A brief history of the creation of an Electronic Guide to
Georgian Central State Historic Archives
In 1995 several scholars from Canada, Germany and the USA, including Professors Anthony Rhinelander (St. Thomas University), Oliver Reisner (University of Gottingen), Stephen Jones (Mt. Holyoke College), Kenneth Church and Stephen Rapp (University of Michigan) visited Georgia to conduct research, participate in conferences, or both. They all became acutely aware of the terrible plight of the Georgian State Archives and determined to create an organization to address the problems affecting these institutions. In short, jointly with Prof. Dr. Rezo Khutsishvili and other Georgian archivists they created the Friends of the Georgian National Archives (FGNA) to address the problems and foster interest in the study of Georgian and the Caucasus.
FGNA decided that the most immediate and effective way to redress this dire situation in the archives is to focus on producing an electronic guide to the Central State Historical Archive (from IX c. to 1921) of Georgia in Tbilisi. The project has been endorsed by the President of Georgia Edward Shevardnadze and was funded by the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX) in Washington, DC.
The project staff within the years, which was run from 1997 to 2001, created a trilingual guide to the Historical Archive, whose primary language is Georgian but whose descriptive entries also are available in Russian and English. The guide consists of collection-level descriptions of 830 record groups.
Below you can see a part of the archival collections from the above-mentioned guide, which comprise most of all genealogical information.
Collection #1. General Assembly of the Highest Georgian Government (1801-1838)
Journals of the meetings of the General Assembly of Georgian Government. Minutes of meetings of Commission on Examination Documents of the Georgian kings.
Reports or correlation between the code of king Vakhtang VI and the code of the Russian Empire on abolition of the General Assembly of Georgian Government.
List of Qartl-Kakheti nobles and participants of Kakheti uprising in 1812.
Correspondence on the following issues: authentication of Georgian kings' deeds and orders granting release from taxes for performing great services; granting pensions; incomes of the estates of thavads; descent of various persons; imposing a fine for killing in accordance with King Vakhtang’s code; giving back of an estate to former ambassador Avalishvili; rewarding of the members of the former royal family, introduction of the names of Georgian tavads in nobles book; Demarcation of Georgian lands.
Originals and translations of the deeds of the kings Rostom, Erekle II, Giorgi XII, princes Alexander, Levan, Theimuraz, Iulon, Queen Darejan.
Collection #213. Assembly of Tbilisi province nobility (1817-1917)
Statute of the Central administration and Council of the Viceroy in the Caucasus. Opening of Tbilisi nobles’ assembly; statute on introducing Zemstvo (district council) institutions in the Trans-Caucasus, on administration of Thergi oblast.
Minutes of the meetings of Tbilisi nobles’ assembly; lists of Georgian nobility; genealogy of Georgian thavads.
Reports, correspondence on building of Kakheti railway, on building road on Daghestan range, on organization of the agricultural and industrial exhibition in Tbilisi (1910). Regulations of Tbilisi nobles’ bank.
The following names are mentioned: N.Barathashvili, D.Qhipiani, I.Tchavtchavadze, A.Tsereteli, V.Barnovi, Sh.Mghvimeli, I.Kargaretheli, Z.Phaliashvili, I.Grishashvili, P.Ingoroqhva.
Collection #214. Head of Tbilisi province nobles (1817-1917)
Statute on Zemstvo (district council) guard.
Lists of nobles. Regulations of Tbilisi nobles’ bank; regulation of the Society of Georgian residents of Moscow.
Reports, circulars, correspondence on the following issues: introducing of genealogical books; aznaurs' participation in 1804 and 1812 uprisings; elections in State Council and State Duma; registers on the number of aznaurs. Peasants' release from serfdom; organization of daily round of landlords' peasants; D.Qhipiani's project on peasants' release from serfdom; taking census of landlord peasants; rules of peasants' exile in other provinces; duties of provisionally obliged peasants; number of peasants in Tbilisi province; estimate of Uezd (district) taxes in the Trans-Caucasus; building of Kakheti railway.
Struggle against vine diseases; activity of the Agricultural Company; opening of winemaking and poultry-farming schools.
Foundation of Tbilisi Public Library, Women's holiday hotel, Dusheti school, the Trans-Caucasian women's Institute, Cultural and educational institutions; celebration of 200th anniversary of foundation of Georgian typography; building of Tbilisi Polytechnic Institute and Museum; restoration of monuments, on archaeological excavations in Ani; on I congress of Georgian stage figures; activity of the Society for spread literacy among the Georgians; publication of newspapers; holding XXIII Congress of physicians in Tbilisi; activity of the Caucasian medical society; decease of I.Tchavtchavadze, T.Zhordania, N.Lomouri, Vazha-Pshavela, Al.Sarajishvili. Perpetuation of the memory of D.Qhipiani, G.Sundukian; Jubilations of E.Gabashvili, V.Gunia, K.Meshki, I.Nakashidze, A.Sumbathashvili-Iuzhin, A.Dsereteli.
Service record of D.Kipiani.
Collection #254. Tbilisi Fiscal Chamber (1802-1918)
Minutes of the meetings and journals of the fiscal expedition. Statute on reorganization of the government of the Trans-Caucasian region.
Correspondence on the following issues: opening of the fiscal expedition of the Higher Georgian Government, Georgian medical board, Tbilisi city police, Baku fiscal chamber, Uezd state treasury; abolition of the mining treasury and mint of Georgian mining expedition; introducing of judicial regulations; formation of demarcation department.
Accounts of Georgian fiscal expedition, Tbilisi land and commercial bank, Caucasian economic companies, "Kakheti" - Society of Kakheti gardeners, funicular joint-stock company, Tbilisi tram, Caucasian industrial company.
Statistic data on industrial enterprises and shops; registers of Georgian mining expedition, of Baku and Baku gubernia mills and factories; correspondence on working of Alaverdi and Akhtala factories; lists of landowners of Dusheti, Borchalo and other Uezds (districts); Census lists and lists of the Uezds.
Collection #489. Saqartvelo (Georgian)-Imereti synodal office (1814-1917)
Minutes of the meetings, accounts of the synod office.
Reports, correspondence on the following issues: abolition of dycasteria and opening of Saqartvelo-Imereti synod office; appointment of Rosen as a Commander-in-Chief of Georgia; foundation of the regional council; abolition of tarkhanship in Georgia; church peasants' misappropriation/seize by thavads; examination of property and documents of Georgian deceased kings; rendering of the code of king Vakhtang; edition of the theological books and journals into Georgian; opening of eparchies, fraternities, theological schools, consistorian, monasteries; transference of the church real property to fiscal/state administration; labour conscription for using church estates; marriage of Prince Shervashidze of Aphkhazeti; number of state and wooden churches in Georgia; repairing of bridges; spread of cholera in Tbilisi, and spread of plague in Gori; registers of number of churches, of amount of church incomes and of number of peasants.