Lithuania Military Records

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Revision Lists[edit | edit source]

Research use: Excellent source for identifying family groups. Due to the difficulty in using metrical books, the revision list provides the most information for the least amount of effort. The original returns are bound in volumes that are sometimes three to four feet thick, making them very difficult to handle except on microfilm.

Record type: Population enumeration for the purpose of assessing a poll tax and identifying those for conscription into the military.

General: Ten official revisions were conducted in the Russian Empire none were conducted in Lithuania until the empire annexed this area. Thus Lithuania was not included until the fifth revision (1795-1808). Thereafter Lithuania was included in the sixth revision (1811), the seventh revision (1815-1825), the eighth revision (1833-1835), the ninth revision (1850-1852) and the tenth and last revision (1857-1859). One copy of the revision lists was kept in the county treasury (uyezdnoe kaznacheistvo) and another was sent to the provincial fiscal chamber (gubernskaiia kazennaia palata). Separate lists were kept for the different social classes such as merchants (kupechestvo), townspeople (meshchane) and peasants (krestiane). Revision lists (reviskaia skazski) are filed and bound, arranged by districts and large cities.

Time period: 1795-1859.

Contents: Revision no. of household, name, parentage, age, age at time of previous revision, sex, nationality, social rank, relationship to household head, and change of status since the last revision of all those in the household. Females were not recorded in the sixth revision. The fifth revision included information on the parentage of the females but this was dropped as of the sixth revision. Sometimes the lists are accompanied by supporting documentation.

Location: State Historical Archive in Vilnius and the Kaunas State Archive.

Population coverage: 75% coverage. This record was not compiled for non-taxed classes: the nobility, high officials, clergy, military, and foreigners. Also, many people evaded enumeration.

Reliability: They are not completely reliable because of efforts to evade taxation or conscription by avoiding correct enumeration.[1]

Conscription Lists[edit | edit source]

Research use: Hard to research because lists are arranged chronologically by district. However, they serve as a census substitute for males.

Record type: A military record of conscripts.

General: Lists of those being called up for military service. Drafting of selected groups began earlier but as of January 1, 1874, all 21-year-old males were subject to military service. Conscription occurred each year in October. Initially, the term of service was 6 years active and 9 years reserve. The length of active duty was reduced to 5 years in 1876 and then varied between 3 or 5 years thereafter. Deferments were granted for only sons, sole breadwinners, etc. More than 50 percent of the draftees were not inducted.

Time period: 1874-1920.

Contents: Name of the draftee, birth date, religion, marital status, literacy; later lists include names of parents, siblings and their ages.

Location: State Historical Archive in Vilnius and the Kaunas State Archive.

Population coverage: 15-40% depending on the time period.

Reliability: High.

Preservation of records/vulnerability: Only a limited number are preserved. The records are well preserved in good facilities. They were little used during the period of Russian coontrol, 1940-1990.[1]

Websites[edit | edit source]

  • Litvaksig More than 1.7 million records from many different sources, including Revision Lists, vital records, tax, voters, and cemetery lists.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Lithuania,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 2003.