Saturday, August 30, 2014

Psotník. Why did so many children die?

Psotník. Božec. Fraiß. Fraißen. These are the most common names for a death cause which is written in many records for dead children. And there were many children dying in the past, almost 50 percent of all children born. Terrible number, I know. But - what this death cause means? What is behind it?

Monday, August 25, 2014

Death causes dictionary

As I was writing a blog post about epidemies, I was already thinking about creating basic dictionary of death causes - Czech-German-English dictionary, because many of parishes in Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia had parish books in German. And here it is. These are just those most common death causes as taken from parish books of Horní Záhoří (South Bohemia), Slabce (Central Bohemia), Nový Přerov (Moravia) and Kateřinky (Silesia).

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Plague, cholera, typhus. Epidemies in Czech past

You have most probably seen them if you have already browsed through the death registries - tens of deaths in really short time, even in small parishes where are few deaths per year. Epidemies decimated our ancestors from time to time and here is overview of illnesses which caused epidemies in the past.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Stabile cadaster maps, part II

As I mentioned in my previous blog post about stabile cadaster, stabile cadaster maps contain many information useful for anyone interested in family history research. So - what exactly is shown on the maps? What information can you find there? And how to use it in your research?

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Farmhands, grooms, day labourers - rural occupations

I have explained who one hide of land owner was in one of the previous posts and it (of course) raised another questions. Who was a "podruh"? What about "čeledín"? And "domkář" or "nádeník"? What these people did, where they lived? Did they own any property? Here are the answers.

Czech Archives on Internet

Updated! All Czech archives are publishing the registries (parish books) online nowadays. The first archives to start was the State Regional Archives in Trebon in 2008 and was followed by the other archives during the following years. Not all registries are available yet, but they should be available in few years time. Here are the links to the digital archives (with comments).
To determine which archive you need, you need to find out where was the village of your ancestors located - you may use and/or gazetteer on (you need registration, but it's for free), but sometimes there are more villages of the same name or it was renamed, so feel free to ask in our FB group or contact us in the message board below.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Czechoslovak legions in WWI. and database of legionaries

As I wrote a post about Czech military service in the past I decided to add one more post with similar topic, this time about Czech legionaries serving in the World War I. Many of Czech soldiers decided (or were forced) to leave Austrian army during the "Great War" - how is WWI. called in their memories - and join foreign legions in France, Italy or Russia. And there is database of these legionaries available online.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

History of villages: Křesetice, Bohemia

Křesetice is located in Kutná Hora district in the Central Bohemia region, about four kilometers south from Kutná Hora. It's placed in the valley of Křenovka creek surrounded by fields. Its name comes from the name of laird Křesata - it meant his village, village of his serfs.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Czech military service in the past

Rose Green asked if I can write a bit about Czech military service history. She had several questions and I decided to answer at least some of them. So, here are Rose's questions: How common the military service was? Was it ever mandatory, and if so, for how long? Did they generally serve locally, or were they sent far away? How common was it for a soldier to marry a local girl? And did the soldiers bring spouses and children along? Let's see if I'm able to answer these questions.