Note: See ./index.htm Interface for "The Hessen Story and How to Research - Research 101" to get started in online and offline research techniques. Be sure to include ./research-costs-etc.htm,

./payforit.htm, and

./letters.htm in your research, as well. If you want to increase your chances of success, you need to study these links and the information presented, below.

Part One - Hessen-Kassel   Part Two - Hessen -Darmstadt
    Part Three - Germany (tips for Hessen and everyone else)

Hessen-Kassel Evangelical Church Archives

The chief archivist at ........

Hessen-Kassel Evangelical Church Archives
Lessingstraße 15 A
34119 Kassel
Telephone 011 49 561 78876-0
Fax 011 49 561 78876-11

....... reported in October 2004 that due to a shortage of personnel and the demand for information, written requests for information cannot be answered in a timely manner. English-language inquiries had become overwhelming. With only two research assistants, they could no longer answer genealogical inquiries in English or German without a long, long delay. The following alternatives are offered for researchers in Kurhessen, Waldeck, Hessen-Kassel, for evangelical ancestors (non-Catholic) from the specific areas covered, IF you know the exact town they came from. I would attempt to contact the main archive FIRST. They may then redirect you to a local archive. Databases at the central location are steadily increased. Please note that Hessen-Kassel archive addresses normally begin with the zip code number 3. Because of so many towns having the same name, you must be careful to isolate the correct town. See ./zipcodes.htm for that purpose. Simply type in one of the town names listed below and choose the one that is in the 3 zip code zone. To find the church address in each town, use ./telephones.htm . Please note that the following church district church archives have been microfilmed and are available through the central archive in Kassel,

You can bookmark the URL (or make it a favorite) for future updates to the list. Check this list, of course, against those  districts that are listed, below, in which case you should contact the central archiv. Evangelical and Catholic church districts in Germany enclose a number of churches. These districts are NOT the same as governmental jurisdictions. The names listed  at the URL, above, are districts, NOT individual towns. For a map of Protestant (Evangelical) and Catholic church districts in Germany, see http// You'll see a number of German maps there.

To obtain successful results for your research you must have the name, the exact birthdate, and the exact place of birth (an approximate birthdate, within a given year, may be acceptable). The person(s) sought must be from within the Evangelical Church of Kurhessen-Waldeck region. No other areas are available and no effort will be made to search anywhere outside of this specific region. Catholic archives are not included (for those, see ./table.htm, left column, and the addresses near the very end of this presentation).

Hessen-Kassel, Kurhessen, Nordhessen, and so on, represent a relatively large region with hundreds of church communities. Searches are not done for the entire region. Therefore, the exact town is required.

Surnames or family names are found across the region, in every village, town, and city. Therefore, you cannot conclude that just because your particular surname appears somewhere, that this is your ancestor or ancestors. Searches will not be done based upon the simple fact that your surname appears in a particular location or because your surname is part of a town name (for that, use FOKO).


- --When in germany, you can research this matter yourself in the archives from Tuesday through Thursday, 8am until 4pm, including church registers here, IF you already know the EXACT town your ancestor(s) came from.

- --There is also the option of having someone else conduct the research for you (but not onsite staff). See a list, below.*

Church Registers on Microfilm are listed at

You can order a copy of all of the archives covered, plus all those which have been microfilmed. Click here to place your order. The cost is 5 Euro plus the cost of mailing it to you (postage and handling). You can receive a poster of the area containing all districts, church counties, and parrishes for 2.6 Euro. You must pay for the information and the cost of getting it to you before you receive it. Details will be provided, in response to your order. An English-language order is presently frowned upon at the main archives. It will further delay your inquiry. You are now required to use the research assistants listed below, for a fee, or write directly to the local church, as shown below, in order to avoid lengthy delays (perhaps a year or more) from the central archive.

There is a list of types of documents and number of volumes available at . These documents cover baptisms until 1901, confirmations until 1916, marriages until 1941, and burials until 1971.

For archived information after 1 October 1874, contact the Civil Administration in each town or city in Germany (German language only), or one of the research assistants listed below.

*Addresses of Researchers (English language inquiry okay IF a researcher indicates that he or she speaks English. Otherwise, your inquiry must be in the German language). According to the Evangelical Church Archives, these researchers will usually charge less than what the archive itself would charge.

Anneliese Mischewski
Hauptstr. 57
67294 Ilbesheim
Tel.: 011 49 6355-3178
Fax: -11 49 6355-989221

Language: German.

