Find your Swedish Ancestors Podcast – Episode 1

Episode 1:
In this episode I talk about how language might be a huge challenge when doing genealogy research in another country. My maternal grandmother was from Estonia, so I know how hard, time consuming and sometimes frustrating it might be. In Estonia I find documents not only Estonian (a language I don’t know) but also German and Russian.

Another challenge might be geography, what if I don’t find the place names on a map? The patronymic namesystem used back then might be a bit tricky. But I see it as a help or clue instead. If Anders Nilsson have a son, his surename would be Anderson. If he have a daughter it would be Andersdotter where dotter means daughter.

I take all those questions and thoughts I have run into doing my Estonian research and try to answer them for you, because I am sure you have the same questions and more when doing your Swedish research.

I talk about databases with gravestones. Especially Svenska gravstensinventeringen, the Swedish gravestone inventory that is found at It is only in Swedish, but in this videotutorial I am showing you a couple of searchers and how you can make use of the built-in translation in the webbrowser Google Chrome.

And a cheatsheet for you to download:

Im also telling you a story that made the local news. A really amazing story on how I uploaded photos of gravestones from the local cemetery to and more than a year later a couple on visit in Sweden from the US  happens to knock on my door, showing me a print-out of the photo, having no idea I took the picture. You will find the article here and Google Translate will do a pretty good job translating it for you.


Swedish words
gravsten – gravestone
kyrka – church
kyrkogård – cemetery
begravning – funeral

I hope you enjoyed the very first episode of Finding your Swedish Ancestors with me Linda Kvist.  You could contact me at with comments or questions, or leave a comment on the Facebookpage: I would love to hear from you.

Thanks for listening, until next time, have a nice day, take care, over and out.

Swedish for the family historian: kyrka - church
Swedish for the family historian: kyrka – church

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *