Yearly Archives: 2013

New records indexed from Vienna, even more on microfilm

logo-genteam

For those with family from Vienna, the web site Genteam.at is an indispensable genealogy resource. It’s a volunteer-run site that has indexed over 8 million records from Vienna, including many Jewish records including birth, marriage and death records, obituaries, cemetery records, directories of professionals, membership lists of lodges (including B’nai Brith), conversion records, and more. Access to their database is free, you just need to register for a free account on their site before you can search.

Recently, the site added 482,000 new records, including a 180,000 records from the Jewish community of Vienna – marriage and death records from 1913-1928, and birth records up to 1913. I believe this record addition is what brought them over 8 million records, so congratulations to the whole team of volunteers at Genteam.at, past and present, who have accomplished an amazing task.

The records indexed all conform to the Austrian privacy laws, which is why the records end when they do. Presumably next year they will add birth records through 1914, etc. In two years my grandfather’s birth record from 1915 will presumably be published on the site. For more on my grandfather, see Friends from Antwerp – and is that a famous Yiddish poet? and Remembering my grandfather.

Keep in mind that while sites like this (located in Austria) cannot publish indexes to these records due to privacy laws, some later records were microfilmed prior to the current privacy laws, and already exist in the Family History Library. It’s unclear to me whether those records can (or will) be indexed online by FamilySearch.org, or whether they too will not provide them online, even if someone can view the records on microfilm in any Family History Center.

Right now, FamilySearch.org has a record set called Austria, Vienna, Jewish Registers of Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1784-1911, which has the images online (over 200,000), but is not indexed. That means you can look at the images and try to find the record you want, but there is no way to search it.

If you search their catalog, however, there exists many more Jewish records from Vienna, including:

  • Register of Jewish births, marriages, deaths, and indexes for Wien (Vienna), Niederösterreich, Austria. Includes Leopoldstadt, Ottakring, Hernals, Währing, Fünfhaus and Sechshaus. 1826-1943
  • Circumcisions and Births 1870-1914
  • Jewish converts in Vienna 1782-1868
  • Index to the register books of the Jewish community, 1810-1938
  • Births, marriages and deaths of Austrian Jewish military personnel in Wien, Niederösterreich, Austria. 1914-1918.
  • Reports the exit from the Jewish faith: 18000 defections from Judaism in Vienna, 1868-1914
  • Names of Jewish infants who were forcibly baptized Christians and left with foundling hospitals in Vienna, Austria. The mothers of the infants were primarily servants and manual laborers from Hungary, Slovakia, Bohemia and Moravia. Each entry includes genealogical data. 1868-1914.
  • Genealogies and biographies of the Jewish upper class of Vienna, Austria, 1800-1938.

Eventually, these records will also presumably make it to FamilySearch.org, and eventually they will be indexed as well. Many of these records are clearly the same records making their way onto Genteam.at – it’s even possibly that Genteam.at is working form the FHL microfilms to create their indexes.

The odd thing is that the online record set covers the dates 1784-1911, while the microfilm record set covers 1826-1943. The question is if the microfilm set only goes back to 1826, then how does the online set go back to 1784? Even stranger, if you click through to the wiki page describing the record set, it says the records cover only the years 1850-1896. Perhaps the online records go back further because they include other record sets like the conversion data, which covers the years 1782-1868 – but if that’s the case then why doesn’t the online set go back those extra two years to 1782? It’s very confusing.

In any case, just to be clear, there are many Vienna records available, even if they apparently run counter to the Austrian privacy laws (which seem to ban the release of birth records for 100 years). As proof that these records are accessible via microfilm, I’ll just end with this birth record for my grandfather who recently passed away at the age of 98, which I acquired from the FHL microfilms with the help of a local researcher a few years ago:

JakobTrauring-Birth-Excerpt

Mac genealogy software updates

Two Mac genealogy programs were recently updated. (Update: MacFamilyTree also offering a discount, at $29.99, 40% off, through October 27.)

Heredis 2014The first is Heredis, now called Heredis 2014, and available through the Mac App Store at 50% off through November 3, at the price of $29.99 (instead of the normal price of $59.99). The updates for this version are listed as:

    SEARCH WIZARD.
    • This highly innovative feature allows you to take a look at where you are in your research and highlights known or missing items from your genealogy. It suggests different ways forward and proposed various online research tools targeted to websites such as Heredis Online, Ancestry, My Heritage…

    EXTENDED FAMILY VIEW.

    • This new and more comprehensive view of your family shows its composition as a whole: siblings, remarriage, stepchildren, step- brothers and step-sisters, children from other unions of the different partners… noting or not when they belong to the direct lineage.

    FIND RELATIONSHIPS.

    • It presents all the ties that may link two people. Within seconds, this exciting tool analyzes all the connections in your genealogy file to find how two people can be linked, whether they are relatives, or they have common ancestors or they simply have other links (godmother, heir…).