Manuela Sehm
Annastr. 62
64673 Zwingenberg
Tel.: 011 49 6251-787570

Languages: English and German.

Gustaf Eichbaum
Eifelweg 5
34277 Fuldabrück
Tel.: 011 49 561 581523
Languages: English, Danish, Swedish

August Gipper
Elbinger Straße 7
34587 Felsberg
Tel.: 011 49 5662 3536

Language: German

Lieselotte Habenicht
Zum Sommerbach 3
34281 Gudensberg-Deute
Tel.: 011 49 5603 4191

Language: German

Dr. Gerd W. Jungblut
Mozartstraße 1
36110 Schlitz
From US/CA Tel.: 011 49 6642 1810
From EU Tel.: 0049 6642 1810
Languages: German, English

Specializing in emigrants from Germany to USA and Canada

RESEARCH IN CHURCH DISTRICTS (due to the overload in the main archive)

These are church districts which will undertake family research. Please note that the P.O. Box number zip code may be different from the street address zip code. Address your inquiry carefully. Do not use both the street address and the P.O Box number on the same envelope. To avoid misunderstandings, delays, and translation fees, please send your inquiry in the German language, whether by letter or E-Mail. Please do not ask IF your ancestor lived in one of these locations. You must KNOW the village, town, or city your ancestor came from. There are no computers. It is IMPOSSIBLE to research all these locations for you. Find your village, town, or city in the listings below, and send your inquiry accordingly. No more than three or four ancestors per inquiry, please. Inquiries must be in the German language. Where no E-Mail address is available, please enclose return postage. Remember that the Germans must pay an access fee, a per-second fee, a monthly fee, and a tax for every second they are online using E-Mail.

Kirchliches Rentamt Eschwege/Witzenhausen
An den Anlagen 14a
37254 Eschwege
(P.O. Box 1430, 37254 Eschwege)

The locations (villages, towns, cities) which the above church district covers are listed as follows: Abterode, Ahrenberg, Alberode, Albshausen, Albungen, Allendorf (an der Werra), Altefeld, Altenburschla, Archfeld, Aue, Bad Sooden, Berlepsch-Ellerode, Berge, Bernsdorf, Bischhausen (ESW), Bischhausen (WIZ), Blickershausen, Breitzbach, Burghofen, Datterode, Dohrenbach, Dudenrode, Eichenberg, Ellershausen, Ellingerode, Eltmannshausen, Eltmannsee, Epterode, Ermschwerd, Eschwege, Frankershausen, Frankenhain, Frauenborn, Frieda, Friemen, Fürstenhagen, Gehau, Germerode, Gertenbach, Friedrichsbrück, Grandenborn, Grebendorf, Großalmerode, Günsterode, Harmuthsachsen, Hasselbach, Hausen, Hebenshausen, Heldra, Herleshausen, Hermannrode, Hessisch-Lichtenau, Hetzerode, Hilgershausen, Hitzelrode, Hitzerode, Hoheneiche, Hollstein, Holzhausen, Hopfelde, Hubenrode, Hübenthal, Hundelshausen, Jestädt, Kammerbach, Kirchhosbach, Kleinalmerode, Kleinvach, Küchen, Langenhain, Laudenbach, Lüderbach, Mäckelsdorf, Markershausen, Marzhausen, Mitterode, Motzenrode, Nesselröden, Netra, Neuerode, Neuseesen, Niddawitzhausen, Niederdünzebach, Niederhone, Oberdünzebach, Oberhone, Oberrieden, Oetmannshausen, Orferode, Quentel, Rambach, Rechtebach, Reichenbach, Reichensachsen, Renda, Retterode, Rittmannshausen, Rodebach, Röhrda, Rommerode, Roßbach, Schemmern, Schwebda, Stadthosbach, Stölzingen, Stolzenbach, Thurnhosbach, Trubenhausen, Uengsterode, Unhausen, Unterrieden, Velmeden, Vierbach, Vockerode, Völkershausen, Walburg, Waldkappel, Wanfried, Weiden, Weidenhausen, Weißenbach, Weißenborn, Wellingerode, Wendershausen, Werleshausen, Wichmannshausen, Wickersrode, Willershausen, Wipperode, Witzenhausen, Wolfterode, Wollstein, Wommen, Ziegenhagen.

