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Historic-Cultural Monuments of Preili District
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Personalia A-L

Aglonietis, Andrejs; priest; born 09.06.1955, Jaunaglona. Educ: Aglona Secondary School; Riga Theological Seminary. Ordination: Deacon, 1977; Priest, 1978. Parish Priest in Krāslava and Skaista (1978-1979), Aglona and Rudzāti (1979-1980); Višķi (1980-1984), Višķi, Ambeļi and Augškalne (1984-1991). Parish Priest in Aglona, Bērzgale, and Peipiņi; Dean of Aglona Deanery, since 1991.

Aldermane, Eiženija; Head, Naturalization Board; born 03.12.1942, Silajāņi, Preiļi Dist. Educ: University of Latvia, Fac. of Philology; the Police Academy of Latvia, Fac. of Public Law. Deputy Head, teacher of the Latvian language and literature, Jūrmala Sec. School No.4, 1968-86; Inspector, Education Department of Jūrmala, 1986-87; Inspector, Department of General Educ., Ministry of Educ., 1987-91; Head of State Inspection, Ministry of Educ., 1991-92; Deputy Minister, Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, 1992-93; Secretary of State, Ministry of Educ. and Science, 1993-94; Head, Naturalization Board, since 1994. Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2004.  

Ancāns, Benjamiņš; graphic artist, painter; born 14.09.1926, Mālkalna Ancāni, Rožupe Civil Parish. Educ: 4-year Buļļu Primary School, 6-year Meža Primary School, Aglona School of Agriculture. During the Second World War was enlisted into Latvian Legion. Got captured by English, spent the rest of his life in West Germany. In a refugee camp studied drawing and painting in a private studio of J.Soikāns. Continued studies in Art Trade School in Hanover. Took part in German and European Latvians’ art exhibitions.
Organized personal exhibitions in Germany, USA, Canada and Sweden. Was interested in sacred art and his graphics of religious content were published in Catholic press of exile. Used name ‘Benis’ to sign caricatures and ink drawings. Painted in oil, paid particular attention to sacred pictures which created in abstract way.

Ancāns, Romualds; actor; born 01.04.1944, Augšmukti, Rožkalni Civil Parish, Preili District. Educ: Vanagi Elementary School, Rīga Secondary Evening School No 14, Latvia State Conservatoire, Faculty of Theatre. Actor, The Daile Theatre, since 1975. Major roles: Blacksmith, Short Instruction in Love Affairs (Īsa pamācība mīlēšanā); Ķirškalns, The Last Barrier (Pēdējā barjera); Kaspars, The Twins of Devil’s Bone (Velnakaula dvīņi), Juda, Joseph and Brothers (Jāzeps un viņa brāļi) and others. Films: more than 100 film roles. Major roles in films directed by Latvian film director Jānis Streičs: Policeman Martins Beks, The Unfinished Dinner, 1979; Jāzeps Gilučs, Limousine in the Colour of White Night, 1981; Izidors, The Child of Man, 1991; Vincents, The Mills of Fate, 1997; Uldis Vītols, The Autumn Rose, 2004.

Anspaks, Antons; educator, historian, local history researcher; born 15.02.1929, Sauna Civil Parish, Preiļi Dist. Educ: Sala, Pļaviņas and Baldone Elementary Schools; Cēsis Teacher Training College; University of Latvia, Fac. of History and Philology. Worked as a teacher in schools in Tukums Dist. and Cēsis. Was a director of Cēsis History Museum. Research work dedicated to the origin of place names, genealogy, the history of Preiļi and Cēsis Districts. The author of the travel guides to Preiļi, Cēsis, Līvāni and to the places of residence of E.Veidenbaums, Brothers Kaudzītes and E.Dārziņš. The initiator of putting up memorial plaques to honour outstanding, undeservedly forgotten cultural workers; the organizer of local history expeditions. Publications: voluminous monograph ‘Preiļi District’, 1996; the book ‘Cēsis Teacher Training College’, 1999. Awards: Ludis Bērziņš’ grant. Died 23.01.2001, buried Bērzaines Cemetery, Cēsis.

Anspaks, Jānis; Dr.habil.paed, Professor, University of Latvia; born 29.05.1929, Anspaki, Sauna Civil Parish, Preiļi Dist. Educ: Anspoki and Priekuļi Primary Schools, Aglona Grammar School, Preili Sec. School No1, Daugavpils Teacher’s Training School, Latvia State Pedagogic Inst., 1952. One of the first candidates of sciences in pedagogy in Latvia. LU: Asst. Lector, Department of Ped. and Psychology, 1956; Asst. Professor, 1957; Chair of Pedagogy and Psychology, 1960-1973; Dr.habil.paed, 1981; Professor,1982. Research work dedicated to the development of pedagogic ideas in Latvia. Author of a monograph ‘Pedagogic Ideas in Latvia’, collected articles ‘Esthetical Education at Junior School’, ’Applied Art at School’, ‘Monitoring of Esthetical Education ’, a book ‘Pedagogy of Arts’ and a large number of publications intended for art teachers and university lecturers.

