ARKIVDIGITAL – YEAR IN REVIEW 2020

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This has been a different year for everyone, even for us at ArkivDigital. However, genealogy is a hobby that one can engage in even in a pandemic. We have continued to work to simplify and improve our services for all of you researching your family history. Following are some of the highlights for the year 2020.

88 million images in the database
During the past year, we published 2 million images of historical documents or 4 million pages of historical records. Due to the Corona pandemic, the publication rate was unfortunately lower than in previous years, as we did not have access to the archives in the same manner as before the pandemic.

Continued development of the family tree
During 2020, we continued to develop ArkivDigital’s family tree and several new functions have been added. Among these is the function, where you can invite up 25 persons to view your tree. There are new views, for example the popular fan view along with a function where you can get an overview where in Sweden your ancestors lived.

Digital presentations in Swedish
When Genealogy Days and other conferences were canceled this year, we have instead invested in holding lectures digitally. We participated in the genealogy conference, Finding Family Together Live, and gave lectures via Zoom during Archive Day. In December, we broke participant records when more than 1,000 people connected to listen to Niklas Hertzman’s lecture on the basics of ArkivDigital. We will continue with lectures online also in 2021.

Digital conferences in English
In October and December, the McPherson County Old Mill Museum in Lindsborg, Kansas, hosted two ArkivDigital online workshops. In October, Kathy Meade from ArkivDigital and Geoffrey Morris from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City gave a day-long workshop on the Swedish church books. In December, Kathy Meade gave presentations on estate inventories and Swedish military research.

ArkivDigital one of the best 101 best family history sites in 2020
During 2020, Family Tree Magazine again named ArkivDigital as one of the 101 best web sites for genealogy. Family Tree Magazine is North America’s leading family history magazine which inspires their readers to discover and preserve their family history.

Updating of the estate inventory index
During the fall, we updated our estate inventory index with searchable posts for estate inventories from Södermanland, Gävleborg, Jämtland, Norrbotten, Uppsala, VVasterbotten and Västernorrland counties. This index now includes a total of 1,864,795 searchable name posts.

RootsTech
At the end of February 2020, we were at RootsTech in Salt Lake City in the United States. RootsTech is the largest genealogy conference in North America and we will again participate in RootsTech Live 2021 virtual conference.

Additions to the birth, marriage and death indexes
During 2020, we have made many updates to our birth, marriage and death indexes. There are now 10.1 million searchable name entries in the three indexes. This is an increase of 6.3 million from the previous year. We have received several indexes thanks to partnerships with genealogical societies and private individuals. We would like more partnerships, so do not hesitate to contact us if you have an index you would like to share.

Many million new posts in BiS (Population of Sweden)
In the beginning of the year, we updated the index, BiS (Population of Sweden) which is ArkivDigital’s largest name index and even the largest name index in Sweden. We added about 21 million searchable name posts for the year 1840-1859 and there are now more than 133 million posts in the index.

Land registration index for the Northern Gotland district archive
In February, we published a land registration index for Northern Gotland’s district archive. The index covers the years 1800-1870 and is searchable by farm name, parish and year. The index includes about 35,000 posts.

Engelholm’s farm archive
During the year, we have digitalized Engelholm’s farm archive. The farm archive comes from the Engelholm manor which is a property located in the St. Anna archipelago in Östergötland. The material consists of 41 volumes including land records, account books, journals, settlement books, poor accounts, farm accounts and much more.

Military rolls (1620-1723) completed in 2020
The Rullor 1620-1723 are earlier military records to the general muster rolls and contain about 550,000 images and about 1800 volumes. During the past year, we completed the photographing of this material from the War Archives and it is now available in our archive.

Material from Riddarhuset (House of Nobility)
During 2020 we have also photographed some interesting material from The House of Nobility (Riddarhuset). If you have some nobility among your ancestors, you may find it rewarding to search within this collection

Updating of Index – Mantals tax records
We have also updated our table of contents or Quick find index to the mantals tax records. The newly photographed tax register volumes are from Blekinge, Halland and Skåne which are searchable in the Quick find: mantals tax records index. There are now approximately 444,000 posts in this Quick Find index.