Dekanat Frankenberg
Auf der Burg 9
35066 Frankenberg

Locations covered by the above church district: Allendorf, Altenhaina, Altenlotheim, Asel, Basdorf, Battenhausen, Birkenbringhausen, Bottendorf, Buchenberg, Dainrode, Dodenhausen, Dörnholzhausen, Dorfitter, Ederbringhausen, Ellershausen, Ernsthausen, Fischbach, Frankenau, Frankenberg, Friedrichshausen, Geismar, Haddenberg, Haina (Kloster), Haine, Harbshausen, Haubern, Herzhausen, Hommershausen, Hüttenrode, Industriehof, Kirchlotheim, Kirschgarten, Löhlbach, Louisendorf, Marienhagen, Niederorke, Obernburg, Oberorke, Rengershausen, Roda, Rodenbach, Röddenau, Rosenthal, Schmittlotheim, Schreufa, Thalitter, Viermünden, Vöhl, Wangershausen, Wiesenfeld, Willersdorf, Willershausen.

Dekanat Fritzlar
Domplatz 10
34560 Fritzlar
(P.O. Box 1128, 34551 Fritzlar)

Locations covered by the above district: Bad Zwesten, Besse, Betzigerode, Bischhausen, Cappel, Densberg, Dissen, Dorheim, Dorla, Elnrode, Ermetheis, Fritzlar, Geismar, Gilsa, Gleichen, Grifte, Großenenglis, Gombeth, Gudensberg, Haddamar, Haldorf, Heimarshausen, Holzhausen, Hundshausen, Jesberg, Kirchberg, Kleinenglis, Lohne, Maden, Metze, Moischeid, Niedenstein, Niederurff, Obermöllrich, Oberurff, Obervorschütz, Reptich, Riede, Römersberg, Rothhelmshausen, Schiffelborn, Schlierbach, Schönstein, Strang, Udenborn, Ungedanken, Uttershausen, Wabern, Waltersbrück, Wenzigerode, Wehren, Werkel, Wichdorf, Zennern, Zimmersrode, Züschen.

Kirchliches Rentamt Hersfeld
Kirchplatz 6
36251 Bad Hersfeld
(P.O. Box 1654, 36226 Bad Hersfeld)

Locations covered by the above district: Zugehörige Orte: Allendorf (in der Wüste), Allmershausen, Asbach, Aua, Ausbach, Bad Hersfeld, Beiershausen, Bengendorf, Biedebach, Dinkelrode, Eitra, Friedewald, Friedlos, Frielingen, Gersdorf, Gershausen, Gerterode, Gethsemane, Gittersdorf, Goßmannsrode, Harnrode, Hattenbach, Heddersdorf, Heenes, Heimboldshausen, Herfa, Heringen, Hermannspiegel, Hillartshausen, Hilmes, Hilpershausen, Holzheim, Kalkobes, Kathus, Kemmerode, Kerspenhausen, Kirchheim, Kleba, Kleinensee, Kohlhausen, Konrode, Kruspis, Landershausen, Lautenhausen, Leimbach, Lengers, Malkomes, Mauers, Meckbach, Mecklar, Meisenbach, Mengshausen, Motzfeld, Müsenbach, Neukirchen, Niederaula, Niederjossa, Nippe, Obergeis, Oberhaun, Oberlengsfeld, Oberstoppel, Odensachsen, Petersberg, Philippsthal, Ransbach, Reckerode, Reilos, Reimboldshausen, Röhrigshof, Rohrbach, Roßbach, Rotensee, Rotterterode, Schenklengsfeld, Schenksolz, Sieglos, Solms, Sorga, Stärklos, Tann, Untergeis, Unterhaun, Unterneurode, Unterstoppel, Unterweisenborn, Wehrshausen, Widdershausen, Willingshain, Wippershain, Wölfershausen, Wüstfeld.