Anspoks, Oskars; orthopaedic and accident surgeon; born 04.04.1963, Sauna Civil Parish, Preiļi District. Educ: Rīga Institute of Medicine, 1990. Head of Unit at Rīga City Hospital No 2. Specializes in joint prosthetic and arthroscopic surgery. In-service training in Germany and Sweden.


Balckars, Pēteris;, Professor, transport specialist; born 22.08.1942, Gailīši, Preiļi District. Educ: Leningrad Institute of Railway Transport Engineers. Worked for Riga Branch of the Institute, 1975-1991. Head of the Rolling Stock Department, Institute of Transport, Riga Technical University, 1991-1999. Director of the Institute of Transport, Riga Technical University, since 1999. 

Barkāns Natans; Chief Rabbi of Riga and Latvia; born 11.03.1923, Līvāni. Educ: Rīga and Gostiņi Rabbi Schools, Jewish Seminary, School of Trade. Was ordained and became Assistant to Rabbi, Rogačevska Synagogue, 1940. Emigrated to Israel, 1969. Head of Religious School in Israel, 1970-88. Returned to Latvia as Chief Rabbi of Riga and Latvia,1989. Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2000. Died 20.11.2003, Jerusalem.

Baško, Jezups; General, war aviator, aviation scientist; born 08.01.1889, Kastīre Rušona Civil Parish, Preiļi District. Educ: Jasmuiža and Preiļi Elementary Schools; Bialystok Realshule (science-oriented sec. school.);  St. Petersburg Military School; Aeronautics Officer Training School; Gatchina Military Aviation School; War Academy courses. Military aviator for Russian Army since 1913. In 1921 returned to Latvia as an instructor of Latvian Aviation Division; Head of Technical Section since 1922; Commander of Aviation Division since1923; Commander of Latvian Aviation, 1938-1940. Awards: The Three- Star Order, 1929. Died 31.05.1946. Buried in Eikša cemetery, Rušona Civil Parish.

Bečs Ignats; Captain of Latgale Partisan Regiment, border guard, police-officer, holder of Order of St. George, Order of St. Stanislaw, Lāčplēsis Military Order, Three-Star Order; born 12.02.1890, Preiļi Civil Parish, Litavnieki. Educ: Preiļi Elementary School, self-education. Volunteered Latvia’s Army, 1918.  Commander of the battalion of Latgale Partisan Regiment, 1919-1921. Joined the State Border Guard, 1922. Head of the police stations in Abrene and Preiļi, 1936-1940. Was arrested and deported to Krasnoyarsk Krai (Siberia) where died in imprisonment, 26.01.1943.

Bekešs, Imants Jānis; Head, Daugavpils City and Dist. Police Dept. of the State Police, Police Colonel;  born 16.08.1955, Rožkalni Civil Parish, Preiļi Dist. Educ: Rimicāni Elem. School; Vārkava Sec. School; University of Latvia, Master’s Degree in Law. Different positions at Interior Dept. of Preiļi Dist., 1976-1984. Head, Interior Dept. of Preiļi Dist.,1984-1997. Head, Daugavpils City Police Dept., 1997-1998. Chief, the State Security Police, 1999. Head, Daugavpils City and Dist. Police Dept. of the State Police, 1998-1999, 1999- up to now. Awards: personal weapon and recognition by Guntis Ulmanis, the Presitent of the State, and Jānis Pujats, Metropolitan, for professional work in arranging security measures during the visit of Pope John Paul II in Aglona, 1993; The Three-Star Order, 1998.

Bicāns, Jānis; Doctor of Medicine, kidney transplant surgeon, Head of the Kidney Transplant Unit at P.Stradiņš Clinical University Hospital; born 10.02.1945, Gubanišķi, Pelēči Civil Parish, Preiļi District. Educ: Paegļi and Niedri Primary Schools; Aglona Boarding School; Institute of Medicine, 1972. Vice-president of Latvian Association of Transplant Surgeons; Member of the Expert Commission, the Society of Baltic Transplant Surgeons. Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2003.

