this is possible. The resources are there – some online, but most are not. Languages vary, as do the places you need to go to find them all, but it is all possible.

What is your genealogical approach? Do you need help defining one? Do you need other kinds of help reaching your goals? Let me know!

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