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 [...]
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. [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
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 [...]
Now up on the Family History through the Alphabet challenge…
B is for Baptists and Brazil
Now, you may be wondering what Baptists have to do with Brazil, and what either have to do with Latvia. Quite a lot actually!
Towards the end of the 19th century, while there were still lots of people emigrating from Europe to [...]
(click image to enlarge)
Statue of Field Marshall Michael Andreas Barclay de Tolly was a descendant of Scottish clan Barclay whose family had settled in the Russian Empire. His grandfather Peter was the mayor of Rīga for a time. As Field Marshall, Michael Andreas was the commander of the Russian army against Napoleon in the early [...]
I never thought that this was something I’d end up doing on this blog – reviewing a Who Do You Think You Are? episode. But it has happened – last weekend’s episode took place partially in Latvia!
The celebrity in question was Rashida Jones, an American actress, daughter of music mogul Quincy Jones and actress Peggy [...]
Part 2 – Genealogical Sources
After reading Part 1 of this primer, and the historical context of Latvian emigration, now it is time to move to genealogical sources – the resources that you can use to trace your Latvian ancestry.
What You Need to Know About Latvian Genealogy
Most records are in Russian or German prior to the [...]
Ready to move on to genealogical sources? See Part 2 of this primer here.
Part 1 – Historical Context
What You Need to Know about Latvia
Latvia is a country in northeastern Europe, bordered by Estonia, Russia, Belarus and Lithuania. The official language is Latvian, an Indo-European language of the Baltic branch, related to Lithuanian. Latvia has a [...]