A big warm thanks to all our customers for a fantastic 2020, now we look forward to an exciting 2021! Happy New Year!

ArkivDigital

NEW! Births in Blekinge 1800-1840

It is time for a new updating of our index, Births, parts of Sweden. With this update, we have added 102,446 searchable posts for persons born in Blekinge county for the years 1800-1840.

This update makes it easier for you who have ancestors in Blekinge county. Now, it is much simpler to find their birth records. Instead of browsing through page by page in the birth book, you can make a quick search in our index. When you find the person you are searching for, you can simply click on the link and go directly to the birth record in order to double check the information in the original source.

blekinge births 1800-1840

You will find the following information in the index record:

  • Birth date
  • Baptismal date
  • Child’s first name
  • Birth place (village, farm, etc.)
  • Birth parish
  • Parent’s names, titles/occupations and ages

There are now approximately 5.7 million index entries in the index, Births, parts of Sweden. We will be updating the registers with more counties so watch our blogs for information about future updates.

Click here to see what parishes and years are included in the Births, parts of Sweden index.

To open the index, Births, parts of Sweden:

  • Login at app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select Index search
  • Select, Births, parts of Sweden, in the list under Index source.

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NEW! Searchable name indexes from Släktdata

At the end of last year, we announced our partnership with the genealogy society, Föreningen Släktdata. The partnership allows ArkivDigital to receive the indexes from Släktdata and these have now been linked to our church books and are searchable in our indexes. This cooperation consists of 1,517,145 posts among which 1,333,167 are now available and searchable in ArkivDigital. The other 183,978 posts have been published in earlier updates of our birth index.

ArkivDigital’s index makes it easier for you to find information about when and where your ancestors were born, married and died instead of browsing through the church books page by page; you can now do a quick search in our index. When you find the person you are seeking, you can simply click further to the original source and double check the information.

slaktdatabirth

The new searchable information is divided among our existing birth, marriage and death indexes as follows:

  • Births, parts of Sweden: 649,739 posts
  • Marriages, parts of Sweden: 169,050 posts
  • Deaths, parts of Sweden: 514,378 posts

Dependent upon which index you search, you can search by name, birth date, marriage date, death date and parish. Click here for more information about search tips.

After this update, our indexes include the following number of posts (click on the links in order to see more information about which parishes and years are included in the index):

  • Births, parts of Sweden: 5,642,121 posts Click here.
  • Marriages, parts of Sweden: 942,666 posts Click here.
  • Deaths, parts of Sweden: 2,283,768 posts Click here.

To open the indexes for births, marriages and deaths, you log in at app.arkivdigital.se and select Index Search. In the list under index source, you select the index for births, marriages or deaths dependent upon which type of information you are searching.

When you have done this, you can begin to search for your ancestors and relatives. (A subscription is required, read more about the different subscription options which exist.) https://www.arkivdigital.net/products

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Another look at Swedish American Church Books

ArkivDigital has Swedish-American church books for the following states in ArkivDigital’s online library:

  • Illinois – 2
  • Iowa – 88
  • Kansas – 99
  • Minnesota – 125
  • Missouri – 9
  • Nebraska – 120
  • Oklahoma – 1
  • South Dakota – 1
  • Wisconsin – 12

The Swedish-American church books include birth, marriage, death, membership, reception of members, dismissal of members, protocols and account records. Often you will find anniversary booklets, church histories, attachments to records and even in some congregation archives family histories. The types of records vary by parish and denomination. Click here for more information about types of church records.

