"Naan has nothing to do with us. He is not related to us", said Marie to my father.My father was Martin Kuldkepp, farmer, and assistant at the Department of Economics and Geography of Tartu University, chief editor at the newspaper "Tartu Postimees" and later editor at Välis-Eesti in Sweden. Later he quit the jounalist profession to become a builder of small houses and a businessman in Sweden.
Marie was the sister of my grandfather Mart and the conversation took place at Väiksevälja, Pärassaare in the 1930's. Naan was a person who had lived 250 years earlier at Pärassaare! Naan died in 1703 and among other things, he had helped the well-known Suure-Jaani vicar, Magnus de Moulin (vicar from 1690-1710) to hide in the deep forests in times of trouble.
My father was amazed and amused at how such a thing could be remembered and how it could be of such importance in people's memory.
When he lived at Pärassaare in the 1930's, he heard many old legends, which he found amusing and interesting. Later he told many of them to me in Sweden in the 60's and 70's. I was as fascinated as my father.
During the war, my father lost his job at "Tartu Postimees". (That story is also interesting but will not be told here). For a period, he had nothing to do. He rememberd what Marie had said and decided to investigate the archives to find out the truth about the roots of the Kuldkepp family. He was successful, but unfortunately, the resulting material got lost during the war.
In the 60's and the 70's father was in contact with his old friend Prof. Leo Tiik at the Tartu University. In 1973 Prof. Tiik agreed to help father redo some of the family research that had got lost during the war. That material became the foundation of the database presented on this web-site.
In 1980 we started collecting more material and writing to relatives. Many persons helped us more than we ever dreamed about. In this context I would like to thank among others Piret Põldmäe for her archive efforts, Ella Kipper, Salme Laanoja, Juta Veemers, Linda Laprik and many others. I would like to give my special thanks to Juta Veemers for her efforts in publishing her father's, Jüri Kuldkepp, "Mälestusvihikud" (Memorial notes).
It is still possible to read most of the old stories thanks to Jaan Kuldkepp, who wrote the "Kuldkeppide kroonika" (Chronicle of the Kuldkepp's). I will publish the chronicle on this website together with links to the family database to get a better understanding of the chronicle.
Now, in 1998, since I have time and resources, I have begun researching the archives to give a more complete view of the Kuldkepp's family tree. I have got great help in this renewed effort from Prof. Paul Kuldkepp in Tartu and again, Ella Kipper.
The material on this web site has been published with the best of intentions, but since many people have contributed and nobody is free from making mistakes, please quote the material with this in mind.
If you quote something, please don't forget the site http://www.aai.ee/~kuld and the people that made it possible.
The material in the database is of various quality. I have divided it into 3 categories:
Finally I would like to quote the author of the Kuldkepp's chronicle, Jaan Kuldkepp:
"The recorder of the following stories has not aimed at any other goals besides saving these fascinating stories, heard in his childhood and later from older relatives, in the form as close to the original as possible, for future generations."
This work and website is dedicated to the memory of my father
|Stockholm, Sweden, in 1998||Andrus Hans Kuldkepp|
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