Buenos Aires, Argentina. In 1995, under the coordination of Mauricio Goyenechea, a group of researchers began to revise and compare Argentinean phone books with Jaime de Querejeta’s dictionary of surnames and heraldry. This first phase of the study resulted in a list of nearly 9,000 Basque surnames in the country. At the same time, families were approached, through various modes of communication, to request more information. A group then worked to standardize this information and put it into book form that was first presented by the society in 2000.
Due to the success of the first book, those involved with the project decided to continue their research which resulted in a second edition in 2001 and a third in 2006, each of which expanded or corrected the information published in the edition that came before. Even though the 10,000 names that appeared in the third version seemed like a lot, it was known that many more were left to be registered and so the researchers continued their search. During the last two years, the focus was on collection so the new addition includes 24,000 Basque surnames in Argentina.
Assured that this research can serve to carry out similar projects in Basque communities in other Latin American countries, those involved with the book admit "This collection is important because Basque surname dictionaries do not include all of the last names.”
The new edition is accompanied by a CD that allows readers to enjoy novelties and curiosities that have emerged during the research process, specifically on the settlement of Basques in various Argentinean provinces prior to 1810.
Anyone interested in purchasing a book should contact the Foundation by phone (5411 - 4328-6906/7947/7910) or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com) or by going to the Foundation headquarters in person (la calle Roque Sáenz Peña 846). The Foundation is also selling the book at a lower price by subscription before it appears in bookstores.
Looking ahead to 2012, the Foundation has also announced that it will upload the list of surnames to its website along with creating a forum of Basque last names, “following the Wikipedia model, that the Foundation has used since 2000, prior to the creation of this internet encyclopedia,” they added to EuskalKultura.com.
The supporters of the project also emphasized, “Finally, we must stress that none of this would have been possible without the help of the Basque Government that generously paid half of the research and publication costs.”