Helmut Finckbein research in Baiersbronn, Wuerttemberg

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For more than 40 years, Helmut Finckbein, an engineer living in Berlin, Germany, spent all of his spare time researching the area in and around Baiersbronn in the Schwarzwald area of what is now Baden-Wuerttemberg.  His work was methodical, precise, and thorough; he became an expert on many of the families in the area including his own, the Finckbeiners.  He frequently shared his research with fellow generalogist, both amateur and professional, and also contributed numerous articles to genealogical and local interest publications.

By the mid-1970s Herr Finckbein had compiled about 1,450 families exactly as they appeared in the original records, drawing, of course, from all available sources.  Many Latter-day Saints have benefitted from his work back into the 1950s, even though Herr Finckbein was a Lutheran and neither he nor his family fully understood why he was doing this tremendous work.

For over thirty years I have been submitting names from The Finckbein File to the Church for temple ordinances.  As the technology has changed and improved I have added much detail to those records, all of which now appear in new.FamilySearch.org and in Family Tree.  Because new.FamilySearch.org permits the addition of notes through the synchronization process with software like Ancestral Quest, in recent months I have added notes to housands of Finckbein File entries already on the database.  In almost every case there were few or no useable notes available through Family Search; my efforts should help eliminate a great deal of confusion that has developed as work has been duplicated time after time.

In the early 1980s Herr Finckbein gave me the entire Finckbein File, with all 1,450 families. I hope to complete the task of placing the entire Finckbein File onto Family Tree by the end of 2015.  The primary lines of descent have been completed; most lines stop after the Thirty Years' War and none proceed beyond about 1875. Much of what I am doing in 2012 involves making sure all names are synchronized with full notes and adding the remaining few (approximately 3,000-4,000 names not necessarily in direct line of descent, many of which came from or departed to places outside the Baiersbronn area.

Feel free to email me when you find my notes on new.FamilySearch.org or Family Tree

Charles Kraut