A researcher may also use the SAAGA search engine with the search term “Judaica” to find another long list of digitized Jewish holdings.
To locate Jewish vital records, click on “SAAGA” and go to Church Records. The Jewish records will be found under “Other confessions' church records kept in the public archives,” and then under the individual Jewish community. The categories are:
Narva Jewish Congregation (1911-1926)
Rakvere Jewish Congregation (1921-1926)
Talinn Jewish Community - select the first link, “Meetrikaraamatud” - various
Tartu Jewish Congregation (1897-1926)
Valga Jewish Congregation (1919-1926)
Vijandi Jewish Congregation (1917-1926)
Võru Jewish Congregation (1883-1926)
The detailed lists of holdings vary by community, but most will be divided into Birth, Marriage, Death, and Divorce, and then divided by year within each category. Some of the listings may be in Russian (use the browser translation feature, if necessary). The Estonian Jewry Archives also has a spreadsheet called "Jewish vital records in Estonian archives" (fourth entry on the page) that breaks down Jewish vital records by town, year, record type, and archival number.
Within the Rahvusarchiv’s Virtual Research Room (VAU), the Estica section of SAAGA includes digital copies from “a selection of Estonian material from foreign archives,” including, but not limited to, the Latvian State Historical Archives (LVVA).
The LVVA listings include:
Tartu and Saaremaa census sheets - Record LVVA.2706.1.250 1897
Saaremaa census sheets - Record LVVA.2706.1.251 1897
Correspondence of the Võrumaa Census Commission and Saaremaa Census Sheets - Record LVVA.2706.1.252-1 1897
Saaremaa census sheets - Record LVVA.2706.1.252-2 1897
The Raduraksti website section for the 1897 census shows that LVVA holds volumes for Tartu County, Võru County, Pärnu county, and Arnsburg (Abrokas pagasts), encompassing LVVA/2706/1/249 (parts 1 &2) - Pärnu, LVVA/2706/1/250, LVVA/2706/1/251, and LVVA 2706/1/252 (parts 1 & 2). These volumes do not appear to be indexed in the JewishGen Latvia database.
Jewish Population Registers
The series of Jewish population registers on FamilySearch is from the Estonian archival collection fond 1107 (Jewish Minority Cultural Government of the Republic of Estonia, 1919-1940). The specific volumes (towards the end of the SAAGA listing of the fond) are as follows:
List of Jews living in Estonia, volume 1 - ERA.1107.1.198
List of Jews living in Estonia, volume 2 - ERA.1107.1.199
Alphabetical Index to the List of Jews Residing in Estonia, Volume 1 - ERA.1107.1.200
Alphabetical Index to the List of Jews Residing in Estonia, Volume 2 - ERA.1107.1.201
In addition to the population registers, fond 1107 contains 213 digitized volumes, in Russian and/or Estonian regarding the Jewish community during the interwar period.
Citizenship and Passport Applications
ERA.1.1.xxxx contains passport applications/files. SAAGA has an alphabetical list of names, with links to their passport files.
SGAA also has an alphabetical list of people who have citizenship files (ERA.14.2.xxxxx).
There are digitized copies of these files on FamilySearch, but researchers need to access each file individually to find the name of the person – the files are neither indexed nor listed alphabetically as they are in the SAAGA section of the EA website.
Genealogical Research Services
The Estonian Archives provides an array of resources for researchers to use on their own. However, the archives will do limited research. They will respond to queries about family events (e.g., BMD) for people who lived in Estonia before World War II. To submit an inquiry, fill out the online form with the required information. Responses can be via email, postal mail, or in-person pickup.
This summary barely scratches the surface of the breadth of contents of the Estonian Archives and its website. Researchers are urged to spend time searching for further resources that may reveal their family’s history in Estonia.