Blaževičs, Jānis; Deputy Chairman, Council of Joint Stock Company Ventspils Nafta, businessman, patron; born 08.10.1947, Konstantinova Civil Parish, Krāslava District. Educ: Rīga Polytechnic Institute. First place of work: Līvāni Biochemistry Factory. Chairman of Preiļi District Executive Committee, 1980-1986. Deputy Chairman, Council of Joint Stock Company Ventspils Nafta, since 1997. Provided financial support for publishing several books on Latgalian literature and cultural heritage. Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2000.

Blonskis, Aloizs Visvaldis; Police General; born 10.03.1933, Ludza Dist., Cibla Civil Parish. Educ. Kategrade Elementary School (Preiļi Dist.), Aglona Gymnasium, Minsk Higher Militsiya School, 1962. Started to work as a militsyaman in Rīga Dist., 1953. Head of Militsiya Criminal Investigation Dept., Jūrmala, 1959-1963; Police Colonel, Deputy Head of the Criminal Police, 1969-1994; Head of the Central Criminal Police Dept., Deputy Head of  the Police Dept., Republic of Latvia Ministry of the Interior, 1994-2000. Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2000.

The Borgh Family; The ancient and noble Borgh family played a major role in the history of Preili. The historical sources contain information that Preili was a part of the Livonian Order since 1376. It was a feud 1376(or 1382)-1561, then a property of the Borgh family. The names of the very first counts of Preili remain unknown, but it is certain that in 1475 The Master of the Livonian Order Bernd von der Borgh devolved Preili to his cousin Simon Borgh.
The Borghs had their origin in the South of Italy. They were feudal landowners in the Kingdom of Naples. From there they moved to Westphalia, Germany. In the 13th century one branch of the family moved to Pomerania, another – to Poland, but the third – to Livonia. In the course of time the Borghs, who had moved to Livonia, split into three smaller branches and settled in Preiļi, Varakļāni and Belarus. The Borghs owned estates in Latgale, in the Duchy of Kurzeme, and in the territories of present Lithuania and Belarus.

Cakuls, Jānis; Bishop, Titular Bishop of Tinista; born 4.07.1926, Rudzāti Civil Parish. Educ: Rusiņi and Rudzāti Primary Schools, Aglona Gymnasium, Preili Sec. School, Riga Theological Seminary. Ordination: Priest, 1949; Bishop, 1982. Served in St Maria Magdalena Church in Riga. Coadjutor Apostolic Administrator of Riga, Titular Bishop of Tinista, 1982; Apostolic Administrator of Riga, 1990; Auxiliary Bishop of Riga,1991. Research work dedicated to the history of Catholic Church in Latvia and the biographies of Catholic priests. Major works: Priests of Latvia’s Roman Catholic Church, 1918-1995.-R., 1996; Latvia’s Roman Catholic Parishes. – R., 1997; The Role of Catholic Church in the History of Latvia 18th-19th cent.-R., 1999; History Materials of Latvia’s Roman Catholic Church 20th cent. – R., 2001. Honorary Doctor of Latvia’s Academy of Sciences.

Čerņavskis, Polikarps; ceramic artist; born 08.05.1923, Jūrīši Village, Silajāņi Civil Parish, Preiļi Distr. Educ: Antonišķi Elementary School, Silajāņi Primary School. Learned the craft at the ceramist Polikarps Vilcāns whose stylistic trend perfected in his further creative work. Created decorative tableware (vases, plates, sets), candlesticks, plateaus. First exhibition in Rēzekne,1943. Member, Latvia Artists’ Assn.,1959. Took part in World Ceramic Exhibitions in Geneva and Montreal. Awards: Golden Medal and 1st Class Certificate of Honour, Exhibition of National Economy Achievement, Moscow, 1977; Certificate of Honour, Melngailis House of Amateur & Folk Arts; Latvia Honoured Arts Worker, 1989; The Three-Star Order, 1996. Died 25.01.1997, Preiļi.

Danilāns, Anatolijs; gastroenterologist, Professor, Dr. of Med.; born 24.03.1943, Kārsava, Ludza Dist. Educ: Pieniņi Elementary School, Rīga School of Medicine No 2, Rīga Institute of Medicine, Fac. of General Medicine, 1966. Doctor of Preili Distr. Central Hospital, 1966-69; postgraduate student RMI, 1969-73; Junior Lecturer, Asst. Proffessor, Professor of Rīga Stradiņš’ University; President of Latvia Assn. of Gastroenterologists; practitioner gastroenterologist at P. Stradiņš’ Clinical Hospital. Research work dedicated to the origin, pathogenesis and treatment of stomach and duodenal ulcer.

