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Friday, January 8, 2010

Additions to Eastern European Records on Record Search


FamilySearch Record Search has just re-published the Slovakia Pre-Ajov Region Church Books (Slovakian and Hungarian Place Names) from 1592 to 1952. To quote the site, the collection contains "images of baptisms/births, marriages, and burials that occured in the Roman Catholic, Evangelical Lutheran, and Reformed Church parishes, as well Jewish congregations within the area of Northeastern Slovakia. The original records, created by local priests of each parish and by Jewish rabbis are located in the State Regional Archive of Prešov. These images were scanned from microfilms. The entries are in Latin, Hungarian, Slovak, and German."

To further quote from the record history:

The edict of the Council of Trent in 1563 mandated that priests create church books. In 1827, duplicate copies were supposed to be deposited in the bishop’s consistory archive. Starting in 1869, the civil authorities took charge of keeping records of births, marriages, and deaths, although the individual churches continued to actually record these events. The official legal copy was kept by local officials. This action was prompted when many of the clergy refused to perform Catholic rites for non-Catholics. Everyone was registered under this new system (not only Catholics or Protestants).

In 1949, all of the church books of Slovakia were nationalized. In 1952 the state began to transfer the books to one of seven state regional archives (Štátné oblastné arhívy): Prešov, Košice, Bratislava, Levoča, Nitra, Banská Bystrica, and Bytča.

Many church books from earlier time periods were lost during the Turkish invasions and Slovak rebellions around 1600-1700. Those which carry over past the early 1900's (even though they may have begun earlier) are still located in local city halls or other institutions. The Family History Library has copies of almost all birth, marriage, and death registers for the following religions: Catholic (the majority religion), Evangelical Lutheran, Reformed, Jewish, Greek Catholic, and Orthodox. Filming of the records was done from 1991-2009. The images in this collection are from those films.

The church books cover a majority of the population.

Another valuable site from Genealogylinks.net gives a list of Slovak Republic Genealogy Links.

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