Dekanat Hofgeismar
Altstädter Kirchplatz 5
34369 Hofgeismar
(P.O. Box 1210, 34362 Hofgeismar)

Locations covered by the above district: Arenborn, Bad Karlshafen, Beberbeck, Burguffeln, Calden, Carlsdorf, Deisel, Eberschütz, Ehrsten, Ersen, Frankenhausen, Friedrichsdorf, Friedrichsfeld, Fürstenwald, Gewissenruh, Gieselwerder, Gottsbüren, Gottstreu, Grebenstein, Grimelsheim, Haueda, Heisebeck, Helmarshausen, Hofgeismar, Hohenkirchen, Holzhausen, Hombressen, Hümme, Immenhausen, Kelze, Knickhagen, Lamerden, Langenthal, Liebenau, Lippoldsberg, Mariendorf, Meimbressen, Mönchehof, Niedermeiser, Obermeiser, Oedelsheim, Ostheim, Schachten, Schäferberg, Schöneberg, Sielen, Stammen, Trendelburg, Udenhausen, Vaake, Veckerhagen, Vernawahlshausen, Weißehütte, Westuffeln, Wilhelmhausen, Wilhelmsthal, Zwergen.

Kirchenkreis Rotenburg:
Archiv für den Ev. Kirchenkreis
Im Rathaus
36037 Rotenburg an der Fulda

Locations covered by the above district: Asmushausen, Atzelrode, Bauhaus, Baumbach, Bebra, Beenhausen, Berneburg, Blankenbach, Blankenheim, Bosserode, Braach, Braunhausen, Breitau, Breitenbach, Cornberg, Dankerode, Dens, Diemerode, Erdpenhausen, Erkshausen, Ersrode, Gilfershausen, Hainrode, Hausen, Hergershausen, Heyerode, Hönebach, Hornel, Iba, Imshausen, Königswald, Krauthausen, Lichtenhagen, Lindenau, Lispenhausen, Lüdersdorf, Machtlos, Mönchhosbach, Mündershausen, Nausis, Nenterode, Nentershausen, Niederellenbach, Niedergude, Niederthalhausen, Oberellenbach, Obergude, Obersuhl, Oberthalhausen, Raßdorf, Rautenhausen, Rengshausen, Richelsdorf, Rockensüß, Ronshausen, Rotenburg, Schwarzenhasel, Seifertshausen, Solz, Sontra, Sterkelshausen, Süß, Ulfen, Weißenborn, Weißenhasel, Weiterode, Wölfterode, Ziebach.

Kirchliches Rentamt Schlüchtern
Unter den Linden 38
36381 Schlüchtern
(P.O. Box 1139, 36371 Schluechtern)

Locations covered by the above district: Ahl, Ahlersbach, Alsberg, Altengronau, Bad Soden, Barackenhöfe,Bellings, Brandenstein, Breitenbach, Breunings, Burgjoß, Drasenberg, Eckardroth, Elm, Gomfritz, Gundhelm, Hausen, Herolz, Heubach, Hinkelhof, Hintersteinau, Hohenzell, Hutten, Jossa, Katholisch Willenroth, Kerbersdorf, Klesberg, Klosterhöfe, Kressenbach, Lindenberg, Marborn, Marjoß, Mernes, Mottgers, Neuengronau, Neustall, Niederzell, Oberkalbach, Oberndorf, Oberzell, Rabenstein, Ramholz, Rebsdorf, Reinhards, Röhrigs, Romsthal, Salmünster, Sannerz, Sarrod, Schlüchtern, Schwarzenfels, Seidenroth, Steinau, Sterbfritz, Ürzell, Ulmbach, Uttrichshausen, Vollmerz, Wahlert, Wallroth, Weichersbach, Weiperz, Ziegelhütte, Züntersbach.

Evangelische Kirchengemeinde
Kirchhof 3
98574 Schmalkalden  (this is an exception to the zip code zone "3" rule)

Locations covered by the above district: Altersbach, Asbach, Aue, Auwallenburg, Barchfeld, Bermbach, Breitenbach, Brotterode, Elbenthal, Fambach, Floh, Grumbach, Haindorf, Herges-Hallenberg, Herges-Vogtei, Herrenbreitungen (Breitungen), Heßles, Hohleborn, Kleinschmalkalden, Laudenbach, Mittelschmalkelden, Mittelstille, Näherstille, Nesselhof, Oberschönau, Reichenbach, Rotterode, Schmalkalden, Seligenthal, Springstille, Steinbach-Hallenberg, Schnellbach, Struth-Helmershof, Trusen, Unterschönau, Volkers, Wahles, Weidebrunn.

