Archiver > BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER > 1999-07 > 0931435946

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Subject: [BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER-L] BB News No. 53A dtd 15 Mar 1999 (edited)
Date: Thu, 8 Jul 1999 08:12:26 EDT

(issued biweekly by
March 15, 1999
(all rights reserved)

This second section of the 3 section newsletter contains articles about
St. Michael History, Zahling-Eltendorf Church Records, Early Poppendorf
Village Fires, Jurasits Name & Szentpeterfa Project, LDS Coming On-Line (also
has a good description of LDS computer files), Member Query and Finding
Ancestors Via a Trip to Europe.

This village history was mentioned in the last newsletter and we've had some
requests about how to obtain it. St. Michael im Burgenland is on route 57
between Gssing and Stegersbach.
Question: > I would be very grateful if you could send me further information
on how to obtain a copy of "Chronical of St. Michael" by Margarethe
Matisovits, which I understand from the article is available only from the
author. Regards Erich Radakovits >>

Answer from Albert Schuch :author's postal address: Margarete Matisovits,
A-7535 St. Michael 136, Austria. Probably also available from the
Gemeindeamt: Gemeindeamt, Hauptplatz 8, A-7535 St. Michael, Austria. I do not
know the price, because I only read the book at the university library in
Vienna. I would guess 300 to 400 Austrian Schillings. ($27-$36)

BURGENLAND), (correspondence between Vicky Wenninger-Fritz Knigshofer-Gerry

Question: What happened in 1879? Did Eltendorf obtain its own Lutheran
parish? If so, is it possible that there were three Lutheran parishes,
namely Eltendorf, Zahling and Kukmirn, within a short distance of each other?
Did some people of Zahling report to the Lutheran parish in Kukmirn? Anyway,
the one point I cannot understand is why Kukmirn could serve Eltendorf (even
if only until 1879) when there was a much closer place for the Eltendorf
Lutherans in the form of the parish in Zahling. As for roman-catholics, to
your knowledge, did all people from Zahling register their vital events in
Knigsdorf, or is it possible that some reported to the r-c parishes of
Kukmirn or Heiligenkreuz?

Answer: The confusion concerning these villages is that at one time or
another their churches were all attended by nearby Lutheran and Catholic
inhabitants. Secondly Zahling was a much larger village at one time than it
is today 1852-694 pop., 1890-1001, 1946-648, 1991-433). Kukmirn has had both
a Lutheran church and a Catholic church, Eltendorf has only a Lutheran
church; Knigsdorf and Heiligenkreuz have only a Catholic church. Zahling and
Poppendorf have no church, only small Catholic chapels. All of these villages
have had a Lutheran "Betthaus" if they didn't have a Lutheran church.

Zahling was at one time the Lutheran headquarters for southern Burgenland
(pre 1780's). The Eltendorf Martin Luther Kirche was built in 1783 following
the 1781 Edict of Toleration, but the church has Lutheran records from 1770
since pre 1783 services were held in "Betthausen", in Knigsdorf, Poppendorf
and Eltendorf, I believe). In the 1500's (Reformation), the Lutheran center
was Gssing (until 1684). It was then transferred to Zahling when the
Batthyany family switched back to the Catholic faith. Zahling had a very
early connection with the Lutheran faith as well as an old Lutheran school
which is currently being restored which may have accounted for its importance
in matters Lutheran, but there was also an important Lutheran school in
Knigsdorf. The center was later switched to Eltendorf, see history extract
below. The Zahling church is old but small and as a result, the Lutherans
(579 in 1873-the date of the Gazetter I use) attended the Lutheran Church in
Kukmirn. The 352 RC's went to church in Knigsdorf which was closer than
Kukmirn. Zahling Lutherans started to attend the Eltendorf church in 1936.
Some may still attend Kukmirn. I also know that children went to school
partly in Kukmirn, partly in Eltendorf and partly in the Catholic school in
Zahling. Confusing to say the least.

