Issue 134— July 6, 2020

My cousin Elizabeth is making good use of this time of sheltering during the pandemic to dig into our family history. It was rooted in the small town of Birzai, Lithuania for hundreds of years until two world wars either killed them or dispersed them to many corners of the world. One of the most intriguing and yet exasperating parts of this exploration is getting the names right as spellings varied from language to language. Vinn became Vinh or Bein, Henne to Hannah, and even some in the same nuclear family some people spelled their last names differently.

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