Photo Gallery

Photography of Ancestral Towns & Villages

Sadly, Standa won't be planning another photo tour anytime soon. For the past 5 years he made trips to towns and villages for clients who could not be here themselves. During this time he photographed more than 800 towns and villages. Only a portion of these were places that we consigned him to. The others were simply places he found interesting, and these will be featured in the months to come, as a tribute to Standa's love of his native land. I will updated these as time permits, and many of his photos will be featured in an annual cycle of seasonal images. High resolution copies (printed or digital) may be purchased upon request. Please Note: The images in the "Photo Album" are not those previously consigned by other clients. Click on images to enlarge


  1. Nature & Other Wonders
  2. Castles & Churches
  3. Arts & Crafts
  4. People
  5. Events
  6. Grave Markers, Memorials & Cemeteries


Nature & Other Wonders

Prague, like other capital cities of Europe, is well know for it's hundreds of man made spires and a veritable trove of architectural wonders. Not as well known, but perhaps equally impressive, is the inspiration for much of this, which can be found in various natural and man made landscapes, both the products of a magnificent God and an industrious people. Thus, this section of the "Photo Album" contains pictures on the theme "Nature & Other Wonders".

Velka Amerika - The Czech Republic's very own (man made) Grand Canyon Beronka River - The slow meandering river which cuts through the countryside West of Prague. Setting for the stories of Ota Pavel (How I came to Know Fish, and Death of Beautiful Deer)and home to Castles (Křivoklát and Karlštejn). Early 20th Century Hydro Electric on the Labe River. A truly ancient occupation, herding sheep in Slovakia. Loket - A poet's corner of Bohemia At rest in West Bohemia Luh at Branov - The remains of the day Near Mělník - A landscape full of surprises A robber's den - Kokořín - Enter a storied setting of enchantment and mystery Šarka - a fresh (cold!) water swimming hole in the Prague environs. A great place on a hot Summer day. Červene Klašter - Slovakia - where manmade meets majesty Springtime - on the road in Centralis Bohemia Crossing the Berounka River Near Bromouv, in the North, the hills near Aderšpach and Božina Němcová's youth. Prague Zoo is a wonder as well. Empty Streets of Prague...?

Castles & Churches

As truly extraordinary symbols of wealth and power, castles and churches represented the height of science and technology at the time they were built. While at different times of war and peace their functions differed accordingly, A close examination is like a window into the past, where we can witness the ebb and flow of history. Not to be confused with the palaces and chateaus from later times, castles represent the harsh reality of the middle ages. Even more so, ancient Rotunda's and early Romanesque churches, which withstood countless times of war, now stand the test of time, some more defiant than others, but each as a symbol of towering aspirations.

Křivoklát - Hands down, one of the most impressive castles still standing from the 13th century. Rabštejn - A Baroque gem West of Prage Rábí - The place where Žižka lost his second eye. Valeč - A day trip West of Prague Sváta Horá - Marian Pilgrimage site at Příbrám Hluboka Castle - Not a bad place to spend St. Valentine's evening.  Orlík - Perhaps it does not impress as much as Hluboka or Krumlov, but this one is still in the family... Valeč - Another look at an otherwise overlooked gem Helfštejn in Moravia, far from the din.... Valtice - Remarkable for wine and the surrounding park. Manětín - An attractive chateau West of Prague Every year seems to find us returning to the same places more than once, perhaps it takes a few visits to find the hidden treasures... Česky Šternberk on the River Sazava. A great place to send off the Winter (see Čarodejnice Tour). Still home to one of the oldest families in the Czech lands. A Castle immortalized by the Poet Goethe. Let us show you why, with a hike to Karlovy Vary. The Vineyards above Troja in Prague

Arts & Crafts

If there is any truth to the expression, "a picture is worth a thousand words", then here is the evidence. Let these pictures speak for themselves about the masters who crafted such lasting expressions in stone, wood, mortar, clay, textile (lace), oil and ink. Indeed, if you visit just about any town, and wander through the cobbled alley ways, there is no telling what your camera will find, or what stories those images will later conjure... To the patient observer, and sincere searcher, a further reward awaits inside the many galleries, old book stores, and museums.

