My wife and I are considering a trip to Poland in the summer or early autumn of 2013. Recently, I found my first evidence of where my Polish ancestors originated in Poland. What sort of information will you need to help us arrange a tour?
First and foremost I need ALL information about your ancestors you were able gather so far. And this is not only official documents like vital or emigration records. Very important are also letters from and to family in Poland and pictures, especially if you are interested in search for living relatives. Very helpful is if you have your family tree already constructed, preferably in one of the many family tree software gedcom file, or on Ancestry.com (you can then share access to your tree with me).
When I have your family information I need you to tell me what are your expectations from the Tour. This is not necessary so obvious as may seem . Some people are interested in genealogy research only, others just want to see the places: the ancestors' town, church, cemetery, and the others want to look for living relatives. Of course, many of you want to pursue all three goals.
Although this is a genealogy research tour some of you may want to see tourist attractions like Krakow, Zakopane or a concentration camp (although I don't feel comfortable to call the last one "tourist attraction"). Of course, I can take you there, but I WILL NOT BE your city tour guide because I am a genealogist and rather "country guide" operating mainly in tiny villages where usually your ancestors came from .
Now, when I know all of the above and the planned date you want to dedicate for the Tour I expect you to make deposit for me to reserve my time exclusively for you. I have first inquiries for 2013 Tours but no confirmed reservations yet.
Thank you for the quick reply. Unfortunately, we have no letters or pictures from Poland. I have a lot of genealogy about my family in the USA. Through the Poznań Project I recently discovered information about the marriage of my great grandparents near Wągrowiec. Using Geneteka, I found references to the birth of another great grandmother and her brothers in a parish in Świedziebnia. I will need to get to an LDS Family History Center and look at the microfilms to get copies/images of what they have.
I'll compile what I have and send it to you once I have the LDS information.
In this part Josphine describes our meetings with her relatives. Today, when I was preparing this blog to publish, I received an email from Josephine. She just found out that 91 years old Stanislawa, her relative who we met, died less than a month ago.... I am very sorry for you Jo and your family in Poland.
If Josephine arrived in Poland only a year later they would never have met...
I especially recommend to read it by those of you who look for practical hints about traveling to and throughout Poland and those who like watching pictures and videos .
Paper version of Jo's story was published this summer in known to many of you 'Rodziny' magazine published for years by Polish Genealogical Society of America. You can find scanned version of it sent by Josephine in the attachment of this post.
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