Prussian and Austro-Hungarian partitions
by Aleksandra Kacprzak
Center for Genealogical Research Service Genoroots, Poland
The territory of former Prussian partition was populated by a variety of nationalities and religions. All denominations maintained their own records and books concerning basic sacraments. In 1874, the Civil Vital Record Office started to operate in the entire Prussian partition. Births, marriages and deaths were registered in civil books, regardless of religion or nationality. Church documents as well as national administration documents concerning German Partitioned lands can be found in many Archives on Polish lands and outside its borders.
The first and the most important step in your research is to locate the national and church administrative affiliation of the ancestral town. Additionally you have to find both the Polish and German name of the town. Please remember that the village name may have changed from time to time. Researching in this area would be a challenge for the genealogists without the Kartenmeister website: http://www.kartenmeister.com/preview/databaseuwe.asp
This website provides Polish and German name of the village, plus the Roman Catholic and Evangelical parish affiliation as well as the Vital Records Office. The website is in English, so you don’t need to use Polish diacritics.
The Index of the Polish-German and German-Polish names of the localities:
Publications that provide similar information are available in digital libraries, for example Kujawsko-Pomorska Biblioteka cyfrowa offers Skorowidz ważniejszych miejscowości Prus Królewskich (Index of main localities in Royal Prussia) http://kpbc.umk.pl/dlibra/docmetadata?id=16822&from=&dirids=1&ver_id=339528&lp=1&QI=!B5E90C75885DBBF11B7096286FD67B03-1
Skorowidz miejscowości – index of localities
Prusy – Prussia
Biblioteka cyfrowa – digital library
Direct link to town research: http://westpreussen.de/pages/forschungshilfen/ortsverzeichnis.php
Very informative website but is only in German. To get information about your town you have to click function Ortsverzeichnis. Type the name of your town – in Polish or in German and you will find information not only about civilian and church affiliation, but also links to old maps and the location of available records.
Projects run by individual state archives:
All projects cover only part of each archive collection.
State Archive in Olsztyn
Home page: http://olsztyn.ap.gov.pl/
Research project: http://olsztyn.ap.gov.pl/baza/szukaj.php
This website offers scans of Roman Catholic and Evangelical metrical books as well as Civil Registrars plus town documents. Some books are indexed and indexes can be searched. Website only in Polish.
Nazwa zespołu – name of the fond
Nazwa oryginalna – original name of the town
Tytuł jednostki – title of the unit
Daty skrajne – time range
Hasło indeksu geograficznego – town name index
Hasło indeksu osobowego – personal index
Hasło indeksu przedmiotowego – subject index
Szukaj – search
State archive in Szczecin
Home page: https://www.szczecin.ap.gov.pl/
Research project: https://www.szczecin.ap.gov.pl/pl/materialy-zdigitalizowane
This website offers scans of many Civil Registration Office books, court records, town records and more. Scans are only partly available on Search the Archives website.
State Archive in Wrocław:
Home page: https://www.ap.wroc.pl/
List of digitized books and documents: https://www.ap.wroc.pl/lista-opublikowanych-skanow
This engine is used to present scans of documents. Some of them are also available in “Search the Archives” project but not all.
State Archive in Koszalin:
Home page: http://www.koszalin.ap.gov.pl/
List of documents available on line in Koszalin and Słupsk branch archives: http://www.koszalin.ap.gov.pl/zasoby-on-line/
Only Polish version but very easy to use. Some scans are available also in “Search the Archives” project but not all.
Geburst – birth
Heiraths – marriage
Sterbe – death
State Archive in Katowice
Otwarty Regionalny System Informacji Przestrzennej – https://www.orsip.pl/uslugi/archiwum-panstwowe – very interesting old maps and on Górnośląskie Towarzystwo Genealogiczne – Upper Silesia Genealogical Society – https://siliusradicum.pl/
Lists of digitized material are available on the home page and linked to relevant website.
