(Expanded Preview: Vol. 6, No. 2)
SUMMARY OF THE FALL/WINTER 2005 ISSUE
We have recently finished the Fall/Winter issue of our Journal, _Proteviai_,
and we hope our readers will find it interesting and informative. Here's
a brief summary of what this issue offers.
The lead article, "LGGS's Vytas Levickis Meets with President
Adamkus," documents what may turn out to be the most important
thing LGGS has ever done: urge the Lithuanian government to allocate
funds to the preservation of documents in the Archives. As Vytas says,
"These documents and records represent not only the proud heritage
of the Lithuanian State but also our heritage." As genealogy has
grown in popularity, these records are being handled more and more;
and many are much the worse for wear, in urgent need of restoration,
preservation, and copying. Vytas met recently with President Valdas
Adamkus and presented him with a letter emphasizing the need for more
attention to this problem. It remains to be see what the results will
be; but at least Vytas has brought the problem to the attention of one
who can do something about it.
Also beginning on page 1 is "My Lithuanian Journal,"
by Mary Guler, a day-to-day journal she kept during her 2005 trip to
Lithuania. It's a long article, filling roughly half this issue; but
I could find nothing to cut! Its immediacy and vivid descriptions make
you feel you're there with Mary, every step of the way. Each paragraph
has some insight or comment that made me say "I didn't know that"
or "That's not what I would have expected." I think you'll
enjoy Mary's Journal as much as I did. It's entertaining, but packs
a deceptively large payoff in terms of practical information.
On page 3 is an article about an online guide to villages and their
parish affiliations in the former Archdiocese of Wilno/Vilnius. This
source will be of most value to genealogists with roots in northeastern
Poland; it may prove helpful, however, to many with Lithuanian roots
as well. As a rule, most parish records in Lithuania were removed from
the local churches and taken to Vilnius decades ago. Still, knowing
which parish served your ancestors' village can aid you in several practical
ways. We felt our members would want to know about this service, so
they can evaluate for themselves whether to look into it.
On page 15 is an article "Noble Lithuanian Tatars"
written by Iwona Dakiniewicz, a Polish professional researcher who is
fascinated by the Tatars who came as soldiers to aid the Grand Duchy
of Lithuania in the 13th and 14th centuries, and were rewarded with
estates and privileges. She lists many of the surnames and estates of
these noble Tatars. Her sources gave the names in Polish form, but I
have added the most likely Lithuanian forms whenever I could determine
them. This article may help you connect with some particularly exotic
branches of your family tree!
On page 20 is a report by LGGS Membership Director Diane Rooney on LGGS's
cooperative venture with the Diocese of Allentown, Pennsylvania to help
researchers acess the records of St. Joseph's Church in Mahanoy City,
PA. This is great news for many researchers, as these records were previously
hard to access.
Also on page 20, LGGS Board Member Tena Puisis gives information on
a new LGGS database: "World War I Draft Names and Serial
Numbers for Grand Rapids, Michigan." It may not help everyone;
but if you have roots in the Grand Rapids area, this one feature may
be worth your membership dues by itself.
Beginning on page 21 is "Spotlight on Towns in Lithuania,"
with translations of information on the towns of Siauliai and Silale.
First the names of these places are analyzed by Lithuanian expert Aleksandras
Vanagas. This is followed by a translation of the entries for these
towns from a massive late-19th-century Polish gazetteer. Typically the
entries from this gazetteer include information hard to find anywhere
else in English; plus they date from right about the time our ancestors
were leaving Europe. So if you have roots in the regions of Siauliai
or Silale, these translations may provide you with some valuable historical
We hope you find this issue worth the wait, and wish you the best of
luck with your research!
William F. “Fred” Hoffman
Fred Hoffman <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Editor of _Proteviai_