Hannover Military Records

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Hannover work group on military history

The work group is called Arbeitskreis Hannoversche Militärgeschichte and has published some important information re. military muster rolls, recruitments etc. of Hannover soldiers. The group has put together helpful tips on how to go about researching an ancestor who had to serve in the military at certain times. Following are some lists of records and what they contain:

List of officers with name, rank, regiment, dates and release from services

Haupt-Rollen, Familienrollen, Musterrollen (until approx. 1750)
List of men, sergeants and officers (mostly kept separately) with names, rank, place of origin and details of service

Stammrollen (approx. 1750-1866)
List of men, sergeants and officers in separate lists with names, rank, place of origin, age, period of service, religion, possible profession, whether married, number of children, remarks, date of recruitment (beginning with the end of the 18th century), height (beginning with the end of the 18th century, personal description (started in the 19th century), name of father (starting in 1820)

List of men and sergeants of a unit with names and height.

Dairies of companies, battalions or regiments with all important events.

Konskriptionslisten des Königreichs Westphalen bzw. Kaiserreich Frankreich während der Besetzung Hannovers 1808-1813 (Conscriptions while Hannover was under the rule of France)

A list of the male population for the birth years 1788-1793 according to parishes with names, birth dates, height, profession, birth place and place of residence, parents with further information if appropriate, financial circumstances, possible retractions (if there was a health issue, or brothers were serving in the military)

Listen der Landwehrpflichtigen (1813-1815)
List of the male population of the age 18-40, separated in groups by age 18-30 and age 30-40 with names, age, birth place, profession, state of health, waivers, inspections by superiors, decisions by the commissioners, remarks

Landsturmlisten (1815)
List of those men from a administrative or judicial district or a town who were eligible for military service separated by ages 17-40 (First class) and 41-50 (Second class) with names, age, profession, residence, whether married or not, number of children, remarks.

Listen der Landwehrpflichtigen (1817-1819)
List of male population between ages 28-30 with names, birth dates, birth place, parents, profession, reasons for exemption with an examination by superiors, decision by commissioners, remarks.

Listen der Militärpflichtigen (1820-1866)
List of male population of various birth years with names of migrants or emigrants as well as information about names, birth dates, birth places, parents, professions, state of health, reasons for exemptions, examinations by superiors, decisions by commissioners, remarks

Feld- und Garnisonskirchenbücher
List of members of the military unit (Feldkirchenbuch) or of soldiers and their families of a garrison (Garnisonskirchenbuch) with
Place and date of marriage with further details for the husband such as name, rank, residence, place of birth and date, death date, details about the wife, details about the children, confirmations.
Some of the garrison church books are already in print, such as Garnisonskirchenbuch Hameln by Wilhelm Rost, Garnisonskirchenbuch Hannover by Jürgen Ritter and Kirchenbuch der Königlich Deutschen Legion by Fritz Garbe.

Losung (Lottery)
The Military Commission of the Grandduchy of Oldenburg issued the following publication on January 8, 1818 regarding the military levy for the coming year.

A good many soldiers of the infantry regiments are soon to be retired. Since the regiments were part of the German army, the contingent Oldenburg Jever had to be restocked with 480 soldiers of the birth year 1797 by Losung. This was to be done as follows: Each administrative district had to furnish names of recruits. All reclamations of reasons why some men are unable to serve had to be reported by Feb 1, 1818. After this date only cases of dire circumstances were considered. Otherwise each administrative district was to revise their list of potential soldiers and conduct a lottery, in which each young man gets a number. The names and numbers are then to be entered into a list and forwarded to the military commission. As soon as all lists were received, each candidate would be examined and his fitness rating determined. Should any man try to avoid compliance with his military duty by not showing up or leaving the country, such actions would have severe repercussions in form of punishment.

Source: Gesetzsammlung für das Herzogthum Oldenburg, vol. 3, printed by Gerhard Stallings widow 1819.

Similar rules existed for the Kingdom of Hannover.
Here is a link regarding Canton Esens, Hannover lottery lists

Most of the above listed records can be found in the State Archive Hannover, however, there are other repositories housing essential information re. the military history of Hannover.

Niedersächsisches Hauptstaatsarchiv Hannover
Am Archiv 1
30169 Hannover
T: (0511) 120-6601
F: (0511) 120-6699

How to view possible records:

go to Hauptstaatsarchiv Hannover via this URL then choose "über Archive and Beständegruppen". Select Hauptstaatsarchiv Hannover and choose "Akten auswärtiger Beziehungen - Militär". In the left field click on "Hannoversche Stammrollen", "Gliederung" will give you troops, i.e., 02... will tell you facts about the Royal German Legion, click on the hyperlink to obtain more information.  More detailed information can also be retrieved by clicking on "Vorwort", "Gliederung" and, "Archivalien".

For the following archives proceed as explained above.

