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Re: [S-R] Readability of Czech Records

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  • Jan Ammann
    Dear Vladimir.....Because you are a far wiser genealogist than I am, I will bow to your comment and explanation. However, I believe that it is a matter of
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 3, 2004
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      Dear Vladimir.....Because you are a far wiser genealogist than I am, I will bow to your comment and explanation. However, I believe that it is a matter of semantics.......I was just using an American saying which is "somewhat a slang" saying. You are interpreting it as "the root" for the Krestni and you are correct. The actual record is always the "root". To me, however, because it gave me so much information, it became "the mother" to me. It was a roadmap. My intent is somewhat different than your correct explanation.

      And, Yes, I have to admit that sometimes the smallest notation in the church record books leads us the furthest distance. When my father was going to retire, he and mother needed birth certificates. So, Mother and I went to St. Marys and talked to the priest and he did a certificate of sorts that would be accepted by the Social Security System and the county courthouse. Many, many years later when I was viewing the LDS records of St. Mary's, I stopped at my father's baptismal record. And, of course, copied it. As I leaned closer to the screen, I saw a tiny scrawled notation on the right hand side of the entry. It said, "Birth date entered incorrectly". Should be Jan. 7 and not Jan.5". Evidently the priest at the time missed the small scrawled correction. I almost missed it myself. I smiled as I realized that Daddy had celebrated the wrong birthday for most of his life.

      Then, while searching to find my Uncle's baptism I came upon another incident. My cousin and I had looked through the LDS films for this record several times and could not find it. We knew Uncle Dick was baptised. Then we made a trip to the Archdiocese Archives. There, I had a chance to look at the actual record book. And much to my amazement when I opened the cover of the book, there was a sheet (page) of the baptismal book tucked in as the first page. It was not hinged in.....just tucked there and was somewhat tattered.. It must have fallen out while the LDS were filming the book and somehow was picked up and put back in. Or had fallen out before LDS ever filmed and then was found and put back in. So, in the process, it was never filmed. And there, staring me in the face, was Uncle Dick's baptismal record.

      If I had not gone and looked at the actual record book, I would never have found his baptismal record. And I am sure that this type of "accident" happens more times than we care to know. So, I always say to people who are starting out doing family history to not assume that because a record can't be found it never happened. You just have to keep up the search.

      And, yes, I realize I am very lucky to have these documents. They are actually very beautiful with the scrolled handwriting. I wish I could tag along with someone like you who has done all this research in Europe. It must be a fascinating job and when you find the "missing link" there is no excitement to match it. It is almost like a "rebirth" of a human being once the pieces of their lives are put together. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

      Sincerely,
      Jan (Aloysia)

      Vladimir Bohinc <konekta@...> wrote:
      Dear Jan,
      With all due respect, I still have to make some small corrections:
      - when talking about Certificates, we usually say Birth Certificate, although, if it was from the church, it is a Baptismal certificate. Such a Certificate, a sheet of paper as you have, contains a transcript of what is written in the book called Baptismal records ( but we call that Birth records). Such records may contain the date of birth, but also sometimes may not. They, however, always contain the date of baptism, which in absence of the date of birth is taken then as the date of birth. The birth itself is not a matter of church. With the act of baptism one becomes a member of the particular church and since then records are being kept on this person ( death, confirmation, marriage, change of religion)
      For the above reason, a Birth Certificate can not be viewed as the mother of all other Birth certificates.
      The "mother" is always the original entry in the Book and a Certificate is a transcript of it. On a Certificate itself, there is a wording, saying, that this information was found in Vol.x, page Y, item Z and that person, who signed the document certifies that the transcription is verbatim. After there is a record in the book, you can have a Certificate issued any time, as many as you like. Today, you could ask for another one, and it would be the same as the one you have, only written by somebody else and with another date and rubber stamps.
      People needed such Certificates for legal purposes. Usually for marriage. Sometimes there is a small note with the birth/baptismal record, that the Certificate has been issued then and then. With the record which I found in Slovenia, there was a note, that in the year 1893 a Baptismal Certificate and the confirmation, that he was single, was sent to Vienna.
      This is great information, because I know now, that he married in Vienna in 1893. I would have never found this without this small note.
      Most of the Certificates which people had, were lost. You are the lucky one to have one that old. But, from the genealogical point of view, this is no problem. As soon as the person is found in the books, a Certificate can be issued. This is what I provide, when people want to have this and that certified. Again, some people collect photos or electrostats of the original records from the books. I do that too. These records are the mothers of all other documents.
      With best regards,
      Vladimir


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Jan Ammann
      To: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Tuesday, November 02, 2004 10:31 PM
      Subject: Re: [S-R] Readability of Czech Records


      Hello Vladimir....Thank you for understanding. I should have said that "Te se Moravian" means "I am Moravian" and that when I said "Ja jsem Moravian a German", I said, "I am Moravian and German". Perhaps there were some who would not know this and I apologize.

      Because these lists do not take attachments, I would like to list all the wonderful things a Krestni List (Testimonium baptismale} states for you. It is, in fact, a biography of a family. It gives the Deanery: Pribor and the Country: Moravia. Also the number of the parish....ours being 363. Then it says "Excerpt from the Baptismal Books in the parish church of Pribore for the village of Skotnici (I said Lednice by mistake I do believe) Vol. 8, Page 56.

