anyone heard of Kiatitai area?

anyone heard of Kiatitai area?

Star Lakavage
Star Lakavage

July 20th, 2017, 2:59 pm #1

Well, great luck-with the help of Balzekas' Museum in Chicago, I received a jpg of my grandfather's application for naturalization. I have SO much more info than I thought I'd find due to many variations of the last name.

Here's my latest question-has anyone heard of an area called Kiatitai? On the application it's listed as Kiatitai, Lith, Russia. Well, no surprise there. It was one of the locations he lived in just before immigrating in 1906.

I tried googling the location and nothing came up. Might be a slight problem with the spelling and again, no surprise there. His original home was in the Sudargas area (also listed as Lith. Russia). I found that with no problem.

His application is dated 1920, his year of arrival to the US is 1906. I tried searching on just the name Kiatitai, Lithuania and again just on the name, no country. All the same, no success.

Thanks for any pointers!
Star Lakavage
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Marie Poznanski Kalinowski
Marie Poznanski Kalinowski

July 20th, 2017, 8:35 pm #2

The website fallingrain does not have anything like Kiatitai in modern day Lithuania. Working on the assumption that our grandparents didn't move around much - and that could be completely wrong - I checked for towns within a 10-mile radius of Sudargas. The only names that were close were Kirkilai, Kirsliai and Kurturiai.
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Star Lakavage
Star Lakavage

July 21st, 2017, 3:54 pm #3

I poked around on Google Maps last night and notice that the further east you go, more towns ended in 'tai'. I'm kind of thinking it might be more east as this was his last location before coming to America. Sort of makes sense? I want to check a few other sites that have older maps-might find it but might not and again, more likely than not, it's a spelling issue. Since we have about 7 fairly major variations on my grandfather's last name, that wouldn't surprise me!

THanks for your interest-I'll post whatever I find out.
Star
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Star Lakavage
Star Lakavage

July 24th, 2017, 12:45 pm #4

I found a website called www.lithuanianmaps.com run by Mr Andrew Kapochunas. The site contains digital copies of older maps of Lithuania. I had no idea where to start searching for "Kiatitai" so emailed Mr Kapochunas and received a rather speedy response. He also added in his email that the spellings are very unreliable-something I already assumed. He did send this note:

"The closest approximation, I believe, is "Getautai," in northern Lithuania. It is too small to appear on antique maps of Lithuania, but not too small to appear on the topographical maps on my site."

This might be a good approximation, considering that many times in my searching, the K in our last name was changed to a G, a similar guttural sound. Not sure how it might work into my grandfather's route to the US since he lived in Sudargas and left from Hamburg, Germany.

But if you're looking for older maps and have an idea of where the area is that you are searching for, you might investigate Mr. Kapochunas's website (www.lithuanianmaps.com). He includes a short bio of how he arrived in the US, also interesting.

In my original posting on Kiatitai, I mentioned finding several towns ending in 'tai' east of Sudargas. My error! I found several towns ending in 'tai' WEST of Sudargas. Just call me directionally challenged-even tho I did spend a long career in a geography based field!

Hope some of this info, especially Mr. Kapochunas's website is helpful to others if not entertaining!

The search continues!
Star
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