Daukšts, Kārlis; Dr.hist., political scientist; born 01.01.1944, Aglona Civil Parish. Educ: Aglona Secondary School; University of Latvia, Fac. of History and Philosophy. Lecturer, University of Latvia, since 1976. Head, Dept. of History of Central and East Europe, 1992-1999. Director of the Institute for Russia Studies. Has studied foreign policy of Germany.

Eglītis, Jānis; Deputy, LR 9th Saeima (The People’s Party); born 23.01.1961, Preiļi. Educ: University of Latvia, MSc, 1994; Latvia University of Agriculture, Dr.oec., 2003; In-service training at Roskilde University, Denmark; International Institute of Educational Planning, Paris. Employment: Head teacher, Preili Secondary School No 1, 1986-1996; Head teacher, Preili State Gymnasium, 1996-2003; Chairman, Preili County Council, 2003-2006; Member of Board, Preili District Council; Member of Board, Trade Union LIVA; Member of Board, Council of Higher Education; Assoc. Prof., DU; Member of Board, Union ‘Development of Latvia and Regions’(Latvijas un reģionu attīstība).

Ersa-Kozlovska, Helēna;
singer; born 05.10.1895, Riebiņi Manor. Educ: Preiļi Elementary School, Rēzekne Town School, Gizicki’s Music School, St. Catherin’s Gymnasium in St. Petersburg, Conservatoire of St. Petersburg, Conservatoire of Latvia., perfected artistry in Milan. Initially sang at National Opera then founded a troupe and started to perform independently. Life and work dedicated to the popularization of Latvian and Latgalian folk songs. Gave concerts abroad – Rome, Berlin, Prague, Warsaw, Budapest. Made three records in Berlin. Gave more than 800 concerts in schools of Latgale. Awards: Cross of Recognition for a significant contribution to the popularisation of folk songs. Died 23.10.1949, buried cemetery of Sarkandaugava, Rīga.

Graubiņš, Jēkabs; composer, musicologist; born 16.04.1886, Aptekas, Rožupe Civil Parish. Educ: Valmiera Teacher Training Seminary,1902-1905; St. Petersburg Teacher Training Institute, 1909-1912; Latvia Conservatoire, composition,1919-1924. Taught at Lubāna Higher Education Folk School, Rīga Folk Conservatoire, Latvia State Conservatoire (lecturer, associate professor, professor). Composer, folklorist, music critic, 1930-1940. Admitted into the Composers’ Union of the LSSR, 1944. Sentenced to deportation to Siberia, 1950-1955. Principal works: 160 folk song arrangements, 210 choral compositions, 90 solo songs, 5 ethnographic performances, 6 cantatas, 7 peaces of chamber music, several books on music education. Died 03.12.1960, Rīga. Buried Rīga Meža Cemetery 2.


Indrikovs, Zenons; Dr. jur., Rector of The Police Academy of Latvia; born 16.03.1938, Aglona Civil Parish. Educ: Higher School, Ministry of Public Law & Order Protection of Russian SFSR, 1964; Academy of USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs, 1979. LR First Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs in Godmanis’ government (1990-1993). Rector of the Police Academy of Latvia. Member of Executive Committee of Lawyers’ Association; Editor of the journal ‘Criminal and Administrative Justice’. The author of several publications and teaching aids.

Ivanovs, Jānis; composer; born 09.10.1906, Babri, Preili Dist. Educ: Latvia Conservatory, composition and conducting, 1931; practical composition, 1933. Recording engineer, artistic director at Latvia Radio, 1931-1963. Taught composition and orchestration (Professor 1955-1983) at Latvia State Conservatoire 1944-1983. Member of CP. Awarded the USSR State Prize, two State Prizes of the Latvia SSR, and the honorary title of the USSR People’s Artist. Principal works: 21 symphonies, 4 symphonic poems, piano concerto, violin concerto, cello concerto, piano pieces, choir music, 3 string quarters, trio for violin, cello and piano, music for wind orchestra, vocal chamber and symphonic music. Died 27.03.1983, Riga, buried Rīga Meža Cemetery.

Jermolajeva, Elita; Assistant professor, Fac.of Social Sciences of Daugavpils University, Head of Department of Economics, Dr.oec; born 17.01.1961, Rīga. Educ: Rīga Sec. School No.64, 1971-1979; Latvia Academy of Agriculture, Department of Economics, 1984; MEcon, 1992; Dr.oec., 1993. Member of the Board, Daugavpils Regional Public Regulator of Public Services, since 2005; Assistant Professor, Rēzekne Institution of Higher Education, since 2001; Member, Latvia National Project Management Association, since 2004; Member, EU Lecturers Group ‘Team Europe Latvia’, since 2003; Leader of Preiļi Women’s Club, since 1997. Head, Department of Development Planning, Preiļi District Council, 2000-2005; Teacher of Commercial Subjects, Preiļi State Gymnasium, 1995-2004; Director, Union ‘Preiļi NGO’s Centre’.  Development and/or management of more than 15 projects with funding from EU and government. Manager, the project ‘Adult Education Centre’, NGO Preili Women’s Club, since 2000. 

