Research in Other Countries
This web site discusses research in Greece. However because of the great demand and the many questions I receive regarding research in countries other than Greece, some basic guidelines will be given on this section, Please remember that there are societies, and professionals that could give you more detail information on this subject.
If you live in Greece please contact us and we will be happy to try answer any questions you may have.
Basic Guidelines for Researching our Greek Ancestors
1. In the U.S.A. If you need the original name or the place of origin of your immigrant ancestor, the following can be helpful:
-- The Baptism Certificate of the immigrant’s children, as long as they have been baptized in the USA and in the Greek Orthodox Church.
Those certificates include detail information written both in Greek and English. Such certificates can be obtained from the local Orthodox
Parish of the town in which the family lived at the time the children were born/baptized. Send your request USING SNAIL MAIL, where you
full name, address, telephone number, e-mail address etc. shows. What you are asking for will be given easier if they know who you are!
-- The Preliminary Form For Petition For Naturalization is very helpful because it has names of people and places written in Greek,and they are
correct because the immigrant wrote them.
-- The Declaration of Intention for Naturalization that your immigrant ancestor filed, has valuable information. Can be found in the State
Archives of the State your ancestor lived when he applied for citizenship.
-- The Passenger List (Ship Manifest) is a great source of information about the immigrant. If you do not know the name of the ship nor the
date of arrival you can use the “Soundex” for Passenger Lists (not the one for Census). It is found at the Family History Library.
The “Soundex” will give you a code for your ancestor’s surname which will look something like K 2 6 4 (if his last name begins with the
letter “K”). With this code you will find in a directory for Passenger Lists (not for Census) the number of the microfilm that has the index
cards of passengers with similar surnames. The cards have been filmed in alphabetical order of the given names. Keep in mind that they
are not in strict alphabetical order. Each card has some numbers or information that will lead through another directory to the number of the
microfilm which contains a copy of the actual Ship Manifest. The Ship Manifest is a large book which has a listing of the full names of the
immigrants, and in columns, information about each of them, including who was the nearest relative they left in their homeland, whom will
they meet upon arrival and the address of that person, and much more detailed information. Microfilms of the Passenger Lists are available
at the Family History Library, and the Library of Congress. You might also be able to order those films at the Family History Library Center
(FamilySearch Center) in your area, provided you know the number of the film.
-- The Family History Library publication titled “Tracing Immigrant Origins”
2. In Pontos, Asia Minor, East Thrace , and other areas of Turkey
-- The Family History Library has some microfilms of records of Greeks from Asia Minor, and maybe other parts of Turkey. These records are
listed in the Family History Library Catalog under “Turkey.” Since the microfilms are cataloged by locality you need to know the Greek and
Turkish name of the place of origin.
-- You may want to try the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul, Turkey. You will be more successful if you DO NOT ask information about
your ancestors. Just ask for the address of the Diocese to which the town of your ancestor belongs. The address of the Patriarchate is:
Halic – Istanbul
-- An excellent book is: Geografia tis Mikras Asias or Geographia tes Mikras Asias [Geography of Asia Minor] by P.M. Kontogiannis, published
in Athens 1995, 470 pages in the Greek language, including maps.
-- For research in Pontos you may want to try the book: O Ellinismos tou Euxeinou Pontou or O Hellenismos tou Efxinou Pontou [The Greeks
of Pontos] by B. Kardasis, published by Ekdoseis Militos, Athens 1997, 265 pages, available in English.
The above mentioned books may be available at Genealogical Libraries such as the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. They can also
be ordered from bookstores in Greece.
3. In Cyprus, Albania, and Hungary
Check the Family History Library Catalog for microfilms of those countries.
4. In Europe, Africa, Australia, and South America
Check for research in those countries.
By: Lica Catsakis