Kirchliches Rentamt der Twiste
Braunser Weg 5
34454 Bad Arolsen
(P.O. Box 1425 34444 Bad Arolsen)

Locations covered by the above district: Ammenhausen, Bad Arolsen, Braunsen, Bühle, Dehausen, Elleringhausen, Gembeck, Helmighausen, Helsen, Herbsen, Hesperinghausen, Hörle, Kohlgrund, Külte, Landau, Lütersheim, Massenhausen, Mengeringhausen, Neu-Berich (Berich), Neudorf, Niederwaroldern, Oberwaroldern, Orpethal, Rhoden, Schmillinghausen, Twiste, Vasbeck, Volkhardinghausen, Wethen, Wetterburg, Wrexen.

Kirchliches Rentamt Wolfhagen
Burgstraße 41
34466 Wolfhagen
(P.O. Box 1326, 34460 Wolfhagen)

Locations covered by the above district: Altendorf, Altenhasungen, Altenstädt, Balhorn, Breuna, Bründersen, Burghasungen, Dörnberg, Ehlen, Ehringen, Elbenberg, Elmarshausen, Escheberg, Gasterfeld, Hohenborn, Ippinghausen, Istha, Laar, Leckringhausen, Merxhausen, Naumburg, Niederelsungen, Niederlistingen, Nothfelden, Oberelsungen, Oberlistingen, Oelshausen, Philippinenburg, Philippinendorf, Philippinenthal, Rangen, Sand, Viesebeck, Volkmarsen, Wenigenhasungen, Wettesingen, Wolfhagen, Zierenberg.

Kirchliches Rentamt Ziegenhain
An der Grenzebach 12
34613 Schwalmstadt
(P.O. Box 2170, 34606 Schwalmstadt)

Locations covered by the above district: Allendorf (an der Landsburg), Appenhain, Ascherode, Asterode, Berfa, Breitenbach, Christerode, Dittershausen, Ebersdorf, Fischbach, Florshain, Frankenhain, Friedigerode, Frielendorf, Gebersdorf, Gehau, Gilserberg, Görzhain, Grebenhagen, Großropperhausen, Gungelshausen, Hattendorf, Hatterode, Hauptschwenda, Hausen, Heimbach, Holzburg, Ibra, Immichenhain, Itzenhain, Kleinropperhausen, Lanertshausen, Leimbach, Leimsfeld, Lenderscheid, Lingelbach, Linsingen, Lischeid, Loshausen, Machtlos, Mengsberg, Merzhausen, Michelsberg, Nausis, Neukirchen, Niedergrenzebach, Oberaula, Obergrenzebach, Oberjossa, Olberode, Ottrau, Ransbach, Riebelsdorf, Röllshausen, Rörshain, Rommershausen, Rückershausen, Sachsenhausen, Salmshausen, Schönau, Schönberg, Schönborn, Schorbach, Schrecksbach, Schwarzenborn, Sebbeterode, Seigertshausen, Siebertshausen, Spieskappel, Steina, Todenhausen, Treysa, Trockenbach, Trutzhain, Wahlshausen, Wasenberg, Weißenborn, Wiera, Willingshausen, Winterscheid, Zella, Ziegenhain Additional Addresses for the Hessen-Kassel region, KurHessen, Waldeck.

Emigrated Ancestors:

Hessisches Staatsarchiv Marburg
Friedrichsplatz 15
35037 Marburg
e-mail: URL:

Immigrants to the USA, USA archives: National Archives and Records Administration 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20408. (No contacts by E-Mail).

National Archives Contact Form:

Particular German Archives (various zip codes)

Huguenot Ancestors:
Deutscher Hugenottenverein e.V.
Hafenplatz 9a
34385 Bad Karlshafen

Catholic Ancestors:
Bistumsarchiv Fulda
Paulustor 5

36037 Fulda

Dom- und Diözesanarchiv Mainz
Heringsbrunnengasse 4
55116 Mainz
e-mail: URL:

Erzbistumsarchiv Paderborn
Domplatz 3
33098 Paderborn

Jewish Ancestors:
Archiv Biographia Judaica e.V.
Große Seestraße 32-34
60486 Frankfurt/Main

(See also: ./links.htm Table 1

Ancestry from the CITY of Kassel:
Stadtarchiv Kassel
Wildemannsgasse 1
34117 Kassel

Organizational assistance with your research:

Familienkunde in Kurhessen und Waldeck    (Family research in Kurhessen and Waldeck)
PF 101346
34013 Kassel

Waldeckische Geschichtsverein e. V.              (Waldeck Historical Commission)
Schloßstr. 24
34454 Arolsen

Ancestors from the former East Germany:

Evang. Zentralarchiv in Berlin                        (Evangelical Central Archives)
Bethaniendamm 29
10997 Berlin

Sächsisches Staatsarchiv Leipzig                    (State Archives in Sachsen)
Abt. Deutsche Zentralstelle für Genealogie    (Central Genealogical Archives)
Schongauerstraße 1
04321 Leipzig
Telephone 011 49 341 401 1113

You MUST have a full name, date of birth or as close as possible, and the EXACT town of the birth, christening, marriage, emigration, or death (based upon information available to you BEFORE you contact Germany. Do not E-Mail, write, or call to ask IF they have any information).

