I have had some success. I've found, confirmed and established some relationships with people as a result of my research. I've accessed archives and found out some interesting and some very sad things about relatives. Most of my (male) ancestors in Latvia were skilled artisans (tradesmen) such as millers, smiths, or merchants. I have at least one mayor of a medium sized city as well as another who was a city council member. I had one relative who was a prisoner of war in the Soviet Union and actually survived long enough to be released, while I had another who was sent to a Nazi concentration camp and perished. I have another relative who was forced into military service for the Nazis and did not survive, but there is no record that I've found and survives about him, his service or his death. I have a ancestor who was a medical doctor and died in Russia. I (very likely) have a relative who was Stalin's maid/housekeeper, but sadly, "disappeared", according to Stalin's daughter, during one of his purges. I've learned that there is no evidence that even hints at the distant Swedish heritage that my grandmother suggested nor of any royal line or linkage to a "Polish Baron" that my grandfather had suggested. Again, while the men in my paternal ancestral line were skilled as far back as my research goes (until the early 1800s), there was never any indication of royalty. While I have been quite pleased with the knowledge I've gained from the research, I'm also filled with envy of people who are fortunate enough to be able to research their family heritage in a bunch of easily accessible records that go back centuries!
I've learned that most people don't really give a shit about genealogy. Oh, and I'm a distant relative of a local weatherman. :-)
Some of my unresolved questions:
- Why was Kurschinsky changed to Truschinsky and why was it not merely by one person, but also for adult (close) relatives?
- In what role did my grandfather serve while under Nazi occupation in Latvia?
- Where was Alma Gunther born and to whom? Do adoption records still exist?
- What is the maiden name of Heinrich Wigert's wife, Anna?
- Which "Trusinskis" who are in Latvia are related to me?
- Where is the link between the Odessa Deifels and my Deifels from Wurtemburg?
- Is there any relationship between "von Truschinsky" and "Truschinsky"?
- From where did August Till come when he moved to northern Latvia in the early 1800s?
- Are there any Trusinskys in Russia?
- Is the "Truschinski" found in a google book search related in some way?
- To what extent do internal passports and emigration records exist/survive in Latvia?