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Answer our quiz and win a CD!

We invite you to take part in our next quiz, themed in conjunction with the upcoming U.S. tour in September and October by the post-folklore band Iļģi.

Answer all three questions correctly and send them to quiz@latviansonline.com by Aug. 27. All correct entries will go into the draw to win a copy of the latest Iļģi compact disc, Ne uz vienu dienu.

The questions are:

  1. Name the first album released by Iļģi.
  2. What instrument does Ilga Reizniece play?
  3. Iļģi bass player Gatis Gaujenieks used to perform with what Latvian-American rock band?

Answers may be found by searching Latvians Online.

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Liels paldies!

We thank the following readers who have generously donated to Latvians Online. And our thanks to countless anonymous donors, too!

Australia

Vilnis Balodis, Melbourne, Victoria
William Cergars, Sydney, New South Wales
Kārlis Kasparsons, Melbourne, Victoria
Oskars Lapa, Kurrajong, New South Wales
Edwin Lecons, Coopers Plain, Queensland
Eduards Lemanis, Melbourne, Victoria
Jānis Lukins, Mandurah, Western Australia
Errol Malta, Camberwell, Victoria
Niks Niteckis, Melbourne, Victoria
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Canada

Tālivaldis Birze, Whitby, Ontario
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Rita Steinbergs, Dundas, Ontario

United Kingdom

Inta Batsman, Stanmore, England
Nick Hayes, Derbyshire, England
Felikss Tālivaldis Ersts, Kettering, England
Māris Viktors Ozols, London, England

United States

Andrejs Baidiņš, Wilmington, Delaware
Vilis Kārlis Bārdiņš, Ada, Michigan
Gunārs Bekmans, Sebastopol, California
Alexander Berkovich, Houston, Texas
George J. Bērziņš, Los Alamos, New Mexico
Jolanta Bērziņš, Centerville, Massachusetts
Inta Bingham, Page, Arizona
Gunārs Briedis, Greenfield, Wisconsin
Balva Caffrey, Edina, Minnesota
Aina Cerliņa, Willimantic, Connecticut
Council of American Latvian Organizations of New York Inc., Bronx, New York
Anita Demants, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Raymond Dinvalds, Dayton, Ohio
Rita Drone, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Imants Eicēns, Wewahitchka, Florida
Arturs Ezeriņš, Arlington Heights, Illinois
Pierre Foy, Framingham, Massachussets
John Freivalds, Dubuque, Iowa
Andris Grunde, Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Eriks Gunārs Fricsons, McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey
Gunārs Graudiņš, Arlington Heights, Illinois
Jane Harris, Jamestown, Rhode Island
Nai C Hironaka, Waianae, Hawaii
Martin Isaks, Salem, New Hampshire
Mayumi da Kaneshiro, Athens, Ohio
Marcel Kārkliņš, Little Rock, Arkansas
Ilze Kļaviņa, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Kārlis Kilkuts, New Brunswick, New Jersey
Paulis Kupšis, Olympia, Washington
Dennis Kuzmickas, Kingwood, Texas
Latvian Church Dievturi, Chicago, Illinois
Latvian Organization Association of Minnesota (LOAM), Minneapolis, Minnesota
Silvija Lechowick, Geneva, Ohio
Lois Leeberg, Gosport, Indiana
Baiba Liepiņa, Chicago, Illinois
Indulis Liepiņš, Spring Lake, Michigan
Marta P MacKenzie, Comptche, California
Andris Mačs, Federal Way, Washington
Andrejs Makwitz, Chicago, Illinois
Māris Mantenieks, Medina, Ohio
Elmārs Mateus, Jenison, Michigan
Ruta Freimanis McNichol, Lincoln University, Pennsylvania
Maija Mednis, Blackwood, New Jersey
Māris Mežs, Lakewood, Washington
Valdis and Anita Mucenieks, Greenwood, Minnesota
Miko Ortiz, Shorewood, Wisconsin
Anita Nāgelis, Chicago, Illinois
Marija Skutāns Netz, Fridley, Minnesota
New Jersey Latvian Society, Freehold, New Jersey
Jānis Robiņš, Saint Paul, Minnesota
Māris Roze, Villa Park, Illinois
Rita Schultz, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Robert Stapf, Germantown, Maryland
Ināra Steinbruner, Napa, California
Ruta Straumanis, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Ivars Strautmanis, Brooklyn, New York
Ilze Šīmane, Kalamazoo, Michigan
Māra Ubāns, Portland, Maine
Indulis Valters, Pine Springs, Minnesota
Gunta Krasts Voutyras, Clemons, New York
Dace Weiss, Sidney, Maine
Ruta Zariņa, Rochester, New York
Maija Zaeska, Delano, Minnesota
Juris Žagariņš, Springfield, Massachusetts
Jānis Zeltiņš, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Miscellaneous

