Canton Basel-Landschaft, Switzerland Genealogy
Guide to Canton Basel-Landschaft ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.
|Switzerland Wiki Topics|
|Local Research Resources|
Getting Started[edit | edit source]
If you are new to Swiss research, you should watch this introductory course. Then study the articles on church records and civil registration, as almost all of your research will be in those two record groups.
History[edit | edit source]
There are settlement traces on the Rhine from the early 5th century BC which was called the La Tène period.
In 1792, the Republic of Rauracia, a revolutionary French client republic, was created and it lasted until 1793. After three years of political agitation and a short civil war in 1833 the disadvantaged countryside seceded from the Canton of Basel, forming the half canton of Basel-Landschaft.
Basel has often been the site of peace negotiations and other international meetings. The Treaty of Basel in 1499 ended the Swabian War. Two years later Basel joined the Swiss Confederation. The Peace of Basel in 1795 between the French Republic and Prussia and Spain ended the First Coalition against France during the French Revolutionary Wars.
In more recent times, the World Zionist Organization held its first congress in Basel from August 29 through August 31, 1897. Because of the Balkan Wars, the Second International held an extraordinary congress at Basel in 1912.
Civil Registration[edit | edit source]
Civil registration began in Canton Basel-Landschaft in 1827. To understand the records available, read the Wiki article, Switzerland Civil Registration.
- Addresses for Civil Registration (ZivilStandesamt) Offices (.pdf)
- You will be able to write your request in German with the help of the German Letter Writing Guide.
Church Records[edit | edit source]
Records are available online at the Basel Landschaft Archive. To access the records, click on the name of the parish. The records are then organized by religion; click on the book of interest. You can then browse the images.
FamilySearch has also digitized some records for Basel-Landschaft. They can be accessed from the FamilySearch Catalog (click on Places within Switzerland, Baselland to select the parish). There may be restrictions on viewing these records.
There are partial indexes of church records on FamilySearch. The majority of these partial indexes cover baptisms and marriages. They can be accessed in these collections:
- Switzerland, Baptisms, 1491-1940. FamilySearch Historical Records. Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland, Baptisms, 1491-1940. MyHeritage.com, ($). Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland, Baptisms, 1491-1940. Ancestry.com, ($). Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland, Marriages, 1532-1910. FamilySearch Historical Records. Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland, Marriages, 1532-1910. My Heritage.com, ($). Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland, Marriages, 1532-1910. Ancestry.com, ($). Incomplete. Index.
- Switzerland Burials, 1613-1875. FamilySearch Historical Records Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland Burials, 1613-1875. MyHeritage. ($). Index. Incomplete.
- Switzerland Burials, 1613-1875. Ancestry.com. Incomplete. Index. ($).
For information on the coverage and content of church records, read Switzerland Church Records.
FamilySearch Microfilmed/Digitized Records[edit | edit source]
Several parish records have been microfilmed and are currently being digitized. Eventually, all of them will be digitized, so check back frequently.These records may have a restriction for use only at a Family History Center near you.
- Click on Switzerland, Baselland FamilySearch Catalog.
- Open the list "Places within Switzerland, Baselland". Select your town.
- A list of record categories will open up. Click on "Church records".
- A list of available records will appear. Click on the record title you are interested in searching.
- Scroll down to the list of microfilm numbers. Some combination of these icons will appear at the far right of the microfilm listed for the record. . 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.
Reading the Records[edit | edit source]
- German Genealogical Word List
- Swiss Dialect Genealogical Word List
- Reading German Handwritten Records
- Old German Script
Search Strategy[edit | edit source]
This search strategy will help you determine what to write for. Limit tour requests to just one of these steps at a time. Once you have established that the parish is cooperative and perhaps more willing to do more extensive research (for a fee), you might be able to ask them for more at a time.
- 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.