Minsk Vedomosti Translation Center - Notes
- Are you Norman Ross? No. This site has no relationship
whatsoever with Norman Ross Publishing.
- Can I buy copies of the microfilms? You can buy
copies of the microfilms from the publisher for about $100 apiece from
Norman Ross Publishing (http://www.nross.com). Keep in mind
that some films cover one year of issues, and some cover six months.
Some years (1897) are great if you're also looking for people outside the
Minsk gubernya, because they include large numbers of "wanted lists" published
by other gubernyas.
- But I'm poor!!!!!!! You can also find the films at major research libraries, such as the
New York Public Library (http://www.nypl.org) and many university
- Who cares about Minsk? The New York Public Library also has the Norman Ross Publishing
microfilms for Kiev, Warsaw and other cities.
- Those stupid ad windows: Tripod gives users "free" Web server space in exchange for
running ads on their Web sites. The banner ads look nice, but they
mess up the operation of the site. They interfere with efforts to select, copy
and search the text. Because the banner ads caused such big problems, I
have switched back to using ads in pop-up windows.
- Ugliness: This site is very plain and ugly because text rules. Plain text loads
quickly. Palm Pilots and machines that read to the blind can handle it very easily.
Also, the beauty of plain text is that you can download it onto your computer
and import it into your own software.
- Dictionaries: If you are not fluent enough to feel comfortable using an actual
Russian dictionary, looking up old Russian legal terms spelled the pre-1917 way
is a huge pain in the neck.
When in doubt, assume that: a) The letter that looks like a cross between a b and a t turned
into an e; b) The zs letter combination turned into an ss letter combination; and c) some of the hard and
soft signs may have disappeared.
Then look the word up in the Oxford Russian-English Dictionary, edited by Marcus
Wheeler, published 1992, available for $23.96 at http://www.barnesandnoble.com and
The complete 1994 Russian-English English-Russian dictionary published by Oxford, edited
by Paul Falla, might be OK, but the desktop version of the Falla book and Della
Thompson's pocket Oxford Russian dictionary give too few historical definitions. For Eastern European
books, you should also try Victor Kamkin (http://www.kamkin.com).
- Russian transliteration system: My transliteration system is just NOT as classy
and consistent as the JewishGen system, and it's evolved over
time as I've learned about Cyrillic. Example: Up to now, I never included
hard signs and soft signs, because it never occurred to me that you might
need them to find words in a Russian dictionary. If you try transliterating any
names you find here back into Russian, keep in mind that you may have to
add some letters to make sense to an actual Russian, or Belarusan.
- Morale: This is a time-consuming project started for personal enjoyment. Quality
of translations, update schedule, etc. will depend on energy level of creator and
state of carpal tunnel syndrome. Harsh criticism will cause creator to permanently rest
- I Could Put Up A Better Site With Both Hands Tied to Beider's Dictionary of Jewish
Surnames in the Russian Empire: If you want to put up a genealogy site ever, put it
up NOW, while tools and Web hosting space are still free. To quote Robert
Heinlein, "There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Internet." The party will soon
Tripod - Free, easy-to-use Web hosting service
Atomz - Free search engine
Mail suggestions and translations to
A.L. Bell (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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