Author Topic: Help with records destroyed during WWII  (Read 565 times)

Offline CID

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Help with records destroyed during WWII
« on: Friday 06 July 18 14:49 BST (UK) »
I've been hunting for my mother's birth record for over a year now, through archives and even a person on the ground, and so far I still have no luck.

My grandparents were Lithuanian, and fled the country around 1941 due to Russian occupation. They traveled across Poland and Germany, and on the way were in DP camps. My mother and her brother were born in what was at the time, the German occupied territory of Schröttersburg -- before and after that time, Plock, Poland. I have contacted archives in both Germany and Poland. Germany keeps saying they have nothing and that I have to contact Poland. Poland says most, if not all records from 1942 - 1944 were destroyed by Nazis -- my mother was born December 1942. The only way I know of the town is through records obtained from US Homeland Security through the Freedom of Information Act, which contain statements about where she was born -- but since she was a child at the time, most information about her has been blacked out by Homeland Security.

I am looking to achieve dual citizenship, most likely through Lithuania (could also be Poland), but my mother's record is key, and I have nothing. It seems unfathomable that there would be no process to help those who had their birth record destroyed (and at the time, it was likely only documented at a local parish), and there have to be many people in this predicament. So far, I have not been able to figure out what to do. Any assistance would be appreciated.

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Offline Radcliff

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #1 on: Friday 06 July 18 15:26 BST (UK) »
what names are we researching
Gunning County Down,Kneale Isle of Man,Riddle Tynemouth,Bibby Kendal/Bradford,Colenso Penzance/Barrow-in-Furness,Steele Corney Fell,Chapman Ely,Dawes Alfreton,Blamire Westmoreland and Ulverston
Dislike the use of P Messaging system, unless its of a sensitive nature, Rootschat is  an open forum,

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Offline CID

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #2 on: Friday 06 July 18 18:01 BST (UK) »
Her name is Ursule Zablauskas or Zablauskaite (Lithuanian suffix for unmarried girl).

Parents:  Augustas Zablauskas and Erna Kirsteinas

Offline Josephine

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #3 on: Friday 06 July 18 19:37 BST (UK) »
CID,

Given that your mother's original birth or baptismal records, if they ever existed (due to the circumstances at the time), are in all likelihood no longer extant: will the governments of Lithuania and/or Poland accept anything else as proof of her birth?

Regards,
Josephine
England: Barnett; Beaumont; Christy; George; Holland; Parker; Pope; Salisbury
Scotland: Currie; Curror; Dobson; Muir; Oliver; Pryde; Turnbull; Wilson
Ireland: Carson; Colbert; Coy; Craig; McGlinchey; Riley; Rooney; Trotter; Waters/Watters

Offline Josephine

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #4 on: Friday 06 July 18 19:48 BST (UK) »
CID,

Have you looked at the website for the International Tracing Service:
https://www.its-arolsen.org/en/

They have some documents online:
https://digitalcollections.its-arolsen.org/

If you do a search on Zablauskas you'll get four results but it looks like they're all connected with one document (or one document series #Z00060):
https://digitalcollections.its-arolsen.org/name/list?query=Zablauskas

If the online documents don't contain the information you are seeking, perhaps you could contact the ITS directly for help.

I don't know if this would be sufficient proof for the purpose of obtaining dual citizenship but, if you don't have this info, it might still be of interest.

Regards,
Josephine

England: Barnett; Beaumont; Christy; George; Holland; Parker; Pope; Salisbury
Scotland: Currie; Curror; Dobson; Muir; Oliver; Pryde; Turnbull; Wilson
Ireland: Carson; Colbert; Coy; Craig; McGlinchey; Riley; Rooney; Trotter; Waters/Watters

Offline CID

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #5 on: Friday 06 July 18 20:14 BST (UK) »
Yes, I'd found those documents already. There is no birth record information.


Offline CID

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #6 on: Friday 06 July 18 20:15 BST (UK) »
I haven't asked Lithuania that, but their requirements (online at the consulate) are pretty clear -- I have to show the connection between my grandparents and me.

Offline Josephine

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #7 on: Friday 06 July 18 20:36 BST (UK) »
I haven't asked Lithuania that, but their requirements (online at the consulate) are pretty clear -- I have to show the connection between my grandparents and me.

Yes, but given the circumstances, it might be useful to ascertain whether there are other secondary proofs of birth that might suffice.

There are undoubtedly other ways to show the connection between you and your grandparents but the question is whether or not the government will accept those.

Here's an example. At some point in Canada (circa the 1930s, I think), the government introduced some sort of government pension, but people had to produce proof of birth. Well, in lots of cases, the original records had been lost (e.g. churches or gov't buildings or archives burned to the ground), so the Government of Canada had other documentation that it would accept instead. My great-grandfather, for example, filled out a form and his cousin attested to having been either present or personally informed of the circumstances of my g-grandfather's birth, including the identity of his parents.

You undoubtedly have your birth record, which identifies your parents. How do you prove that your mother was the child of X & Y, if her original birth and/or baptismal records are gone (or never existed in the first place)? Either the governments of Lithuania and/or Poland accept secondary proofs of identity or they don't. If the former, what proofs will they accept? If the latter, it sounds like you are out of luck, but perhaps a lawyer who specializes in this sort of thing would know of possible work-arounds; this would cost money, obviously.

Regards,
Josephine
England: Barnett; Beaumont; Christy; George; Holland; Parker; Pope; Salisbury
Scotland: Currie; Curror; Dobson; Muir; Oliver; Pryde; Turnbull; Wilson
Ireland: Carson; Colbert; Coy; Craig; McGlinchey; Riley; Rooney; Trotter; Waters/Watters

Offline CID

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Re: Help with records destroyed during WWII
« Reply #8 on: Friday 06 July 18 22:25 BST (UK) »
I haven't asked Lithuania that, but their requirements (online at the consulate) are pretty clear -- I have to show the connection between my grandparents and me.

Yes, but given the circumstances, it might be useful to ascertain whether there are other secondary proofs of birth that might suffice.

There are undoubtedly other ways to show the connection between you and your grandparents but the question is whether or not the government will accept those.

Here's an example. At some point in Canada (circa the 1930s, I think), the government introduced some sort of government pension, but people had to produce proof of birth. Well, in lots of cases, the original records had been lost (e.g. churches or gov't buildings or archives burned to the ground), so the Government of Canada had other documentation that it would accept instead. My great-grandfather, for example, filled out a form and his cousin attested to having been either present or personally informed of the circumstances of my g-grandfather's birth, including the identity of his parents.

You undoubtedly have your birth record, which identifies your parents. How do you prove that your mother was the child of X & Y, if her original birth and/or baptismal records are gone (or never existed in the first place)? Either the governments of Lithuania and/or Poland accept secondary proofs of identity or they don't. If the former, what proofs will they accept? If the latter, it sounds like you are out of luck, but perhaps a lawyer who specializes in this sort of thing would know of possible work-arounds; this would cost money, obviously.

Regards,
Josephine

I would love to hope that they'd accept something else -- I'd had a back and forth with the consulate about documents a while back, and they were very specific.

Indeed, it seems crazy that there either wouldn't be some exception, or a way to get some other sort of record with what information I have. That's why I posted here, in the hopes someone could think of something I can't. I have one friend who has worked in another country's passport office who told me I should submit directly to Lithuania, not through the consulate -- and tell them there is no record of her birth just to see what they do. Everything has to be translated into Lithuanian, and Apostille certified, and I'm worried about not getting something right and being rejected.