The next five posts include a break from the series of posts about the resources in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Library and Archives on the Fifth Floor, specifically describing the best resources for understanding the end of the German population in Lithuania in July 1944.
Instead I will focus on my preparation for the Feefhs conference in Salt Lake July 17 – 20, the actual conference, and the follow up. The fifth post will describe the International, Cultural, and Personal connections I made at the first International Germanic Genealogy Partnership Conference (IGGP) in Minneapolis July 27-30. Both conferences were exhilarating experiences for difference reasons. All of this information will be directed to East Prussia and Suwalki Province as much as possible.
First, Feefhs prep:
- For many years I had wanted to investigate the EWZ records the Nazis created to record the details of Germans in Eastern Europe. Details about these records will be the subject of future posts in late 2017 and 2018. Suffice it to say, I hired a researcher at NARA II in Salt Lake to obtain the Control Numbers for the individuals I was seeking so that when I went to Salt Lake, I would be able to pull the records fairly easily.
Part of this prep would lead to an understanding of what many of you already knew: many, many films have and are being digitized so I could do some of the EWZ research ahead of time at my local Family History Center and the recent information that all film orders have to be placed by August 31, 2017. Starting September 1, 2017, no more films can be ordered as Family Search moves to digitization of all films by 2020. Some are and will be available on your home computer, some only at Family History Centers depending on the contract made with the archives, parish, or municipality, etc. but especially German and Swiss films.
I also wanted to continue my research in East Prussia for the maternal families – great and great grandparents to see if I could find a name in neighboring East Prussian kreise even though I did not have a specific place to look: Spurgats but also Ber/Bersz, Gudat, Keller, Kuczynska, Walat, and Wellert.
This search would also include the Hutop ancestors– Cering/Zering, Simoneit, and Stein.
I also spent a great deal of time looking at the possibility of additional records for Kybarti, Virbalis (aka Wirballen, Wierzbolowo, and Verzhbolov), and Vistytis (aka Wischtiten, and Vyshtynets) to aid in the Hutop research.
I also wanted to update my findings in the most recent Landsmen articles of interest to my blog followers, and to copy a few more articles from Altpreussische Geschlechterkunde that might include translatable material for my readers and my own research.
I also wanted to check and recheck a few books.
Because the International Tracing Service records about Emil Hutop had led us to consider both Belgium and Canada as possible destinations, I wanted to peruse two books on Lithuanians in Canada, especially one on DPs to Canada post WWII.
All of the above resulted in the reorganization of computer files and notebooks so that I could pinpoint exactly what I had to prepare in order to complete what I wanted to do.
Much of my research time in 2017 had been devoted to three presentations I would make during the Feehfs conference.
If I had time, I would like to use some of the many databases available only at the Family History Library.
If it sounds like I had enough to do, you are right!