Karen Greever

Frequently asked questions about banner ads

If you are new to promoting your Web site through banner ads you probably have some questions. Here are some of the most commonly asked.

How does banner advertising work?

We display your banner ad on our site where it can be seen by our site’s visitors. If someone is interested in your product or service, they click on the banner and are transferred automatically to your site where you can tell them more and, hopefully, get them to make a purchase or commitment. We sell you advertising space on our site on the basis of how many times your banner is seen, a measurement called CPM.

What does CPM mean?

CPM refers to “cost per thousand” and is used by the advertising industry to describe how many people have viewed the banner ad (“page views”) or received an “impression” by seeing the ad.

What does “click-through” mean?

When someone is interested in your banner ad, they click on it and are transported to your Web site. Every time someone clicks on your banner, it is called a “click-through,” and the “click-through rate” is expressed either in percent or clicks per thousand.

How can I find out how well my banner is working?

We keep track of the times your banner was viewed, the number of click-throughs and the click-through rate. We make this information available to you “real time” on our site anytime during the month, using an account name and a password.

What kind of click-through rate should I expect?

Ours is a highly targeted site, attracting Latvian community groups and business people. Your banner ad will appear throughout the entire Latvians Online site. You can expect a 1 percent to 3 percent click-through rate, or higher if your banner is very compelling. It all depends on your banner’s message and catchiness.

What size banner can I use?

We use three standard sizes: 728 pixels wide by 90 pixels high (leaderboard), 160 pixels wide by 160 pixels high (small square banner) and 160 pixels wide by 600 pixels high (large skyscraper). We allow the file size of the banner to be no more than 15-20 K, so keep your animations “tight.”

What do you charge to prepare a banner for us?

We have a Web designer who can create a banner for you if you already have the concept with a logo, some simple animation of text, etc. Cost for this service is USD 100.

What if I don’t have a Web site to link to?

If you don’t have your own Web site that your advertisement can link to, we can create a PDF of your Microsoft Word document—containing more details on your product or service—that will be stored on our site and linked to your text or banner ad. 

What’s the next step?

Choose which ad size best suits you and try it for a month or two. Contact us, email your ad and we can put it up on our site as soon as we have received payment. You can follow the progress of your campaign by choosing to have an account which you can access regularly yourself. If you are happy with the success of the campaign contact us regarding discounted long-term advertising.

Who we are

aLatvians Online is a global Internet meeting place for persons of all ages with an interest in Latvians and Latvia. Offered are free online services such as regular news reports, current affairs and interviews from Latvia and abroad. Also provided are a regular newsletter, discussion forums, a global events register and other community-building features. A compilation of Latvian Internet resources, product reviews and online shopping are popular features of the site.

Latvians Online saw its debut Nov. 18, 2000. This network is the merger of two prominent Latvian Web sites, LatBits.com, which was led by Melbourne-based team Arnis and Daina Gross, and Minneapolis-based SVEIKS.com, which was headed by journalist Andris Straumanis and Web programmer Todd Rossman.

LatBits.com began in 1997 and provided its online readers with an insight into the ever-changing Latvian Internet presence in the form of Web site reviews and feature articles. LatBits was affiliated with the Latvian software development firm DekSoft, which has been involved with the Latvian Internet since its inception.

SVEIKS.com, which saw its debut at the start of 1999, was a leading independent provider of general interest content about Latvian affairs and culture in the West with a focus on North America. The site, in turn, came about from the merger of Latvians in America, created by Straumanis, and Latvia-Latvija, run by Rossman.