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Aurich
Oldersumer Straße 50
26603 Aurich
T: (04941) 176 660
F: (04941) 176 673

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Bückeburg
31675 Bückeburg
Postanschrift: Postfach 1350, 31665 Bückeburg
T: (05722) 9677-30
F: (05722) 1289

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Oldenburg
Damm 43
26135 Oldenburg
T: (0441) 92 44 100
F: (0441) 92 44 292

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Osnabrück
Schloßstraße 29
49074 Osnabrück
T: (0541) 33162-0
F: (0541) 33162-62

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Stade
Am Sande 4c
21682 Stade
T: (04141) 406-406
F: (04141) 406-400

Niedersächsisches Staatsarchiv Wolfenbüttel
Forstweg 2
38302 Wolfenbüttel
T: (05331) 935-0
F: (05331) 935-211

Niedersächsische Kommunalarchive

Addresses, business hours and a brief description of all Lower Saxony local archives can be found in the handbook ANKA (also online) Stade, 1997, ISBN 3-98059976-0-1

State Archives in the Netherlands and other neighboring archives can be found in the following journal:

Hans Mahrenholtz: Quellennachweise über militär (heeres-) geschichtliche Bestände in den niedersächsischen und angrenzenden Staatsarchiven, in: Norddeutsche Familienkunde, 32. Jahrgang, Band 13, Heft 1/1983

The National Archives
Richmond, Surrey TW9 4DU
United Kingdom
T: +44 (0) 20 8876 3444
F: +44 (0) 20 8392 5286

The Kingdom of Hanover provided many soldiers for the British King. The following link provides access to the King's German Legions http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/: enter "King's German Legions" into the search field.

Military records for Hannover in the Family History Library

What you can do to research a soldier who served in the Hannover army, please refer to this website /Genealogy.

If you are interested in a time frame or a regiment, you want to browse the Family History Libarary catalog for appropriate records. Just type in Hannover and choose Hannover, Prussia, military records under "place search". A selection is offered by type of regiment and the time frame. One will also find lists of soldiers sorted by administrations (Amt) or by historical regions/regiments. For the type of records and what they contain, please refer to the list above under the title "Hannover work group on military history".

Death list of Hannover soldiers 1813-1815

The list contains names of 927 soldiers who were enlisted in the Hannover army and died. Among these names are also men from the Duchy of Lauenburg, although Lauenburg was in possession of Denmark in 1815. The list was printed by S.L. Lamminger and Roschenbusch in Hannover in 1817. The names can be retrieved from the online project “Gefallenendenkmäler” (war memorials) at www.denkmalprojekt.org-2008/vl_kgl-hann_truppen_1813-1815.htm The names are according to year and arm of service, then organized by title, name, birth place with administrative district, date of death and place, regiment, and cause of death as they appeared in the above mentioned book.

In order to find quickly information about a long searched ancestor who was born at the end of the 18th century and whose fate has been open, Joachim Memmert took the trouble to organize the death list alphabetically by family names. His lists can be retrieved in Zeitschrift für Niederdeutsche Familienkunde Heft 3, 2008 for the letters A-K. Letters L-Z can be found in the following issue of the periodical.

Hardly used sources for family research in Lower Saxony

When Napoleon invaded Russia in 1812 many men from Hanover were forced to fight. Most of the men never returned home. After the Wars of Liberation the government of Hanover appointed Lieutenant Heinrich Meyer to travel the parts of Russia where the war took place or where German POWs were brought to in order to promote the return of the Hannover residents. He also investigated whether the soldiers were killed in action or find out why many did not return to their homes.
The results of his investigations resulted in four lists which were given to the government and explained the fate of 1058, 906, 410, and 1040 missing persons. Of the 3423 men 71 lived in Russia and did not want to return to Lower Saxony. A lot of them had married in the German settlement of Saratow. 212 men enlisted into the Russian army. The rest had either died in hospital or during their marches. With remarkable care the Russian hospitals recorded the deaths of German soldiers.
A fifth list was established which registered 1148 German POWs, whose German origins could not be established. These five lists are located in the State Archive in Hannover. They can be found among the documents for Amt Lüchow (Signatur 74 Lüchow Nr. 212).
Maybe the one or other family researcher will be able to explain the fate of those Hanoverians who went missing after 1812/13.
Meyerholz, Heinrich. Ein Hinweis auf bisher kaum genutzte Quellen für Familienforscher in Norddeutsche Familienkunde, Heft 1/1980

Einquartierungsbuch of Hildesheim

When the Battle of Leipzig was bringing victory for the Prostestants on September 2, 1631 many North German cities tried to exploit the situation to free themselves from occupation by the Imperial Army. The city of Hildesheim which had suffered through multiple administrative changes now joined the Leipzig Union against the Imperial Army. However, their resistance proved to be too weak and therefore, they let a Swedish contingent occupy their city for seven week in hopes to avoid occupation. The Swedes with the help of Lüneburg troops fought against the Imperial general Count v. Pappenheim who lost the fight, and the Duke Georg von Lüneburg now occupied Hildesheim as general and the man in charge of 14,000 soldiers. This army very soon joined the people of Wolfenbüttel who were trying to fend off Imperial troops. Hildesheim was now exposed to armies, friendly and not. Count v. Pappenheim, informed by the Catholic Church about the fate of the people in Hildesheim, saw another chance to score and hurried back to his previous head quarters.
The city fathers and people of Hildesheim were not happy with the prospect of again coming under siege and being plundered. They looked for negotiation. Their wish was granted in exchange for feeding 2,000 soldiers and paying the amazing sum of 150,000 Reichsthaler (currency). Even though some single families were protected from plunder, the whole city generally suffered greatly by occupation, fire damage and forced regulations, so badly that Hildesheim, once a prosperous city became now one of the poorest in the German Empire.
FamilySearch has a document on film called “Einquartierungsbuch” of the city of Hildesheim. This is a list of those who took in soldiers and contributed money for being protected from plunder (see Family History Library film 2065432)
Otfrid Mylius and Karl Seifart: Erheiterungen: eine Ausw.d.Neuesten u. Interessantesten aus dt. Vol. 39