Please sign in to post.

Kaliningrad for family research of old Konigsberg

I am needing help with translations of any written materials from any possible sources that might have survived the wars from Old Konigsburg. I would like to stay to take pics, research, and write about family from the area in the 1800s. I suspect that I have both German and Russian family from that area, and would like to know if anything/anyone are still there, and find possible information for my book about my ancestors! I would appreciate help in this, Kaliningrad is still amazing, even simply visiting. Would need to know good hotels, ect. Thank you!

Posted by
21157 posts

I am not sure if you are asking a question or just making some statements. It is a little unclear. This is a travel site and not a genealogy site.

For this subject the best source of assistance in Konigsberg or anywhere else would be one of the local genealogy societies. The have experts who, for a fee, will work with you to find what you need. They know where the records are and can read the local language and script. Google -- they are easy to find. Also one of the DNA companies would be very useful in pointing you in the right direction and perhaps establishing some contacts. This well take time, effort, and some expense. Good luck. It can be fun but frustrating.

Posted by
6 posts

Thank you Frank, I wrote that kinda sleepy! I don't know what resources there are, so that is fabulous to know! I have heard much of Prussian information is gone, but hoping for a miracle about my family from that area. My first stop is Germany, to prepare for Russian visit.

Posted by
21157 posts

Genealogy is a tough business to play it unless you can afford to pay someone else to do it. It is either get involved or forget it. It is very logical and very lineal. But if you haven't done your homework in the US, it is an improbable expectation to jump into Germany and expect to find something. Even if you could find something in Germany, without your US homework you would have idea if it fits. If you are new to this business, join a local genealogy group. They will have a lot of eager people willing to help you. Do the DNA -- we done both 23 and Me and Ancestry. See if there is LDS family history center in your area. They have tremendous files and resources to help you. You do not have to be a member of LDS. Their web site is fantastic. Then you begin building the trail back. Churches in Europe are a great source of original information but it will be in the local language and most likely in script. And you might lucky and find via DNA a distant relative who has done all of this work for you.

Posted by
6 posts

Thank you Frank! I have several family members who already have footwork, whom I will be traveling to meet in US, before even Germany. I have the great news that some of them have already traveled to Germany for some research. I will be gathering ALL data, putting into a laptop especially for this endeavor. I am going to take over genealogy in my family, as my older relatives are getting on. Anything you offer I will take seriously Frank! 😊

Posted by
4822 posts

I understand that Kaliningrad is heavily militarized. Not sure if that makes it harder to get a visa to go there?

Posted by
6 posts

That is what I understand. I kinda wonder if now, with a new American president, if it would be allowed?

Posted by
416 posts

New American president or not, there's a sizeable part of Kaliningrad region that is off-limits for regular visitors (here's the map of restricted areas: https://visit-kaliningrad.ru/info/visa/inostrannye-grazhdane.php).
I couldn't find that map on the English-language homepage of Kaliningrad's tourist site, but you might have better luck: https://visit-kaliningrad.ru/en/)

Other than that (and the fact that all tourist visa services, including e-visas for European and Asian citizens, have been suspended) - once the services resume, they shouldn't be any different from a regular Russian visa procedure.

Posted by
6 posts

My only interest is the past. I want to visit libraries, anything that has old paperwork, offices, maybe if they have a museum. Boring stuff. Just seeing the immediate city area is good enough for me. That hopefully will be established before I go, and on the Visa. Then a quick trip to St Petersburg and Moscow. Hoping for a miracle to see White Nights!

Posted by
416 posts

Well, the best of luck to you! As you probably know, the vast majority of K-berg pre-war archives ended up in Berlin and Olsztyn. Kaliningrad archives can't really offer too much when it comes to genealogy.
Still, a trip very much worth the effort.

If you're shooting for White Nights in SPB, are you planning on being there in June this year? Sounds a tad too optimistic to me...

Posted by
26 posts

Cheers from Kalininigrad. Due to COVID restrictions, borders are still closed. But you are welcome to visit and research former Konigsberg when it will be possible. Feel free to reach me, whould be happy to help as much as I can.

Posted by
6 posts

Thank you Nick, I will take you up on that! Here in California, America, the most populated state, they are ending the precautions for Covid-19 on June 15. Hopefully in the rest of the world, it will be soon too!
Thank you,
Connie Stinson