See Also!!!
Hessen-Darmstadt Localities and Parishes

(includes Starkenburg, Rheinhessen, and Oberhessen)

If it isn't listed, above, DON'T ASK! Perhaps some of you can penetrate your "brick wall" with this information. I hope so!

Subject: GerGnWb Odds 'n Ends.......

If all of your older relatives have passed away or are unable to be interviewed, look to their peers as possible subjects. Are some of their lifelong friends still living? Local senior citizens groups can be a treasure trove of information. You may not be able to get your ancestor's personal information, but you certainly can get a feel for what the world was like for your ancestor. Social histories can be a valuable tool to learn what daily life was like for any of our family members. If you can contact an individual who lived in the same town at the same time as your ancestor, information is available for you to get a pretty good idea of your relative's life. (I once visited the home of a relative with whom I had had no previous contact, in search of family history information, and was not allowed inside the home. It seems a grandfather had just died and they thought I was after his money!) .. :-) Don

Another tool that can help you understand the time frame of your subject's life is newspaper collections. Each state has an official repository for newspapers, so you can read both local and national news from any given period in history. Look at the news items, the social columns, the advertising and the editorials. You will come to understand and appreciate the time frame more clearly and be better able to adapt your questions to pertinent subject matter. Events are valuable tools to take your subject back to another time and place. One memory will lead to another and open up new avenues of discussion

Records at the town level and in local libraries:

* cemetery and tombstone records

* city directories

* newspapers

* school records

* tax lists

* town records

* vital records

* voter registration records

* funeral Home / mortuary records

Records at the county level or county libraries:

* county and state census records

* county histories

* deeds (land and property records)

* naturalization records

* newspaper collections

* vital records

* wills and estates (probate records)

Records at the state level or in state archives:

* archived historical documents

* immigrant and passenger manifest documents (pre-federal period)

* manuscript collections

* newspaper collections

* state census records

* state land grants

* state military records

Records at the federal level:

* censuses (federal only)

* immigrant and passenger manifest documents

* military records (for federal military service)

* naturalization records (after INS establishment in 1922)

* pension records (federal military service)

Records in church archives or offices:

* church histories

* memberships, birth, baptism, christening, marriage, death

* church records pertaining to the purchase of pews, donations, membership lists, etc.

* lists of clergymen who served in the parish or church

* sacrament records regarding baptisms, marriages and deaths/burials

--Excerpted from "The Genealogist's Question and Answer Book" by Marcia Yannizze Melnyk.


***Always*** use all lowercase in search engines. If you use upper case, your  "finds" will be limited to those that match the case. Lowercase gives you all the variations in the results.


Imagine what would happen if an archive in the USA got an inquiry in German. Think of the thousands of inquiries that now go to Germany in English. If a church pastor in Memphis received an inquiry in German, would he say, 'O yes - we can handle this,' or 'Good Lord - what is this?' If a city clerk in Wichita received an inquiry in German, would he/she immediately assign someone to do the research? I don't think so. I am personally aware of many cases that involve the Pfarramt or Standesamt simply not replying to an English-language letter. The American who sent it then wonders why. Then again, so many inquiries received from America have no return postage and no fee deposit. The fees in Europe are set by law. Although some clerks may bend it somewhat, no one has the authority to bypass German law in this matter, or to negotiate. I have read many letters from America which read as follows: "I will pay you if you find something." That simply is impossible. The research still has to be done. The fees are still payable. The persons sending such letters do not even include return postage.

That has added significantly and negatively to the cultural position in Germany. I am also aware of cases wherein an American writes to germany, receives a statement, and does not pay it. I am in no position to handle all of these matters, but  I have devoted 15 years of computer-assisted research, direct telephone calls, letters, and E-Mail, to doing my best to increase mutual respect and understanding. I have lived in Germany, speak and interpret German, and love the country.

