Slovakia Genealogy Research Strategies
Survey of 1869 Magyar Census Data for Slovakia
at the Family History Library (FHL)
Since the LDS has not released all films for Slovakia and is intent on not releasing their plans, Generally speaking, the LDS does not provide a "what's new" listing of new holdings. Consequentially I have taken initiative to document these film updates once or twice a years.
STATUS - Oct. 2002
Empirical Study In October, 2002, I conducted a brief empirical analysis of the progress the Mormonís Family History Library (FHL) is making regarding the filming of Slovakia records. I compared a FHL catalog set from April 2000 to the catalog available online in October, 2002.
The number of settlements enumerated on the 1869 census has increased tremendously from 458 to 1,772 plus or minus a few. The number of titles (rolls of film) has increased from 177 to 1,785. The number of settlements may vary slightly due to the possibility of a few duplicates in the cataloging process.
I also conducted a related study of the state of FHL filming of church records. Church record film status is far easier to ascertain as there is a correlation of village names to FHL catalog entries. It is fair to say that the increase in church records during this period was minor, the reasons explained below.
A Filming Strategy Shift in 2002
There was a significant change in FHL cataloging strategy for Slovakia in early 2002. Originally when FHL filming of Slovakia began, we understood the work of filming census and church records was proceeding east-to-west. Predictably, we saw church and census records from the counties of Zemplen, Saros, Abauj-Torna and Szepes in the east. Within the past several months, the FHC published the census records of Nyitra, Bars, Komaron and Esztergom, which are in the east.
I received correspondence in October from the FHL Germanic-Slavic Cataloging section who verified my suspicions. The filming and release of church records was interrupted when the 1869 census films unexpectedly began to arrive. I have produced a map which illustrates the present state of 1869 films cataloged, as of October, 2002. An "X" on the map indicates a county where the FHL has filmed and cataloged census data.
The FHL cataloging section indicated that It is unknown (or they do not wish to disclose) whether filming has been completed at any particular location the Slovak State Archives. Based on previous correspondence with the Salt Lake FHL, I am led to believe that Bratislava filming is to be next.
The cataloging of the church records resumed six months ago. No further filming of the 1869 census is presently in progress. From this we can expect that new films are now coming into catalog. The FHL was quick to warn researchers though that as new census data is published to the catalog, it will NOT be found on the latest CD-ROM set (April, 2002) which most Family History Centers utilize. For this information, you are advised to use their online catalog. Researchers should also be alerted to the "rolling" nature of such updates. As films are catalogued, they become immediately available for distribution and appear in the catalog. Researchers should check the online catalog frequently (I recommend every month or two) to see if any new films are available for their communities.
I was not advised as to which geographic areas are being worked on now. The FHL is very guarded on their release of their work plans, so I do not expect to receive any updates for a while. If you asked me to guess, I would expect the east-to-west strategy to resume.
FHL CATALOG - Settlement Names versus Census Catalog entries
A word of warning to researchers. Many of the settlement names included in my catalog lists below will NOT appear if the researcher searches for the settlement name in the FHL Catalog. This is due to the way the FHL has chosen to catalog the 1869 Census. The 1869 Census is catalogued by country name (Slovakia, Hungary, etc.) only. The individual settlements are enumerated in the catalog titles only and are ONLY SEARCHABLE using the KEYWORD SEARCH FEATURE of the FHL Catalog search . The titles are organized by county and then alphabetically. It is therefore much easier to use the surveys shown below to scan for a settlement name.
The Data - An FHL CATALOG SURVEY
I extracted all the settlement names included thus far in the LDS FHL catalog for the 1869 Magyar Census covering Slovakia. Data as of 10/5/2002. The enumerated data is stored in several formats and organized alphabetically by settlement name. This helps the researcher more readily locate the settlement of interest.
1869 Census Village Cross-Reference Lists (various formats)
Follow-up, July, 2003
A follow-up with the FHL in June, 2003 reveals that no further Slovakia 1869 census items have been cataloged since the the aforementioned update ending in October, 2002. There have been additional church records added during that period. I have categorized them on a separate page.
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