The researching of your lineage is one of the hardest and the most ungrateful job in this life.
Why are we saying that it is ungrateful job? Because the first thing to do, if you have decided to research the history of your lineage, is to collect the primary information from all of your living relatives. And this is great if you have somebody to ask, but, unfortunately, not all the relatives are ready to share such information. And not all of them are ready to tell the truth because of different reasons. That is why it is preferable to try to confirm all the family legends by any documents.
But in any case you need to start from asking all the relatives and constructing of the first variant of your Family Tree. And it is preferable to start from the websites like www.ancestry.com to construct such a Family Tree.
First of all, it will facilitate the task and you will never get perplexed in your relatives.
- Secondly, we will immediately start to get the links for the same name carriers that are already on the website and probably they are your relatives too.
- The next stage is to research the documents’ range you can add to your genealogical research (Parish registers, censuses, etc.).
These documents are the core of your Family Tree. They are its branches.
The next step allows you to clothe the leaves on your Family tree. Because usually it is not enough just to know what the name of your grandfather was.
It is interesting to know what he did in his life, where and how he lived, etc. Additional resources are: recruit records, service records, court and police cases, lists of the voters etc.
Also it will be helpful to explore the settlement’s history that your ancestors used to inhabit.
To our regret it is much harder to research Jewish genealogy than any other genealogical research. Especially, if the origin of your lineage is in the countries of the former Russian Empire in general and if it is Ukraine in particular. It is connected with several reasons:
- Three wars, revolution and lots of pogroms.
- Administrative division: the documents related to just one settlement can be at three archives at the same time or vise-versa can be lost during their transfer, in fire or just damaged.
- There used to be Jews who tried to hide their origin and that is why they destroyed the entire records book with all other records.
- Or we have another more common reason: negligence in documents preserving conditions. There are several archives that were totally damaged during the Second World War.
But do not worry if you know that there are no parish registers (metrical books) for the settlement you need. We will find any kind of information in the documents of the second type. The main thing is just to search more insistently. The biggest amount of information may be found in police documents and it is connected with limited rights for Jews in Russian Empire. Unfortunately, these documents are almost impossible to describe and there are lots of them. Each book has about 1500 sheets in one record and almost all of them are handwritten. That is why it is difficult to read it because of the penmanship and faded ink.