      Next comes the year of birth and baptism...ours being 1869..born 1 and Baptized 2. Then the House Number...ours being 41. Then the name of the person baptised...ours being Teresie.

      Then the father, Josef Krumpholz, farmer from Skotnici, son of Josef Krumpholz, farmer from Skotnice and his wife Marianna, born Vajda of Porubi.

      Then the mother Rosina daughter of Josef Benese, farmer from Skotnici and his wife Rosina, born Jan of Skotnici.

      Then the godparents: Frantisek Fililp, farmer of Skotnice and Magdalena, his wife. Then the priest Jan Smid, retired priest and the midwife, Josefa Friedlova, House #429 Pribore.

      Then, signed and sealed, in Pribore on the day 29 of March, 1873...has the seal of the church "The Nativity of the Blessed Virgn Mary" in the presence of the most Reverend Rector, Jan Vyhlidolff, Chaplin.

      So, as you can see, a family history....giving names of parents, grandparents, maiden names, occupation, godparents, presiding priest, midwife, and location of area and church. You now have a roadmap in your hands.

      I hope everyone enjoyed hearing these details as there are always new researcher on the list who may not have heard of a Krestni List. My daddy used to say that it was strange to have a g-grandfather who spoke German but was a Moravian. But it was the general order of the government in that time frame that German was the official language.

      The Krestni list is, of course, in Moravian and latin. My Reise Pass is in German with the largest letters/words on it being: Franz Joseph I, Kaisers von Osterreich, Konigs von bohmen U.S.W., und Apostolischen Konigs von Ungarn...also the CoA of the Habsburgs, and two very official looking seals.

      So, I would say to anyone living here in USA whose ancestors came from this general area, your family had, at one time or another, these very documents. They were necessary to be granted a "passport" to leave and come to America. Every person, mother, father, and all children each had a Krestni; however, only one Reise-Pass (Passport) which was issued in the father's name with the wife and children listed on the back.

      So, these are the names of the documents you can ask your ancestors about...not a birth certificate as Vladimir so correctly stated. The Krestni is actually, using modern American terminology, the "Mother of all Birth Certificates".If you have one........treasure it! Also the Reise-Pass.

      I hope I did not bore anybody with this lengthy post.

      Sincerely,

      Jan (Aloysia)

      Vladimir Bohinc <konekta@...> wrote:
      Dear Jan,
      Thank you very much for your response, which leads me to another typical mistake many are doing;
      It is the sentence " I am looking for a Birth Certificate."
      There is no such thing. Of course, there are Certificates, but they are nowhere waiting for you.
      Either you happen to have one or you have to have one issued for you. This is always made based on either Church Records or Civil Records. When I said bad readability, I meant the records and not Certificates, which were issued later.
      There is abolutely no comparison between the script in the record and on a Certificate.
      There is no archive or church, where one could study Certificates.
      You can believe me that.
      Reisepass is the same story.
      I am glad, you are a proud descendant of Moravian Germans. Everybody should be proud of his/her roots.I did several geman genealogies in Moravia.
      Best regards,
      Vladimir



      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Jan Ammann
      To: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Tuesday, November 02, 2004 7:08 PM
      Subject: [S-R] Readability of Czech Records


      Hello Vladamir.........My first opportunity to say thank you for your many helpful posts and for your knowledge. It is always good to have a "guidepost" like you. However, I do have to say that my Krestni Lists and Reises Pass for my ancestors are quite legible and readable. Perhaps we were lucky and just got a "good handwriting" person who made them out. They are from the 1870's. Actually, they are very beautiful documents. And of course, I treasure them. The Reise Pass is quite interesting in that it gives my g-g-grandfather's description. It is a little hard to discern, while the Krestni's are very easy. They came from the area of Lednice which is now Czech Republic, but what was then Moravia. I grew up in a household that spoke Moravian....as did all my relatives. Then we we started school, English was the language, but still Moravian for family weekends, etc. Because both my parents are gone, I have lost so much of my Moravian ability. And I do have to say
      "Moravian"........my grandmother beat that into us. She would say, "Te se Moravian"....however, "Ja jsem Moravian a German". Not Czech...not slavic...not Silesian...but Moravian. And I will always remember that.

      Jan (Aloysia)

      Vladimir Bohinc <konekta@...> wrote:
      Dear Bill,
      Right. Just I am not sure whether the particular archive is accepting the research orders. I haven't been checking in what archives this would be, but it can be Plzen. As you see, there are two places of each name, so this has to be sorted out first. Some archives definitely do not accept research orders any more. This is why, for example in Brno, when I get there, there are 25 genealogists sitting there with books or films.Brno archive is to congratulate for being able to handle so many researchers. In Slovakia, if there are more than three, there is a problem:-)
      Since I am always doing the research myself, I do not know for sure, which archives take and which do not take orders.

      I also must say, that if LDS would have filmed the Czech records, an ordinary person would have not more than a zero chance to read anything. Most of the records are written in very nasty old german script, which requires an expert.
      Who doesn't believe me, I can send him a sample of a record. This is why the Czech researchers have so much to do.
      Best regards,
      Vladimir




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