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52 Ancestors #12: Kristīne Kvante

Time for Week 12 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge! As noted in my first post of this challenge, I am starting with my most ancient known ancestors.

This week’s ancestor is Kristīne Kvante, born July 11, 1833 (some sources say 1830, but she is not even a year old at the time of the 1834 revision list), and died sometime after 1867. She is my great-great-great-grandmother, by way of my paternal grandmother’s paternal grandfather, Jēkabs Šīrs (you read about Jēkabs’ paternal grandfather Marcis Šīrs several weeks ago).

Kristīne Kvante was born on Cāļu folwark (“half-estate” – a small estate that was a subsidiary of a larger estate), on the south shore of Lake Burtnieki, to parents Jēkabs and Marija. Jēkabs was a carpenter. Kristīne had five older siblings, Jānis (c. 1818), Jēkabs (c. 1819), Anna (c. 1822), Pēteris (c. 1827) and Marija (c. 1831). The family moved estates frequently – they had moved to Cāļu folwark from Burtnieki estate in 1826, and then they moved again to Briedes estate prior to Kristīne’s marriage in 1851. Kristīne married Jānis Šīrs on November 21, 1851 at Matīši Lutheran Church.

Kristīne would continue to move around for much of her life. The family moved to Stāberģi estate near Aloja in 1858, which is where my great-great-grandfather Jēkabs Šīrs was born in 1862. They moved to Milite estate in 1863, and then Vilzēni in 1868. This is where the trail ends, though there are some indications that they may have continued on to Limbaži at some point, but I have not found them there yet. By this time, there are so many people with the names Šīrs and Kvante running around northern Latvia that I haven’t had the opportunity to trace them all. In addition to Jēkabs, Kristīne and her husband Jānis had at least three more children – Jānis, Pēteris and Marcis.

Kristīne’s family story highlights the importance of the incoming/outgoing registers to keep track of people who moved about frequently – without them, people could easily just disappear without a trace, even if they only moved a few kilometres away. But thankfully, in the areas where these registers survive, they will provide detailed information about who left a place, when, where they went, and then on the other end, when they got there and from where. So even if a register on one end might be missing, the other can still provide some of the information and you can keep your trace going.

Have incoming/outgoing registers been vital to your research? Share your successes here!

2 comments to 52 Ancestors #12: Kristīne Kvante

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