Name searching tips

The number of name searchable indexes in ArkivDigital continues to increase. Recently the Population of Sweden of 1975 and the military service card indexes were added. You can find these indexes by selecting “New Index Search” and then select the desired index under “Index source”.index search screen

There are two methods for searching: simple and advanced. Today, we will focus on the simple search which is more powerful than one might believe at first glance.

The key for all searches is not to write too much information. Begin with a broad search and then narrow the search.

One example: We will look for a woman named Berta Lungren. Select the index, Population of Sweden 1860-1930, and write in her name “Berta Lundgren” in the search field and click on “Search” (or press Enter). The result list shows 202 matches which feels like too many to search through.

berta lundgren

When I add her birth year to the search criteria, the number of matches is reduced to eight. Four of these refer to the woman I am interested in, born on the 3rd of March 1887 in Odensala. But if I look more closely in the match list, I see one that mentions the birth date as the 31st of March 1887 (which is her correct birth date). If I had entered her full birth date instead of only the year, I would have missed all the matches. Therefore, one should never write in more information than what is needed to get a good search result.

bertil 1887

It is also smart to search the same person using different information, for example only the last name and birth date or only the first name and birth date or only the first and last name (the last only works well with a name that is not common). These methods will increase the chances to find as many possible matches.

Now we will look at some more advanced search techniques.

There are a number of special search characters that can be used for searching.

An example: I want to search for a person named Anders Setterqvist, but I know that his last name can be spelled differently in the records: Setterqvist, Sätterqvist, and Zetterqvist. And sometimes quist is written as qvist. In addition, I have seen different birth years for him in the records.

One can write the following in the search box:
anders (zetterq* | sätterq* | setterq*) (1816 | 1817 | 1818)

The result will be a search of all these spellings and years. The vertical bar (|) means  “or” and the asterisk (*) is used as a wildcard showing all the names that include the letters preceding the asterisk. 

zetterquist

Following is a list of the special characters that can be used in ArkivDigital’s searches.

  • * (asterisk) An asterisk at the end of Bergl* will find Berglind, Bergling, Berglund, etc.
  • “ ” (quotation marks) = exact phrase For example “georg olof” will find Georg Olof but not Olof Georg or George Karl Olof.|
  • | (vertical mark) = or (See above explanation)
  • - (minus sign) = not - For example: -västra frölunda will find Östra Frölunda and Frölunda but not Västra Frölunda
  • + (plus sign) = and – For example: Lundqvist+Lundberg will find all posts which includes both names.
  • ~1 (tilde plus a number) after keyword = approximate search with numerical character difference – For example: appelqvist~1 will find in addition to Appelqvist, Appelquist, Appelkvist where one character or letter differs from the original keyword. If one increases number to 2 appelqvist~2, one will also find Apelquist.
  • ~1 tilde plus a number) after phrase = approximate search. An additional word may be found. (The first and last word in the phrase shall be mentioned). For example “sven filip”~1 finds also Sven Gustaf Filip and Sven Erik Filip. A search “sven filip”~2 will find in addition Sven Johan Olof Filip as well as Filip Sven.
  • ( ) parenthesis = searches for alternative spellings – For example aurora (concordia | conkordia | konkordia | koncordia) searches for all posts that includes Aurora Concordia, Aurora Conkordia, Aurora Konkordia and Aurora Koncordia).

These special characters work also with the Advanced search. The search possibilities are nearly infinite. All one has to do is try!

 Read original blog in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Population of Sweden 1880-1920 grows and now becomes 1860-1920

ArkivDigital’s largest and most popular searchable name index, Population of Sweden 1880-1920, is growing. The name index register has been expanded to include 20 additional years and now includes the years from 1860 to 1920.

The name register was already Sweden’s largest personal name register with 47 million entries. Mikael Karlsson, ArkivDigital’s managing director announced, “Now an additional 26 million posts have been added in partnership with MyHeritage. This makes the register more usable for family history researchers. Also, persons who disappeared in the 1860’s and 1870’s now can be easily tracked.”

The index, Population of Sweden 1860-1920, is a name searchable index of all the household books covering these years. This means that a person who has moved several times in his life, can be found posted in many entries, which means that the index is much larger than what the population of Sweden was at that time.

The index is not only the largest one that exists in Sweden; it is also the most user friendly and easiest to use. There is a direct link to the original source from the search result page. You click on the link and immediately you see your ancestor in the actual volume. It can’t get much easier!

1860 search

The index, Population of Sweden 1860-1920, is available in ArkivDigital’s All-in-one subscription. In ArkivDigital’s web version, you click on “New index search” and then select Population of Sweden1860-1920 under “Index search”. Then you enter in the desired name in the search box below “Search index”. There are also advanced search possibilities.

If the name is unusual, it is often sufficient to only enter the first and last name but for more common names one should also enter additional information such as birth date and birth place. At first, one should enter minimum search information. If the search results are too many, then add additional search information until the search result list becomes manageable. Then click on the desired entry and all the details will be displayed. Under the heading “Links”, you will find a direct link to the actual record in the household book.

