16611RE: [S-R] Doubts about church records KOKAVA
- Feb 4, 2007First, It's not strange to see records kind of cobbled together. In many
churches there were two sets of records kept, one local and one for the
bishop. When collected by the Hungary government in 1895, some, not all
came together in one place Again, not always.
Second, different churches had different schemes for recording information,
even though the higher ups had given specific instructions to the contrary.
Rural churches were the most non-conforming. Often times, the b, m, and D
records are separate sections, until they "run out of room" and have to
start somewhere else.
Third, not all records survived for a multitude of reasons. For every
village there is probably a different explanation. Some may have been lost,
some misplaced, some misfiled.
These missing records are a clue, as you have eluded to. I am fairly
confident that the FHL has recorded every church record the Slovak state
Sometimes the priest indeed was gone for a few years, but that was about it.
Have you looked at neighboring villages? According to the slovak state
archive cross-reference, there are Reformed church records (of Kokava) in
the Rimavska Sobota village records. This is in addition to the primary
church records you have found. Have you looked there?
See my other note on "family movements" with regards to answering your other
questions about how far back church records go.
You also need to look at the village history, to be certain some major event
had not affected the village recordkeeping. I can send you the brief
village history from "mesta a obce" if you want. I'm really quite busy
right now and can't offer too much more of my time. I'd look locally before
you try to cast your net too wide.
If you can't find a village history, finding one of a nearby larger village
or region can be helpful also.
Your village was in GEMER (Gomor) county, Lom nad Rimavicou (Rimaszombati )
district. Kokava was a pretty significant village in 1910 when these
http://lazarus.elte.hu/hun/maps/1910/gomork.jpg maps were drawn. In that
district was a village called Esztrény (see
http://www.bogardi.com/gen/g124.shtml ) That's a wild goose, in my opinion,
doesn't mean anything, but it's an idea. I still think it's an
Many times abbreviations are local in origin. What time period did the
"EST" abbreviation exist. Try to seek out possible word formations in
Magyar or Slovak or whatever language the church books are rendered in. It
sure seems like it would be "estimated". Can you can and post/mail a sample
page? Sometimes seeing it reveals a lot more than a transcription.
You are taking a lot of initiative and asking great questions.
I wish my answers could be more "meaty." I'm really short on time to devote
to forums for the next couple of months, but feel free to keep the questions
coming, and remind me from time to time.
From: Maria Eugenia Kromholc [mailto:mariuk@...]
Sent: Wednesday, January 31, 2007 11:16 PM
Subject: Re: [S-R] Doubts about church records KOKAVA
Hi, Bill, thanks for you reply. I will try to clarify the doubts with the
little information I have.
-The records I am looking at are the original evangelical parrish records
from the town of Kokava nad Rimavicou (Slovakia). Yes, they are handwritten
and as I told you, I found that below some of the children's entries is
written: EST. 1888-1904 (numbers vary).
-The birth records I am looking at start in 1837, then 1838 and then they
jump to 1860. This is pretty strange because on the same 1838 page, the
priest draw a line dividing the page and started afresh in 1860. So I really
don't know what to think, because there are a lot of years to think that
perhaps the priest died and they had to wait till a new one came. I really
doubt a village in those times could be without a priest for so many years.
"Important monument of Kokava is an evengelical church from the year 1566.
In 1911 it was devastated during catastrophic wildfire but in 1913 it was
built up again". (www.gemer.org). I thought about this as an explanation but
years don't fit. The EST thing I have found it along the 1837, 1838, 1860
and 1861 pages, that is up to where I have read.
- The records belong to the evangelical church.
- I cannot tell you the population at that time because I still haven't
received the census microfilm. Today there are 3117 people living there. So,
yes, 150 years ago I'd say there were less than 1,000 inhabitants.
Concerning the number of churches: "The others sacral monuments are Roman
Catholic church from 1820, chapel at Kukucínová street from 1847 and
Jewishly synagogue from 1912" (www.gemer.org).
-I haven't found the mother's birth records in 1837 or 1838, so she must
have been born before or after, and after jumps to 1860.
That is all the information I have. Do you think there is any possibility
that the LDS get to microfilm older than 1837 parrish records? How do we get
to know in what year they started registering births and marriages, or if
there exist -though not microfilmed- older records?
Thanks once more for all your thoughts about this matter,
Hugs from Argentina,
Maria Eugenia Kromholc
From: Bill Tarkulich
Sent: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 11:19 AM
Subject: RE: [S-R] Doubts about church records KOKAVA
I'll take a shot at #1:
1) I have found that below some registrations there's written: EST.
by two numbers, like: EST 1884-1908. I don't have the slightest idea what
does this mean, mostly because those numbers (that are all different)
match birth or death dates. Does anybody have a clue of what this might
- What records are you looking at? Are you looking at a microfilm of the
original handwritten document? Or perhaps a "transcribed" version that
someone has re-written or re-typed? I smell a rat, because this type of
annotation seems much more western (i.e., US) -style. EST is a common
genealogy abbreviation in *English* for "estimated".
- What is the year(s) of the birth records you reference? It is important
to know the history of the village at this juncture in order to deduce
further clues. Was it during a war? During particularly chaotic periods,
the answer that the "father was unknown" may be entirely valid, for
example, in the case of rape.
- What religion are the records you examined?
- Tell me about the village - the population at the time, the number of
churches. I'll guess it's a small town, of about 1,000 inhabitants 100
- Did the mother originate in this village? i.e., do you find the
mother's birth record in the village?
I can comment further when you provide the above info.
On Tue, January 30, 2007 8:52 am, Janet Kozlay wrote:
> Your second question is much easier to answer. As you suspect, the child
> illegitimate. If the (legitimate) father were deceased, it would have
> indicated that. Occasionally you will find a father listed even if the
> parents weren't married.
> If these baptismal records are significant in your research, look for a
> subsequent marriage of the mother. This would "legitimatize" the child's
> birth. Also check for death records for the child. Since illegitimacy
> very serious disability for a child's future, many of these children
> at young ages. Sad but true. I have recently run across a young woman in
> of my lines who had two illegitimate children, both of whom died in
> From: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com]
> Behalf Of Maria Eugenia Kromholc
> Sent: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 4:12 AM
> To: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com
> Subject: [S-R] Doubts about church records
> Hi, everyone!
> I have been looking at Kokava's ev. church records concerning births and
> have a few doubts I hope you can help me with (as you always do) :)
> 1) I have found that below some registrations there's written: EST.
> by two numbers, like: EST 1884-1908. I don't have the slightest idea
> does this mean, mostly because those numbers (that are all different)
> match birth or death dates. Does anybody have a clue of what this might
> 2) I have also found that some birth entries either don't have a
> name or the father does not have a surname. (In this books, babies are
> written down by their first names). So what do you think about this? Is
> right to assume that the baby without a father's name was illegitimate
> dead? And when you come across no surnames, are there any tips to help
> solve this mysteries?
> I would really like to read your opinions,
> Thanks as always,
> Maria Eugenia Kromholc
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