MEMEL ARCHIVE RECORDS - WHERE ARE THEY?
Eric Goldstein wrote:
<<<In reply to Brent Harris, who asks what guberniya and uezd Klaipeda (Memel)
was in, the answer is: none. Memel, until 1924, was part of Germany, not
Russia or Lithuania. Not until the League of Nations transferred it to
Independent Lithuania in 1924 did it become officially know as Klaipeda.
Perhaps someone else knows, however, if there are any records for Memel
available in the German archives. Like many families in the area of Darbenai,
Kretinga, Palanga, etc., who were engaged in trading across the German border,
I think my family may have ties in Memel. I'd be interested in finding out
where those records are.
I will quote >from information about the whereabouts of the Memel Archive
records as posted to Deja News by Martha Lev-Zion on 3/17/97. The facts, as
presented, were based on a letter Martha Lev-Zion received >from a researcher
(archivist) at Klaipeda University.
Key points in the letter are as follows:
At the end of World War Two the Germans attempted to take the Klaipeda (Memel)
archive with them as they retreated westwards, some parts were left behind.
The documents disappeared somewhere in East Prussia. However, Polish scholars
have recently confessed that part of the Klaipeda archive is stored,
uncatalogued in the vicinity of Olsztyn. We are trying to find the means to
copy this resource and house it in Klaipeda. Another part of the evacuated
archive disappeared near Pillau (now under Russian control). A third section
is preserved in the Lithuanian Central State Archives (Lietuvos Centrinins
Valstybinis Archyvas - Oskaro Milasiaus g. 21, LT 2051 Vilnius). Lithuanian
scholars have neglected this (largely >from ignorance of German) and it too is
very poorly catalogued.
We are working on the Jewish community of western Lithuania (Zemaitija, across
the border >from East Prussia) as a separate research project, but this is in
its infancy. The Centre for West Lithuanian and Prussian History was
established three years ago to carry out research into Lithuania's relations
with her Baltic, German and Slavonic neighbours. We also specialize in the
history of western Lithuania and are just beginning to build up a strong local
archive (mainly of copies) with the cooperation of various national and
foreign archives. Unfortunately, we severely overestimated the capacity of our
archival base, which is not such as would throw much light on individual
family history now, although we do hope to remedy this eventually.
Klaipeda records in the LCVA in Vilnius.
The following information is listed for the records; Fond number - Name of the
record - Timespan covered - Quantity of records in the Fond.
F645 - Klaipedos miesto magistratas (City Magistrate) - 1882-1941 - 2,878
F1217 - Lietuvos Respublikos VRM Klaipedos krasto pasienio policija (LR
Interior Ministry, Klaipeda Region border police) - 1927-39 - 9 documents.
F1256 - Karaliauciaus generaline komisija (Konigsberg General Commission) -
1820-1921 - 2,928 documents.
F1452 - German political organizations in Kl. Region - 1923-1940 - 129
F1493 - Lith. Rep. Governor in the Kl. Region - 1924-39 - 81 documents.
F1605 - Klaipeda High Insurance Institution - 1906-24 - 226 documents.
F1606 - Klaipeda central customs office - 1880-1923 - 17 documents
F1611 - Klaipeda Region population office - 1865-1944 - 2 documents.
F1614 - Royal Administration, Konigsberg - 1809-1915 - 57 documents.
F1615 - Klaipeda Region police - 1877-1944 - 5,837 documents.
F1633 r.p - Klaipeda city police - 1938-44 - 4,749 documents.
F1634 - Klaipeda regional criminal police - 1919-39 - 71 documents.
F1635 - Klaipeda Regional Court - 1796-1943 - 1,522 documents.
F1636 - Kliapeda Region Directorate - 1890-1940 - 584 documents.