Latvians Online saw its first major redesign in March 2004, adopting the latest Web standards for the display of information. For those interested in such details, the layout of our pages is driven by Cascading Style Sheets while content is largely served through a content management system. An RSS feed with the latest news, columns, reviews and other material is available here.

For further information about Latvians Online, contact us.

Staff

Daina Gross, Editor

Daina Gross was born in Sydney, Australia, and now lives in Melbourne. Her association with Latvians and learning about their perspective on life began at an early age and continues to this day. Daina graduated from the Sydney Latvian high school and Anna Ziedare Summer High School and has studied Latvian at the university level. She has been actively involved in the Latvian community both in Sydney and Melbourne in the culture and education sectors as well as in Latvian academic sorority (korporaciju) life. Daina has an arts degree and has worked in the legal publishing industry for seven years. She has lived and worked in Latvia in 1991, 1993 and 1998. She served as editor of LatBits, an online Latvian e-zine, from 1998 to 2000, is married to Arnis Gross and is raising three young children, Laila and Toms and Olivers.

Arnis Gross, Technical Director

Born in Melbourne, Australia, Arnis Gross has since the 1980s been actively promoting the use of computers and the Internet to the local Latvian community and other Latvian organisations worldwide. Since 1986, he has been the principal at DekSoft, a Latvian software and computer consulting and development firm; developed the Baltic Express Mail service, which operated between Australia and the Baltics from 1991 to 1993, and in 1997 co-founded LatBits, an online Latvian e-zine. His qualifications include a B.Eng. from Monash University in Melbourne and a Latvian linguistics minor at Flinders University in Adelaide. Arnis enjoys spending his spare time with his wife, Daina, and three children, Laila, Toms and Olivers.

Contributors

Amanda Jātniece, Contributing Editor

Amanda Jātniece contributes to Latvians Online through folklore features and album reviews. She also heads up the Izglītība section focused on Latvian education abroad. Jātniece graduated from the Minneapolis-St. Paul and Gaŗezers Latvian schools; the Latvian Gymnasium in Muenster, Germany, and earned her bachelor of arts degree in linguistics from the University of Minnesota. A Latvian-American currently living with one foot in Latvia, where she works in translation and is raising her two children. Jātniece has been a member of the Latvian folk music ensembles Lini and Teiksma, both based in Minneapolis, Minn., and now sings with two ensembles in Latvia.

Egils Kaljo, Contributing Writer

Egils Kaljo is an American-born Latvian who lives in Rīga, Latvia. He went to Latvian school in Yonkers, as well as the Latvian summer camp in the Catskills. A member of the New York Latvian Ev.-Lutheran Church in Yonkers, Kaljo has a large collection of Latvian recordings, and is also a musician himself, playing the guitar and piano.

Andris Straumanis, Special correspondent

Born in New York, Andris Straumanis is an associate professor of journalism at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, commuting from his home in Minnesota. Research interests include the history of pre-World War II Latvian immigrants to North America and the contemporary Latvian mass media. Straumanis has worked as a reporter, editor and photographer for newspapers in Illinois and Minnesota. He was editor of Latvians Online from 2000-2012.

Style guide

Latvians Online faces a particular challenge because it is partially bilingual and because of its international audience. While the vast majority of material published here is in English, articles in Latvian do appear, as does frequent use of Latvian within English-language articles. In all cases, Latvians Online attempts to respect the specific cultural setting of the author. Thus, in English-language articles, both American and British use are acceptable (flavor or flavour, skeptic or sceptic, etc.), so long as consistency is maintained within the article. With the Latvian language, both pre-World War II and post-World War II use are generally acceptable (we'll allow both archīvs and arhīvs, for example).

