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

Beginning Swedish Research Tutorials

churchbooksummaryAlgutsrum (H) CI:3 (1779-1854) Image 104 / page 203 (AID: v37085.b104.s203, NAD: SE/VALA/00005) Link.

Are you new to Swedish research and don’t know how to get started? Want to know more on how to research in the Swedish church books? Today, we would like to provide a summary of our English tutorials and blogs providing tips on how to get started and researching in the church books.

Tips for beginning Swedish research
http://blog.arkivdigital.net/research-tips (Link)

Introduction to Swedish Church Books
https://www.arkivdigital.net/swedish-genealogy/swedish-church-books (Link)

Birth Record Examples
1700’s birth record example (Link)
1800’s birth record example (Link)
1814 Christmas birth reading example (Link)

Marriage Record Examples
1700’s marriage record example (Link)
1800’s marriage record example (Link)
Marriage record example from Jönköping (Link)

Death Record Examples
1700’s death record example (Link)
1800’s death record example (Link)
Death record example from Söderfors parish (Link)

Household Record Example
https://www.arkivdigital.net/swedish-genealogy/late-1800s-household-examination-record-example (Link)

Moving In/Out Records Example
https://www.arkivdigital.net/swedish-genealogy/moving-records (Link)

Case Study – Searching for Birth Record
http://blog.arkivdigital.net/birth-record-search-and-reading-example/ (Link)

Case Study – Searching for Household Record
http://blog.arkivdigital.net/search-for-household-record-and-reading-example/ (Link)

ArkivDigital

Information sources in the ArkivDigital program

In the ArkivDigital program, there are information boxes that can help you in your search for records. Here are examples of a few.

When one enters a name of a parish archive or other name in the search box in the archive search form, the search results will appear on the right side. When you click on the desired parish, the row is highlighted in gray.

forshem search

Once you click on the selected parish, the volume list for the parish appears on the right side.

interface explanations

Below are explanations of parts of the search form numbered 1 to 4.

  1. Here you see what was typed in the search box (Forsh), which brought up four hits including the desired parish. Forshem is the third one in the list.
  2. You can open and close the search form by clicking on the magnifying glass.
  3. Click on “Archive info” and you will get more information about the archive.

nad box

  1. (A) Information on which county the parish is in. In this case Forshem is in Skaraborg county.
  2.  (B) Link to NAD or the National Archive Database at the National Archives. There is an abbreviation for the actual regional archive. (GLA = Göteborg Regional Archive). By clicking on the link, your browser will direct you to the regional archive where you can find a list of the physical volumes that exist in the archive.
  3. (C) Information about the organization of the parish. In this case, it states that since January 1, 1962, Forshem is the mother parish in the Forshem, Fullösa, Medelplana, Västerplana, Österplana och Kestad parishes’ pastorat. Up to December 31, 1961, Forshem was the mother parish in the Forshem, Kinne-Vedum och Fullösa parishes’ pastorat. You can more information about mother parishes and annex parishes in a previously published blog. Go to the blog.
  4. (D)Stift is the name of the diocese that the parish belongs to. In this case the diocese is Skara. Härad or district is the name of the district that the parish belongs to. In this case, the district is Kinne. The district is important to know when you are searching for the district tax registers.

In this box, you can also find other information about the archive. As an example, you may see a note that the records were partially destroyed by fire.

4. The symbol “i” indicates that there is more information on the volume. Hold the cursor over the “i” and a box with more information will appear.

information box

You can see the same information by clicking once on the volume that has an “i”. The list of the volumes moves to the left and the information is shown on the right. There is also a button to click on to open the volume.

information box 2

Read original blog in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Searching for a parish of origin in the Kansas church books

One of the biggest challenges for many Swedish Americans is to discover the parish of origin for their Swedish ancestor. When one attends a presentation about how to get started with Swedish research, the Swedish American church books are mentioned as one source that might provide some clues. (Click here for beginning Swedish genealogy research tips.)

Many Swedes who immigrated to North America joined a Swedish American church. While most of these congregations were Lutheran, there were also Swedish Covenant, Swedish Methodist, Swedish Baptist, Swedish Mission and other free churches. Many of these churches kept detailed records as they did in Sweden.

