Austria Seigniorial Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Title in the Language of the Record

Österreich, Herrschaftsprotokolle

Record Description

This collection of seigniorial records from Austria includes records such as birth, marriage, death, testaments, and real property covering the years between 1537 and 1888.

This collection includes a variety of feudal land records from numerous jurisdictions throughout Upper and Lower Austria. This collection is being published as images become available. The records are handwritten in German. Most records have been preserved well.

For a list of localities currently published in this collection, select the Browse link from the collection landing page.

Local jurisdictional authority in Austria was held by Seigneurs prior to 1848. Seigniorial authority was granted by the Emperor to individuals who reigned as lord over their manor (Herrschaft) within a given village or community. Civil records created within a manor are referred to as Herrschaft or Seigniorial records. The older Herrschaft records of the four Lower Austrian Kreisgerichte (KG) are stored at the Landesarchiv in St. Pölten. In 1848, a modern court system was implemented in Austria, and the Seigneurs were instructed to transfer all records needed to continue administration of justice to the recently established district courts (Bezirksgerichte). This generally included all Herrschaft records back to about 1750-1800. The earlier records, those that had been closed prior to 1750, were transferred to Kreisgerichte. However, a significant quantity of these records remain in private hands or have become a part of the archival collections of other institutions.

Seigneurs created these records to record the events in the life of the people in their communities and to help in the administration of their manors.

The information in these records is usually reliable but depends upon the reliability of the informant and the recorder of the record.

  Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.

"Austria, Seigniorial Records, 1537-1888." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013.


Suggested citation format for a record in this collection.

Record Content

Austria, Lower Austria Seigniorial Records DGS 4979009 4.jpg

Marriage contract records (Verehelichung) may include the following information:

  • Date of marriage contract
  • Names of bride and groom
  • Place of event
  • Fiscal considerations
Austria, Seigniorial Records estate inventory DDGS 136.jpg

Wills or estate inventory records (Inventurprotokoll) may include the following information:

  • Date of death
  • Place of residence
  • Name of the deceased person
  • Names of the surviving spouse, children, and in-laws
  • Ages of all involved
  • Settlement of the fiscal account

Real property records may include the following information:

  • Date of the business transaction
  • Names of the grantors and grantees
  • Place of the property
  • Settlement of the fiscal account
Austria, Seigniorial Records land registers DGS 601 602.jpg

Land registers (Grundbuch) may include the following information:

  • Names of the sequential property owners
  • Place of the property
  • Dates
  • Tax payments and fiscal data

How to Use the Record

To browse this collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒ Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒ Select the “Country” category
⇒ Select the “Province” category
⇒ Select the “Place” category
⇒ Select the “Seigniory” category
⇒ Select the “Record Description” which takes you to the images.

Look at the images one by one comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to make this determination.

Seigniorial records supplement existing church and civil records and provide information in those time periods where church and civil records do not exist. These records are very helpful in establishing family relationships that are difficult to identify; differentiating between individuals and families with similar given and surnames; documenting family locations, arrival and departure dates; and so forth.

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information about other people listed in the record. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.

For example:

  • Use the baptism date and place to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate civil and land records.
  • The father’s occupation can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • The parents’ places of origin can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • A couple’s marriage date and place may help you find records of their children
  • The burial place may also help you identify their migration pattern

It is often helpful to extract the information on all children with the same parents. If the surname is unusual, you may want to compile baptism entries for every person of the same surname and sort them into families, based on the names of the parents. Continue to search the baptism records to identify siblings, parents, and other relatives in the same or other generations who were born, married, and died in the same place or nearby.

Keep in mind the following:

  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
  • There is some variation in the information given from record to record.

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Related Websites

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.

Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection

“Argentina, Buenos Aires, Catholic Church Records, 1635-1981,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 28 February, 2012), La Plata > San Ponciano > Matrimonios 1884-1886 > image 71 of 389 images, Artemio Avendano and Clementina Peralta, 1884; citing Parroquia de San Ponciano en la Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Matrimonios. San Ponciano, La Plata, Buenos Aires.


 

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