During the 19th century, the household books were the most important source for recording population information. The household books were organized geographically compiling data for each household in the congregation. Along with the other church books: birth, marriage, death moving in/out books, one gains a deep understanding of one’s ancestor. The household books were created for all parts of Sweden except for a number of the large congregations within Stockholm city. In Stockholm, another method, the roteman system, was used to record the population. Thus, many people who lived in Stockholm are missing in the Population of Sweden 1860-1920 index. One can search for people living in Stockholm in the Rotemansarkivet 1878-1926 which is available on the Stockholm City Archives website.

Read the announcement in Swedish by clicking here.

ArkivDigital

Digital searchable estate inventory register – now in ArkivDigital

ArkivDigital has now launched a new name searchable register for estate inventories. The building of this register is still in progress but today the register includes estate inventory index entries for Gotland, Jönköping, Kalmar, Kronoberg, Stockholm, Uppsala and Östergötland counties. As the register expands, other counties will be added.

You will find a list of the district courts (härader) and city courts (rådhusrätter) where estate inventories are currently name searchable by going to the following page: https://www.arkivdigital.se/online/register/bouppteckningar

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

Below is an example of searching for the estate inventory for Sven Svensson who died on the 28th of August 1766 in Ljung parish in Östergötland county.

  • Access ArkivDigital.
  • Select new index search.
  • Select index source – Inventory of estate.
  • Enter Sven Svensson and Ljung in the search box. (Note – we could have limited the search to Sven Svensson and received many matches or we could also have added the year 1766 and further limited the number of matches.)
  • Click search.
  • A result list will appear on the right. In this case, there are 10 matches.
  • Select the one for the year 1766.

sven svensson ljung

Below is the result page. Notice all the headings are in English in the English version. The result page shows the following information: first name, last name, occupation, name of the archive, parish, place such as farm or village in the parish, year, and sometimes extra information. In this case the record gives the name of Sven’s wife, Brita Nilsdotter. There is also a link to the original estate inventory record.

svenson result

Additional Comments

  • In certain cases, only the place (farm, village, etc.) and not the parish name is mentioned in the register. If you cannot find a person, try searching by excluding the parish name in the search criteria.
  • The estate inventory year is the year that it was created. This could happen one or several years after the date of death. In the advanced search, you can search for an interval of years by entering the start and end years for the search.

Click here for more information about estate inventories.

Read original blog in Swedish here.

 ArkivDigital

Army’s pension fund’s list of qualifications “Arméns pensionskassas meritband”

meritbandArméns pensionskassa: Överstyrelsen, Arméns pensionskassa  E5:60 (1817-1821) Image 6580 / page 635 (AID: v779034.b6580.s635, NAD: SE/KrA/0078A004Ö) Link.

Do you have a commissioned or non-commissioned officer in your ancestry who belonged to the Swedish army? Or do you have an interest in military history and would like to follow an officer’s career? If the answer is yes to either question, you may find the list of qualifications (meritband) in the Army Pension Archive (arméns pensionskassas överstyrelses arkiv) of great interest.

Both the officers and non-commissioned officers sent in merit and service lists to the pension fund (pensionskassan) continually throughout their military career.  These lists were banded together into a meritband or a list of qualifications.  Since an individual sent in several lists, you may find different qualification lists or meritband for the same person.

The meritband began in 1757 and there are now records up to 1883 in the Army Pension Archive (arméns pensionskassas överstyrelses arkiv) on ArkivDigital. You can search for these records in ArkivDigital by:

  • Select advanced options in the search window
  • Select archive type: military archives
  • Select arméns pensionskassas överstyrelses arkiv

You will find name indexes for these records in the volumes E5: 198-206.

The above image is an example of a document out of a meritband or a list of qualifications for Sergeant Gust. P. von Wulfschmidt. In the record, we see that his military career began in 1796 when he was accepted as a volunteer, in 1801 he was promoted to being responsible for the armory (rustmästare) and that in 1812 he became a sergeant. There is also information that he received orders for duty in Norway and on the Göta Canal.

In addition to the meritband, you can find military service documents in the archive “Meritförteckningar”. Here you will documents prior to 1757, from the 1600’s and forward. Beginning in 1757 the records in the archive “Meritförteckningar” and the meritband in the “arméns pensionskassas” archive complement each other.

Read the original article in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Research in Stockholm City 1878-1926

A question that is often asked at conferences and lectures is, “Why are there not any household examination books for Stockholm city parishes at the end of the 1800’s?”  The answer is simple. No household examination records were produced so they do not exist.

Researching in the cities is a little different from researching in the rural areas. And Stockholm research has some unique challenges because of the non-existence of the household examination records beginning in the late 1870’s.   Instead of the household examination books and congregation books for the years 1878-1926, there exists a population register in Stockholm called the roteman’s archive (rotemansarkivet).

Stockholm grew rapidly during the second half of the 19th century and it was common for individuals to frequently move. In order to maintain an accurate population register, a new municipal organization was created called the Roteman’s Institution (rotemansinstitutionen). Stockholm was divided into a number of districts called rotar.  In each district or rote, there was a city employee (roteman) responsible for recording the population statistics.  All who lived in a real estate property (fastighet) were registered in a special ledger.

