Germany, Prussia, Brandenburg and Posen, Church Book Duplicates (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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GermanyGotoarrow.png Posen

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Germany, Prussia, Brandenburg and Posen, Church Book Duplicates, 1794-1874 .
CID1491272
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Brandenburg, Prussia,  Germany
Flag of the German Empire.svg.png
Flag of the German Empire, 1871-1917
German Empire - Prussia - Brandenburg and Posen (1871).svg.png
Location of Brandenburg, Prussia, Germany
German Empire blank map.svg.png
Map of the German Empire, 1871-1917
Germany.png
Current Location
Parts of Brandenburg are now in Poland. All of Posen is in Poland.
Record Description
Record Type Church Records
Collection years: 1794-1874
Languages: German, Polish
Title in the Language: Deutschland, Preußen, Brandenburg und Posen, Kirchenbuchduplikate
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Brandenburgisches Landeshauptarchiv


What is in this Collection?

This collection includes records from 1794 to 1874. German states successively began creating church book duplicates from 1792 to 1876. This collection of church records covers the years 1794–1874 and are good sources to find information of ancestors before the institution of civil registration in 1876.

In Germany, a parish was an ecclesiastical jurisdiction made up of many villages and hamlets, with one of the villages designated as the main parish town. This set of church book duplicates do not usually include records from all of the villages within a parish, but only records from one village, or from a few of the villages within the parish. In larger cities, where there was more than one church, each church is listed separately.

Outside of Prussia, the clergy were required to record the vital events (births, marriages and deaths) of people living within their jurisdiction regardless of their religion. For example, Catholic or Jewish people living in an area that did not have a Catholic church or Jewish synagogue were often recorded in the Lutheran records. The reverse was also true in Catholic areas, where Lutherans and Jews were recorded in Catholic records.  However, in Prussia--including Brandenburg and, from 1793 onward, Posen--this was not the common practice.Some Posen church books have entries for Jews during the period 1807-1814, i.e., the Napoleonic occupation.

German church book duplicates, like the originals, are the most reliable and accurate family history source until 1876 when civil registration of births, marriages and deaths began in all of Germany.Church book duplicates may differ slightly from the originals because of transcription variations. They are often more legible than the originals. Entries are usually arranged in chronological order in a column format. The baptisms, marriages and deaths for one year are grouped together before the baptisms, marriages and deaths for the next year.

Sample Images

Click on images for a larger view.

Marriage Records generally contain the following information:

  • Names of bride, groom, their parents, and witnesses
  • Date and place of marriage and marriage proclamations or bans
  • Age of bride, groom, and their parents
  • Residence of bride, groom, and their parents
  • Religion of bride and groom
  • Occupation of groom and fathers

Death Records generally contain the following information:

  • Names of deceased, spouse, and parents
  • Date and place of death and burial
  • Age and residence of deceased (sometimes date and place of birth)
  • Cause of death

Baptismal Records generally contain the following information:

  • Names of child, parents, and witnesses or godparents
  • Date of birth and place of baptism
  • Residence and religion of parents
  • Occupation of father
  • Whether child was legitimate or illegitimate


How Do I Search This Collection?

When searching, it is helpful to know:

  • Your ancestor's name
  • Age and or residence
  • An estimated event year
  • A relative's name

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page. Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information in the list to what you already know about your ancestor to determine if it is the correct family or person. You may need to compare several persons in the list before you find your ancestor.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page.

To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:

⇒ Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒ Select the "Province" category
⇒ Select the "City or Town" category
⇒ Select the "Religion" category
⇒ Select the "Event" category which takes you to the images

What Do I Do Next?

Whenever possible, view the original records to verify the information and to find additional information that might not be reported. These pieces of information can lead you to additional records and family members.


I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the age in the record to find an approximate birth year, which will help you find their other records.
  • Use the information in each record to find additional family members.
  • Repeat this process with additional family member’s records to find more generations of the family.

I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • Try viewing the original record to see if there were errors in the transcription of the name, age, residence, etc. Remember that their may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you identify possible relations that can be verified by records.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby locality in an area search.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name while searching the index or browsing through images.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.

{{Tip|Don't overlook items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. FHL Keyword state, town, record type


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 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.

How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.


Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image. Collection Citation:

“Germany, Prussia, Brandenburg and Posen, Church Book Duplicates.” Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2016. Brandenburgisches Landeshauptarchiv, Potsdam (Brandenburg State Archives, Potsdam).

Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Germany, Prussia, Brandenburg and Posen, Church Book Duplicates, 1794-1874.

Image Citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Germany, Prussia, Brandenburg and Posen, Church Book Duplicates, 1794-1874.

How You Can Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.