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

Swedish Parish Records in Paris now on ArkivDigital

sofia in paris
Svenska Sofiaförsamlingen i Paris AV:1 (0-9999) Image 40 (AID: v793349.b40, NAD: AD/PARIS/0001)

Sweden’s oldest international parish, Svenska Sofiaförsamlingen, is in Paris, France. The Swedish church presence in Paris dates back to 1626, when Professor Jonas Hambraeus at the Paris Academy began to gather Swedish and German Lutherans for worship services. The parish services were both in Swedish and German. On Sunday, worship services were usually held first in Swedish and then in German. Knowing this, it is easy to understand why the oldest books in the church’s archive are written in German as the above image out of one of the books from the 1600’s shows.

The Swedish parish in Paris existed from the end of the 1600’s to 1806 as an embassy church. The parish did not have a permanent location for services and moved around between the diplomatic envoys’ different residences. At the time of Napoleon Bonaparte’s crowning in 1806, the parish minister received an order to leave the country. For the years up to 1806, there are three volumes available on ArkivDigital: 2 parish registers (församlingsregister) volumes AV: 1-2 (written in German) and a marriage book for the years, 1764-1806. A large portion of the marriage book is written in French.

In the autumn of 1858, the embassy preacher Thor Frithiof Grafström was sent to Paris. At the time, there was the Union between Sweden and Norway and Grafström’s commission was to establish a Swedish-Norwegian parish. The volume, Svenska Sofiaförsamlingen i Paris AI:1, includes various types of documents from the Swedish-Norwegian parish in Paris during the years 1859-1863.

During the period 1863-1877, there was no Swedish priest in Paris. Since 1877 when Emil Flygare became the minister in Paris, the Swedish church presence in Paris has continued without interruption. The parish received its current name in 1878 when the first church, Sofiakapellet, was consecrated and named after the Swedish queen, Sofia of Nassau. The current Swedish parish church, Sofiakyrkan, was consecrated in 1913.

Most of the volumes for the Sofia parish in Paris are after 1877. These volumes include household examination/congregation books, migration records, birth, marriage and death books along with many other types of documents.

Read the original article published 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.

ArkivDigital

 

New Records on ArkivDigital

Produktkatalog

 

Recently, we performed a major update of our online archive and many new records are now available. Below is a summary of the major updates.

Church Books
For those of you who have Swedish relatives who have lived in London, England, we have added the church records for the Swedish parish in London, Ulrika Eleonora, to the online archive. You will find these in the archive for Ulrika Eleonora församling (London).  In addition to household examination/congregation books, moving, birth, marriage and death records we have added other documents such as the attachments to the moving records, parish administration records and parish accounts.

Estate Inventories (Bouppteckningar)
Our photographing of the estate inventories for the 1900’s is going at full speed and many newly photographed images are now online. Before Christmas, we will be publishing a blog giving a status of the estate inventory photographing for each county. Watch out for the blog.

Population/Tax Registers (Mantalslängder)
The county tax/population registers from earliest times to 1820 for Kopparberg and Västmanland counties are now available. For the same time period, the district tax registers (häradsskrivarens exemplar av mantalslängder) or copies of tax/census records for Kronoberg county are now available.

Other Records
The bankruptcy cases for Gotland county from the earliest times up to 1940 are now available. However, some of the volumes are missing from Gotlands norra häradsrätt or district court since they were damaged by fire and are in too poor a condition to be photographed.

Other material that is currently being added are the Supreme Court protocols for the years 1737 to 1751 and the prison lists for all of Sweden from the Office of the Chancellor of Justice for the years 1801 to 1805.

Click here to find out what is available on ArkivDigital.

ArkivDigital

 

Using the Table of Contents in the Swedish Church Books

When you are researching in the Swedish church books in ArkivDigital, many times you will discover that some Swedish church books contain multiple types of records. You may find birth, marriage, death, moving in and moving out records in the same volume. Many books but not all contain a table of contents (Innehåll) but this may not be immediately obvious if your native language is not Swedish.

Before searching for a record in a volume, one should always check for the presence of a table of contents (Innehåll).  If one exists, the table of contents (Innehåll) is usually located in the front of the book and will show the page numbers where you can find the various record types.  Below is an example from a birth and christenings book for Kärna parish in Östergotland county.

Table of Contents

Kärna CI:3 (1808-1856) Image 3 / page 1 (AID: v38617.b3.s1, NAD: SE/VALA/00208)
Link

Transcription
Innehåll
Födelse-  och doplängd  6/1 1808 – 25/12 1856____________________pag. 4 -231;
Vigesllängd 27/3 1808 – 30/12 1856________________________        ”  233-294;
Död- och begrafningslängd 4/1 1808 – 28/11 1856________________     ” 295-427.

Translation
Table of Contents
Birth and baptismal records  January 6, 1808 – December 25, 1856____page 4-231;
Marriage records   March 27, 1808 – December 30, 1856___________  “ 233-294;
Death and burial records  January 4, 1808 – November 28, 1856_______”295-427.

The table of contents shows the page numbers where you can find each set of records that are in this book: birth, marriage and death records as well as the date coverage. Thus if we were looking for a death record in 1808 for Kärna parish, we would go directly to page 295 to begin the search.

While not all books include a table of contents and in those cases you may need to browse through the book to find the correct section, we recommend that you develop a habit of always checking for the existence of a table of contents (Innehåll) in a volume to help your search.

ArkivDigital 

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