Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Ukrainian source for genealogical research

Cover of the volume of Istoriia mist i sil URSR, devoted to the 
Ternopil oblast (Ukr.: Ternopil's'ka oblast')

 Map of the Ternopil oblast' found within the above mentioned volume.

Between 1967-1974, the Institute of History for the Academy of Sciences of the Ukrainian S.S.R. (today, the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine) published a series of volumes, titled, Istoriia mist i sil URSR (The History of the Cities and Towns of the Ukrainian S.S.R) each one, devoted to an individual Ukrainian oblast (province or administrative unit). Within each volume, there is a detailed look at each of the oblast's various districts, or raions, with accompanying maps of each of these districts. For genealogists, this is truly a great resource for locating small villages, that may not usually appear on ordinary commercial maps. In addition, one will find write-ups on the history of each city, town and village located within that particular oblast'. Although each volume contains the Soviet-slant on Ukrainian history, it is still a great source  to obtain information about, say for example, --when a particular town was founded; what are some noteworthy events that took place over the centuries in the town and its surrounding areas; and what important buildings and landmarks exist in a district. It would be nice to see an updated version of this set of volumes in present-day, independent Ukraine. Perhaps such a project is currently underway -- one can only hope...

Istoriia mist i sil URSR, is located in the Slavic Collection's Reference section under the call number, Slav DK 511 I7.