Saturday, December 26, 2015

2015

There were 20 new posts this year. 
15 new registered readers.
221 new comments (wow). 

Thanks to all of you who read this blog and use it for your research. We are happy we can help you trace your Czech ancestors, help you find answers to your questions. 

Special thanks belong to our supporters - there were 4 donations done this year and we really appreciate them. These donations help us find some more time to write new blog posts so we can provide you more interesting information from Czech past. 

And what can you expect next year? I'd like to finish third part of "Houses of our ancestors" - town houses. I'd also like to show you how the localization research is done (that's the type of research when we don't know where exactly the family came from). Another post I plan will be about craftmen and their work. 

I would also like to ask you - what would you appreciate reading in this blog? What topics are interesting for you? 
I think there is much from Czech history and family research covered, that's why I'm asking - to be sure I'm not missing bits important for the research. 


Thanks and good luck in your research in 2016!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Oh no, that parish book is still in Municipal Office!

How well I know that situation. I need a record from the end of 19th or beginning of 20th century which should be in the archives - but it's still in the parish book which is stored in local municipal office. It's not so bad if the municipal office is near, but if I would have to travel 150 miles to get one parish record, I have to think about it twice. And this is still quite easy for me as I'm living in the Czech Republic. So - what to do in such cases?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Political districts, court districts, district offices...

All (well, almost) you always wanted to know about districts in Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia. Or at least those important bits which could make your research a bit easier. Not much, but at least a bit. The districts as we know them were created in the middle of 19th century, during huge administrative reform initiated by the Emperor František Josef I. Czech lands were divided into several regions and number of domains before this reform. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Houses of our ancestors, part II. - cottages and small houses

I promised another blog post about houses where our ancestors lived - about cottages and small houses. And here it is. So - what were the small houses like? How our ancestors lived there, how much space they had?

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Houses of our ancestors, part I. - farm houses

I received some comments mentioning ancestors of those who wrote them didn't live in small houses, they lived in farm houses, so what I presented was quite extreme case. Well, it wasn't. There are two different things - large (farm) house and large area for living. Do you think that if the house was large, the living area was also large? Really? Let's take a look on some examples.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

One family, two families, few more adults...

Curious what the heading is about? I hope so. How many people live in your house? You, your partner or husband or wife, your kids? Maybe parents or one of the kids with his or her family? Most houses/flats hold just one family today. But was it the same in the past? You probably already know the answer: No, it wasn't. I have here one excellent example from 19th and beginning of 20th century which will provide you an idea how our ancestors lived.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Don't forget there are marriage church records!

There is one question I keep repeating every time someone asks about finding details about their family: "Do you have church record of their marriage?"

Monday, May 11, 2015

Czech language in the past (updated)

Michaela is preparing long post about traps of Czech spelling. I anyway decided to write short blog post about changes which are those most visible in registries. There are some changes which can complicate your research if you are not aware of them. So, let's take a look on them.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Bez vyznání - without religious affiliation

These are thousand of such notes in Czech registries and you have probably already seen them. 

Vystoupil z církve katolické k bezvyznání dle přípisu polit. správy v Přešticích 2/8 1926 č. 22844. 

Vystoupil z církve a zůstal bez vyznání, okr. pol. spr. v Plzni dto 24/5 1921 č. 29631. 

Jest bez vyznání dle okres. hejtm. v Rokycanech č. 61899 z 29./12.1921. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter Monday

There are many traditions connected to Easter in the Czech Republic, but just a few of them are still living in majority of society. And most of those are connected to Easter Monday even the most important day for Christians is Easter Sunday. So, which traditions are still kept even in Czech "atheistic" society?

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Open-air museum in Pohleď

Open-air museums are very popular part of Czech heritage. There is one called Michalův statek (Michal's farm) in Pohleď in Vysočina region, not far away from our home. They are presenting life as it was in 19th century, including local traditions. We visited it today and I made some photos there which I want to share with you.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

German and Czech names of places, towns and villages (updated)

There is plenty of villages in the area of what is today called Czech Republic which were known under two different names in the past, one Czech and one German. This was caused mainly by presence of two large groups of inhabitants in the area. This fact has its roots deeply in the middle ages.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Mistakes in parish books

Well, well, well. You already bumped into them, right? Mistakes, mistakes, mistakes. Wrong names, wrong surnames, wrong places, wrong age, wrong anything. I already wrote a blog post about age, but let's take a look on those other incorrections. This post is more or less valid for whole Europe, not only Czech parish books as we all are just humans and we make mistakes.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Old Czech (and Slovak) postcards and photos

Those of you who are on Facebook maybe already noticed them - groups or pages focused on posting old photos, postcards, drawings and other pictures from Czech Republic (and also Slovakia). I have some of these pages as my favorites and I wanted to share them with you. There are quite many of them so I'll mention only those which I really like - and links to the rest are at the end of this blog post.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Maps of Czech catholic parishes

Czech Catholic church system is divided among seven (arch)episcopates which have their residencies in Prague, České Budějovice (Budweis), Plzeň (Pilsen), Litoměřice, Hradec Králové, Brno, Olomouc and Ostrava/Opava. All parishes in the Czech Republic are divided among these episcopates - and here are maps of these (arch)episcopates divided to parishes. These maps can help you when you need to search surrounding parishes for marriage or birth records. Here is a link to zip file with all the maps packed: Packed ZIP file of Czech parish maps.

Monday, January 19, 2015

First names in parish books

I had similar blog post (web page) on my old website. As I think this overview is quite useful, I decided to add it to this blog as a specific post. So - how did the names look like in registries? Here is a selection of most common first names as I collected them few years ago for my Czech personal genealogical website. It shows names in three different time periods and two or three different writing styles.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Cheap tickets to America! Ads in old newspapers

It was one of the first times I read about emigration to U.S. and other countries in 19th century when I found out a mention about emigration advertisements which were published in Czech newspapers. These ads offered cheap tickets, full service connected to emigration and much more. I never paid to much attention to this until I bumped into one of such ads in old newspapers when looking for another article. 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Protestants in Bohemia and Moravia after 1781

When Patent of Toleration was issued by Emperor Josef II. in 1781, about 80 thousands of people living in Bohemia and Moravia decided to change the church in next few years - it was just 2 percent of Czech population. The recatholization had its impact when comparing the numbers before Thirty years war and after 1781. This blog post focuses on years 1781 to 1918.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Jewish roots in Bohemia and Moravia

Czech genealogical research is quite easy if your ancestors were Catholic or Protestants. But what if they were Jews? Well, the research is not too easy in such case. There are several reasons - so let's take a look on Czech-Jewish history and genealogical research and what's available for this specific population group.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Raschwitz or Rašovice? Municipality lexicon of Litoměřice archives

There are many useful tools available online, some created by the volunteers and genealogy fans, other created by the archives themselves. One of those which I see as extremely useful and were created by the archives, is the Municipality lexicon of Litoměřice archives which is available on website http://www.soalitomerice.cz/slovnik/slovnik.php?lang=en.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Czechs and religion

I was asked how is it possible that so many Czech people don't belong to any of the churches. What caused current situation when almost 70 percent of whole Czech population isn't registered in any of the existing churches? Why are so many people in the Czech Republic atheists? I'll try to answer these questions.