I have been working on my German genealogy while I search for my distant Russian family and work on my Russian family tree. A big surprise came in e-mail last week. A woman related to my great-great-grandmother’s sister contacted me from St. Petersburg.
I never expected anyone from her family to find me. One distant relative apparently had her married name wrong but knew she had a son and daughter. Two years ago, a woman from Texas claimed her great-grandmother was niece of my great-great-great-grandfather. Her family documents did not prove that in the end.
This time, the woman who had contacted me had a birth record to prove she was related to my family. I have familysearch.org to thank for this match. I submitted a portion of my family tree to the site even though I am not Mormon. This is the second time I have found distant cousins through this website. A few years ago, I found a man related to my great-great-great-great-grandfather’s brother.
I learned last week my great-great-grand aunt Martha married a Cossack and moved from the Bialystok area, once in Russia, and now in eastern Poland, moved around Ukraine and Russia. I have her birth certificate in Russian and German, several family photos and a family tree. I paid for Bialystok archives to look for records on my Bleschke family, but only Martha’s birth record could be found. Archives found marriage, birth and death records for most of her siblings.
I have yet to find any distant Russian or Ukrainian relatives on the very popular Ancestry.com. But a few years ago, I found a man related to another 4th-great-grandmother’s brother from my German ancestry on Ancestry.com. He mailed me copies of family documents back from the 18th century.
So this newest connection is giving me hope that I should submit other portions of my family tree to familysearch.org. I have more German ancestry from current day eastern Poland that once was part of the Russian Empire. My ancestors lived so close to the Russian border that maybe more of my German relatives married Russians.
Thankfully, familysearch.org is a free website and easy to use. Anyone can register here. Then, when the account is confirmed, go to the trees link, scroll down and click on submit tree button to upload a gedcom file. I recommend submitting family trees that cover one family group each. I assume anyone can submit multiple trees.