Difference between revisions of "Denmark: Using Witnesses to Find the Next Generation"

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(Created page with "''Denmark Image:Gotoarrow.png'''''City Research Strategy'''<br> == Step 1: What do I know? == The first step in finding an ancestor in one of Denmark's cities...")
 
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''[[Denmark|Denmark]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]]'''''City Research Strategy'''<br>  
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''[[Denmark|Denmark]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]]'''''Witness Research'''<br>  
  
== Step 1: What do I know?  ==
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Sometimes, finding the next generation can be very difficult. Depending on the circumstances, witness research can be a vital strategy in overcoming the brick wall. The majority of witnesses at a christening are usually some sort of relative of the parents. Witness research is, in a way, a back door for finding the next generation. Follow these steps for conducting witness research.
  
The first step in finding an ancestor in one of Denmark's cities is to determine what you already know. Before beginning research, ask yourself the following questions:  
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'''[https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/images/f/f0/Case_Study_in_Witness_Research.pdf Case Study 1]'''
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'''Case Study 2'''
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'''Case Study 3'''
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== Step 1: What Do You Know  ==
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The first step in witness research is to determine what you already know.&nbsp;Before beginning research, ask yourself the following questions:  
  
 
#What information do I have? How accurate is that information?  
 
#What information do I have? How accurate is that information?  
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== Step 2: Three Questions to Ask ==
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== Step 2: Gather Christenings of All Children ==
  
When you begin to research your city ancestors, there are three important questions to ask yourself. As you strive to answer these questions, research in the city will become easier.  
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Once you know what has been done, the next step is gathering christening records. Let's say you have ''Father A'' and ''Mother B'', and you are trying to find the parents of ''Father A''. The first step you need to do is gather the christening records of ''<u>every</u>'' child of the couple. On the christening records is the witnesses that will be needed for witness research. You want to gather the christening records of every child because each child will have different (and similar) witnesses along with different information about each witness.  
  
==== Question 1: Where in the City Did They Live? ====
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== Step 3: Extract Information ==
  
The most important question to answer is to find where in the city your ancestor lived. Where they lived in the city may determine which jurisdictions and records are available to research in. You can find where in the city a person lived by using:  
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The third step is to extract the information found on each christening record. This includes:  
  
*Church Records
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#The name of each witnesses (even if it says Lars Larsen's wife),
*Censuses
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#The place of residence of each witness
*Tax Records
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#Any descriptive information that may be list (such as occupation, titles, relations, etc.)
*Directories
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#Make a note as to which christening record the witness was found in and the year of the record
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#Any other information that may be listed.
  
==== Question 2: What Was Their Occupation?  ====
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{{Tip
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|A good note of advice is to put all of this information into a table. Tables are great for making analysis easier. See Case Study 1 for a good example of Table analysis}}
  
With many more different types of occupations found in the city than the country, it becomes very important to know your ancestor's occupation. An ancestor's occupation strongly influences what records you may or may not find him/her in. Usually, as you answer Question 1, you will find the answer to Question 2.
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== Step 4: Analyze  ==
  
==== Question 3: What Was Their Social Standing?  ====
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Once you have extracted all of the information, analyze what you have found.
  
As Denmark is a Kingdom, a person's social standing has always been important in the culture. Whether or not a person was rich or poor will also determine what records are available for you to research in. You will usually find an ancestor's social standing when you discover the occupation of the ancestor. Words such as ''fattig'' (poor), ''Madame'' (madame), ''Herr'' (Mr. or lord), ''plejebarn&nbsp;''(foster child), and so forth, are some of the key words you will need to be aware of.
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*Does any of the witnesses have the same surname as ''Father A''?
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*Does any of the witnesses show up in multiple christenings records?
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*Are there any key words given (such as ''faster''&nbsp;= father's sister, Mandens moder = the man's mother, etc.)  
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*Do the majority of the witnesses come from the same village?
  