Authors of English-language articles are advised to use the The Associated Press Stylebook for most questions regarding journalistic usage. A dictionary should be used to answer most questions regarding spelling and specific language usage. Beyond that, the following items must be observed in English-language articles.

abbreviations
In general, use abbreviations in subsequent references to organizations with particularly long titles. Immediately after the first reference to the organization, indicate the abbreviation, without periods, in parentheses. It is acceptable to use the Latvian abbreviation for well-known organizations. However, avoid the "alphabet soup" that results when too many abbreviations are peppered throughout an article. Example: the World Federation of Free Latvians (PBLA).
addresses
Use specific addresses to identify locations in calendar items or in other references where a reader might need to know exactly where something may be found. Abbreviate avenue (Ave.), boulevard (Blvd.) and street (St.) when used with an address, but not when standing alone. Examples: 123 Smilšu St.; Brīvības Boulevard.
a.m., p.m.
Not AM and PM, not am and pm. See time.
compact disc
Spell out compact disc on first reference. CD is acceptable in subsequent references. Album and record may also be used, keeping in mind that some albums or records are available in multiple formats, such as CD, cassette or vinyl.
Daugavas Vanagi
When referring to this World War II veterans group's branches in the United States, use Latvian Welfare Association "Daugavas Vanagi" on first reference. Daugavas Vanagi or DV is acceptable on subsequent references.
datelines
Datelines are the identification at the beginning of a story (for example, "RĪGA, Latvia"), that indicate where a journalist physically was when they reported a story. However, the average reader might assume instead that the dateline merely means that a story occurred in that location. To avoid the confusion, do not use datelines. It is better to make clear in the text of the story where an event occurred or where an interviewee was when an interview took place.
dome
In references to the cathedral in Old Rīga, it's dome, not dom. Example: the Rīga Dome Boys Choir.
European Union
Spell out on first reference, but EU may be used in subsequent references. EEC (the European Economic Community) is an antiquated term and should not be used unless for historical purposes. In Latvian-language text, the first reference should be to Eiropas Savienība, after which ES may be used.
Gaŗezers
The Latvian center in south central Michigan is spelled with the soft "r", not without it (and even if the soft "r" has fallen out of use today). The center takes its name from the adjoining body of water, Long Lake. To spell the name of the center without the soft "r" might suggest that the English name is Spirit Lake. It is not.
Internet and related terms
It's Internet, not internet. The Internet is a network of computer networks employing various communication standards. The Internet includes such elements as e-mail, FTP and the World Wide Web, but the terms are not synonymous. On first reference, the Web is acceptable as a reference for the World Wide Web. It's website, not Web site. In Latvian, it is internets (lower case i), except, of course, at the beginning of a sentence. The word for Web is tīmeklis.
Latvian
The word Latvian may be both a noun and an adjective. Its use may be confusing if a clear distinction is not made between a reference to the ethnic group and a reference to the nation. A person may be a resident or a citizen of Latvia, he or she may not necessarily be of Latvian ethnicity. Likewise, a person might be from Latvia, but not necessarily of Latvian ancestry. In most articles it may be assumed that references to Latvian refer to membership in the ethnic group, but care should be taken in cases where confusion might arise. The same holds for articles in the Latvian language and the use of words such as latvieši and latviešu.
Latvians Online
Latvians Online is the only acceptable usage. It's not Latviansonline. LOL is sometimes used as shorthand by readers submitting to forum discussions, but is not to be used in articles because confusion may result with accepted Internet shorthand (LOL means "laughing out loud") or with other Latvian Web sites (the former Laiks Online, for example, would refer to itself as LOL).
NATO
The abbreviation NATO is acceptable on first reference. It stands for North Atlantic Treaty Organization. For clarity, it's useful to write "the NATO defense alliance" on first reference. NATO also may be used in Latvian-language text, even though it's not the true acronym for the alliance's full name in Latvian: Ziemeļatlantijas līguma organizācija.
numbers
Spell out numbers zero to nine. Use numerals for 10 and greater. However, do not start a sentence with a numeral. Either rewrite the sentence, or spell out the number. Exceptions: Use numerals when citing dimensions, such as 3 inches, 9 meters, etc.
punctuation
Rules for punctuation differ between English and Latvian, as well as between American English and British English. For Latvian, follow proper form as stipulated in any good grammar guide. For English punctuation, follow the form of American English. Remember that punctuation is meant to provide natural pauses and stops in language; it is not meant to confuse a reader. If nothing else, we frown on excessive use of exclamation marks!
Russian transliteration
If Russian text (the Cyrillic alphabet) needs to be used in a story, it should be transliterated using the system approved by the U.S. Library of Congress and the American Library Association. A copy in Adobe Acrobat format may be downloaded here.
Saeima
Note the correct spelling! Parliament or Latvian parliament may be used in place of Saeima.
Soviet Union
Use this rather than U.S.S.R. The abbreviation may be lost on some readers, particularly younger ones. If you must use the abbreviation, spell it out on first reference -- Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
surnames
Use the proper Latvian form for writing the last names of men and women of Latvian origin (Ozoliņš for the man, Ozoliņa for the woman, etc.). The exception is when a woman prefers to use the masculine form of her surname or when she is better known that way outside Latvian society.
time
Particularly in U.S. and Canadian calendar listings, but also in all articles, references to time are to be presented in 12-hour format with a.m. and p.m. denoting morning and afternoon or evening, respectively. Proper use: 3 a.m., 5:03 a.m., 7:30 p.m. The midday hour is noon, not 12 noon. Midnight is midnight, not 12 midnight. For European calendar listings, use 24-hour format. For example, 4 p.m. is the same as 16:00 hours.
titles
Official titles appearing immediately before a person's name are capitalized. Appearing alone, or following the person's name, the title is not capitalized. Generic titles are not capitalized. Examples: President Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga; Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, president; Latvian head of state Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga.
United States
Use the abbreviation U.S. for both the noun and the adjective. Examples: The president is to visit the U.S.; The U.S. government supports NATO.
Web, website
The network of hypertext sites is the Web, but a singular location on the network is a website.