However, I need assistance. When a searcher discovers a link that does not go anywhere, simply tell me. I will fix it. When a web site procedure is not understood, simply ask. I will explain it.

We have a translation page. If you cannot afford a donation, I will do it for free, including old script, if it is legible. Modern or Gothic type is no problem.


I've added German databases to the website at ./table.htm and ./links.htm. Just scroll down the left column to FOKO, GEDBAS, HADIS, METASUCHE, etc., and try VORFAHREN SUCHE, as well. It is in the German language, just like the other databases listed there. They are the German effort to produce databases similar to the LDS database in Salt Lake City.

The translation at Vorfahren Suche is......

Name = Surname
Exacte Suche = Exact Search
Vorname = First Name
Geb.Ort = Place of Birth
Geb.-Jahr = Year of Birth
Geschlecht = Sex
Hilfe = Help
Suche Starten = Start the Search

There are some home pages listed in the left column.

Questions? Always happy to provide the answer. If you don't find anyone using VORFAHREN SUCHE (Ancestor Search), try eliminating some of the entries, one at a time from the bottom up, until you finally find at least a list of surnames.


From: Art & Kay Harple Staub <>
Subject: GerGnWb Familienbuch-Romer

I located my "family book" at the LDS library in Salt Lake City. They were from Bickenbach, Hesse. I checked the online catalog under Bickenbach to see what was available for that village. It was listed in the catalog. I wrote to the library and asked how much of the book could be copied for me. They copied all the pages that bore the name HERPEL, HARPLE.


There are two methods to search villages in the vicinity of your ancestors home. One is located at...


Choose Site #1, Option #1. Just follow the instructions there. Don't jump the gun and go to the distance-radius search feature first. You must initally find the latitude and longitude numbers.

The second method is to use the postal (zip) code of the location your ancestors lived in Germany. For example, if the postal code is 64297, or 56377, go to....


and choose Site #2, Option #1. Choose Europe, and use the postal code as the name of the town, instead of a town name. 64297 will be the south side of Darmstadt (formerly known as Eberstadt) in Hessen, and 56377 will be Nassau in Rheinland-Pfalz. Now go to.....


and choose the German or English language option. Click, and at the site choose "Detail-Suche" or "Advanced Search." Type in the name of the ancestor you are seeking, and then use the first four digits of the postal code instead of the town name, like this......

6429* or 5637*

That will show you all the towns in the vicinity. Your ancestor and some of his/her cousins may have come from a village not far away, or you may find living persons in the vicinity today that bear the surname you are searching for. You then have three things you can do:

1. Write a letter to one or more of the German families you discover in that area, and

2. Write a letter to the church or civil archive in that area, and

3. Use these newly discovered town names with names of your ancestors in future research.

Of course, you should always check with the LDS Family History Center (FHC) in your area before writing to Germany. It is far less expensive and time-consuming if the microfiche/film are already available in your country, perhaps at an FHC just a few blocks away. That's the case where I live - just a short drive and I'm there.

Zip Codes are found at ./zipcodes.htm


Using Windows Outlook Express or Mail and suddenly you can't download your E-Mail from the server? Nothing comes in to your IN box? Sign up at or any web-based E-Mail service and read your E-Mail "out there" on the server at your Internet Service Provider's (ISP) headquarters. Choose ADVANCED and then SECURE login first. Be prepared to type in your POP3 server name or IP address, found in TOOLS, ACCOUNTS, SERVER for Outlook Expess 6.0. Others will be slightly different. Check for a HUGE E-Mail with an attachment that contains TONS of data. You'll know by the number of kilobytes it uses. Find one? Delete it and forget it. Now your E-Mail should download.

E-Mail still won't find its way to your IN box? Quit Outlook Express (don't reboot, just leave the Outlook Express program). Click START, click FIND, or SEARCH, then click FILES OR FOLDERS. On the line provided, type inbox.dbx . Select drive C (for most folks) for it to look in. Click FIND NOW. Right click on the inbox.dbx file and then click RENAME. Rename the file to inbox.old . Now do exactly the same thing for folders.dbx . Follow the same procedure for finding it, and proceed until you have it renamed from folders.dbx to folders.old . Close out the box next, and start up Outlook Express (no rebooting involved). A new inbox.dbx and folders.dbx file will be created. Your E-Mail will now download to your IN box.


Subject: GerGnWb A GERMAN website to continue your search......

