Swedish American Church Book Record Types

ArkivDigital’s online library includes many Swedish American church books from Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska and a few from Missouri, Oklahoma and Wisconsin. Below are the types of records that you will find in the various congregations However, the type of records that were kept and preserved varies by congregation.

  1. Congregation records or church registers (Församlingsböcker)
  2. Birth and christening records (Födelse- och dopböcker)
  3. Marriage records (Vigselböcker)
  4. Death and burial records (Död- och begravningsböcker)
  5. Catechetical records (Konfirmationsbok)
  6. Protocols (Protokoll)
  7. Accountings (Räkenskaper)
  8. Member reception records (Intagna medlemmar)
  9. Member dismissal records (Utträdda medlemmar)
  10. Anniversary documents (Jubileumsskrift)

Congregation Books (Församlingsböcker)
The congregation records or church registers include similar information to the Swedish household or congregation records. The type of information you may find includes:  the names of the household members, birth date, birth place, baptismal date, marriage dates of the head of the household, arrival date in America and arrival date in the congregation. Some of these books have alphabetical name indexes. These records are very helpful in identifying where a person came from in Sweden.

Omaha Congregation RecordCongregation book from Omaha Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Nebraska, USA (NE) Vol:1 (1868-1890) Image 74 / page 69 (AID: v883292.b74.s69, NAD: ) Link.

Birth and Christening Records (Födelse- och dopböcker)
The birth and christening records are somewhat similar to the Swedish birth and christening records. The contents do vary by congregation but they usually contain the child’s name, birth date, baptismal date, names of parents and names of baptismal witnesses.  Most of the time the mother’s married name and not maiden name is presented. These records are organized in chronological order often by baptismal date. Occasionally, there is a cross reference to the family in the church register or congregation record.

omaha birthsRecords of baptisms from Omaha Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Nebraska, USA (NE) Vol:4 (1894-1916) Image 21 / page 35 (AID: v883294.b21.s35, NAD: ) Link.

Marriage Records (Vigselböcker)
The marriage records are an important source because it is the one source where the female’s maiden name is shown. The contents in the marriage record usually include the names of the groom and bride, date of the marriage and the places where the bride and groom are from. These records are organized in chronological order.

omaha marriageRecords of Marriages from Omaha Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Nebraska, USA (NE) Vol:4 (1894-1916) Image 59 / page 173 (AID: v883294.b59.s173, NAD: ) Link.

Death and Burial Records (Död- och begravningsböcker)
The death and burial records sometimes called “Records of Funerals” show the deceased’s name, death date, burial date, age, sometimes names of nearest relatives and cause of death. Unfortunately, abbreviations may be used in names such as “P. A. Swanson” versus the complete name and married women are often noted as “Mrs. Charles Eklund”.  These are organized in chronological order usually by the funeral date. Occasionally, there is a cross reference to the family in the church register or congregation record.

omaha burialsRecords of Funerals from Omaha Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Nebraska, USA (NE) Vol:4 (1894-1916) Image 98 / page 291 (AID: v883294.b98.s291, NAD: ) Link.

Catechetical (Konfirmationsbok)
The catechetical records provide names of the persons confirmed. Most of the time, these are only list of names but occasionally, the birth date and the names of the parents of the confirmed will be shown.

Protocols (Protokoll)
The protocols are administrative records for the parish. They contain minutes of administrative meetings and decisions relating to parish matters.

Accountings (Räkenskaper)
The account books will include records of financial transactions such as cash books, bookkeeping records and real estate transactions.

Member reception records (Intagna medlemmar)
These records record new members of the parish usually stating the name of the person, date of admission and the place where the person came from.

Member dismissal records (Utträdda medlemmar)
These records record the names of members who leave the parish. Usually, you will find the name of the person, departure date and where the person is going to.

omaha dismissalRecords of Dismissals of Members from Omaha Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Nebraska, USA (NE) Vol:4 (1894-1916) Image 85 / page 247 (AID: v883294.b85.s247, NAD: ) Link.

Church anniversary document (Jubileumsskrift)
In many congregation archives you will find a church anniversary document celebrating a number of years in existence such as 25 years, 50 years, 75 years or 100 years. These documents usually present a short history of the church or a church organization such as a singing group or other group within the church. Sometimes in addition to the history of the church, biographical information and photos of members of the church are included.

Other documents (Övriga handlingar)
You may find other documents dependent upon the parish such as church school records, tomb or cemetery records, historical notes, church constitution, and attachments to migration records, newspaper clippings and other types of documents.

More information about Swedish American church books:
Searching for a parish of origin in the Kansas church books.

