Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, the guru of Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, appeared in Sri Ksetra Dhama.(Jagannatha Puri) on 6 February 1874 as the son of Srila Sacidananda Bhaktivinoda Thakura. In his childhood he quickly mastered the Vedas, memorized the Bhdgavad-gita, and relished his father's philosophical works. He became known as "The Living Encyclopedia" for his vast knowledge.
Shri Purushottama Dasa constantly meditated on and served the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda. Kanu Thakura, his son, was such an exalted Devotee that Lord Krishna always lived in his body. When Kanu was five Ma Jahnava took him to Vrindavana. The Goswamis joyously greeted him upon seeing his genuine devotion.
His Divine Grace Gour Govinda Swami Maharaja made his appearance as Braja-bandhu Manik in a vaishnava family on 2nd September 1929. He appeared in the village of Jagannathapura, not far from Jagannatha Puri Dhama, in Orissa, India, but as his mother was descended from the Giri family of the village Gadeigiri, Braja-bandhu spent his childhood there. His grandfather was a paramahamsa whose only business was to chant Hare Krishna and cry before the local Deity of Krishna known as Gopal Jiu. He taught Braja-bandhu how to chant the Hare Krishna maha-mantra by counting on his fingers. In the company of his uncles, Braja-bandhu would travel from village to village chanting Hare Krishna and singing the songs of Narottama Dasa Thakura. The Giri family have been known since the time of Syamananda Prabhu as famous kirtana performers in Orissa.