Swedish Moving Certificates (Flyttningsattest)
Moving certificates (called Flyttnings attest or Flyttnings betyg) were created for people who were moving from their parish to reside in another. The certificate was filled out by the parish priest (from the moving out parish), carried by the person moving, and given to the parish priest who presided over the “moving in parish”. The original purpose was to authorize the person moving to partake of communion with their new parish. The certificates’ offer information such as:
- The name of the person moving
- Birth date
- Birth place
- Marital status
- Knowledge of Christian doctrine
- Vaccination information for Small pox
- References to taxation with the Mantals tax
Once the moving certificate was turned in, the parish priest had the option to keep the original or not. Many moving certificates were discarded or destroyed. Other parish priests chose to file them for future use. If an individual came asking for a moving out certificate, the priest would get the old moving certificate, write additional information on it and then reissue it to the person. A certificate that had been reissued many times can offer a wealth of information!
In later time periods, it became more common to have moving certificates on printed forms. Usually the moving certificates were kept in a general chronological order, loosely stacked by year and month. They supplement the moving in records for a parish.
- The priest who issued the moving out certificate always wrote his name, date, and place of residence somewhere on the note (often at the bottom.) This can be confusing because the priests "parish of residence" is not always the same as the parish that the person is moving from. This is often the case where the priest who presided over multiple parishes in his pastorat has written a moving out certificate for a person moving from one of his parishes (just not the mother parish where the priest resides.)
- A moving out certificate could be issued on an individual or family basis (meaning 1 certificate per person, or 1 certificate used for multiple people of the same family.)
- “Det ursprungliga syftet var att intyga att den som fått attesten (begyget) var berättigad att delta i nattvarden." Släktforska steg för steg, page 51
Clemensson, Per and Andersson, Kjell. Släktforska steg för steg. Falköping, Natur och Kultur/Fakta, 2005