ArkivDigital

Regna local historical society’s archive

For all family and local history researchers with interest in Regna parish in North Östergötland, we want to point out a very interesting resource, the Regna local historical society’s archive (Regna hembygdsförenings arkiv). Recently, selected sections of the society’s archive have been added to ArkivDigital’s online archive.

The archive consists of many types of documents, such as extracts from court protocols, bills of exchange, private letters, purchase documents and examination catalogs. Parts of the collection are sorted by farms / villages, making it easy to find documents for a particular farm or city. Many of the documents were collected in the 1930s, 40s and 50s when three men, Adolf Guditz, Herbert Larsson and Axel E. Ericsson visited the farms and collected the material.

Among the many documents we have photographed include 17 volumes of wonderful photographs. The album includes photographs of people living in Regna, taken from the middle of the 1800’s and forward. Many of the persons in the photos are identified with information about their place of residence as well as birth and death year.

regnaA page out of a photo album. On the left side, we see home owner Anders Eriksson (1823-1909) in Gåsnäs and on the right side we home owner Erik Eriksson (born 1828) in Börstorp. Link.

In order to access Regna local historical society’s archive in ArkivDigital:

  • Select New archive search.
  • Enter Regna hembygdsförening in the search box and click search.

The material is divided into six archives:

  • Regna hembygdsförening
  • Regna hembygdsförening: Adolf Guditz efterlämnade handlingar
  • Regna hembygdsförening: Axel E. Ericsson
  • Regna hembygdsförening: Fotoalbum
  • Regna hembygdsförening: Göntorps gårdsarkiv
  • Regna hembygdsförening: Herbert Larssons samling

Read original blog in Swedish.

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What does NAD mean?

We have received a couple of questions from some of our English-speaking customers asking what does NAD mean in the ArkivDigital source citations? NAD is an abbreviation for the National Archive Database (Nationell Arkivdatabas). When anyone creates a source citation for an ArkivDigital record by clicking on the copy icon in the application and then selecting copy source identifier, there is a NAD reference in the citation.

source identifier 2The source citation for the above birth record in Brunskog parish in Värmland county created by using the copy source identifier function is: Brunskog (S) CI:3 (1782-1844) Image 76 / page 143 (AID: v5046.b76.s143, NAD: SE/VA/13065).

In this case the NAD reference code is SE/VA/13065. The code elements include a country code (SE) for Sweden, archive code (VA) an abbreviation for the Värmland regional archive and a collection code (13065) referring to the collection materials or in this case the church book collection for Brunskog parish.

You can also find the National Archive Database reference code in the parish archive info box in ArkivDigital. Whenever one looks for an archive such as a parish archive, one will see two tabs at the top of page: volumes and archive info as shown below.

archiveNAD

More information about the archive is displayed in the info box. For most Swedish archives, you will also see NAD with a reference code as shown in the image above. You can click on the reference code which is a direct link to the National Archive Database which lists all the volumes that exist in the archives for this collection.

This is a good tool to use to determine if a volume actually exists. For example, let us search for a death record in Brunskog parish for the year 1931. When we search for death books in ArkivDigital, we find that the books only go up to 1928.

brunskogdeath

To check if there is an original death book for 1931, click on the archive info box for Brunskog parish and click on the NAD reference code which provides a direct link to the National Archive Database. There we will see that the 1931 death records are included  in the volume FI:7 1928-1952 as shown in the image below.

brunskogsarchive

Since this volume has records that are protected by the 70-year privacy law, the book is not available in ArkivDigital.  However, you will find the death record extracts for 1931 in the SCB collection in ArkivDigital. Click here for more information about the SCB collection.

ArkivDigital

Stockholm City Church Book Registers

Researching in the larger cities can often be both difficult and time consuming. For those who research in Stockholm city, there is now a welcome addition in ArkivDigital, name registers for many of the Stockholm city church books.

During the fall, ArkivDigital had added church registers for the parishes in Stockholm city. We have published registers for birth, marriage, death books as well as household and moving in/out books. The registers are found in the archives for the respective parishes (in the form of images and currently the registers are not searchable by name). The types of registers and years covered vary by parish.

The registers that we have photographed are typewritten and were created by the Stockholm city archives. In addition to these registers, you will find in many of the Stockholm city parishes older, handwritten name registers that were created by the respective parish.

Stockholm city registerA page out the Klara parish death book register for the years 1748-1860. The register is organized alphabetically and gives a reference to the volume and page number where you will find the complete record. Link.

The information given in the above death register includes the deceased’s name, occupation or title, death date, burial date, church book volume and page number.