The membership books for the Swedish-American Lutheran churches are very similar to the Swedish household/congregation books. These records have often been the link in helping Swedish-Americans identify where in Sweden their ancestor came from. Below is an example from Trade Lake Zion Lutheran Church in Wisconsin for Per Erik Erikson and his family.

per erik eriksonTrade Lake Zion Lutheran Church, Wisconsin, USA (WI) Vol:2 (1895-1943) Image 54 / Page 23 (AID: v904701.b54.s23) https://app.arkivdigital.se/volume/v904701?image=54

The above record shows that Per Erik was born on the 27 of September 1848 in Linde (Lindesberg) parish in Örebro county and that he joined this congregation in 1889 and arrived in America in 1880. The record shows his wife, Anna Rosenqvist, who was born on the 16th of July 1862 in Vinslof (Vinslöv) parish in Kristianstad county, followed by the names of their children and their birth information. The record shows that Anna immigrated in 1881. Sometimes, the date of marriage will be shown on the membership record but in this case it is not. More research will be required to find the marriage date. The first child, Harry Lawrence, is shown as having been born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1884 and the next child was born in Trade Lake in 1886. So, it appears that the family moved from St. Paul to Trade Lake between 1884 and 1886 and then joined the congregation in 1889.

With the above information, we can search in the Swedish church books for Per Erik’s birth record.

per eriks birth recordLindesberg (T) CI:13 (1833-1850) Image 408 (AID: v53511.b408, NAD: SE/ULA/10851)
https://app.arkivdigital.se/volume/v53511?image=408

The birth record confirms his birth date as the 27th of September 1848 and that his parents were Erik Olsson and Maria Andersdotter. His mother was 29 years old at the time of his birth. The family lived in a place in the parish named Ryda.

Also, with a little further research, we can see the notation in the household record showing his move to North America in 1880.

erik move to americaLindesberg (T) AIc:19 (1871-1881) Image 229 / Page 225 (AID: v52142.b229.s225, NAD: SE/ULA/10851) https://app.arkivdigital.se/volume/v52142?image=229&page=225&register_collection=28

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Olof Liljegren – Letters from the Civil War

Today, in ArkivDigital we have Swedish American church records for the following states:

  • Illinois – 2 congregations
  • Iowa – 88 congregations
  • Kansas – 99 congregations
  • Minnesota – 125 congregations
  • Missouri – 9 congregations
  • Nebraska – 120 congregations
  • Oklahoma – 1 congregation
  • South Dakota 1 congregation
  • Wisconsin – 12 congregations

In many of these archives along with church records such as membership, birth, marriage, death, reception and dismissal records, you will often find anniversary booklets and historical notes that present a history of the congregation, ministers and early settlers. In browsing these books, one will find many items of historical and also genealogical interest.

In the archive for the Cambridge Lutheran Church in Cambridge, Minnesota, you will find a very interesting set of letters, Olof Liljegren – Our Years in the Civil War. This collection consists mostly of letters translated into English written by Olof Liljegren to his father in Sweden, Jonas Nilsson, in Boggsjö, Sundjö parish in Jämtland county between the years of 1861 and 1864.

Olof emigrated from Sweden in 1858 to North America. He served in the Third Minnesota Regiment during the Civil War and in 1865 died in the United States Army in Pine Bluff, Arkansas in 1865. Besides the letters written by Olof to his father, the collection also includes a letter to his sweetheart, Mary Edblad, a pioneer school teacher in Isanti County, Minnesota as well a letter from Sargent Glader to Olof’s father notifying him of Olof’s death in 1865.

olof letter 1861

Letter dated December 1861 from Olof to his father. Cambridge Lutheran Church, Minnesota, USA (MN) Vol:31 Image 20 (AID: v886267.b20) Link

In the above letter Olof writes to his father the following:

“I have not told you anything about myself. I enlisted in the U. S. Army for three years or the duration of the war. We are building up a Swedish regiment with all officers having been trained in Sweden which makes them excellent officers. The captain’s pay is $108 per month, first lieutenant, $100, 2nd lieutenant, $75, Corporal $15, and private $10 per month.