ArkivDigital’s online library includes many Swedish American church books from Kansas and a few from Missouri and Oklahoma. If one’s Swedish’s ancestor settled in these areas, these books can be helpful in determining where your ancestor came from in Sweden.

One can search in the  Swedish American church records to discover where in Sweden a person came from or to discover more about the person’s life in North America. The detail and content in the Swedish American church books do vary by time, minister and religious denomination. The Lutheran church books tend to have some standardization and more detail than other denominations but again that will vary by congregation.

Search Method
To begin your search, you will need a name and a location. If you have a name and town location, but don’t know the person’s religious denomination:

  1. Look for church books for that town.
  2. If there are several denominations, begin with the Lutheran church books since most were Lutherans, then proceed to Covenant, Methodist, Baptist or other church book denominations in that order.
  3. If you don’t find the person in the church books, you may want to search in the church books in a nearby town that is in the same county or nearby county.

Case Study – Begin in Congregation Book (Church Register)

We want to discover the parish of origin in Sweden for Carl Carlson who lived in Lindsborg, Kansas and was Lutheran. We have been told that he was born around 1835 and that his wife’s name was Emma and one of his children was named David.

  1. Start the ArkivDigital application and click on search archives.
  2. Select new archive search and county.
  3. Select the archive for Kansas (USA).
  4. Search for the Lindsborg Lutheran church archives.
  5. You will find that there are 3 Lutheran churches in Lindsborg:
    1. Lindsborg Lutheran Bethany Church
    2. Lindsborg Freemount Lutheran Church
    3. Lindsborg Messiah Lutheran Church
  6. Select the first in the list: Lindsborg Lutheran Bethany Church.
  7. The info box above the archive list names the county where Lindsborg is located which is McPherson. On the right side is a list of volumes available for this congregation. For this parish, there are four congregation books all beginning in the year 1869 with different end years.
  8. Search for congregation books and click on each congregation book and see if there is a name register in the book. In the info box above the volume list, the name index will be noted with the entry “med personregister”. You will notice that one appears for the volume, Lindsborg Bethany Lutheran Church, Kansas, USA Vol: 2 (1869-1886).  Not all congregation books have name registers. In those cases, where there is none, you will need to browse through the book page by page.

Open the book and you will see an indexed name register. Search for Carl Carlson. See image below.
lindsborg-index
Lindsborg Bethany Lutheran Church, Kansas, USA (KS) Vol:2 (1869-1886) Image 9 (AID: v812465a.b9, NAD: ) Link.

While there are no Carl Carlson’s, there are the following entries in the list:

  • Carlson C. J.                     25
  • Carlson C (Sec 28)           96
  • ” (Sec 30)                          83
    The numbers: 25, 96 and 83 to the right of the names in this case represent an entry number in the church register.  Sometimes the number represents a page number. The minister did not repeat the name on the third line but only indicated that it was the same name by a ditto mark.

Go to entry  #25 to see if the information matches. In this case, the record does not match the given information. Below is the image for entry #25.

entry-number-25Lindsborg Bethany Lutheran Church, Kansas, USA (KS) Vol:2 (1869-1886) Image 37 / page 7 (AID: v812465a.b37.s7, NAD: ) Link.

Next, go to entry #96. See image below.

entry-number-96Lindsborg Bethany Lutheran Church, Kansas, USA (KS) Vol:2 (1869-1886) Image 50 / page 20 (AID: v812465a.b50.s20, NAD: ) Link.

This is the correct person. The record shows Carl Carlson born on the 12th of June 1835 in Lungsund, Värmland. You will notice that Värmland is abbreviated as Werm. Also, Carl has a child named David and his wife is Emma Olsdotter born on the 23rd of July 1840 in Färnebo, Värmland. This record shows that they were received in this parish in October of 1869.  Carl and Emma arrived in America from Sweden in 1869 and came to Lindsborg in 1869. The record also shows three children all born in Lindsborg:

  • Emma was born on the 28th of June 1870.
  • David was born on the 21st of December 1875.
  • Hannah was born on the 2nd of February 1880 and she died on the 17th of July 1880.

