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Activities

4th edition of the genealogical workshops "We combine stories"

Looking for your family roots? Or maybe among your relatives there are any emigrants? Want to reach sources that can help you learn their stories better? Do not know how to sort out your home archive and read old family documents? These workshops are for you! You can sign up from April 1.

Learn what resources can be found in national and international archives. Baptism, marriage and death certificates, lists of passengers traveling from Europe to other continents on transatlantic ships, documents related to application for citizenship in a new country, censuses – these are examples of some documents used in genealogical searches; access to them is today much easier than in the past.

The fourth, expanded edition of "We combine stories" workshops will help you reach these valuable resources and teach you how to use them.

All workshops will be held on Tuesdays at 5.30 - 7.30 PM in the reading room equipped with computers or in the multimedia room at the Emigration Museum in Gdynia (ul. Polska 1). Participation is free of charge. You can sign up by e-mail (see details below).

You can sign up for the entire session or attend only individual workshops. In the case of workshops taking place in the reading room, computer skills are required, and at workshops no. 8, 10 and 11 also English language skills.

Join us! Genealogical searches can be an exciting adventure!

Schedule and topics:

  • 1. What do we need genealogy for?

April 11

Venue: multimedia room

Delivered by: Marcin Maniecki

The first workshops will get the participants familiar with reasons to take to genealogy. Verifying family legends, gaining historical knowledge and new skills are just some of them.

  • 2. How to start a genealogical search

April 18

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa

Participants will learn the basic types of documents used in a genealogical search and will attempt to read the 19th century certificates. Practical exercises with the use of online databases will show you how to start your search, how to draw conclusions based on the acquired information and how to make hypothesis for further investigation.

  • 3. Home genealogical archive

April 25

Venue: multimedia room

Delivered by: Marcin Maniecki

During the workshops participants will learn the advantages and disadvantages of paper and digitized archives, they will find out how to collect data and documents and how to maintain documents and photos.

  • 4. Certificate sources in genealogical searches in Polish lands

May 9

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa

During the workshops participants will get acquainted with regional and national Internet search engines of birth, marriage and death certificates scans. They will also learn how to determine where original documents are stored and how they are shared.

  • 5.Sources other than certificates in genealogical searches in Polish lands

May 16

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa

Participants will learn what kind of archival materials, apart from certificates, can be particularly useful in studying family history and how to locate them. Practical exercises will allow you to familiarize yourself with sample censuses of selected places, registers of occupational groups, lists of students and journeymen. It will be also possible to learn how to find information about particular people in archival newspaper articles.

  • 6.Types of genealogy trees

May 23

Venue: multimedia room

Delivered by: Marcin Maniecki

The workshops will provide examples of the oldest genealogical references. Participants will learn about the types of genealogical trees and possibilities of their graphical representations. They will also explore selected systems of genealogical records and find out what else apart from a tree can be a tangible result of genealogical searches. They will also familiarize themselves with MyHeritage webpage.

  • 7. Foreign languages in the genealogy of Poles

May 30

Venue: multimedia room

Delivered by: Marcin Maniecki

Apart from Polish, it is Latin, German and Russian that are the key languages in the genealogy of Poles. During the workshops participants will learn the differences between the present and the 19th century records and will master the minimum necessary to grasp foreign language certificates, for example, notations of numbers, names of family connections or the most common occupations.

  • 8. Resources of familysearch.org and ancestry.com portals in genealogical searches

June 6

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa

Two portals that for years have topped the list of the most popular databases and genealogical websites. During the course participants will learn how to use also other, beyond the document finder, functionalities of both the portals.

  • 9. Genealogical searches abroad - Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania

13 June

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Marcin Maniecki

After World War II, Poland lost 48% of its pre-war territories, which were annexed to the Soviet Union - territories inhabited by approximately 30% of Polish citizens. Not all of them left their homes to move to the territories of Poland in its new frontiers - a few million Poles did not. Their descendants seeking Borderlands traces of their ancestors face numerous obstacles connected with the dispersion of sources, the lack of information about the history of certificate registries, numerous deportations in 1939-41 or the access to Lithuanian, Belarusian and Ukrainian archives. The workshop participants will learn where to find information on those who formerly lived in the Eastern Borderlands.

  • 10. Genealogical searches abroad - United States

June 20

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa


The workshops will be devoted to the subject of emigration. By means of practical exercises with the use of passenger lists, population censuses, documents related to the citizenship application process, military registers or address books, the participants will find out where to look for information on emigrants to the United States.

  • 11. What information is hidden in passenger lists?

June 27

Venue: reading room

Delivered by: Dominik Pactwa

Lists of passengers to the USA, apart from standard information, contain also additional notes, deletions and stamps. During the course participants will learn what such items mean and how they can help in further search for emigrants to the New Continent.

Concept and delivery:

Dominik Pactwa - soft skills coach, enthusiast of genealogy. He took to searching for his roots 16 years ago and since then has systematically carried out his work and supported others in this area. He has reached his ancestor born in the mid-nineteenth century, found numerous relatives both at home and abroad and brought together family members who had lost contact with each other as a result of emigration and internal migrations years ago.

Marcin Maniecki - majored history at the University of Gdansk, enthusiast of genealogy for 20 years - primarily searching for his own ancestors. He systematically widens the knowledge on his family history, so far he has managed to reach his ancestors from 17th and 18th centuries. For several years he has been supporting his family and friends in solving their genealogical puzzles, for a year he has been running a company specialising in genealogical searches, translation of documents and preparation of genealogical trees.

You can sign up by e-mail from 1 April 2017: warsztaty@muzeumemigracji.pl

Your application should contain your name, contact phone number, date of the selected workshops and consent to the processing of personal data:

I hereby consent to the processing of my personal data for the purposes necessary to conduct the genealogical workshops. I have been informed that the Emigration Museum in Gdynia, ul. Polska 1, 81-339 Gdynia is the administrator of the personal data. My personal data will be processed for the purpose of conducting the genealogical workshops. I have the right to inspect my personal data, to change and correct them and to request a cessation of processing. Providing personal data is voluntary, however necessary for conducting the workshops.

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We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website as well as for statistical purposes. Unless you block them, you hereby express your consent to their use and storage within your system's memory. Remember – you can manage cookies on your own by changing browser settings. More information on our privacy policy.

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