== Step 3: What records can I search to find my ancestor?<br>  ==
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As you analyze the information, you will notice clues that may either be the parents of Father A or some other relative.
  
{{Tip
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== Step 5: Research the Witnesses  ==
|'''Many Danish records are available online.''' See the [[Danish Research Websites|Danish Research Websites]] for links to the different websites
 
}}
 
  
<br>
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The final step is to research the witnesses that you deem to be possible relatives. One of the quickest ways to begin the research is to find the witness in the nearest census. This step may take a while but it always pays off in the end.
  
#[[Denmark Church Records|<u>Church Records</u>]]: Probably the most important records to use in Danish research are the church records. For centuries the church was in charge of recording the vital information of the populace. Nearly all of the Danish church records have been digitized and made available online for free. See the article [[Digitized Danish Records Online - Arkivalieronline|Digitized Danish Records Online - Arkivalieronline]].&nbsp;<br>
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== Step 6: What Records Can I Use in Witness Research?<br> ==
#[[Denmark Census|<u>Censuses</u>]]: This includes national and Kommune censuses. Censuses not only give a picture of the family as it was at the time the census was taken, but also provides information about where they lived in the city.
 
#[[Denmark Tax Records|Taxes]]: The cities usually had more taxes than the countryside, resulting in more records. Some of these records include fire insurance. Although there is not a large amount of specific genealogical information in these records, they do give a specific address of the individual and helps in finding other records.
 
#<u>Directories</u>: For centuries, cities were the only areas with directories. Directories can include genealogical data along with residence information.
 
#<u></u>[[Denmark Civil Registration|<u>Civil Registration</u>]]: Although civil registration did not become a major record source until the 20th century, and was only available in a few areas of Denmark, they are a very useful record. Often the civil registration records will contain more information than the church records, on the deceased individual.<br>  
 
#[[Denmark Probate Records|<u>Probates</u>]]: Usually, after a person died, a probate was conducted in order to pay the deceased's debts and distribute what's left to the inheritors. these records will usually list when the deceased passed away. If not, usually the probate date is close to the death date.
 
  
<u>Occupational Records</u>  
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{{Tip
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|'''Many Danish records are available online.''' See the [[Danish Research Websites|Danish Research Websites]] for links to the different websites
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}}<br>  
  
#<u>[[Denmark Occupations|Guild Records]]</u>: If your ancestor was some sort of tradesman (butcher, baker, blacksmith, etc.) he may have belonged to a guild. Each guild has a variety of records that contain many different types of genealogical information. These records will be some of the best records to search if your ancestor was a tradesman.
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#[[Denmark Church Records|<u>Church Records</u>]]: In order to do witness research, you will need to use the Danish national church records. Nearly all of the Danish church records have been digitized and made available online for free. See the article [[Digitized Danish Records Online - Arkivalieronline|Digitized Danish Records Online - Arkivalieronline]].&nbsp;<br>  
 
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#[[Denmark Census|<u>Censuses</u>]]: Use Censuses to discover who each witness may be. Censuses not only give a picture of the family as it was at the time the census was taken, but also provides information about where they lived in the city.  
<u>Social Records</u>  
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#[[Denmark Probate Records|<u>Probates</u>]]: Usually, after a person died, a probate was conducted in order to pay the deceased's debts and distribute what's left to the inheritors. these records will usually list when the deceased passed away. If not, usually the probate date is close to the death date.<br>
 
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#<u></u>[[Denmark Civil Registration|<u>Civil Registration</u>]]: Although civil registration did not become a major record source until the 20th century, and was only available in a few areas of Denmark, they are a very useful record. Often the civil registration records will contain more information than the church records, on the deceased individual.<br>
#<u>[[Copenhagen: Poor Records|Poor Records]]</u>: Even if your ancestor was poor, there will be records about them. Very detailed information was kept concerning the poor of a city. These records include foster children records, poor house records, [[Copenhagen: Elderly Care Records|elderly records]], and much more.  
 
