Tracing German Ancestors

Started by Private User on Sunday, July 6, 2014
Problem with this page?


Showing all 15 posts
Private User
7/6/2014 at 4:23 AM

Tracing the origin of our German ancestors can be quite tricky. Many of the names of the old villages changed and even the borders of Germany changed. I realized that I would have to get creative and think out of the box to find the answers. I’ve made some amazing discoveries on the internet over the last couple of day and would love to share them with you. All the links are at the end, maybe somebody else would find this useful.

According to the Passenger list my ancestor departed from Hamburg on 1 October 1859 and his birth place is listed as Mohsau. This place does not exist in modern Germany and this is where the magic began

1. I found a book on the internet that gives names of all those long forgotten places and even the GPS coordinates. Here I discovered that Mohsau’s been renamed and actually changed counties as well. I searched on Google earth and found the place where I would never have looked, Poland.

2. The only solution was to educate myself about the history of Germany. I started looking for information about the borders of Germany and found a short video about the Political Borders of Germany from 1789 to 2005. I then decided to look for events at about the time I was searching for and found an article about the Battle of Palzig on July 23 1759.

3. “Wedel ordered his troops to march in 2 columns by the left: the first towards Kay (actual Kije) and the second towards Mohsau (actual Mozow).”

4. This discovery led to me searching for Mozów as a possible place of origin and I found another article about the Battle of Palzig with a map showing Mosau.

5. This was a major breakthrough. I now knew where to look for birth records. Hours later I found an amazing source. I’ve found 12 people with the same surname and born at around the same time as my 2xgreat grandfather and I am sure I’m going to find him as well.

The only problem is I am now going to have to learn Polish to decipher the vast amount of information that I discovered!






Private User
7/6/2014 at 4:36 AM

Well done Charmaine... Thanks for sharing!

Private User
7/6/2014 at 4:41 AM

Absolute pleasure!

7/6/2014 at 5:53 AM

Private User

Your tenacity is commendable !

Private User
7/6/2014 at 6:07 AM

Pam Karp Until 14 years ago my mother thought she had no family. I promised her I would find her family. I found many Urbasch cousins, uncles and aunts in South Africa. I still can't find what happened to her father though. My mother just turned 78 and she remembers last seeing her father when she was about 6 years old. The research just never stopped and I don't think it ever will.

7/6/2014 at 8:28 AM

Go Charmaine.
I'm trying to remember who our Polish speaking curators are, who might be able to help you. Private User always knows this kind of thing. Bjorn, do we have Polish Curators?

Private User
7/6/2014 at 8:48 AM

I'm wondering if I should look at variations of the surname as well. I just found a municipality in Germany called Urbach.

Private User
7/7/2014 at 4:50 AM

Sharon Doubell, no reply on the Polish Curators yet?

Private User
7/7/2014 at 5:11 AM

Andrzej Hennel is a curator from and living in Poland, but is a month since he last logged in, probably because it is summer and vacation time.

What exactly do you need a curator from Poland for?
Remember that curators cannot do the research for you, but if you make a post in the project discussion you might get help from other users from Poland.

Private User
7/7/2014 at 5:16 AM

Bjorn, I found two handwritten birth notices in what I believe to be Polish. I just need somebody to look at it and help me to decipher the names. Also point me in the right direction were I could look for more information. I am still looking for birth information of my 2xgreat grandfather.

Private User
7/7/2014 at 5:22 AM

Again: It is easier to get help from users from Poland by starting a discussion here:

7/7/2014 at 5:22 AM

Thanks Bjorn.

7/7/2014 at 12:35 PM

Hello Everybody
Just to let you know, that I am still alive.
The problem is that I changed recently from Mozilla to Chrome, and Chrome has some serious troubles with Geni.
Anyway I am following all disscusions and questions coming to my mail.
Andrzej Hennel
Polish Curator

7/7/2014 at 12:41 PM

I sent you my mail contact.

Private User
7/7/2014 at 6:21 PM

Thank you to everybody.
Bjorn I joined the project you mentioned and posted a message there as well.
Andrzej I sent you the information. Thank you for offering to help me.

Showing all 15 posts

Create a free account or login to participate in this discussion