Our privacy policy

We respect the privacy of our newsletter subscribers, those who answer our surveys and those who fill out our questionnaires.

Choice and consent

It is our policy to respect the purpose for which our site visitors gave us information. We give users choice and consent over how their personal information is used, and remove names immediately upon request.

Third party use

It is our policy to not sell, rent, or loan our lists to third parties for e-mail marketing. While we sell advertising in our e-mail publications to other companies, we do not allow third parties any other use of our lists.

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It is our policy to send our periodicals only to those who request them, and immediately unsubscribe those who request it. Sometimes people subscribe for their friends, and while we cannot prevent that, our welcome message to subscribers—and every issue of our free newsletter—explains how to unsubscribe. We keep our subscription lists as clean as possible to prevent obsolete e-mails using unnecessary bandwidth.

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We use third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our Web site. These companies may use information (not including your name, address, e-mail address or telephone number) about your visits to this and other Web sites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like more information about this practice and to know your choices about not having this information used by these companies, click here.

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It is our policy to store subscriber and password files with personal information in a secure manner. We store such files in areas not accessible to Web browsers, or behind password protection, or off-line.

Contact us

To help us reply to your e-mails as quickly as possible we invite you to use the form below. If you would rather telephone or send a letter, our contact details are at the bottom of the page. Some questions may take some time to research. Questions about long-lost relatives or friends are better addressed in our discussion forum devoted to the topic.

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Editorial queries

Andris Straumanis
630 23rd Avenue N.W.
New Brighton, MN 55112
USA
mob: +1 651 235-2915

Advertising and technical queries

Arnis Gross and Daina Gross
27 Gissing Street
Blackburn, VIC 3130
AUSTRALIA
tel: +61 419 247 677
fax: +61 419 247 678

Advertising on Latvians Online

If you have a product, service or information that you would like to reach a worldwide Latvian audience, then here is how you can quickly and cost effectively use Latvians Online to spread the word. We have an average 80,000 visitors to our site every month (mainly from the United States, Canada, Latvia, the United Kingdom and Australia) and 10,000 subscribers to our monthly Latvians Online Update e-mail newsletter. The majority of our readers are of Latvian origin, but not all. We are often the first port of call for those who are looking to find information on Latvia on the Web. Tourists, journalists, people who have Latvian acquaintances and the average Web surfer with an interest in Latvia are also our audience. Have a look at our reader profile (PDF, 1.4 MB), based on an analysis of 300 respondents who completed our latest survey in May 2006.

Advertising options

We offer various advertising options:

1. Text ads

Text ads appear just below the main menu in the right hand column of our site. Text ads appear throughout our site. Your ad will go into rotation with other ads in this position. The cost is USD 75 per 100 characters for one month or USD 150 per 400 characters for one month. Characters include text, numerals and spaces. We offer considerable discounts for advertising for three months or more. If you would like to include a link to your Web site please send this to us together with the text.