Now you have enough information to research Carl and Emma further in the Swedish church books. Below is an image of Carl’s birth record in Lungsund, Värmland.

carls-birth-recordLungsund (S) C:5 (1830-1854) Image 29 / page 53 (AID: v7336.b29.s53, NAD: SE/VA/13342) Link.

Click here for more information on Swedish church books.
Click here for examples of birth records.

ArkivDigital

Have you seen our register correction function?

Have you found incorrect information in our registers? If so you can correct the error by clicking the “Correct” button which is available for all our registers.

You will find the “Correct” button in the top portion of the post between the buttons “Print” and “Shortcut”.

1950-censusr1

When you click on the “Correct” button, a correction form is opened. Here you can change the values that are incorrect.

1950-correction1

Select the information that is incorrect, erase it and enter in the correct information. For example, if a name is incorrect highlight the field and enter in the correct name.

birth-correction-2

After you enter the correction, click on “Send”.

We review all corrections before they are updated in the register. In most cases, the review is completed within three business days, but in some cases it may take a little longer.

ArkivDigital

Photographing of modern church books complete for several counties

varmland 1945

 At the end of January, ArkivDigital began photographing the modern church books up to the time of the law of privacy limits, currently 1945 (See earlier blog entry). We are happy to announce that we have now completed the photographing for Stockholm, Jämtland, and Gotland counties. In early February, the modern church books for Värmland were added to the online archive.

New volumes of modern church books are continually being added. Currently we are focusing on photographing the books in Blekinge, Halland, Kristianstad, Malmöhus, Västmanland, Kopparberg and Kronoberg counties.

Concerning the privacy limits, we wish to clarify that if a book contains years that are protected by the privacy law, we cannot photograph it. For example if a death and burial book covers the years 1895-1950, we are not able to photograph this book since the book contains years that are protected by the privacy law. The moving in and out registers along with the banns and marriage books are an exception to this rule. Generally, these records are not protected by strict confidentiality so we can often photograph these records even if they include information after 1945.

Finally, we would also like to mention a few words about the birth and baptismal books.  In these books it is common that notes may be added to a record, for example a note relating to an adoption, often decades after the event. The 70 year privacy law begins from the date of the last inserted note. This means that we do not currently have the opportunity to photograph some of the birth and baptismal books even though they do not contain any birth records for persons born after 1945.

Read blog entry in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Research Soldiers in the General Muster Rolls – Example Jan Fräs

gmbookcoverGeneralmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 123 (1841-1845) Image 20 (AID: v372940a.b20, NAD: SE/KrA/0023)  Link.

The primary records for researching soldiers and officers from the 1680’s to the 1880’s are the general muster rolls. Earlier we wrote two blogs about the general muster rolls:  General Muster Rolls and General Muster Roll Column Headings. Today, we will show you how to follow a soldier’s military career in the muster rolls.

The general musters were usually held every three to five years. The muster rolls are organized by regiments and companies within each regiment. Each military rote within a company has its own number and sometimes it is called the soldier number. In the church book or household record, often the only information you will see for the soldier is the village or torp and parish where he lived. In order to locate the regiment and company the soldier served with you can use the publication “Statistiskt sammandrag af svenska indelningsverket” or “Statistical Digest of the Swedish Army System” by Claes Lorentz Grill or “The Grill”. You can find more information about how to use “The Grill” in ArkivDigital by clicking here.

1841-1845muster rollGeneralmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 123 (1841-1845) Image 3750 (AID: v372940a.b3750, NAD: SE/KrA/0023)  Link.

In this case, we shall follow the military career of Jan Fräs in the general muster rolls. He was a soldier at rote number 41 in Gustaf’s company in the Dal Regiment (Dalregementets). The above image is showing him in the Dal Regiment’s general muster roll for 1845. In the image we see that he enrolled in the military on the 21st of December 1841. He is 27 years old, has served in the military for 3 ½ years, is approximately 5 feet 7 inches tall and that he is married (gift). This record gives his patronymic name, Jan Andersson. In the far right hand column, there is a note that he was present and approved at the general muster.  (Note pr. is an abbreviation for the Latin word praesens meaning present.)

1849 Muster RollGeneralmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 124 (1849-1852) Image 1580 (AID: v372941a.b1580, NAD: SE/KrA/0023) Link.

