Province of Saxony (Provinz Sachsen), German Empire Genealogy
Guide to Province of Saxony (Provinz Sachsen), German Empire ancestry, family history, and genealogy before 1945: birth records, marriage records, death records, family history, and military records.
Historical Background[edit | edit source]
- The Province of Saxony (German: Provinz Sachsen), also known as Prussian Saxony(Preußische Sachsen) was a province of the Kingdom of Prussia and later the Free State of Prussia from 1816 until 1945. Its capital was Magdeburg. The Province of Saxony was one of the richest regions of Prussia, with highly developed agriculture and industry.
- The majority of the population was Protestant, with a Catholic minority (about 8% as of 1905) considered part of the diocese of Paderborn.
- In 1945, the Soviet military administration combined Magdeburg and Halle-Merseburg with the State of Anhalt into the Province of Saxony-Anhalt, with Halle as its capital. The eastern part of the Blankenburg exclave of Brunswick and the Thuringian exclave of Allstedt were also added to Saxony-Anhalt. In 1947, Saxony-Anhalt became a state. Wikipedia
Getting Started[edit | edit source]
Getting Started with Germany Research
Links to articles on getting started with German research:
Germany Research Tools
Links to tools and websites that assist in German research:
Historical Geography[edit | edit source]
Preussen, Sachsen Note: "Sachsen "(without Preussen) is used for the Kingdom of Saxony.
Finding Birth, Marriage, and Death Records for Province of Saxony (Provinz Sachsen)[edit | edit source]
Most of the information you need to identify you ancestors and their families will be found in two major record groups: civil registration and church records. To locate these records, follow the instructions in these Wiki articles.
1. Find the name of your ancestor's town in family history records.[edit | edit source]
Records were kept on the local level. You must know the town where your ancestor lived. If your ancestor was a United States Immigrant, use the information in the Wiki article Germany Finding Town of Origin to find evidence of the name of the town where your ancestors lived in Germany.
2. Use gazetteers and/or parish inventories to learn more important details.[edit | edit source]
Your ancestor's town might have been too small to have its own parish church or civil registration office. Find the location of the Catholic or Lutheran (Evangelical) parish that served your ancestor's locality. Find the name of the civil registration office (standesamt) that serves your ancestor's locality. Use the Wiki article Studying Your German Locality for step-by-step instructions.
Germany was first unified as a nation in 1871. An important gazetteer, Meyers Orts- und Verkehrs-lexikon des deutschen Reichs, "Meyer's Gazetter" for short, details the place names of villages, towns, counties (kreise), and higher jurisdictions used at that time. In the Research Wiki, FamilySearch Catalog, and FamilySearch Historical Records, the records of Germany are organized using those place names.
At the end of both World Wars, the boundaries of the states were changed dramatically, as areas of Germany were distributed among the Allied nations. Eventually, after re-unification in 1990, the states of Germany settled into what they are today. It is also necessary to understand Germany by this system, as it affects the locations of civil registration offices, archives, and mailing addresses used in correspondence searches.
3. For birth, marriage, and death records from 1874 on, use civil registration.[edit | edit source]
Follow the instructions in German Empire Civil Registration.
4. For baptism, marriage, and death records, use church records or parish registers.[edit | edit source]
Follow the instructions in German Empire Church Records.
More Research Strategies and Tools[edit | edit source]
- Germany Online Classes and Tutorials
- Reading German Handwritten Records Practice exercises to build your skills and confidence.
- Old German Script Transcriber (alte deutsche Handschriften): See your family names in the script of the era. Type your name or other word into the font generator tool. Click on the 8 different fonts. Save the image to your computer and use it as you work with old Germanic records.
- Finding Aids for German Records
- Research Tips and Strategies
- Print these handouts for ready reference when reading German Handwriting:
- Kurrent Letters Handout
- Numbers Handout
- Birth Records Handout
- Marriage Records Handout
- Death Records Handout
- Days and Months Handout
- Common Symbols Handout
- Common Abbreviations Handout
- List of Names in Old German Script A comprehensive list of German given names, written in old script, with possible variations.
- Fraktur Font--Many forms and books are printed in this font.
- German Research, BYU Independent Study, no cost.