So, until recently I knew quite little about one of my great-grandfathers (my maternal grandpa's dad). As he died when my grandpa was quite little, and then the whole family moved, details are quite murky.
So, what I knew: His name was Alexandr Costarcov (or at least that's how it transliterates into Romanian), he was a cossack from the Don bassin area, possibly Voronej area but not sure; when the Soviets came into powr he became one of the many White Emigres, so he moved to Ceadir-Lunga, in which is now the Republic of Moldova (used to be Romania back then, before WW2), where he started a wine business and met my great-grandma.We have no idea whre he was from exactly or what his family of origin was.
What I just found out: In his youth, he has been a soldier/sailor in the Czar's Navy, and he fought in the Russo-Jampaese war. His ship was hit by the Japanese, and only a few people survived the shipwreck by holding on to planks; he did make it to the shore, but he was taken prisoner (not sure for how long or how he got out). Now I'm wondering if there are any records of that anywhre, which may help me shed light on his origins. Any suggestions?