The above image is from the general muster roll for 1849. This is also a good example showing the detail you can find in the rolls. This one has more detail than the one in 1845. In the 1845 roll, the soldier’s name, Fräs, is only shown in the rote name column but in this roll, we find out where the rote was located: Fagerbackens by in Stora Tuna parish in Falu county. In the text below Jan Fräs’s name, we find information about his birth date and birth parish.

förut kallad Jan Andersson född i St. Tuna Socken af Fahlu Län den 18 December 1818. Antagen den 21 December 1841.

Previously named Jan Andersson born in Stora Tuna parish in Falu county on the 18th of December 1818. Enrolled on the 21st of December 1841.

In the 1852 general muster there is no new information presented. It is noted that he was present at the muster. The 1856 muster roll indicates that he was not present because he was sick in the hospital “sjuk på sjukhuset”. See image below.

sick at the hospita

Generalmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 125 (1856-1856) Image 1820 (AID: v372942.b1820, NAD: SE/KrA/0023) Link.

Jan was not at the muster in 1859 but he was at home. A doctor’s certificate dated the 9th of May 1859 was attached to his record in the general muster roll showing that he was still recovering from pneumonia and therefore was not able to be present. See text and image below.

Att Soldaten No 41 Fräs vid Gustafs compagnie af Kong. Dal-Regementet, hvilken genomgått en lunginflammation, ännu icke är så tillfrisknad att jag anser honom kunna inställa sig vid samlingen för Jernvägs Commenderingen, intygas. Barkgärdet den 9 Maij 1859.

doctor's certificateGeneralmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 126 (1859-1863) Image 1610 (AID: v372943b.b1610, NAD: SE/KrA/0023) Link.

In the 1863 muster roll, we see the end of Jan’s career as a soldier. The notation in the last column states,”Begär och får afsked för intygad sjuklighet. Tjent väl.”  He requested to be discharged because of ill health and was granted an honorable discharge.  See image below.1863 General muster rollGeneralmönsterrullor – Dalregementet 126 (1859-1863) Image 5930 (AID: v372943b.b5930, NAD: SE/KrA/0023) Link.

Link to the original blog in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Marriage Record Example

Marriage record readingBringetofta BI:2 (1751-1839) Image 298 / page 589 (AID: v33277.b298.s589, NAD: SE/VALA/00047)  Link.

Many people at conferences have asked for more record transcriptions.  Today’s blog presents an example of a marriage record with a transcription and an English translation.

Above is a marriage record from Bringetofta parish in Jönköping. The content and format of a marriage record varies by time and minister. In most records, you will find the dates of banns for the marriage, marriage date and names of the bridal couple. The above marriage record is for Petter Andersson and Catharina Pehrsdotter who were married on the 26th of May in 1806 in Bringetofta parish.

This minister noted the following information in the marriage record: entry number, date of first banns, groom’s name and place of residence, bride’s name and residence, marriage date, minister’s name and information about the morning gift.

Transcription
N.9  Den 26 april utfärdades Lysning för Drängen Petter
Andersson i Drageryd Mellang. och Pigan Catharina
Pehrsdtr i Drageryd Mellang.
Vigde den 26 Maj 1806 And. Ljung
Morgongåfva efter Lag

English Translation
Number 9.  On the 26th of April, the marriage banns were issued for farmhand Petter Andersson living at Drageryd Mellangården and maid Catharina Pehrsdotter living at Drageryd Mellangården. Married on the 26th of May 1806 (by) Anders Ljung.
Morning gift according to the law.

While most of the text includes dates and names of persons and places, there are a few Swedish words that are common in many marriage records. Below are the common Swedish words with the English translations;

Swedish       English
den                  on the
drängen          the farmhand
efter lag          according to the law
för                    for
i                        in, at
lag                    law
lysning            banns
morgongåfva  morning gift
och                   and
pigan               the maid
utfärdade        issued

Additional Comments
Before a marriage was performed, the couple’s intention to get married was announced three times and these postings are called banns of marriage. If no objections were presented to the marriage, the couple was free to marry. The marriage records are organized in chronological order by the banns date.