In the example for Mathilda Erica Lindberg (enclosed in a red box), the following information is shown:

  • Name – Mathilda Erica
  • Title – Maid (piga)
  • Death Date – 13 July 1848
  • Burial Date – 16 July
  • Church book volume – FIa:9
  • Page number – 15

Thus, one just needs to return to the Klara parish archive and search for the volume FIa:9, open the book and go to page 15. There you will find the complete death record as shown in the image below.

stockholm death 2Klara (AB, A) FIa:9 (1848-1860) Image 12 / page 16 (AID: v87412.b12.s16, NAD: SE/SSA/0010) Link.

Read the original blog in Swedish by clicking here.

ArkivDigital

Short cut to ArkivDigital’s web version

If you use the web browser, Google Chrome, you can add a short cut to the program on the desktop by doing the following:

Start and log in to the program at the following page: https://app.arkivdigital.se. If you were previously logged in and used the application you must first close all open volumes except for New archive search. Otherwise, these volumes will always open when you start the program from the short cut. In order to close the open volumes, click on Search archives.

  1. Click the blue arrow next to the box “Close all except favorites”. Select Close all. All open volumes are now closed.
  2. Open up New File Search.
  3. Return to the start menu.

short cut 1

Add the shortcut as follows:

  1. Click on the three vertical dots at the top right of the browser.
  2. Select More Tools.
  3. Select, Add to desktop.
  4. In the box that appears, you will see out logo and that is the way the icon will look when it is on the desktop. Click Add.

shortcut 2

If you don’t have Chrome installed on your computer, you can download it by clicking here.

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Many tax registers in ArkivDigital

Old tax registers or population registers (mantalslängder) may not sound like a particular exciting research source. And many who look at tax registers are not easily impressed. Mostly just names, columns and numbers.

However, as we go back in time, the information in the household records becomes less detailed and the household records often do not exist in the late 1700’s or in prior times. It is at this time that the tax registers become a valuable source for the family researcher. Particularly useful are the tax or population registers (mantalslängderna), which begin around 1630.

The tax registers or population registers were created annually and are, like the household records, organized topographically by parish and village or farm. A single volume does not say so much. But when one follows the registers through a succession of years, one can follow developments and changes on a farm or village. This data can then be combined with the birth, marriage and death records, and often one can see the changes within a family nearly as clearly as if the household records had been preserved. The information in the tax registers or population registers varies over time and in different areas of the country.

tax register october 2017At the time around the change of the century between the 1700’s and 1800’s, there is often good information in the columns in the tax register. In the above tax register which refers to Nätra parish in the year, 1803, you will columns for taxes referring to pocket watches (fickur) (gold or silver) and the use of silk (sidentyg).

In ArkivDigital, you can find tax registers or population registers for all of Sweden from the beginning up until the 1800’s (often 1820). Several copies of tax registers or population registers (mantalslängder) were created and they are preserved in different archives. Thus, they can sometimes be difficult to find.

The first series are found with the local authorities. You can search for these in the following archives in the English interface in ArkivDigital:

  • District registrar (Swedish – häradsskrivare)
  • Alternative archives
    • Kronokamrer
    • Kronokassör
    • Mantalskontor
    • Taxation Authority (Swedish – Uppbördsverk)
    • Kommunalborgmästare
    • Crown bailiff (Swedish – kronofogde)

The second series is at the regional level or county level in the regional archives or search for the country archives in the English interface.

The third series are at the national level in Stockholm. In the English interface, search in the chamber archive. Or you can enter mantalslängder 1642–1820 or länsräkenskaper in the search box. For Stockholm city, you can find population registers and other tax register in the Överståthållarämbetets archive.

Concerning the third series of the tax registers or population registers those named Mantalslängder 1642-1820, we are prioritizing photographing volumes for the counties and years that are missing in the other series. This is an ongoing project and more volumes will be added online. For the first two series, the photographing is now complete.

ArkivDigital is working currently to make it simpler to find all these tax or population registers.

Read original blog in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Place Names in the Church Books

Place names in the church books can be names of farms, villages, parishes, counties, countries, abbreviations or even Latin terms.

At a recent conference in North America, the following question was asked: What are the birth places for Fredrik Leopold Hartung and members of his family as shown in the household record in Ystads Sankta Maria parish in Malmöhus county for the years 1882-1887?  Below is the record in question which is an example of a record with various types of place names.

hartungYstads Sankta Maria (M) AI:49 (1882-1887) Image 205 / page 1084 (AID: v111988.b205.s1084, NAD: SE/LLA/13489) Link.

Line 1 – Skomakeriarb. (Shoemaker worker) Fredrik Leopold Hartung’s birth place is Tyskland or Germany. In this case, the birth place is a name of a country. Tyskland is Swedish for Germany.

Line 2 – Hu (an abbreviation for hustru or wife) Charlotta Josefina Klein’s birth place is shown as YSM. This is an abbreviation of the parish, Ystads Sankta Maria. You will find her birth record at the following reference in ArkivDigital: Ystads Sankta Maria (M) C:11 (1827-1845) Image 42 / page 38 (AID: v112010.b42.s38, NAD: SE/LLA/13489).

