Hungary, Catholic Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at
Access the records: Hungary Roman Catholic Christenings .

Title in the Language of the Records

Magyar Katolikus Egyházi Keresztelési Anyakönyvek

Ungar, Katholische Kirchenbücher

Collection Time Period

This collection of church records includes baptisms for the years 1636 to 1895.

Record Description

The text of these records varies between Latin, Hungarian, and German. Earlier records hold less information than more contemporary records.

Record Content

The key genealogical facts found on most baptism records include the following:

  • Place and date of baptism
  • Infant’s name
  • Sometimes the birth date
  • Names of the father and mother
  • Names of godparents
  • Sometimes names of grandparents
  • Residence

How to Use the Record

Begin your search by finding your ancestors in indexes. Use the locator information found in the index (such as page, entry, or certificate number) to locate your ancestors in the records. This will help you access a specific record quickly. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies such as altered spellings or misinterpretations. If the information was scanned, there may also be optical character recognition errors.

When searching the index, it is helpful to know the following:

  • The county where the birth or baptism occurred
  • The name of the person at the time of the event
  • The approximate event date
  • The event place

After you find the record, compare the information 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.

For example:

  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
  • The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other counties.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

Keep in mind:

  • The information in the records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the later records.

If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

Record History

Roman Catholic parishes were first required to keep church registers in 1563 by order of the Council of Trent. Unfortunately, most of Hungary was under Turkish rule at that time and was unable to comply. Only a few Franciscan registers exist from the Turkish period, and these start in the 1660s. Most Catholic records begin shortly after the Turks departed in 1686. Prior to 1781, all vital records were kept by the Roman Catholic Church; after 1781, you must know the religious affiliation of your ancestors to find their records. Church records are the property of the state and are stored in the archives of the various Hungarian counties under direction of the National Archives of Hungary [Országos Leveltár] in Budapest.

Why the Record Was Created

Church registers were created to record the baptism, marriage, and death in the parishioner’s life. Before 1781, the Roman Catholic Church was charged with keeping records for individuals from all religions, including the Jews.

Record Reliability

Church records were official records and are some of the most reliable sources of information available for genealogical research in Hungary.

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 Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to 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.

Related Websites

Your Guide to Researching Hungarian Ancestors

Related Wiki Articles

Contributing to This Article

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 FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections

Example of a Source Citation for a Record Found in This Collection

"Hungary Catholic Church Records." index and images, FamilySearch ( accessed 24 March 2011). entry for Josephus Valog, baptized 12 January 1887; citing Church Records, FHL microfilm 4,510,861; Magyar Orszagos Leveltar, Hungary.

Citation for This Collection

The citation below refers to the original source of the data and images published on Historical Records. It may include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.

“Hungary Roman Catholic Christenings”, index, FamilySearch, 2010; from Magyar Orszagos Leveltar, Hungary. “Hungary Roman Catholic christenings”. Magyar Orszagos Leveltar, Hungary. FHL microfilm reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA.

Information about creating source citations for FamilySearch Historical Collections is listed in the wiki article Help:How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.