    MIGRATIONS MAP.

    • Trace the movements of a whole family just a few miles away or at the other end of the world on the Migrations map. Pins are numbered to show the sequence of movements and display the list of events recorded in this place.

    HEREDIS ONLINE.

    • Share your discoveries on Heredis Online, the new service for publishing your genealogy data and research on the Internet. You will have a website dedicated to your genealogy, searchable by your family and your friends. Start your research also on Heredis Online directly from your Heredis software over hundred million of people in the online family trees. Get in touch with your cousins!

    MANAGEMENT OF BRANCHES.

    • Memorize the status of your family branches, with ancestors as well as descendants. You may filter only the branch ends, or only complete persons, or only those persons for whom further research is required. You can hide already complete persons or sort by modification date. New charts show the progress of your research.

    DESCENDANTS VIEW.

    • Work on the Descendants View that displays the descendants of the primary person for the number of generations you will determine.

macfamilytree1The second application updated is MacFamilyTree, now at version 7.1. Also available via the Mac App Store, for $49.99 ($29.99 through October 27). The updates for this version are listed as:

    Completely new Web Site Export

    • Configureable Themes
    • Live preview
    • Direct FTP upload (secure connections supported)
    • Includes Videos, PDFs and Audio Media
    • Improved user interface
    • Free upload to our web service MacFamilyTree.com

    Statistics Map (using Apples new Maps, requires OS X 10.9 Mavericks)

    • See where your ancestors lived the longest or married earliest
    • Play slideshows of your ancestors living places across the globe
    • Detailed physical or satellite maps

    Chart Backdrops

    • Add background images for all charts
    • Includes 50+ backdrop images
    • Import your own images as backdrops

    Improved FamilySearch integration

    • Revamped FamilySearch user interface
    • FamilySearch Discussions added
    • FamilySearch change history is now available directly from MacFamilyTree
    • >Improved FamilySearch integration in the Interactive Tree

    Private Information

    • Mark Persons, Events, Families or Sources as private
    • Exclude private information from charts, reports and GEDCOM export

    User Interface

    • Refined user interface
    • Improved navigation
    • Entries count is displayed above each list in the edit mode
    • Sections added to family list
    • Sections added to places list
    • Associated To Do items are now displayed directly for each person, family, event or source.

    Other

    • Optimized for Mavericks AppNap
    • Faster database opening
    • Better To Do management including larger To Do browser
    • PDFs are included in Person Report
    • Improved Interactive Tree including changed coloring for better readability
    • Better Date Parsing and Date Reformatting
    • Improved GEDCOM Import and Export

Remembering my grandfather

Two weeks ago, my grandfather passed away. I’ve mentioned him before on this blog in my post Friends from Antwerp – and is that a famous Yiddish poet?. Although we lived in the same city for only a few years we were very close and I spoke to him every week. As I flew to the US to attend his funeral, I wrote the following. It is exactly my thoughts as I sat in the airplane heading to say goodbye to my grandfather.

    Almost exactly 34 years ago my grandmother passed away. As a young child I didn’t fully comprehend what that meant. It was traumatic for me at the time, not understanding death, but moreover it was the intense sadness in my father that I think affected me. I didn’t get to know her well, although I have fleeting memories of her, more emotion than memory.

    Yesterday, my grandparents were finally reunited. At 98 my grandfather lived what by any standard is a long and full life. Having had the intervening years with my grandfather, of course I knew him considerably better than I did my grandmother. After college I lived in the same city as him for several years, and although I now live in a different country, he was always one of the people I made sure to visit when I was in town.

    My grandfather had a special connection to my oldest child, now the age I was when my grandmother passed away. It’s not the same, a great-grandparent compared to a grandparent, of course. She didn’t know him like she knows my parents, or my wife’s parents, but I like to think she knew he had a special place in his heart for her. We called him every week, and while he was happy to speak to my wife and I, he always seemed to light up when he spoke to his ‘little princess’. My younger children will likely not remember my grandfather, but I like to think my oldest will in some way remember him, more perhaps than the fleeting memories I have of my grandmother.

    Technology will help in some regard there, as I’ve been able to document the connection between them, with photos and videos that I’ve shot over the years. In some respect, my interest in photography and videography comes from my grandfather. Just like he lugged a camera loaded with Kodachrome and either a 16mm or an 8mm film camera around with him, I am usually not without similar, if a bit more modern, equipment. Just as he recorded moments from the 1940s through the 1970s, illustrating the youth and vibrancy of my grandparents and extended family, so I hope my own recordings more than half a century later will help my children and grandchildren understand what our lives were like, and the connections we shared between family.

    So to my grandfather, Yaakov Mordechai ben Moshe Tzvi, and my grandmother Lipka bat Chaim, now united once more, I offer the old Jewish prayer – may your names be remembered as blessings.

    jackandlilyrowboat