I have a book titled "200 Jahre Evangelische Pfarrgemeinde A. B. Eltendorf".
This was issued in 1983 and carries the dates "1783-1983".

page 21 "Die Komitatsbehrden erteilten erst auf Grund besonderer Ansuchung
und etlicher Kommissionierungen im Jahre 1783 die Erlaubnis, das sich die
Evangelischen von Eltendorf, Knigsdorf, Rudersdorf, Poppendorf,
Heiligenkreuz, Raabfidisch, Oberradling, Unterradling, Gssing, Neuhaus am
Klausenbach, Tauka, Liebau, Minihof, Mhlgraben, und Krottendorf zu einer
Pfarrgemeinde zusammenschliessen drfen, als deren Sitz Eltendorf bestimmt
wurde. Schon die Wahl des Pfarrortes zeigt, dass zu den Einrichtungen der
Reformationszeit keine organisierte Kontinuitt bestand. Vermutlich war es
die zentrale Lage, mglicherweise aber auch das Fehlen einer katholischen
Pfarre, die zusammen mit einer entsprecenden Anzahl von Familien (der Ort war
fast zur Gnze evangelisch) die Ursache war, dass sich in Eltendorf die
Gemeinde sammelte. (this establishes Eltendorf as a Lutheran center with the
establishment of their new church).

I find no significance in the date 1879. Eltendorf Martin Luther Kirche was
already almost 100 years old by that time. My history cites Eltendorf's
"Unsere "Tochter" (affiliated Evangelical villages) as Heiligenkreuz (no date
given), Knigsdorf (1783), Neustift (from Kukmirn to Eltendorf in ?),
Poppendorf ?, (Lutherans bought a Gasthaus in 1800's for a "Betthaus), and
Zahling (Auch hier hatte der Protestantismus bereits Mitte des 16.
Jahrhunderts Fuss gefasst). The village belonged to the parishes of
Knigsdorf, then Kukmirn and today to Eltendorf.

The Kirchenvisitationsprotokoll of 27 Febr. 1787 lists "Mutttergemeinde"
"Filiale Gemeinden" Fidisch (sic), Ruttersdorf(sic), Heiligenkreuz,
Poppendorf, Nemeth Ujvar (sic)-Gssing. (note Zahling is missing at which
time it must have belonged to Kukmirn).

>From all of this I would again suggest that members researching ancestors
from this area should search the following church records:
Eltendorf-Catholics-Knigsdorf, Lutherans-Eltendorf
Heiligenkreuz-Catholics-Heiligenkreuz, Lutherans-Eltendorf
Knigsdorf-Catholics-Knigsdorf, Lutherans-Eltendorf
Poppendorf-Catholics-Heiligenkreuz, Lutherans-Eltendorf
Zahling-Catholics-Knigsdorf, Kukmirn, Lutherans-Kukmirn, Eltendorf

Fritz adds: The Lutheran records for the Kukmirn parish are on four films
(0700678-81). The Lutheran records for the Eltendorf parish are on three films
(0700737-39). The Roman-catholic records for the Knigsdorf parish are on two
rolls (0700675-76). The Roman-catholic records for the Kukmirn parish are on
one roll, namely 0700677. The Roman-catholic records for the Heiligenkreuz
parish are on one roll, namely 0700718. All these Lutheran and catholic
records are the so-called duplicates that cover the period 1828 till
September 1895. The civil records for Eltendorf cover the time from October
1895 to 1920, include all denominations, and are on five rolls (0700435-39).
Considering the many inter village marriages, I'd search them all.

My reading of the village lists (Albert's) shows Zahling rc to Knigsdorf
only and lu to Eltendorf only but these lists were compiled in 1970 and
reflect the current status (as of 1970). They have changed more than once as
reflected by the entries in my 1873 gazeteer.

I might mention that the LDS also had considerable confusion concerning
Zahling and Eltendorf in that that they had no entry for Eltendorf! Took me a
year to find that they were listed under Zahling (Czahling). I wrote to then
and they corrected their index. Their problem had to do with the reading of
"Kortvelyes"-Hungarian for Eltendorf, as being the same as "Kis Kortvelyes"
-Hungarian for Zahling, but many of the Hungarian records carried "Zahling"
titles even though the data was from Martin Luther Kirche in Eltendorf. A
mystery which might be explained by a confused copyist.

Checking the latest Zahling history I find that from 1653-1671, Zahling
Lutherans belonged to Knigsdorf. This was of course when the Catholic church
was taken over by Lutherans who were then surpressed until the edict of
Toleration. In 1783 Zahling became a "Tochtergemeinde" of Kukmirn where a new
Lutheran church had been built. It also says that in 1936 they joined
Eltendorf to which they still belong. Population is now about split RC vs
Evang.-slightly more Evang.

