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Greek Catholic Records of the Central State Historical Archive of Ukraine, Lviv Emigration from Bialy Kamien through the Port of Hamburg
Roman Catholic Records of the Central State Historical Archive of Ukraine,  Lwów / Lviv   Bielawa Family (of Poznan region, not Galicia)
Great Books: Ukrainian Genealogy: A Beginner's Guide                                                              -Older Bielawa Generations    -Newer Bielawa Generations
Going Home: A Guide to Polish American Family History Research

The Prussian Partition of Poland

A General Review of Research Methodology


In connection with the pages on my own Bielawa family research, I provide here a general overview of research methodology in the Prussian (also known as German) Partition of Poland.  Since Prussia was an entirely different country than the Austrian Empire, it is obvious that the research strategy should be somewhat different than my other pages dedicated to Galician research.


For an overview of the Prussian Partition of Poland, visit Wikipedia.

Gazetteer Information

Meyers Orts- und Verkehrs-Lexikon des Deutschen Reichs
(Meyer’s Gazetteer and Directory of the German Empire)
3 volumes.  Leipzig, 1912.
     Help is required for understanding the layout and abbreviations of this gazetteer. 
     Learning aids are available for purchase at various bookstores, including the popular Amazon.  For example:
          How to Read & Understand Meyers Orts- und Verkehrs-Lexikon des Deutschen Reichs by Wendy Uncapher
          Understanding Meyers Orts - Translating Guide For The Directory Of The Towns and Places In The German Empire by Fay S. Dearden
     For a short guide, visit the site.

You can also view this gazetteer through the Brigham Young University's online Family History Archives:
Part 1 (place names A - K):
Part 2 (place names L - Z):


Gemeindelexikon für das Königreich Preussen
(Gazetteer for the Kingdom of Prussia)
13 volumes.  Berlin, 1907-1909
FHL microfilm number:

Ostpreußen (East Prussia): 1,346,208 Posen (Poznan): 1,346,209
Westpreußen (West Prussia): 1,346,208 Schlesien (Silesia): 1,346,209
Pommern (Pomerania): 1,346,208  

     Although it's in the old style German writing, known as fraktur, the gazetteer is in an easy-to-read column format.
An excellent searchable database for the area once ruled by Prussia/Germany, but now in Poland.  Includes both the German and Polish county jurisdictions, as well as a neat social aspect allowing researchers from a particular village/town to connect!


Maps (Contemporary Poland)
    (In upper right, type the town/village under "Pokaż na mapie, Miejscowość" ("Show on the map, Locality"
    Covers what was considered Western Galicia during the Austrian period)

Polish Military Institute of Geography.  Maps covering the interwar period, 1919-1939
(click on the various map links in the left hand box "Navigation")

Polish Mapster (Select different map types with the drop down arrow)


The Poznan Marriage Project

Łukasz Bielecki created and maintains a wonderful database of marriages in the Poznan (German name Posen) region of Poland.  This incredible database allows the researcher the opportunity to search for his family throughout the entire region, which is especially crucial for those researchers who have not yet found their ancestral village or town. 

The website is continually being updated by an aggressive team of volunteers who painstakingly go through marriage records, parish by parish, in order to create an index.  It's free to use and offers an English language interface.

    Introductory Page:

    Searching the Database:


The Pomeranian Marriage Project

The Pomeranian Genealogical Association in Poland has created a similar database of for searching marriages in Pomerania, the area north of Poznan.  Visit and search them at


German Civil Registration

As vital records are vital to a genealogist, it's important to know about Civil Registration records.  In 1874, Civil Registration was set up in the Poznan (Posen) region.  For the genealogist, this is GREAT news!  Before 1874, the church records were the only official vital record source.  But after 1874, one can search for both church records and the civil records.  More good news....the Family History Library has covered the Poznan region quite well, so many microfilms are available!  Check the Family History Library's Catalog at today!

Note that Civil Registration Districts were different from Parish boundaries.  Therefore, it's important for you to know both the parish your ancestral village or town belonged to, AND the civil registration district it belonged to.  One can learn these districts by using the Prussian gazetteers listed above.

Since it is a purely German source, the records are obviously in German...and not just any German, but in fraktur script.  But don't panic!  As with everything else in genealogy, take your time and have patience.  You'll be surprised how you will be able to read the records with practice! 

For more information on German Civil Registration, visit the wonderful FamilySearch Resource site.


Polish Vital Records Online

The Polish Genealogical Society, based in Warsaw, is building a a massive database of indexes (and even images) of vital records.  As of today, there are already over 2 million entries of birth, marriage and death records!  Search for your family and ancestral parishes at

            Questions and Comments to Matthew Bielawa
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