I took this step after much thought and decided my life is worth no more than the next man and if I die, I feel I can not die for a better cause than to stop slavery.”

 olof deathLetter from Sargent Glader to Olof’s father notifying him of Olof’s death dated December 17, 1865. Cambridge Lutheran Church, Minnesota, USA (MN) Vol:31 Image 80 (AID: v886267.b80) Link

“I am sending you a few lines to let you know your son Olof died in the United States Army at Pine Bluff, Arkansas, September 25, 1865. Two days before he died, I stayed with him one day and one nite. He was then so poorly he did not think he could get well. He told me to write to you and gave me authority to take card of his belongings and send his medal home to Sweden.”

To find these letters:

  • Go to app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select archive search
  • Select country, United States
  • Select state, Minnesota
  • Select Vol:31 Printed Documents

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Household record transcripts in Hedemora parish

Within ArkivDigital we have more than 2,800 parish/congregation archives in Sweden. Whenever one looks at a parish archive volume list, one usually sees volumes for household/congregation, moving, birth, marriage, death records followed by other types of record collections. The volume list will vary by parish and so it is important to review the entire volume list before you begin researching within that parish.

Many times, especially in the large cities one will find photographed name registers for some of the church books. These name registers can save you much time in your research. In Hedemora parish in Kopparberg county, one will find a gem: transcripts for early communion and household records. These transcripts were done by the experienced Hedemora researcher Siv Thorsell (1937-2016). These transcripts help one save time in deciphering the old handwriting.

To find the transcriptions for household records in Hedemora parish, do the following:

  • Access app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select Archive search.
  • Enter Hedemora in the box under Archive holder.
  • Click the search button.
  • Scroll down and search for the Transcript volumes in the volume list or use the filter function and look for Transcript.

hedemora transcriptSearching for the household and transcription volumes in Hedemora parish for the years 1688 to 1720 using the filter function.

Below are images from a household book and the corresponding transcription record. Most of the time only the head of household and family members’ names are transcribed and not the names of the farm hands or housemaids.

hedemora householdHedemora (W) AI:2 (1698-1704) Image 122 / Page 235 (AID: v130346.b122.s235, NAD: SE/ULA/10388)

hedamore transcript record2Hedemora (W) Husförhörsavskrift:1 (1698-1704) Image 1480 (AID: v894492.b1480, NAD: SE/ULA/10388)

Again, always review the volume list for each parish you are researching and check to see if there are any tools such as name registers or even transcriptions to help you with your research.

ArkivDigital

NEW! Birth, marriage and death indexes in Botvidsbygden

Now, we have again updated our indexes of births, marriages and deaths for parts of Sweden. This time we have added searchable name entries for Botkyrka, Grödinge, Huddinge and Salem parishes in Stockholm county. If you have relatives or ancestors who lived in any of these parishes, you can now find the information with a simple search in ArkivDigital’s index.

The updating includes approximately 51,000 searchable entries from these four parishes.botkrykaSearching for a birth record in Botkyrka using the index, Births, parts of Sweden.

The following parishes and years are included in the update.

 Births, parts of Sweden:

  • Botkyrka 1664-1900
  • Grödinge 1666-1680, 1791-1800 and 1806-1900
  • Huddinge 1765-1900
  • Salem 1710-1900

Marriages, parts of Sweden:

  • Botkyrka 1664-1900
  • Grödinge 1798-1900
  • Huddinge 1765-1900
  • Salem 1724-1900

Deaths, parts of Sweden:

  • Botkyrka 1664-1900
  • Grödinge 1788-1820, 1826-1859 and 1895-1900
  • Huddinge 1673-1900
  • Salem 1724-1900

The register is created in partnership with Botvidsbygdens Släktforskarförening.

After this update, the index, Births, parts of Sweden has 2,645,229 searchable name entries, the index, Marriages, parts of Sweden has 428,605 searchable name entries, and the index, Deaths, parts of Sweden has 1,211,531 searchable name entries.

ArkivDigital’s indexes make it much easier for you to find the person you are searching for. Instead of browsing in the church books page by page, it is a quick search. When you find the correct person, you can simply click on a link to the original source and verify the information.