It was customary, and for a period of time the law, for the groom to present his bride a morning gift (morgongåfva) at the marriage which was hers to keep forever. It could not be legally shared with her children as other parts of the estate at the time of her husband’s death.  Many times the marriage record will note the actual  morning gift that was given to the bride or as in this record the notation was recorded as “morgongåfva efter lag” or morning gift according to the law.

Click here to see more examples of marriage records.

ArkivDigital

Göta Canal Company’s Archive in ArkivDigital

pioneer companyGöta kanalbolag EII:20 (1820-1820) Image 341 (AID: v89682.b341, NAD: SE/VALA/02660) Link.

The Göta Canal is one of Sweden’s most popular tourist attractions for visitors from Sweden and abroad.

ArkivDigital has photographed many older documents from Göta Canal Company’s archive.  Among the many records you will find in the online library are rolls of soldiers and craft workers who worked on the canal, registers of ships and incoming correspondence to the Executive Board.

The Göta Canal Company (Aktiebolaget Göta Kanalbolag) manages the canal which was completed in 1832. The company was established in 1810 when construction of the canal began. The Göta Canal Company was privately owned up until 1978, when it was taken over by the state.

One example of what you can find among the many exciting documents in this archive is a list of 19 Russians who were in the “pionjärkompaniet” or pioneer company who requested to return to their home country. You will find this document in volume 20 for “To the Executive Board received letters”.  The first names on the list were: Constantin Simeonow, Andrei Iwanow and Iwan Kaslow. See the image at the top of the page.

You can search for the Göta Canal archive documents in ArkivDigital by entering “Göta kanalbolag” in the search box or you can select advanced options and select archive type, corporate archives and then select “Göta kanalbolag”. See image below.

gota canal search box

Read original article in Swedish.

Estate Inventory more than 300 pages!

bouppteckning ingressÅkerbo och Skinnskattebergs tingslags häradsrätt FII:5 (1912-1912) Image 220 / page 8 (AID: v748972.b220.s8, NAD: SE/ULA/12685)
Link to image.

Upon a person’s death an estate inventory (bouppteckning) was created. This document consists of an ingress or preamble which gives information about the deceased and the names of the heirs. Following the preamble is the inventory listing all the deceased’s assets and debts. The estate inventory is a wonderful document for proving genealogical relationships as well as helping one gain a better understanding of one’s ancestor life.

The number of pages within an estate inventory varies greatly from only a couple of pages to sometimes hundreds of pages. One example of an extensive inventory is the estate inventory for the wholesale merchant, Adolf Ferdinand Hagström from Svarthäll in Kung Karl’s parish. His estate inventory totals 305 pages.

Adolf Ferdinand Hagström died on the 20th of August 1909 at Sofiahemmet in Stockholm at age 55. His death is recorded in the death book for Kung Karl’s parish.  Only a month earlier his wife, Augusta Charlotta Andersson died. The couple had no children and the heirs of Adolf’s estate were his mother and his siblings. The above image shows the ingress or preamble naming Adolf’s mother and siblings as the heirs.

When one browses this estate inventory, it is almost like venturing more than 100 years back in time and touring his house room by room. Since he was a wholesale merchant, the estate inventory also details the merchandise he had in stock. Below is an image showing some of the liquor that was in stock. Lots of aquavit!

branvinÅkerbo och Skinnskattebergs tingslags häradsrätt FII:5 (1912-1912) Image 690 (AID: v748972.b690, NAD: SE/ULA/12685) Link.

The assets of the estate were 1,135,609.69 Swedish kronor and the debts were 536, 306.61 kronor resulting in the net value of estate being 599, 308.08 kronor. See image below.

net valueÅkerbo och Skinnskattebergs tingslags häradsrätt FII:5 (1912-1912) Image 3230 (AID: v748972.b3230, NAD: SE/ULA/12685) Link.

Learn more about Swedish estate inventories.

Read original article in Swedish.

Other Sources
Adolf Ferdinand Hagström’s death record
Kung Karl F:3 (1895-1909) Image 790 / page 73 (AID: v72960.b790.s73, NAD: SE/ULA/10669) Link.

Congregation book showing Adolf Ferdinand Hagström’s residence at time of death
Kung Karl AIIa:6 (1907-1920) Image 1250 / page 570 (AID: v261754.b1250.s570, NAD: SE/ULA/10669) Link.

ArkivDigital