Danish Military Levying Rolls (Lægdsruller)

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Danish Lægdsruller, What are they?

Lægdsruller are records of the males who could be enlisted for service in the army or navy. These rolls have many different uses. For genealogical purposes they are used mainly to follow the registered individual's movements, identify a birthplace, find which military unit they were assigned to, and when they completed their obligation.

In 1788, adscription was repealed and the foundation was laid for a civilian service. This was done by regulation on June 20, 1788. Previously the private landowners had the obligation to provide personnel for the army. After adscription's repeal this responsibility was shifted to the king and the state. There was thus created a direct relationship between the state and the conscripts.

In subsequent years there was an agency created by the government known as a lægdsvæsen to watch over its conscripts. It was important for the government to know how large a force it possessed in case of war. Therefore it became the states responsibility to keep detailed records of the male population in lægdsruller.


Changes to the miltary obligation law of March 6, 1869 established 6 districts instead of the county sub-divsions or lægds. Here after the lægds were sequentially numbered in each of the 6 districts. After reunification in 1920 the 7th district (Sønder Jylland) was established.

The Registration Process

Tools for using the Lægdsruller

Where do you find the Danish Lægdsruller?

  • Access through Statens Arkiver
  • Access through FamilySearch


Statens Arkiver. Lægdsruller. Denmark: Statens Arkiver, 2008

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Lægdsruller Topics

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