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Summer Fun Course on Surnames!

So I’ve decided to do a little mini-course this August all about surnames! It will be a light and fun exploration of the intricacies of surnames in Latvia – their acquisition, their meanings, their geographic reach and so on.

This course can be summed up with the phrase “How? Who? Where? What?” – these are the […]

New Genealogy Courses Starting in May!

As you may recall, in February I started my first beginners’ course in Latvian genealogy. It is still running, and it has been an intense experience for all involved! But everyone (including me!) is learning a lot, so I think that further sessions of the course can help more people, so the next sessions will […]

Beginners’ Course in Latvian Genealogy!

Big announcement today – Starting on February 9th, I will be running an online 12-week beginners’ course on Latvian genealogy, where we will start with the basics of Latvian research using online sources.

I know getting into the records can feel intimidating, especially if you don’t know the languages involved. But we were all beginners once, […]

52 Ancestors #33: Jānis Graumanis

Time for Week 33 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 Jānis Graumanis, born c. 1789 and died 1851. He is my great-great-great-great-grandfather by way of my maternal grandfather’s maternal grandmother Līze Graumane.

Jānis […]

The Dreaded Corner House of Rīga

During the Soviet era, there were few buildings so feared and dreaded in Latvia as the “Corner House” – an otherwise nondescript building on the corner of Brīvības and Stabu streets (though of course Brīvības street – meaning Freedom Street – was called Lenin Street during the Soviet era, couldn’t have any references to freedom). […]

Bringing Out the Great-Grandfathers, Part 1 (updated)

I was looking through old blog posts recently, and realized that I started a series of posts on my great-grandfathers (almost four years ago now), but that I never finished the series. I only talked about one of my great-grandfathers!

So I’m going to finish this series now, and I will start by expanding on the […]

Book Review: The Case for Latvia

I don’t review books on here often – okay, this is the first review – but I think it might be something I start. This book in particular I think is very valuable for understanding the tricky nuances of Latvian history.

The book is called The Case for Latvia: Disinformation Campaigns Against a Small Nation by […]

T is for Tartu

So again, the Family History Through the Alphabet challenge has the name of a city that is not in Latvia. But this time it is closer to home – Tartu is a city in Estonia, which, at the time of the Russian Empire, was a part of the province of Livland, which, as I’ve mentioned […]