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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Via Handelsaffär (A General Store) in Hackvad

ArkivDigital is much more than just church books. We have many types of records that can help you gain a better understanding of how your ancestor lived.  One interesting source is an accounts book for the general store (Via Handelsaffär) in Hackvad in Örebro county. In our online library, you will find an account book for the years 1882-1886. Karl Johan Nilsson, the shopkeeper of Via Handelsaffär, recorded the names of all who shopped at the store listing the items purchased and the amounts paid.  So, if you happen to have ancestors who lived near Hackvad at this time; you may have ancestors who shopped in this store.

Hackvad Journal

Via Handelsaffär, Hackvad Journal:1 (1882-1886) Image 80 / page 12 (AID: v785801.b80.s12)  Link

In the above image, we can see that the farmhand (drängen) Joh. Emil Carlsson purchased the following items on the 2nd of February 1883:

  • rakknif (shaver)
  • borste (brush)
  • tvål (soap)

On the 10th of February, he purchased 6 pairs of socks (par strumpor).

Also, you can find some pictures of Karl Johan Nilsson and Via Handelsaffär in the volume, Via Handelsaffär, Hackvad Historik:1.

You can find these volumes, by using the advanced search function in ArkivDigital online and selecting archive type, private archives.  Then select the archive, Via Handelsaffär, Hackvad.

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Death Record Reading

The contents of the death records in the Swedish church books vary by time and parish. Usually, the death record will contain the name of the deceased, death and burial date, place of residence, age and cause of death. However, in some parishes you will find a death record that gives a biographical sketch or an obituary of the deceased’s life. Because of the extra detail given in these records, these are treasures if you find one for your ancestor.

An example of a death record that reads like an obituary is found in the Söderfors parish for Anna Bäckström who died on November 27, 1799 and was buried on the 8th of December 1799.

soderforsdeath record

Söderfors F:1 (1788-1860) Image 30 (AID: v126071.b30, NAD: SE/ULA/11524)  Link

Record Transcription
Anna Bäckström.  Enka efter afl. Hammarsmeds Mästaren Matts Martin. Född härstädes år 1720.  Fadren:  Ankar Mäst. Pehr Olofsson Bäckström.  Modren: Hustru Catharina Bohm.   År  1744, ingick hon ägtenskap med sin före nämde man i hvilket hon hade 7 barn: 4 söner och 3 döttrar.  Af de förre äro redan 2ne äfven  som 2ne af de sednare med dö.
Den afgångne.  Ålderdomsbräckligheten slutade ett lif, som var ret utmärkt af Gudsfruktan ock christeligt tålamod.

Record Translation
Anna Bäckstrom. Widow of the deceased Master forging blacksmith, Matts Martin.  She was born in this place in 1720. Her father was Ankar Master Pehr Olofsson Bäckström and her mother was wife Catharina Bohm. In 1744, she married the previous named man (Matts Martin) who together had seven children: 4 sons and 3 daughters. Two of the four sons and two of the three daughters are deceased.
Cause of death: Old age infirmities ended a life which was distinguished by the fear of God and Christian patience.
Her age at death was 79 years, 5 months and 27 days.

On our website, you will find more death record examples with transcriptions and English translations.

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ArkivDigital and Demographical Database for Southern Sweden (DDSS)

Often reading the older church books with the older script can be a challenge. If you research in parishes in Skåne, Blekinge and Halland, you are very fortunate. The Demographical Database for Southern Sweden (DDSS) consists of three separate databases containing transcriptions extracted from the original Swedish parish church records of births and baptisms, weddings, deaths and burials for about 400 parishes from Southern Sweden. The free site is both in Swedish and English.

Many of these registers in DDSS have been cross-referenced in ArkivDigital online.  If you see the entry “Register i DDSS” in the info box for a highlighted book such as below, that indicates there is a register in DDSS for the highlighted records. In this case the info box notes that there is a register for the birth and christening records (1755-1782) for Röke parish.

ddss info box

Here is an example of how to use DDSS to help you read a record. Below is a birth record for January 21, 1769 for Röke parish.

birth record rokeRöke CI:4 (1755-1782) Image 380 / page 35 (AID: v101006a.b380.s35, NAD: SE/LLA/13324)  Link

  1. Go to the Demographical Database for Southern Sweden website.
  2. Click on databases.
  3. Click on birth and baptism records.
  4. Select the parish, Röke.
  5. There are several search options. In this case, enter 1769-01-21 in the from date field and 1769-01-21 in the to date field.
  6. Click the search button.
  7. One entry will display in the result list.
  8. Click on the entry and you will see the entry below.

DDSS

While not all the Swedish text in the Christening Witness section has  been translated into English, one can search for the translation of these words in a Swedish/English dictionary. On the DDSS site, you will find a Swedish/English genealogical glossary where you will find some of these words.

Complete English Translation
January 21 (Birth date) Ole Svensson’s son Sven from Englarp
Carried to baptism on the 29th (of January) by Nils Tufwes wife, Maria in Önnarp. Witnesses: Per Olson in Lergrafwatorpet Maid: Pernilla in Sågmoll Sissa Jeppas dotter

If you are researching in parishes within Skåne, Blekinge and Halland, you should definitely bookmark the DDSS website for quick reference.

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Welcome to our English Blog

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Welcome to our English blog. Here you will find information about ArkivDigital in English. The blog content will range from information concerning new record additions to research and record reading tips, events and other important news. With over 50 million color images, we have a lot of interesting things to share with you!

In addition to postings, you will find an Event Calendar listing activities where ArkivDigital will be present in North America. In the Links section, you will find information about Swedish American Genealogical Centers in North America and other links. Under Research Tips, you will find hints for beginning your Swedish research.

Follow our blog to keep current with ArkivDigital!

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ArkivDigital one of the ”101 Best Family History Websites”

ArkivDigital is proud to announce that we have been named as one of the “101 Best Family History Websites” by Family Tree Magazine.

Family Tree Magazine is North America’s leading genealogy magazine, helping readers discover and preserve their family history. Each year, Family Tree Magazine publishes the 101 Best Websites for family history.

This edition guides genealogists to the top websites where they can make progress with their family history research. It also honors the individuals and organizations who create those sites.

This year, the list of outstanding websites has been broken down into fifteen categories and ArkivDigital has been selected as one of the “Best of Continental European Genealogy Websites”. You can find the full list of the 101 Best Genealogy Websites for family history here.

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Swedish Church Book Tutorials

Swedish GenealogyThe Swedish church books are usually the first Swedish records that one uses when tracing one’s Swedish roots. These records are a “gold mine” because they are so complete and contain such detailed information. In many cases, one can trace a person’s life in the church books from birth to death or birth to emigration.

We often hear from many people who have Swedish ancestry but don’t speak Swedish, that they are intimidated by the Swedish church books because they are in Swedish. But there is no need to be. The church books consist primarily of tables of names, places and dates. Yes, there are Swedish words but these words are used repeatedly. Once one becomes familiar with the commonly used words, researching in the church books becomes relatively easy.

On our website, you will find a section titled, Swedish Genealogy. In this section, you will find record examples and translations for birth, marriage, death, household examination and moving records and much more.

Introduction to Swedish Church Books
Birth Record Examples
Marriage Record Examples
Death Record Examples
Household Examination Record Examples
Moving in and Moving out Records

Death record example

Image above: 1700s death record example. Go to page.

Kathy Meade, ArkivDigital USA