Schleswig-Holstein, Germany Genealogy
|Local Research Resources|
Guide to Schleswig-Holstein ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.
- 1 How to Find Birth, Marriage, and Death Records in Schleswig-Holstein
- 2 See also, Lübeck
- 3 For German Research, You Must Know Your Ancestors' Town
- 4 Research to Find the Town
- 5 If You Know the Town, Next Use Meyers Gazetteer
- 6 Figure Out the Parish for Your Town
- 7 Jurisdictions
- 8 Research Tools
How to Find Birth, Marriage, and Death Records in Schleswig-Holstein
Civil Registration Records
- 1874-1983 - Germany, Schleswig-Holstein, Kreis Steinburg, Civil Registration, 1874-1983 at FamilySearch — index and images
See also, Lübeck
A separate series of articles are available on the wiki for Lübeck, a region of Schleswig-Holstein that was a different state of the German Empire until 1945.
For German Research, You Must Know Your Ancestors' Town
- To begin using the records of Germany, knowing that your family came from Schleswig-Holstein will not be enough to use the records of Germany. Records are kept on the local level, so you will have to know the town they lived in.
- Details about the town will also help:
- the county or "Kreis" of that town,
- where the closest Evangelical Lutheran or Catholic parish church was (depending on their religion),
- where the civil registration office ("Standesamt") was, and
- if you have only a village name, you will need the name of the larger town it was part of.
Research to Find the Town
If you do not yet know the name of the town of your ancestor's birth, there are well-known strategies for a thorough hunt for it.
- Use Gathering Information to Locate Place of Origin as a guide in exhausting every possible record to find what you need.
- Or watch this webinar: Online Class: Finding German Places of Origin
- Schleswig-Holstein Immigrants in New Amsterdam/New York,1636 - 1667.
- Das Nordfriesische Auswanderer-Archiv (North Friesland Emigrants), Images and no index.
- Emigration out of Schleswig-Holstein, 19th century, Index.
- Dithmarschen Emigration
If You Know the Town, Next Use Meyers Gazetteer
Once you know the town name you need, the other facts you need are contained in Meyers Orts- und Verkehrs-lexikon des deutschen Reichs, the gazetteer on which the FamilySearch catalog for Germany is based.
- Use MeyersGaz, the digital gazetteer, to find the details you need, particularly the Kreis (county) it belonged to, found after "Kr".
- MeyersGaz Help Guide
- Abbreviation Table
Here is part of an entry from MeyersGaz.org. (The whole entry can be studied at Heusenstamm, MeyersGaz.)
Figure Out the Parish for Your Town
Your town might be too small to have its own parish church. Or it might have a Catholic church, but the Lutheran church is in a neighboring town. You might have to do a little reference work to determine where the church (and therefore the church records) was for your ancestors' town. Methods for doing this are described in:
From these historic areas now in
From the province of Schleswig-Holstein, these areas were annexed to Hamburg in 1937-8
Areas Now in Denmark, By Kreis