Lithuanian Family History Discoveries
As a Project Manager with Legacy Tree Genealogists, I often find myself just as anxious as the client is to get a report back from a researcher and find out what was discovered. I really care about each and every project, and love that we have such amazing researchers who do such great work.
Lithuanian Family History
One of my favorite projects is one that has been ongoing for nearly seven years! The client originally ordered in July of 2007, asking us to translate the writing on the back of some photos from Lithuanian into English, and then to try to extend his paternal ancestral line in Lithuania.
It was determined that the records needed were not available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, so research had to be undertaken in the State Archives in Vilnius.
Research was completed via correspondence with the archive for the next FIVE years! The State Archive in Vilnius would only allow a certain number of requests at one time, and they would only search a certain number of years as well. I would compose an email, translate it into Lithuanian using Google Translate, and then it took several months to receive results each time. When the results were received, they would be in some combination of Polish, Russian, Latin, and/or Lithuanian, and had to be translated into English. In the course of five years we only completed two 20-hour projects for the client, but slowly, progress was actually being made, and it was exciting to be able to provide the client with new information about his ancestors in Lithuania.
Using Onsite Researchers
In 2012 I sent an email to our onsite Polish researcher with a query about another project and much to my surprise, I received an auto-reply from him that said something along the lines of “I’m currently at the State Archives in Vilnius, Lithuania, and will get back to you soon.” I was THRILLED! I immediately contacted him again about doing research for my client there, and then contacted the client with the great news that I had found a trustworthy researcher who could travel to Vilnius and conduct research much more quickly and efficiently.
Since then, our agent has made six trips to Vilnius for this client (and is scheduled for a seventh), and has learned that they actually belonged to the noble class, and proved their nobility in the Russian Empire. The line appears to be documented back to at least 1633 in the nobility documents found so far. We’ve been able to find siblings to complete full family groups, and even provided the client with a video demonstrating how his ancestral names should be pronounced. The results have been amazing, and the client is extremely pleased!
Just in the 8 years I’ve been working with Legacy Tree, huge advances have been made in the availability of records, onsite research possibilities, and even DNA. I look forward to the great things we’ll continue to do in the future!
For an update on this client’s research project, check out this article: Perseverance Pays Off: A Lithuanian Case Study.
Legacy Tree Genealogists has extensive experience in helping clients trace their ancestors from all over the world, and we can help you dig through archives and onsite records to find details about your ancestors. Contact us today for a free quote.