Ceramics as Therapy - what better way to find joy and meaning, then to fill the garden with Clowns & Flowers. You may be surprised at what you may come across in the country.... A well known icon - The Prazdroj Brana The Botanical Garden & Historic Village at Ostra. A must see for families traveling with children. Easily accessible from Prague by train. There's nothing quite like shopping in the small town Bazars Noah - A proverbial family history gallery An Old Moravian Mill converted to an Inn - Art & Craft galore! Kuks - Nine of the twelve vises by Matias Braun  Shopping in Prague Nowy Sancz Poland - It is not unusual to see people dressed traditionally. Reviving an old tradition - Marionette Theater in the country There is both an art and a craft to hunting mushrooms.  Lace and Historic textiles are as good as gold (or in Bohemia - Crystal). Demonstrating the historic craft of paper making. Brewing Beer fuels the true Czech favorite pastime. No visit to the Czech Republic is complete without visiting at least a pub.


People are everywhere. In case you haven't already noticed, it's not easy to find places where you won't see them. Although we are rather averse to crowds, there is never enough time in life to spend in the company of those people we call family and friends. One of my daughter's story books, "Lu and Swamp Ghost", makes the case that "you're not poor if you have family and at least one good friend". Thus, this page is dedicated to a few of the many people we are blessed to call our friends.

Randolph Stilson - The man behind the curtain... Librarian, archivist and genealogist, his role as teacher and patron cannot be overstated. Hasterman - Our renowned bicycle guide Tom & Marie - A rare moment at home together during the Summer. Hanka - Now on maternal leave (with a third child on the way), she had assisted as many families to discover lost relatives as any Pathfinder. Jan Pařez & Tom Zahn, working together since 1992 (not only in the archives...) The Children of Lidice - still living in our hearts, 
sadly no descendants will ever look for them Irena Novotna (nee Vesela) - teaching the world about dudy (Czech bagpipes) Eva & Valentina - Our first choice to hold down the fort in our absence... Richard Choleva - Ten years after guiding a wedding party through North East Slovakia (his birthplace) he continues to be a Pathfinder. Tereza - From Hradec Kralova, but in love with Moravia Very Important People - Marie and the girls... Marie at work, with patient, effective, and peaceful purpose. Truly the heart and soul of P.A.T.H. FINDERS...  Tom Zahn, Tomaš Biskup, Jan Pařez, at an all too infrequent meeting... Where's Marie? Kent Kasha - A friend who knows about beer and hockey Father's Day! Standa & Tom


For the moment this will be the final page in our Photo Album. In many ways it encompasses all the previous pages, since quite often Events Happen, wherever there are mysterious Castles, wonderous Nature, playful Art & Architecture, and lots of loving People. So here you will find, as the culmination of all the above, some of the Events we were fortunate to capture.

Standa's dream from his earliest memories was to visit New York. For both of us, this was the event of a lifetime... Quite extraordinary street music (from Dvořak to Dixieland) just outside the Castle gates. Seasonal Festivals that celebrate the history of particular places (in this case Křivoklat Castle) Veselá vs. Novotny - Traditional Wedding near Strakonice Celebrating Easter by going door to door... Children's Camp - Just how important it is to play Praha - Prčice - an annual trek hosted by the Czech Touristic Club (the folks that mark the trails). One trail departs from Milevsko, and follows the path of many emigrants to America  Praha - Prčice take two... Looking for relatives in Ukraine Zofia, Ukraine - Everything is now Illuminated Witch Burning - April 30th - Some pagan rituals still thrive. Romance is everywhere... Ota Pavel's Hike (June)- In honor of the writer who taught me how to know fishermen in Bohemia... A film in progress - Three Musketeers

Grave Markers, Memorials & Cemeteries

Here we are posting just a few of the many markers and memorials that we have photographed. We offer to travel to villages and create photo albums for those who are searching and may not be able to visit themselves. The objective of most family history explorations, besides finding living family, ancestral houses and parish churches, is to visit the cemetery where relatives were laid to rest. 

Teplice nad Metuji - The Czech boarder lands are strewn with villages, parish churches and cemeteries that had once been home to a sizable ethnic German population. After WWII the inhabitants were mostly expelled from their homes. We are touched by the porcelain photos, faces that have survived the test of time. These faces wait for their families to return and find them. Telice nad Metuji Teplice nad Metuji Teplice nad Metuji Teplice nad Metuji Albrechtice Albrechtice Albrechtice Albrechtice Vlachova Brezi - Jewish grave markers Narodní Hřbitov - Vyšehrad Prague Old Town Jewish Cemetery Franz Kafka's Grave - Prague New Town Olšanské Hřbitov Šafov Jewish Cemetery Moravia Šafov Jewish Cemetery Moravia Šafov Jewish Cemetery Moravia