Welcome to the new edition of the German Genealogy Quarterly eNewsletter – the German Schrift! This newsletter will highlight the German Research Discussion Group, featured German resources, research tips, and interesting places to visit.
Midwest Genealogy Center: May German SCHRIFT
German Research Discussion Group April 2019 Meeting Notes:
First, the International German Genealogy Conference in Sacramento, California, is quickly approaching (June 15-17, 2019), and we have a few members attending. Hopefully, they will be willing to share with us their observations, and pictures from this huge and popular conference.
Last session, we had a large attendance despite the fact that it was a holiday weekend (the Saturday before Easter).
During the first hour, Bob and Christl led an introduction of the first-time attendants, which was followed by various announcements, including introduction of this new German Schrift newsletter. In the second hour, Lois gave us a review of Germans from Russia and history of their settlements in the Russian lands. A good read is the book Wir Wollen Deutsche Bleiben (We Want to Remain German: The Story of the Volga Germans) by George J. Walters. We might be discussing this interesting subject again next year, and some of you have already shown an interest in giving us your review of this unique group of Germans, your knowledge, as you are tracing your own roots to either Russia, Volhynia, Bessarabia, or other places in Europe.
The next German Research Discusion Group meeting will be on Saturday, July 20, 2019, at 2:00 p.m.
During the first hour, we will have the usual announcements and introduction of new attendants. In the second hour, we will focus on your research and experiences. Pat will give us a report on her recent trip to Germany with the Family Tree Tours agency. Then, Sylvia will share with us her discovery of her whole family clan through the Family Village Book. She will show us the website where there are digitized copies of some of the Ortssipenbücher (Family Lineage Books).
If you are planning to attend the next discussion group meeting, you can register here.
Journal of the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia This is a newsletter of the aforementioned international society, which has a very informative website. And because our April session was partially dedicated to Germans from Russia, some of you might find this information helpful.
This periodical started to publish articles from Olga Litzenberger’s History of the Volga German Settlements, Part 1. Lutherans and the latest two issues contain articles about Lutherans of Reinwald, now Starizkoje, Saratov Region, and Germans of Konstantinovskaya Volost: From the Kingdom of Poland to Samarskaya Gubernia (1864-1917). This periodical is currently on display at MGC.
This is a selection of stories of German-Bohemians, taken from the newsletters published by this society for many years. If your German ancestors lived in Bohemia, Moravia, Mährisch-Schlesien, or Czech Silesia region, you may find this book very informative. It gives you a larger picture than just filling the family tree chart with names and dates.
The Midwest Genealogy Center offers the Czech and Slovak Genealogy Research Class twice a year The next one is scheduled for May 22, 2019, and it may help with tracking your German-Bohemians ancestors.
The German so "Forty–Eighters" played an important role in German-American history. They came after a failed revolution in Europe, usually well-educated, and continued to spread their vision and ideas for a better society on the American continent. They quickly grew to be the leaders in political and cultural life on U.S. soil. They became teachers and professors, and founded newspapers and periodicals. They also contributed greatly to various institutions and branches of life in general. Use this book to see if you have one of these German scholars in your family tree.
Study the Historyof all the places where your ancestor lived and settled, both in the US and abroad. If you know at least a former German province, read a history of that place. It gives you clues, such as why they left at a particular period of time, and why they made this decision, especially if they knew they may never see their parents and other loved ones again.
Online resource tip:
If your German ancestors came from Grand Duchy of Posen as part of the Kingdom of Prussia (1815-1848) or Province of Posen (1848-1919), now Poznań, Poland, you can check the German marriages of this region, here.
Guidance with your genealogy needs:
This time a message for Jennifer: Check German records from Prussia (now in Poland) on this Polish website. Click the magnifying glass at the top right corner, and type the surname. If there are original images, click the word “Skan” next to the name in the yellow box. Usually the last images in the file contain handwritten indexes, which are of a tremendous help.
Places to Visit
Rediscover the former German town of Hamburg, Missouri, near St. Charles (not to be confused with the New Hamburg, Missouri). Hamburg was a small town founded by German immigrants in the 1800s. The community was thriving until WWII when all the inhabitants had to leave their houses because of the construction of a WWII plant. Nothing indicates there once was a town except a German cemetery which is preserved. The index of some of those buried there can be found on this website.
To learn more, visit the Weldon Spring Site and Interpretive Center in St. Charles County, Missouri. The exhibition illustrates the history of this former German town, along with other two others, Howell and Tonnerville. The descendants meet every year and visit the area. Are you one of them? There is a five-minute video online, made in cooperation with the Missouri Humanities Council and Missouri Life. Watch the tribute in remembrance of the descendants of this former community here.
Fun and Learn
What is this German word? Dust off that German dictionary from your shelf.
S t _ _ m b _ _ m (Family Tree)
K _ _ ch _ (Church)
A _ t (Office, District)
H _ _ m (Home)
H _ _ m _ t (Homeland)
H _ _ r _ t _ n (Get Married)
“Was du heute kannst besorgen,
das verschiebe nicht auf morgen!” which means
“Don’t put off for tomorrow what can be done today!”