#<u>Citizenship Records</u>: For many occupations, it was necessary for the worker to be a citizen of the city. These records are usually found with the Town Hall records. Citizenship records usually give birth information, residence informtion, and occupational information.
 
  
 
<u>If you still cannot find your ancestor in the city try the following records</u>:  
 
<u>If you still cannot find your ancestor in the city try the following records</u>:  
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#[[Denmark Cemeteries|<u>Cemeteries</u>]]: Like all cemeteries, you can usually find the death information of the individual on the headstone. However, it is important to note that in Denmark, a person only remains buried while the family pays for the grave. When there is no one else to pay for the grave the body and headstone is usually removed and taken to the catacombs or crematorium. The headstone is usually recycled.
 
#[[Denmark Cemeteries|<u>Cemeteries</u>]]: Like all cemeteries, you can usually find the death information of the individual on the headstone. However, it is important to note that in Denmark, a person only remains buried while the family pays for the grave. When there is no one else to pay for the grave the body and headstone is usually removed and taken to the catacombs or crematorium. The headstone is usually recycled.
  
== Step 4: What's next?  ==
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== Step 7: What's next?  ==
 
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<div style="float: left; width: 136.3920440673828px;"><br></div>
 
If you need additional guidance, consult some of these other strategies:  
 
If you need additional guidance, consult some of these other strategies:  
  
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| bgcolor="#f9ffa3" |  
7.&nbsp;Emigration information<br>8. Immigration information<br>9.&nbsp;Using witnesses to find the next generation<br>10.&nbsp;Families in Sønderjylland (Southern Denmark)<br>11.&nbsp;[[Denmark:_City_Research|City People and Research]]<br>12. Miscellanious  
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7.&nbsp;Emigration information<br>8. Immigration information<br>9.&nbsp;Using witnesses to find the next generation<br>10.&nbsp;Families in Sønderjylland (Southern Denmark)<br>11.&nbsp;[[Denmark: City Research|City People and Research]]<br>12. Miscellanious  
  
 
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== References  ==
 
== References  ==
 
[[Category:Denmark|Denmark]]
 
 
Statens Arkiver. <u>Lægdsruller</u>. Denmark: Landsarkivet for Sjælland Lolland-Falster &amp; Bornholm, 2008 <br>
 
</div><div style="float: left; width: 22%;">
 
{| border="0" style="background: rgb(255, 255, 240);" class="FCK__ShowTableBorders"
 
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| align="center" style="background: rgb(238, 238, 238); font-family: verdana;" | '''Case Studies'''
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''[[Danish Military Levying Rolls: Case Study 1|Case Study 1]]'''
 
 
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'''[[Danish Military Levying Rolls: Case Study 2|Case Study 2]]'''
 
 
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'''[[Danish Military Levying Rolls: Case Study 3|Case Study 3]]'''
 
 
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'''Case Study 4'''
 
 
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'''Case Study 5'''
 
 
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'''Case Study 6'''
 
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''Case Study 7'''
 
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''Case Study 8'''
 
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''Case Study 9'''
 
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''Case Study 10'''
 
 
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'''Case Study 11'''
 
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
'''Case Study 12'''
 
 
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| align="center" style="background: rgb(238, 238, 238); font-family: verdana;" | '''Access to Lægdsruller'''
 
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| align="left" style="background: rgb(249, 243, 253)" |
 
*Statens Arkiver
 
*FamilySearch
 
  
 
<br>  
 
<br>  
  
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[[Category:Denmark|Denmark]]
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Revision as of 14:27, 28 August 2013

Denmark Gotoarrow.pngWitness Research

Sometimes, finding the next generation can be very difficult. Depending on the circumstances, witness research can be a vital strategy in overcoming the brick wall. The majority of witnesses at a christening are usually some sort of relative of the parents. Witness research is, in a way, a back door for finding the next generation. Follow these steps for conducting witness research.