Otwarty Regionalny System Informacji Przestrzennej
“Link do mapy” ——- „select map” —— archival maps —— select option on the right
State Archives in Bydgoszcz and Toruń
Genealogy in the Archives project, covers Prussian and Russian partition
Collections of church archives:
Archdiocesan Archive in Gniezno
Archdiocesan Archives in Poznań
Archdiocesan Archives in Katowice
Diocesan Archives in Koszalin
Diocesan Archives in Pelplin
Diocean Archive in Zielona Góra
Zasób archiwalny – black – not active, red – active links
#1.4 Akta Stanu Cywilnego – Vital Records Office
#2 Parafie i kościoły – parishes and churches
Diocesan Archives in Toruń (Prussian and Russian partitions)
Projects run by genealogical societies:
All presented projects offer searchable indexes of metrical books and civil registrars. Some of indexes provide a link to the scan of the record.
BaSIA – Project run by Wielkopolskie Towarzystwo Genealogiczne Gniazdo
Pomorskie Towarzystwo Genealogiczne
Pomeranian Genealogical Society
Zachodniopomorskie Genealogical Society Pomerania
Projekt Warmia – źródła genealogii Warmii i Mazur
Project Warmia – Genealogical sources for Warmia and Masuria
German Society Arbeitsgemeinschaft ostdeutscher Familienforscher e.V.(AGoFF e.V)
Many of our ancestors and family members fought in the Prussian Army. Sometimes they were taken to prison, wounded or died. The Prussian Army published lists “Lists of Losses” to inform the civilians about what happened to their relatives fighting on different fronts. These lists were displayed in public places, such as shop or workshop windows or newspaper desks. Based on these Lists of Loses indexes were made and they are available online at the following websites:
The original lists are available on Wielkopolska Digital Library
AUSTRO – HUNGARIAN PARTITION
Civil and church town affiliation:
Jagiellonian Digital Library: https://www.jbc.bj.uj.edu.pl/dlibra?language=en
Skorowidz wszystkich miejscowości położonych w Królestwie Galicyi i Lodomeryi wraz z Wielkiem Księstwem Krakowskiem, Lwów, 1868
Małopolska Digital Library: http://mbc.malopolska.pl/dlibra
Skorowidz wszystkich miejscowości z przysiółkami, Lwów 1904
Baza Miejscowości Kresowych
State Archive projects:
State Archive in Przemyśl project
Home page: http://www.przemysl.ap.gov.pl/
Research engine: http://www.przemysl.ap.gov.pl/skany/
This projects offers scans of Roman Catholic and Greek Catholic metrical books, cadastral maps, notary books and others.
Archiwum Główne Akt Dawnych – AGAD
Central Archive of Historical Records
Scans on line – https://agad.gov.pl/inwentarze/testy.html
Church archives inventory:
Archiwum Kurii Metropolitalnej in Kraków
Home page: https://archiwum.diecezja.pl/
inventory: https://archiwum.diecezja.pl/metryka /
Sakralne Dziedzictwo Małopolski: https://sdm.upjp2.edu.pl/en
English version available, maps of all included to the project villages and very informative description of the village and church. Each antique picture or sculpture is described in details.
Diocesan Archive in Tarnów
Home page: http://archiwum.diecezja.tarnow.pl/
Małopolskie Towarzystwo Genealogiczne
Home page: https://www.mtg-malopolska.org.pl/
Indexes of some metrical books: https://www.mtg-malopolska.org.pl/ksiegimetrykalne.html
directories, address books, list of loses:
Many maps, huge collections of pictures and documents, detailed information about hundreds of villages. Navigation available in English.
Private website of the Windak family: http://windaki.pl/english-version/
Indexes and information about the area of Wieliczka.
Private website of Maciej Róg: https://genealogia.mrog.org/records.html
Many family branches including lines in USA, research by last name or place.
Private website of Aleksandra Kacprzak, Genoroots: https://genoroots.com/cemeteries/
Thanks to the hard work of Genealogical Societies, Polish National Archives and genealogy enthusiast the internet databases are growing all the time. If your ancestors are not on a database today, be sure to go back and check from time to time. One day your ancestors may appear, because they all want to be found!