RC data-The very old Zahling church (13th century) has a bell dated 1404. In
a canonical visitation of 1557, Zahling is described as the mother church of
Knigsdorf parish! It is now (no date given) a "Filialgemeinde" of the parish
of Knigsdorf. Kukmirn is not mentioned in this respect.

EARLY VILLAGE FIRES (Fritz Knigshofer)
Both articles were written by my greatgrandfather who chronicled events in
Poppendorf and surroundings for the weekly newspaper Der Volksfreund in

>From Der Volksfreund, 15 June 1901, page 3
"Correspondence from Patafalva, 12 June 1901
Watch your fire, watch your lights!" is the tune sung by our good and dutiful
night-guard and hornist of the fire brigade, Andreas Hacker, a tune that
resounds throughout our village every night. While song and custom are
age-old, the reasons for it remain equally valid today, because it reminds us
humans about the dangers when handling fire, and especially the related
dangers that surround us at night. The tired farmer can sleep calmly knowing
that when everybody is asleep, the orderly night-guard is on his post. That
was the situation in Patafalva too.

Everybody still lay in deepest sleep, when very early in the morning of the
Corpus Christi holiday the peaceful inhabitants got awakened from their sleep
by the fire brigade's trumpet. Three houses stood in flames; the fire
brigade set out and some worked with all their strength at extinguishing the
fire, e.g., Wundeler Johann, Simitz Franz, Mu"ller Andreas, et cetera. The
captain of the fire brigade of Heiligenkreuz, Mr. Anton Wagner was one of the
first on the site of the accident, as usual; his fire brigade soon arrived,
grouped itself under his secure leadership, and it did not take long for the
blaze to be under control. Later, the fire brigade of Ko"rtvelyes
(Eltendorf/Zahling) arrived as well, but did not need to get into action

The cause of the fire has not been established until now. Therefore: Watch
your fire, watch your lights, so that the good Lord will protect you!"

>From Der Volksfreund, 15 November 1902, page 5
"Correspondence from Patafalva, 10 November.
On the 3rd of this month, at 4:30 in the morning, the house of Franz Simitz
burned down in Patafalva. While saving the livestock, the old grandfather
received such burns, that he gave up his spirit [died] at 4 o'clock in the
evening. His son Franz - into whose hands the search for economic gain has
forced the walking stick - is currently in America, while his wife has been
stricken here by this fire and death.

"Father, when I come back, everything will be better" Franz had said at his
departure, when he pressed the dear hands for the last time. Yes, it has
become better; but not for him, but for the poor one burnt to death who has
been liberated from human suffering and who no longer needs to watch the
sorrow and worry that are once again loaded upon the shoulders of his son.
Now Franz will again be forced to stay longer than he had intended in the
far-away lands, and -- work hard and harder; this is because the damage and
loss is much bigger than what the insurance amount covers; and wherefrom take
the money other than obtain it through the hard work of his hands.

His greatest fortune is that he has a very good father-in-law, the Jost from
Unterradling, who is assisting with all his strength so that Franz does not
need to hurry back home immediately. Also within the local community there
will be assistance, as much as people can help, and the neighboring
communities will likely step in too, taking pity of the 5 underage children,
and giving them the most that is possible. The following deserve special
mentioning for their effort in fighting and extinguishing the fire: village
judge Gibiser, J. Berl, the capable unit leader of the local fire brigade, J.
Wirth, and Johann Berghold junior who excelled at saving the children. All
other village inhabitants also unselfishly contributed in fighting the fire.
In addition, the fire brigades of Ra'bakeresztur (Heiligenkreuz) and
Ko"rtve'lyes (Eltendorf/Zahling) showed up, but did not need to get into
action. The cause of the fire is completely unknown.

More On Fires: When recently in Budapest, I went through some more old issues
of Der Volksfreund, I noted a series of articles in the summer and early
autumn of 1890 about a series of fires in and around Kohfidisch. I believe
that eventually a 16-year old girl was identified as the arsonist, but I did
not note this fact. Anyway, the series created reactions in the form of
letters to the editor, and fear in the area. One of the letter writers was a
Sigmund Holzer. I also noted the names of the teacher Michael Ruck who was
also the commander of the fire brigade, and further letters by Georg Schck
and Georg Oswald, possibly from Kirchfidisch.

