Žilina Region (Žilinský kraj), Slovakia Genealogy

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Europe Gotoarrow.png Slovakia Gotoarrow.png Žilina Region (Žilinský kraj), Slovakia Genealogy
Guide to Žilina Region (Žilinský kraj),Slovakia ancestry, family history, and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, and military records.

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Žilina from the second half of the 10th century until 1918, was part of the Kingdom of Hungary.
It was one of the first municipalities to sign the Martin Declaration on 30 October 1918, and until March 1919, it was the seat of the Slovak government. On 6 October 1938, shortly after the Munich Agreement, the autonomy of Slovakia within Czechoslovakia was declared in Žilina.
During World War II, Žilina was captured on 30 April 1945 by Czechoslovak and Soviet troops, after that it became part of Czechoslovakia.

Church Records

Church records are the prime source for information about the vital events in an individual's life. This information can be used to compile pedigrees and family groups. They identify children, spouses, parents, and often grandparents as well as dates and places of vital events. They establish individual identity and are excellent sources for linking generations and identifying relationships.

  • Christening registers – infant's name, name and surname of father and mother, christening date (most also give the birth date); sometimes names of grandparents; names of godparents.
  • Marriage registers – names of groom and bride, date of marriage, often include ages, residences, occupations, previous marital status, names of parents, sometimes the birthplace; names of witnesses.
  • Burial registersname of the deceased, date and place of death and burial, residence; sometimes cause of death, names of survivors, occasionally the date and place of birth.

In December of 1949, all church vital records were declared state property. In 1952 the state began centralizing all these records into state archives (štátné archívy). In many cases records as late as the 1940s have been placed in state regional archives. Registers more recent than those in the state archives are still at local city or subdistrict registration offices (matričné úrady). 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.

1. First search the indexed and online digitized copies of the church records.

2. If the records for either the parish or the time period you need are not in the online collections, try to find them in microfilmed records of the Family History Library.

Currently, these microfilms are being digitized, and plans are to complete that project by 2020. Check back occasionally to see if your records have become available. In the meantime, some of them might be available at a Family History Center near you.
To find a microfilm:

a. Click on this link to see a list of records for Slovakia, Žilina.
b. Click on "Church Records" topic. Click on the blue links to specific record titles.
c. Choose the correct event and time period for your ancestor.
d. Some combination of these icons will appear at the far right of the microfilm listed for the record. FHL icons.png. The magnifying glass indicates that the microfilm is indexed. Clicking on the magnifying glass will take you to the index. Clicking on the camera will take you to an online digital copy of the microfilm.

3. Try contacting the regional archives that should have collected the records for Žilina.

In some cases, parish records were collected after the major filming effort. If records for your parish of interest are not microfilmed, next contact the archives to ask about the location of the records:

Štátny archív v Žiline so sídlom v Bytči
Kastiel, S.Sakalovej 106/3
014 01 Bytča

Telephone: 041/5533311
Fax: 041/5533622
E-mail: archiv@saby.vs.sk
Website: http://www.minv.sk/?statny-archiv-v-bytci

The Slovak Letter Writing Guide will help with wording requests in Slovakian, including PDF form you can use for your request.

Word Lists - Language Aids

Search Strategy

  • Search for the relative or ancestor you selected. When you find his birth record, search for the births of his brothers and sisters.
  • Next, search for the marriage of his parents. The marriage record will have information that will often help you find the birth records of the parents.
  • You can estimate the ages of the parents and determine a birth year to search for their birth records.
  • Search the death registers for all known family members.
  • Repeat this process for both the father and the mother, starting with their birth records, then their siblings' births, then their parents' marriages, and so on.
  • If earlier generations (parents, grandparents, etc.) do not appear in the records, search neighboring parishes.
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