Jokste, Silvija; journalist; born 1966, Preiļi. Educ: Preiļi Secondary School No 1, University of Latvia. Work experience: Preiļi District Newspaper ‘Novadnieks’; News Service of Latgalian Television; editor-in-chief of LNT (Latvian Independent Television) news service; deputy editor of the magazine ‘Ieva’; editor of the weekly newspaper ‘Fokuss’ and the magazine ‘Kas notiek?’; deputy editor of the magazine ‘Privātā Dzīve’; editor of the television broadcast ‘Bez Tabu Laiks’; editor-in-chief of the free newspaper ‘5 min’.

Kanceviča, Viktorija; engineer technologist, Professor, Riga Technical University Inst.of Textile & Clothing Technology; Dr. Habil.of Sc. Eng.; born 28.02.1923, Preili Civil Parish. Educ: Jersika Primary School; secondary evening school in Riga; Moscow Institute of Light and Textile Industry,1964; Riga Polytechnic Institute, post graduate course, 1969. Employment: Head of Workshop, factory ’Lenta’, 1948-64; Head of Lab., RPI, 1964-65; Senior Lecturer, Asst. Professor, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of Fibre Fabric, 1969-94; Professor, Inst. of Textile & Clothing Technology, since 1995. After 20 years of research, she was the first in the world to discover artificial blood vessels. The author of 58 scientific works and many inventions.

Kovaļevskis, Aleksandrs; scientist, biologist; born 19.11.1840, Vārkava Civil Parish.  Educ: University of St. Petersburg; Heidelberg University, Germany. Biologist, evolutionist, Dr. biol, Professor, founder of comparative embryology and experimental histology. Was elected to the Russian Academy of Sciences, 1890. Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of London; Honorary Doctor of Science, Cambridge University; member of several other scientific societies all over the world. Died 22.11.1901, buried in St. Petersburg.

Kudrjašovs, Aleksandrs (His Eminence Aleksandr); Metropolitan of Riga and All Latvia, Latvian Orthodox Church; born 03.10.1939, Preiļi District. Educ: Daugavpils Pedagogical Institute, Moscow Clerical Seminary. Teacher, Kalupe, Biķernieki, Riga Sec. School No 4. Ordained as a priest, 1982. Bishop of Riga and Latvia, 1990. Archbishop of Synod, Latvian Orthodox Church, 1994; Metropolitan, since 2002.
Awards: The Three-Star Order, 2002.

Kulakovs, Juris; composer, musician; born 20.05.1985, Līvāni. Educ: Līvāni Secondary School No. 1 and Līvāni Children’s Music School, 1975; Jāzeps Mediņš College of Music, 1979; Latvia State Conservatory, 1984. Member of ensemble Menuets since 1978, leader of rock group Pērkons since 1981. Principal works: rock music for the group Pērkons, video opera Heavenly Necessity, St. Mathew’s Passion, open-air performance Riga Mystery, rock opera Gypsy in a Dream, telecast, film and theatre music

Kursīte, Janīna; scientist; born 08.03.1952, Arendole. Educ: University of Tartu, Fac. of Philology, Estonia, 1975; University of Latvia, Fac. of Philology, 1976; Dr. philol., Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art, 1982; Dr. habil. philol., Inst. of Literature, Folklore and Art, 1993. Head of the Department of the Theory and History of Culture, Academy of Culture, 1994-1995; Vice Rector, Acad. of Culture, 1995-1997; Professor, University of Latvia, since 1997; Dean, Fac.of Philology, University of Latvia, since 1999. Author of several books, has written about theory of poetry, mythology and cultural history. Awards: The Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas.

Laizāns, Fēliks Boļeslavs; priest, folklore collector; born 22.04.1871, Sakstagals Civil Parish. Educ: Sakstagals Primary School, Rēzekne Town School, St Petersburg Theological Seminary. Ordination: 1871. Served in Augustova, Vanagi, Nautrēni and Bebrene parishes. Correspondent of Latgalian newspaper ‘Gaisma’. While working in Vanagi collected and systematized folklore. Collected 2458 folk songs which were published in ‘Latvian Folk Songs’ (Latvju dains) Volume 1. Died 17.07.1931. Buried in Bebrene Cemetery.

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