By the way, I am well into my Szentpeterfa project and have about 1500 names
and dates entered thus far. As a side project, to cut the tedium of pure data
entry, I traced out every known Jurasits birth and marriage in Szentpeterfa
and I constructed a mega tree and Excel database to show how the various
different Jurasits lines interconnect.

It looks to me like anyone who bears the name Jurasits today, must descend
from one of 7 distinct couples who were married between about 1792 and 1819.
Also, it is obvious to me that these seven progenitors also must have been
related somehow, and this will be my focus when I get those earlier
Szentpeterfa records (1682-1793) copied.

LDS COMING ON LINE (from Anna Kresh and others)
The most important sources of Burgenland family history are the LDS microfilm
copies of 1828-1921 Burgenland church and civil records. For almost forty
years genealogists have been using these records and in many cases have added
their findings to the LDS data bases. It now appears that the main lDS
computer files -The Ancestral & IGI (International Genealogical Index) files
will be coming online soon. The following was received recently via Roots/L,
Arkansas Roots/L:

As the director of a LDS Family History Center (Arkansas?), I have received a
notice from Salt Lake LDS FHL, announcing the Beta testing of Family Search
on line. It is not yet up, a problem with a piece of equipment, but will be
starting sometime this month (ED. not up March 7) and will be up only a few
weeks as a test run. If there is not a lot of interest it will be taken off
and not put back on. So spread the word and keep trying to get through. When
it comes on line the URL will be: > www.familysearch.org <.

I have not been told exactly what will be available but know at least the
Ancestral File and Family History Library Catalog will be included. Family
Search (FS) is the name of the program we have on CDs in all LDS FHCs. Some
public libraries also have this program. FS includes the IGI, Ancestral File,
Family History Library Catalog, Social Security Death Records, Korean and
Vietnam war death records, and Scottish Church Records.

For those of you not familiar with the various searches, the IGI is the
International Genealogical Index. It includes, in alphabetical order, all of
the names that have been sent to the Temples to have ordinances performed in
their name. Names in the IGI are usually submitted by members, but not
always. Non-members also submit their family names to get them into the IGI.
Some of the marriages may have been part of extraction programs. The names
were taken from courthouse records and checked and rechecked by several
volunteers before being accepted as correct. Most people do try to send in
accurate information but there are many mistakes. My advice is, always check
the original source. Use the IGI to find where people with your surname would
have lived and order the census and court records from that area.

Ancestral File contains Gedcoms of group and pedigree sheets sent in by
members and non-members. The name and address of the submitter is included
and hopefully will allow you to contact others working on your line. If the
address is out of date sometimes a letter to the Membership dept. in Salt
Lake will get you a correct address if the person was a member of the LDS
church. Once again, the material is only as good as the research that went
into it and some of it is pretty bad. Check it out before you 'adopt' it. If
you find a mistake on Ancestral File, you can send in your corrections, along
with your sources of proof, and it will be noted in the next update. The
first submitter does not have to provide proof, but you do, if you are making
a correction. You can add additions to a file, or submit a new file. You do
not have to be a member to submit material.

The Family History Library Catalog is a listing of every book, film and fiche
available at the Salt Lake City LDS Family History Library. This allows us to
find what is available for each locality, world-wide. It includes the FHL
call numbers and a description of what is included in the film/fiche or book.
The material from the books and film/fiche will not be on line. That is not
something they can do, at this time. Hopefully it will be a possibility some
time in the distant future. The film and fiche will still have to be ordered
through FHC. Microfilm and microfiche are the property of the FHL and are
sent into the care of the LDS FHC director and must remain under her/his care
until returned. For this reason they are never allowed to be taken from the
LDS FHC. Almost all of the microfilm and microfiche at the LDS Family History
Library in Salt Lake City can be ordered into any LDS FHL, anywhere in the
world, but there are a few exceptions. Copyright laws prevent them from using
material without the written consent of the owner. Some of the film and fiche
where filmed by companies other than the LDS Church and permission to
circulate these film to LDS FHCs has been denied. There will be a notice
included in the description, saying it can not be circulated....

Ed. Note: If this becomes permanent, it will be the most important website on
the net for BB members (next to our homepage of course!)