Note – Her birth date is actually the 20th of April 1834 versus  April 4,1834 as shown in the household record. That will be another blog in the future to show how the correct birth record was found.

Line 3 – Son Carl Fredrik’s, porslinsmål. or abbreviation for porslinsmålare or porcelain painter, birth place is noted as ibm. Ibm is a Latin abbreviation for ibidem or in the same place. In this case, he was born in the same place that was noted above for his mother or Ystads Sankta Maria parish. You will find his birth record in ArkivDigital at the following reference:  Ystads Sankta Maria (M) C:17 (1863-1872) Image 187 / page 184 (AID: v112016.b187.s184, NAD: SE/LLA/13489)

Line 4 – Foster daughter, Charlotta Pettersson and her birth place is noted as YSP or Ystads Sankt Petri. Her birth record can be found in ArkivDigital at the following reference: Ystads Sankt Petri (M) C:8 (1877-1884) Image 30 / page 28 (AID: v111936.b30.s28, NAD: SE/LLA/13490).

In the above household record, we discovered place names in the following formats:

  • Name of a country
  • An abbreviation of a parish name
  • Latin term

ArkivDigital

New Additions to the Estate Inventory Register

During this past summer, ArkivDigital launched a name searchable estate inventory register, which we reported in a previous blog. Go to earlier blog. We are adding more entries to the register and now many of the early estate inventories from Gävleborg, Norrbotten, Västerbotten and Västernorrland counties are now searchable.

estate inventory search

Estate inventory for the former fisherman and citizen, Pehr Nordstrand, who died in 1842 in Härnösand. Searching using the inventory of estate register, you can quickly find Pehr’s estate inventory.

pehr nordstrand

There are now more than 750,000 register entries in the estate inventory register and many more will be added in the future. You can find out which district and city courts along with the time periods are currently name searchable are found at this link: https://www.arkivdigital.se/online/register/bouppteckningar

In order to access the estate inventory register, one must have an All-in-one subscription. The register is only available in the web version of our software, which you will find here. https://www.arkivdigital.net/products/adonline/installation

For more information about estate inventories, click here.

Read original blog in Swedish by clicking here.

ArkivDigital

Church Book Tutorials

At conferences, we receive many questions from our English-speaking customers on where to find examples for reading the church books. Today, we would like to point out that we have some tutorials on our website. In addition, we want to point out a wonderful website that includes some instructional videos on reading birth records from the late 1800’s back to the early 1700’s using ArkivDigital images.

On our English website, you will find a section titled, Swedish Genealogy. In this section, you will find record examples with transcriptions and translations for birth, marriage, death, household examination and moving records and much more. Below are links to these tutorials.

birth tutorial

Also, we would like to point out a wonderful website (swedishgenealogyguide.com) which is free that includes some wonderful instructional videos including among others “Reading Gothic Handwriting for Swedish Genealogy” and several videos showing examples of reading birth records.

Click here to link to the learning center which lists the instructional videos.

ArkivDigital

Registers for birth, death and marriage records, 1666-1894 for Västra Södermanland

Thanks to a partnership between ArkivDigital and Katrineholm-Flen-Vingåker’s Genealogy Society (KFV), we can now proudly present a wonderful searchable name register that will greatly simplify and enhance the quality of research in Västra Södermanland where the register is linked to the original photographed book.

The register, which was created by KFV, contains nearly half a million register entries and comprises a total of 20 parishes: Bettna, Björkvik, Blacksta, Dunker, Flen, Floda, Forssa, Helgesta, Hyltinge, Julita, Lerbo, Lilla Malma, Lilla Mellösa, Sköldinge, Stora Malm, Vadsbro, Västra Vingåker, Årdala and Östra Vingåker.

In order to access the register, one must have an All-in-one subscription and access the service by using the web version of our program software, which you find here: https://app.arkivdigital.se.

In our program, select “New index search” and then select one of the following: “Birth index”, Marriage index”, or “Death index” and then you can begin to search.

In the following example, we will search for the birth record for Helga Carolina born on the 26th of September 1893 in Västra Vingåker parish.

  • Select new index search
  • Select birth index under index source

birth marriage death search

  • Enter Helga Carolina in first name field.
  • Enter birth date in birth date field.

search carolina

Below you see the register entry for Helga Carolina born on the 26th of September 1893 in Västra Vingåker followed by an image of her birth record.

carolina register entry

helga carolinaVästra Vingåker (D, T) C:20 (1879-1894) Image 346 (AID: v63059.b346, NAD: SE/ULA/11076) Link.

Read original blog in Swedish.

ArkivDigital