This website concerns an area that used to be in Hessen, but today is in Rheinland-Pfalz.

Many thanks to Webmaster Herr Carsten Peter Thiele, who sent a link to his site which includes all entries from the book Schaumburger Auswanderer 1820-1914 by Heinrich Rieckenberg. (Schaumburger Emigrants 1820-1914). It is a searchable German immigration database! Other searchable databases are found in the Table of Links and LinkTables,

./table.htm  and  ./links.htm

including FOKO, GEDBAS, METASUCHE, HADIS, ANCESTOR SEARCH, etc.... is the Schaumburg website.

Although this is a website is in GERMAN, you can translate it by going to, and typing in .....

Historische Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Schaumburg (the umlaut over the letter u is created by clicking on NUM LOCK, holding down the ALT key, and typing 129 for many systems. For some it is simply ALT 129). You can also substitute "ue" for "ü" in many cases. You can also have your info translated using ./donstrans.htm

Just scroll down the page until you find it. The most important portion of this site to any casual access is the listing of surnames. Here are some quick how-to's for those that might not pursue this website because it is in German or the translation is not clear enough...

Click on the Schaumburger website link (URL)..

Click on the Schaumburger AUSWANDERER line under PROJECTS on the LEFT side... You will then be given a page in German..

Scroll to the bottom..


click on it and you will be able to start your search.

A page with several options will be presented. Click on the Tab of SUCHE NAME... then enter in the surname of the family you are interested in.. Perhaps you will find a name that has been a stumbling block for you. Many thanks to Valentine at


USA dates for laws requiring Birth & Death registrations

State Birth/Death

Alabama 1908

Alaska 1913

Arizona 1909

Arkansas 1914

California 1905

Colorado 1907

Connecticut 1897

Delaware 1881

D.C. 1871/1855

Florida 1915

Georgia 1919

Hawaii 1896

Idaho 1911

Illinois 1916

Indiana 1882

Iowa 1880

Kansas 1911

Kentucky 1911

Louisiana 1914

Maine 1892

Maryland 1898

Massachusetts 1841

Michigan 1867

Minnesota 1900

Mississippi 1912

Missouri 1910

Montana 1907

Nebraska 1905

Nevada 1911

New Hampshire 1905

New Jersey 1848

New Mexico 1919

New York 1880

North Carolina 1913

North Dakota 1908

Ohio 1909

Oklahoma 1908

Oregon 1903

Pennsylvania 1906

Puerto Rico 1931

Rhode Island 1852

South Carolina 1915

South Dakota 1905

Tennessee 1914

Texas 1903

Utah 1905

Vermont 1857

Virginia 1912

Washington 1907

West Virginia 1917

Wisconsin 1907

Wyoming 1909

Live outside the USA? If you have the dates for your country, please post them to a mailing list or to the German discussion group. (Remember that columns in a plain text E-Mail are difficult to line up - you may want to use a word processor or html editor, for appearance sake, then send your E-Mail in PLAIN TEXT).


Subject: GerGnWb Surname Frequency

Those of you who are interested in surname frequency, the region of origin for a surname, naming patterns, etc., should be comparing your information with the information found in the Table of Links Merged Index, German Telephone Directory, FOKO, GOV, GEDBAS, METASUCHE, HADIS, and VORFAHREN SUCHE - could be a winter months project! Be sure to compare your work with other researchers by using .... and,  along with the surname and location mailing lists and query board found at  ./index2.htm#gold .

It's all at ./index.htm. I recommend that you find the Table of Links first, either by going to ./index.htm or ./table.htm before you go to work on the other links provided, above. An orderly, systematic approach works wonders!


Subject: GerGnWb New Map

At ./towns.htm Site #2, Option #1 (click) you'll see Europe, North America, and World (topographic maps). The latter, World (topographic maps) is great, and may be helpful in your search.


If you aren't using


in the box of links there,

for FOKO, GOV, GEDBAS, METASUCHE, HADIS, and VORFAHREN SUCHE, you are bypassing the GERMAN databases located in Germany, similar to the LDS databases in Salt Lake City in content. Don't worry about the German language. Translations are provided. You'll be sailing through these databases in no time! Just be careful to observe the format that the Germans provide. And when you get a chance, say THANKS! guys and gals in Germany! Wunderbar!


For the world's greatest translation site, see ./donstrans.htm

Happy Hunting!




Research 101:

(Everything you ever wanted to know about German research)