(Our lists of Lehigh Valley immigrants in the last issue generated a lot of
comment. The following is typical:)
Question:<< In the latest edition, you mention several names which occur in
my tree (which can be found at The Schuetter & Schafer Family Home Page),
particularly the names MUHR (I have a Theresa married to Herman Schuetter),
GRATZEL (my spelling is GRATZL, but what's a little "e" between family
members?!), KEGLOVITS (I have a KEGLOVICS and LUIPERSBECK (I've spelled it
LUISPERBECK, but I'm so sure I'm mistaken that I'm changing it to your
As far as I know, I don't have a Pennsylvania connections, but I'm open to
all possibilities. Do you think there are any connections here? >>Bill
Schuetter, Orland Park, IL>>

Answer: You don't say where the names were mentioned but I'm assuming you
mean the Lehigh Valley immigrants list. The more common names are found all
over the Burgenland. At least grouped between the south (below Oberwart) and
the north (above Oberwart). Spellings will change frequently-'ics" to "its",
etc. Luipersbeck is probably also spelled Liperspeck or some other
variation. Croatian names will mostly be found in southern Croatian villages
and probably are related (albeit distantly) regardless of where they settled
in the US. The only way to know for sure is to link them through the church
records, same village, same house numbers. Otherwise you are just guessing.
Our lists of names are given to provide clues as to where to look. The Urbars
tell you that families with those names were present at the time of the
Urbar. Just a clue as to when they arrived.

(We get a lot of questions like this and let me repeat that trying to find
ancestors via a trip to Europe without doing your homework is fraught with
problems. You might get lucky and get to the correct village, you might even
find a helpful relative, priest or official; but it's all very nebulous. Do
your homework first or you might be disappointed!)

Question:<< I will be going to St. Michaels, Austria and I understand from
relatives that our family was from there. The name was changed from Malajter
to Malayter. I believe they settled in New Jersey or Pennsylvania. How would
I go about tracing the family name once I get there? I also understand thay
my great grandfather was a freedom fighter. Thank You S. Malayter >>

Answer: First let me say that there is more than one St. Michael. I'm
assuming you mean St. Michael im Burgenland, Austria (was Hungarian
Pusztaszentmihaly pre 1921) which is closest to the Hungarian border. There
are 4 others in Austria (2 in Styria and 2 in Carinthia) as well as 2 in
Hungary (one near Nagykanizsa)-Szentmihalyhegy near the Serbian border and
Szentmihalytelek (near Szeged) also near the Serbian border.

This is not an easy task for an amateur who has not had experience with
Austrian or Hungarian records; however I'll try to provide some help.
Austrian church records from about 1770 to present and from 1670 in Hungary
are located in the churches. If you can find the priest (I'm assuming you are
RC; Lutheran or Reformed records require a different church) and he's willing
to help, he can probably find your ancestor's birth and or marriage, unless
it's in Hungarian or German script which he may not be able to read. This
assumes you have an approximate date. I'd first look for the birth of your
immigrant ancestor and work back from there. The priest may be very busy and
if you can find someone to help, so much the better. If you don't speak
German (in Austria) or Hungarian (in Hungary), language can be a problem.
Check with the local "Gemeinde Amt" (village office) or Fremdenverkehr
(tourist office) and offer to pay someone who speaks English to be your
guide. The Gemeinde Amt also has civil records from 1896 to date and can show
you records if your ancestor fills that time frame.

Always offer to pay for copies (they'll charge very little if at all but it
makes them feel good as they are always busy and sometimes get tired of these
requests and you'll also establish yourself as a good sort). Also leave a
donation for the priest if he doesn't charge you for look up. 100 s (about
$9) is not too much.

Austrian records prior to 1770 may also be available in the Diocesean Archive
in Eisenstadt (the capital of Burgenland) at St. Rochus Strasse 21. Ask for
Dr. Hans Peter Zelfel. They will not have records post 1770 and you must know
the church your ancestors attended. Again offer a donation.

By "freedom fighter" we generally mean someone who left Hungary in the 1950's
during the brief revolt against the Communist regime. This would mean that
your ancestor (1950 freedom fighter couldn't have been your g-grandfather!)
was born in Hungary? If so you must look in Hungary. St. Michaels has been in
Austria since 1921. Thus no "freedom fighters" in Austria except for those
who crossed the border and settled there briefly before emigrating to the US.
Thus no records except those of residence.

The church records for St. Michael, Austria are available in the US as LDS
(Mormon) microfilm 0700716-7. Civil records 1895-1920 are also available.
(newsletter continued as 53B)

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