Text ads will also automatically be included in the classifieds section of our monthly Latvians Online Update newsletter. Click here (PDF, 40 KB) for a sample of a Latvians Online Update newsletter.

2. Banner ads

This option is ideally suited for advertisers with their own Web site or for those who require the display of an image as part of the advertisement. If you do not have a banner ad we can organise a talented graphic designer to create one for you for USD 100. If you are new to promoting your Web site using banner ads, read our FAQ About Banner Ads.

We offer various sizes of banner ads.

a) Leaderboard banner ads

Leaderboard banner ads appear on all pages at the top of our Web site. Size: 728x90 pixels. Your ad would go into rotation with other ads in this position. The cost is USD 400 per month. We offer considerable discounts for advertising for three months or longer.

b) Small square banner ads

Small square banner ads appear on every page of our site in the far right hand column just below the Text ads section. Size: 160x160 pixels. Your ad would go into rotation with other ads in this position. The cost is USD 200 per month. We offer considerable discounts for advertising for three months or longer.

c) Large skyscraper banner ads

Large skyscraper banner ads appear on every page of our site in the far right hand column just below the Small square banner ads section. Size: 160x600 pixels. Your ad would go into rotation with other ads in this position. The cost is USD 400 per month. We offer considerable discounts for advertising for three months or longer.

With both text and banner advertising we provide you with an account so that you can track the success of your advertising campaign in real time.

Graphic showing ad sizes

Marketplace business listings

Our new Marketplace section is the ideal place to advertise your product, service or organization. This section is meant as a virtual Latvian marketplace, bringing together the buyer and seller of Latvian products or services. You can place a free, basic listing by sending an e-mail to reklama@latviansonline.com. A free listing includes your name, address and phone number. An enhanced listing will add to the free listing your e-mail, a link to your Web site and a brief outline of your firm's activities. The cost is USD 60 for two months.

All payments are processed via PayPal.

If you have any further questions, please contact us at reklama@latviansonline.com.

In short

Latvians Online is for anyone interested in Latvia and its diaspora. Sections include news, features, commentary, discussion forums, an events calendar, product reviews and shopping.

Vote

What's new

News

22 Apr 2014

Konference “Latvieši pasaulē - piederīgi Latvijai” Rīgā notiks 11. un 12. jūlijā

Jau vairākus gadus pēc kārtas, Eiropas Latviešu apvienībai (ELA) ciešā sadarbībā ar Kultūras ministriju, Izglītības un zinātnes ministriju un Ārlietu ministriju, divu dienu garumā tiek organizēta konference „Latvieši pasaulē – piederīgi Latvijai“.

Opinions

17 Apr 2014

Who’s Afraid of the Big, Bad Bear?

If countries were described in terms of human lifespans, it could fairly safely be said that Russia today is a teenage hooligan. 

Opinions

15 Apr 2014

Diasporu aicina atbalstīt Latvijas gatavošanos ES prezidentūrai

Jau pēc nepilniem deviņiem mēnešiem Latvija kļūs par prezidējošo valsti Eiropas Savienības Padomē. Ko Latvijai nozīmē prezidentūra ES Padomē? Kāda ir gaidāmā prezidentūras darba kārtība? Un, visbeidzot, kā ārvalstīs dzīvojošie latvieši var iesaistīties un veicināt Latvijas prezidentūras sagatavošanos un norisi?

In the forums

Good news for Russians in Latvia posted by Bruno the Lett on 22 Apr 2014

Priecīgas Lieldienas posted by Mr L L on 19 Apr 2014

Looking for nformation on the Sautiņš Farm in Valkas Region posted by courtney lorenne on 09 Apr 2014

Mārtins Bisters on the life and death of poet Leonids Breikšs posted by jandžs on 07 Apr 2014

IRMA LESINA: LATVIESU CIMDU RAKSTI/ORNAMENTS IN LATVIAN GLOVES AND MITTENS posted by Kristine Kirsch Stivrins on 29 Mar 2014

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