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Immigrant Stories in the Swedish American Church Books

ArkivDigital’s online archive includes many Swedish American church books primarily from Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska and Minnesota. But we also have a few from Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Wisconsin. The types of records vary between congregations. The most common sets of records are congregation or membership rolls, birth, marriage, death, confirmation, church protocols, church accounts, anniversary booklets and other types of records.

One of the most interesting set of records is the anniversary booklet (jubileumsskrift). Often these booklets include a history of the church and settlement and describes the life of the early immigrants in North America. Some of these books also contain wonderful biographical sketches and pictures.

john benson imageBucklin Swedish Mission Covenant Church, Missouri, USA (MO) Vol:13 (1880-1980) Image 17 / Page 31 (AID: v950811.b17.s31)

The above image is taken from the Centennial Celebration booklet for the Swedish Mission Covenant Church in Bucklin, Missouri. There is a short biographical sketch of John Benson born Johannes Bengtsson in Skummeslöv parish in Halland county in Sweden on April 4, 1852. It states that he first lived in St. Louis, Missouri and worked for the Johansen Shoe company and then moved to a farm north of Bucklin in 1881. The sketch gives information about his wife and children and states that he died on July 24, 1900.

With the information in the anniversary booklet, we can search for his birth record in ArkivDigital and then trace him forward in the household books until his emigration in 1871. Below is his birth record showing his birth of the 4th of April 1852 at Allarp in Skummeslöv parish. His parents are noted as B. P. Persson and Christina Bengtsdotter. His mother was 32 years old at the time of his birth.

john benson's birth recordSkummeslöv (N) CI:3 (1824-1860) Image 380 / Page 69 (AID: v93216a.b380.s69, NAD: SE/LLA/13348)

To find the Swedish American church books in ArkivDigital:

  • Log in at app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select Archive Search.
  • Select country, United States.
  • You can also limit the search by state.

ArkivDigital

New! Name searchable birth index – 1800-1840 in Gotland county

We have again updated the index, Births, parts of Sweden, and this time we have made it easier for you who search for ancestors born in Gotland county.

The updating includes approximately 40,000 index entries with persons who were born in Gotland during the years, 1800 – 1840.

The birth register is a great help when you research since you can quickly find the correct person with a simple search. Then you can then click directly to the original source in order to verify the information in the birth book.

You will find the following information in the index record:

  • Birth date
  • Baptismal date
  • Child’s first name
  • Birth place (village, farm, etc.)
  • Parent’s names, titles/occupations and ages

gotland birth index

There are now approximately 2.3 million index entries in the index, Births, parts of Sweden. We will be updating the registers with more counties so watch our blogs for information about future updates.

Click here to see what parishes and years are included in the Births, parts of Sweden index.

To open the index, Births, parts of Sweden:

  • Login at app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select Index search
  • Select, Births, parts of Sweden, in the list under Index source

ArkivDigital

New! Name searchable birth index – 1800-1840 in Västerbotten county!

We have again updated the index, Births, parts of Sweden, and this time we have made it easier for you who search for ancestors born in Västerbotten county.

The updating includes approximately 68,000 index entries with persons who were born in Västerbotten during the years, 1800 – 1840.

The birth register is a great help when you research since you can quickly find the correct person with a simple search. Then you can then click directly to the original source in order to verify the information in the birth book.

You will find the following information in the index record:

  • Birth date
  • Baptismal date
  • Child’s first name
  • Birth place (village, farm, etc.)
  • Parent’s names, titles/occupations and ages

vasterbotten birth record

There are now approximately 2.2 million index entries in the index, Births, parts of Sweden. We will be updating the registers with more counties so watch our blogs for information about future updates.

Click here to see what parishes and years are included in the Births, parts of Sweden index.

To open the index, Births, parts of Sweden:

  • Login at app.arkivdigital.se
  • Select Index search
  • Select, Births, parts of Sweden, in the list under Index source.

ArkivDigital