THE ZAMAGURIE REGION DNA PROJECT
FOR FORMER SPIS COUNTY EASTERN SLOVAKIA AND POLAND BORDER VILLAGES
Announcement by Karen Melis, the Group Administrator
I am pleased to announce the launch of a new project that may be of interest to many of our TARG members. As Group Administrator, I will be heading up an independent project called, THE ZAMAGURIE REGION DNA PROJECT FOR FORMER SPIS COUNTY EASTERN SLOVAKIA AND POLAND BORDER VILLAGES. Detailed information can be found at the following website: http://www.familytreedna.com/public/ZamagurieRegionDNAProject/
This project is the next extension of 'giving back' to researching our Slovak roots from the Zamagurie Region. A complete list of the Slovak and Polish border villages is available on the website. TARG readers should note that the Zamagurie Region is a sub-set of villages covered by the Tatra Area Research Group area.
As you know, I have actively researched my Slovak ancestry for over 10 years. What started as the desire to know where my grandparents came from and who my great-grandparents were grew into more than an interest but a passion. Key to this dedicated effort has been amassing a well researched database of surnames and pedigrees beyond my own to those specifically from the Zamagurie villages. Literally thousands of hours have been expended to create and grow the database which now exceeds 12,000 people, 1,700 surnames (excluding variant spellings) and over 4,000 marriages! What is unique about the database is that it is not just a surname list. It is comprised of actual pedigrees generated by documenting all the birth, marriages and death records for all descendants, their spouses, children etc. Your readers will recognize many of the surnames! As a way of 'giving back' to others who have helped me, I have shared information with many of your readers and others also researching their Slovak roots. Many times while doing 'look-ups', I would find that the person is a 3rd, 4th or 5th cousin! Sometimes by focusing on that surname, I could further their genealogy efforts. I know others have also been helpful in performing look-ups and information as well!
The source of vital statistics are actual church records from the ancestral villages obtained during 5 trips to the Zamagurie Region, personal research in Slovak archives, personally paid for professional genealogy services done year round, available LDS microfilm and work with fellow researchers.
DNA Projects are the next buzz word in genealogy efforts and people may naturally wonder, 'what's in it for me?" The major advantage of joining this project is combining efforts of technology and tapping into established pedigrees based on 10 years of experience and research for a particular set of villages, familiarity with surnames, migration patterns, and record availability specifically in the Zamagurie Region.
I encourage your readers to check out the website for more detail and explanations and to contact me with any questions! My hope is that early participation will grow this project steadily. This will benefit not only the participants but TARG members as well.
e-TARG.org note: Karen Melis is the Group Administrator for this independent project called, The Zamagurie Region DNA Project and can be reached at tmeliszoominternet for any specific questions. Karen is a long-time TARG member.
This map shows perfectly the villages in the Zamagurie DNA project. (Map used by permission of Jan Budz, author of the book Zamagurze Spiskie; Spisske Zamagurze. Photographs by Wojciech Smolak. ISBN 83-912197-0-4. Copyrighted 1999 by Wydawnictwo Oficyna Artystow, Sztukato.)