Russia, Samara Church Books (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Samara, Russia
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Location of Samara, Russia
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Record Description
Record Type: Church Books
Collection years: 1779-1923
Languages: Russian
Title in the Language: Россия, Самарская Православная Консистория Дубликаты Метрических Книг
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
State Archive of Samara


What is in the Collection?

This collection will include records of births and baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials from the Orthodox Church in the Samara Province from 1779 to 1923. Register transcripts usually contain multiple parishes for a year, with separate sections for the baptisms, marriages, and burials of a single parish. The volumes cover a district (uezd) and often are very large. Original registers may contain multiple years for a single parish.

For a list of records by localities currently published in this collection, select the Browse.

The Church acted as both a religious and civil agent in recording vital events and church sacraments such as baptism and burial. Peter the Great mandated the keeping of Russian Orthodox books in 1722. The format was standardized in 1724. Printed forms were introduced in 1806. In 1838 a format was introduced that prevailed until the 1930s. The priests made a transcript for the ecclesiastical court (dukhovnaia konsistoriia) having jurisdiction over the parish. This is usually the version that has been preserved. The register covers 70% of the population for early periods, 90% after 1800. The registers are in Russian. 

Church registers were created and kept by priests to record the baptisms, marriages, and burials performed for their parishioners. 

These were considered an official record and are normally very reliable. Earlier registers may not be equally reliable. In 1825 the Holy Synod, governmental body over the Orthodox Church, ordered bishops to eradicate bribery of priests to falsify the books, suggesting that this problem existed. 

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923.

Coverage Table

A Coverage Table for this collection is available in the wiki article Russia, Samara Province Orthodox Church Records, Coverage Table (FamilySearch Historical Records)

Image Visibility

Whenever possible, FamilySearch makes images available for all users. However, rights to view images on our website are granted by the record custodians. These images can be viewed online by members of the supporting organization(s), at a family history center near you, or the Family History Library.

For additional information about image restrictions, please see the Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections page.

Collection Content

Baptism records may contain the following information:

  • Child's date and place of baptism
  • Child's name and gender (usually an infant)
  • Child's age or date of birth
  • Names of parents and their residence
  • Father's occupation
  • Parents' religion
  • Names of godparents
  • Sometimes names of grandparents
  • Witnesses

Marriage records may contain the following information:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Names of bride and groom
  • Ages of bride and groom
  • Names of parents
  • Religion of all involved
  • Residence of all involved
  • Witnesses

Death or burial records may contain the following information:

  • Date and place of burial
  • Name of deceased
  • Date and place of death
  • Age of deceased
  • Cause of death
  • Residence
  • Sometimes, parents may be listed

How Do I Search the Collection?

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923.

To search by image:

⇒Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒Select the "Province" category
⇒Select the "District" category
⇒Select the "Place/Parish" category
⇒Select the "Year/Vol/Event," category which takes you to the images

To search this collection by name:
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.

To begin your search, it is helpful to know your ancestor's name and some other identifying information, such as the birth place or birth date .

Look at each individual image, 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.

As you are searching, it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.

Begin your search by finding your ancestors in indexes; this will help access a specific record quickly. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned. When searching the index it is helpful to know the following:

  • The county where the birth/baptism, marriage, or death occurred.
  • The name of the person at the time of the event.
  • The approximate event date.
  • The event place.

Use the locator information found in the index (such as page, entry, or certificate number) to locate your ancestors in the records. Compare the information in the record to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination. When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the age in the citizen to find an approximate birth year to begin your search in church or civil records.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have moved, been recruited or lived nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify. Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual. This compiled list can help you identify possible relations that can be further verified by researching vital records indexes in the country.
  • When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. Save a copy of the image or transcribe the information. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details such as a title, an occupation, or land ownership. Add this new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your ancestors.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

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

  • Switch to a different record collection. Depending on the time period, either Civil Registration records or Church Records may be more useful.
  • While searching, it is helpful to know such information as the ancestor’s given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence and age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as an ancestor and that the ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.
  • Keep in mind that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • 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. Pay special attention to how the name should have been pronounced and try variations on the pronunciation.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names.
  • Search the indexes and records of local genealogical societies.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another.

Known Issues with This Collection

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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.

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:

"Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923." Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Orthodox Church. State Archive of Samara, Russia..

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 Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923.

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 Russia, Samara Church Books, 1779-1923.

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.