Currently, the Stockholm City Archives is in the process of digitizing these records and making the material searchable online for free at the Stockholm City Archives site.  While not all the records have been registered, much has been completed and is now available online. This is an extremely valuable resource for Stockholm research. However, it is important to remember that this is a register and there is always a possibility of an error.

Other church books such as the birth, marriage, death, moving in and moving out records exist for Stockholm parishes and these are found in ArkivDigital. The moving in/out records for Stockholm are a very good source because these often contain more information than the moving in/out records for rural areas.

As in other cities, there are many parishes in Stockholm and not all have Stockholm in their name. Therefore, it is sometimes difficult to identify which parishes exist in the city of Stockholm. You can create a list of Stockholm city only parishes by doing the following:

  1. In ArkivDigital, click on the advanced options search button
  2. Select county, Stockholm stads
  3. Select archive type, parish/congregation

stockholm city research

To search in the roteman’s archive on the Stockholm’s city archives site, click here.  Click on the English flag for the English version.

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Tax Registers (Mantalslängder)

The tax/population registers (mantalslängderna) are an important replacement source in cases where the parish records have been destroyed.  Even in cases where the church records have not been destroyed, the household examination records only go back to the early 1800’s or late 1700’s in many parishes.

The tax/population registers exist from the middle of the 1600’s and while they are not as detailed as the household examination records; they do provide the possibility to continue to follow a family backwards.

Several copies of the tax registers were created. ArkivDigital is photographing the two copies which are preserved at the regional archives primarily the district/city registers and the county rural copies.

The original copy of the tax register exists in the district (häradsskrivarnas) archive. This is the copy that one should use since as a rule it is the one that generally contains the most information. The district office was responsible for the tax registers for the rural areas.  For the cities, you can find original copies of the tax registers in the city hall and magistrates archive, crown treasurer’s archive (kronokassörens arkiv), crown accountancy (kronokamrerarens) or tax collection (uppbördsverkets) archives.

Below is an image of a 1787 tax register for Svenarum parish in Jönköpng county.

Svenarum mantal Jönköpings läns landskontor EIII:34 (1787-1788) Image 158 / page 299 (AID: v400751b.b158.s299, NAD: SE/VALA/01971)  Link

To search for the above record, one method is:

  1. Click on advanced options in the ArkivDigital program.
  2. Search by archive type.
  3. In the archive selection, select country office.
  4. Select Jönköpings läns landskontor.
  5. Open the population register volume that includes the year 1787.
  6. Open the volume and look for a place or parish index.
  7. You will find a place index at the following reference: Jönköpings läns landskontor EIII:34 (1787-1788) Image 3 (AID: v400751b.b3, NAD: SE/VALA/01971)  Link
  8. The place index states that the tax register for Svenarum for 1787 begins on page 298.
  9. Go to page 298 and you will find the beginning page for the 1787 tax register for Svenarum parish as shown above.

For most counties, the copies of the tax registers up to 1820 from the regional archives are now available on ArkivDigital. These records are found in the district registrar or country office archives.

ArkivDigital

Ancestors from Åland, Finland? You can find them in ArkivDigital!

stor-logo-600x452px-namn-och-symbol transparent

Åland, an autonomous region of Finland, is the only area outside of Sweden where ArkivDigital has photographed extensively.  If you have an ancestor from Åland, you are in luck.  You will find many types of records for Åland in ArkivDigital’s online archive.  Below is a summary of the records.

 

Church Books
You will find church books for Åland’s sixteen parishes: Brändö, Eckerö, Finström, Föglö, Geta, Hammarland, Jomala, Kumlinge, Kökar, Lemland, Lumparland, Mariehamn, Saltvik, Sottunga, Sund (with Skarpans) and Vårdö.  The privacy act only allows the photographing of records up to around 1885

Estate Inventories and Judicial Records
In Åland’s judicial district archive (domsagas arkiv), you will find estate inventories up to 1916, court records up to 1900 and land registration protocols (lagfartsprotokollen) up till 1901 along with other documents such as guardianship protocols, bankruptcies and house inspection records.

Tax Registers and Land Records
In Åland’s district archive (häradsskrivares arkiv), you will find tax registers up to 1933 and also land records.

Maps
And in Åland’s land bureau archive (Ålands lantmäteribyrå arkiv), you will find village maps mainly from the 1700s and 1800s (and sometimes later).  There you can get an idea of how the village looked when your ancestor lived there.  You can find explanations (in Swedish) of what the maps show in the Ålands lantmäteribyrå volumes 1b: 1-36.

Find Åland Records in ArkivDigital
You can find Åland records in the online archive by selecting “Search archive” in the ArkivDigital program and then click on “Advanced search”.  Then you select the county or province archive type (it does not matter which one) and select Åland and you will get a list of all the records that are available for Åland.

You can find a list of all the records that are available for Åland here.

ArkivDigital