Case Studies

Case Study 1

Case Study 2

Case Study 3

Step 1: What Do You Know

The first step in witness research is to determine what you already know. Before beginning research, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What information do I have? How accurate is that information?
  2. Are there any living relatives that would already have the information?
  3. Are there secondary sources (such as online Family Trees and Biographies) that would have the information? What have others found?

Whatever information you find, make sure to document where you found that information. Also, make sure to determine whether the information found is merely family hearsay or if it came from original records.

Step 2: Gather Christenings of All Children

Once you know what has been done, the next step is gathering christening records. Let's say you have Father A and Mother B, and you are trying to find the parents of Father A. The first step you need to do is gather the christening records of every child of the couple. On the christening records is the witnesses that will be needed for witness research. You want to gather the christening records of every child because each child will have different (and similar) witnesses along with different information about each witness.

Step 3: Extract Information

The third step is to extract the information found on each christening record. This includes:

  1. The name of each witnesses (even if it says Lars Larsen's wife),
  2. The place of residence of each witness
  3. Any descriptive information that may be list (such as occupation, titles, relations, etc.)
  4. Make a note as to which christening record the witness was found in and the year of the record
  5. Any other information that may be listed.

Step 4: Analyze

Once you have extracted all of the information, analyze what you have found.

  • Does any of the witnesses have the same surname as Father A?
  • Does any of the witnesses show up in multiple christenings records?
  • Are there any key words given (such as faster = father's sister, Mandens moder = the man's mother, etc.)
  • Do the majority of the witnesses come from the same village?

As you analyze the information, you will notice clues that may either be the parents of Father A or some other relative.

Step 5: Research the Witnesses

The final step is to research the witnesses that you deem to be possible relatives. One of the quickest ways to begin the research is to find the witness in the nearest census. This step may take a while but it always pays off in the end.

Step 6: What Records Can I Use in Witness Research?


  1. Church Records: In order to do witness research, you will need to use the Danish national church records. Nearly all of the Danish church records have been digitized and made available online for free. See the article Digitized Danish Records Online - Arkivalieronline
  2. Censuses: Use Censuses to discover who each witness may be. Censuses not only give a picture of the family as it was at the time the census was taken, but also provides information about where they lived in the city.
  3. Probates: Usually, after a person died, a probate was conducted in order to pay the deceased's debts and distribute what's left to the inheritors. these records will usually list when the deceased passed away. If not, usually the probate date is close to the death date.
  4. Civil Registration: Although civil registration did not become a major record source until the 20th century, and was only available in a few areas of Denmark, they are a very useful record. Often the civil registration records will contain more information than the church records, on the deceased individual.

If you still cannot find your ancestor in the city try the following records:

  1. Military Levying Rolls: If an ancestor was still included in the military rolls when they died, their name will usually be crossed out and a death date written in the notes column.
  2. Court Records: there are many different court records and they may not necessarily record vital information, but they can give clues. For example, if the ancestor was murdered, there may be a court proceeding that records the circumstances surrounding the death.
  3. Cemeteries: Like all cemeteries, you can usually find the death information of the individual on the headstone. However, it is important to note that in Denmark, a person only remains buried while the family pays for the grave. When there is no one else to pay for the grave the body and headstone is usually removed and taken to the catacombs or crematorium. The headstone is usually recycled.

Step 7: What's next?


If you need additional guidance, consult some of these other strategies:

   How to Find Information for Danish Ancestors

1. Getting Started
2. Birth Information
3. Marriage Information
4. Death Information
5. Place of Origin in Denmark
6. Moving within Denmark

7. Emigration information
8. Immigration information
9. Using witnesses to find the next generation
10. Families in Sønderjylland (Southern Denmark)
11. City People and Research
12. Miscellanious

References