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Name Origins

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Posted 2010-01-14 15:38 (#74120 - in reply to #73673)
Subject: RE: Name Origins

Carl - 2010-01-02 2:27 AM


I am new to this forum, but wanted to pose a question concerning surname origins that I am researching in my family. My mother's side of my family came from around Taurage and Silale in Lithuania. My grandfather and his mother immigrated to the United States in July 1914, one month before WW1 broke out.

Lithuania in 1914 as a state not existed.

His name was Gustav Grigat, his father Adolf Fridrich Grigat and his mother Johana Runkis / Runke. He had a grandmother had maiden surname of Ilian. All of these family members had German first names, though I believe Grigat was Prussian or Lithuanian in origin. I am sure Runke was German. I have no idea what kind of name Ilian was, as it does not sound German, Prussian or Lithuanian. I believe the following are name variations:

Grygat / Grigat and Grigaitis - Assumed Prussian or Lithuanian origin
Runke / Ruhnke / Runkis - Assumed German

Please comment if anyone has an idea of the national / ethnic origin of the surname Ilian. Also, any information on the origin of Grigat and Runke / Runkis / Ruhnke would be appreciated.



Grigat, Runke are typical East Prussian German surnames. In 19th century existed small migration of Germans into Russian Empire. The location of Taurage and Silale is not far from border. I don't know do they identified as Prussian Lithuanians, but surname Grigat is Prussian Lithuanian origin. Runke - no. Surnames with suffix -ke, like Klempke, Kempke, Schempke etc. are German surnames.

Edited by incognito 2010-01-14 15:39
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