BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER-L ArchivesArchiver > BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER > 2000-01 > 0949327977
Subject: [BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER-L] BB News No. 73A dtd 31 Jan 2000
Date: Mon, 31 Jan 2000 09:12:57 EST
THE BURGENLAND BUNCH NEWS -No. 73A
DEDICATED TO AUSTRIAN-HUNGARIAN BURGENLAND FAMILY HISTORY
(issued biweekly by
January 31, 2000
This second section of the 3 section newsletter has An Interesting Report of
Genealogical Help, Notice of Allentown Morning Call Archive Charges,
Obituaries From The Allentown Morning Call and comments on the Derivation of
INTERESTING REPORT OF GENEALOGICAL HELP
New member Mary Carmody ()introduced herself by telling me
of the help she received from a pastor in Hungary. Thinking her experience
would be of interest to our readers, I asked her to elaborate. Her reply
follows. It shows the results that can be obtained by contacting distant
relatives as well as writing to church authorities. Many of us often get the
feeling that some unseen hand is guiding our efforts.
Mary writes: Gerry, You asked for a short report on my contact with the
church in A'gfalva, Hungary. I'd like to give a fuller sense of how during
1999 something larger than ourselves unexpectedly opened one door after
another taking us on a wonderful genealogy adventure -- the pastor in
A'gfalva is but the most recent.
Early in 1999 my 87-year old legally-blind father (he was the fourth child
and the first born in the U.S.) gave me items that belonged to his parents --
old photos, letters, and a book recording his parents' marriage in A'gfalva
and the deaths of some relatives "in the old country" -- all handwritten in
"old" German (script) and which he couldn't help identify. Grandpa and
grandma had not talked much about the old country, which they left in 1907
and 1911, but had preserved these items over many years. I suspect Dad had
kept them put away because grandma and grandpa had two children before they
married. I shared copies of the "hand-me-downs" with a cousin who lives near
me in St. Louis and she had a friend translate the book for us, but the "old"
German was very difficult and we had some questions about grandpa's brothers.
So, on a long shot we contacted my cousin's brother in San Diego whom we had
heard visited one of grandpa's relatives in the 1950s. It turned out that he
had visited Nuenkirchen, Germany with the wife of grandpa's #2 brother and
had visited twice after her death with her offspring in Mosbach, Germany.
Most importantly, he still had a Christmas-card-exchange relationship with a
cousin there. He contacted the Mosbach cousin and her husband, who gave us
names and birthdates of the family of grandpa's #2 brother, identified some
photos and gave us photos of her family. Even more, she surprised us with
the existence of and an address for the daughter of grandpa's #4 brother who
lives in Traun, Austria. From the Traun cousin and her daughter we received
much help not only with a list of their relatives but with the knowledge that
grandpa had two sisters. They also did translations of "old" German
writings on photos and postcards. And, another surprise, they had a copy of
birth documents obtained by grandpa's #4 brother in 1938 as "proof of Aryan
descent". These gave us the names of grandpa's two sets of grandparents. On
top of that, the Traun cousin knew of a grandson of grandpa's #1 sister now
living in Budapest Hungary. She also knew that grandpa's #2 sister lived in
the Balaton-Lelle area of Hungary and died giving birth to her 6th or 7th
child. My San Diego cousin contacted our Budapest cousin who was delighted
to provide the information about his relatives, identified some of the
photos, and contacted the cousin still living in A'gfalva who apparently
speaks the same "old" German as our grandparents. In addition, our Budapest
cousin remembered hearing the married name of grandpa's #2 sister and found
two listings of people with that name in the Balaton-Lelle phone directory.
He is writing to them and to the registrar of that city.
On grandma's side, my cousin in San Diego, via the internet, located the
daughter of grandma's only sister who lives in Brownsville, Wisconsin and had
visited grandma in St. Louis in the 1950s. San Diego cousin and an uncle
visited Brownsville, took photos of that family and learned the story of our
19-year old cousin -- forced to leave Hungary when the Soviets came in,
relocated to Schwaigern Germany, married and had a child, and then insisted
on taking the opportunity presented in a newspaper ad to come to the U.S. to
work on a dairy farm (and much more). She gave us an old address for her
sister. My San Diego cousin asked the husband of our Mosbach cousin
(grandpa's family) for help in locating grandma's niece; she had moved but he
tracked her down in Leonberg, Germany. She has provided much data about her
family and given us photos of her parents and stories of being cold and
hungry and how the family lost everything except 100 kilos of belongings when
they were relocated to Germany. Genealogy brings some sadness, too.
By October of 1999, the fates had led us to the point of having a list of 52
relatives of grandpa and 24 of grandma. Of these 29 and 13, respectively,
were probably born in A'gfalva (Agendorf). We knew the identities and
contents of 50 out of 52 of the original old photos and letters and we had
amassed a nice collection of additional photos from our European relatives.
Probably familiar to other family researchers, as the adventure progressed we
became more and more emotionally "caught up". Each succeeding door held not
only revelations, fascinating historical stories, and yet another enticing
door, but provided contacts with really helpful and enthusiastic previously
unknown relatives with whom we continue to correspond.
All of which leads me, finally, to October 10, 1999 on which date I wrote to
Evangelikus Egyhazkozseg, 9423 A'gfalva (near Sopron), Hungary, the church in
which grandpa and grandma were married. The letter was in English and
inquired as to whether extracts could be obtained from them, the cost, and if
we could visit the church. I enclosed the lists of possibly-A'gfalva
(Agendorf)-born relatives to give the pastor an idea of the size of the job.
As time passed, I worried that I should have had the letter translated to
German or Hungarian. But, just before Christmas, a response arrived. The
pastor, Makovnikne' Hu"ffner Gyo"rgyi, wrote in perfect English giving
information about our cousin living in A'gfalva, inviting us to visit the
church and offering to provide information at a modest cost. On the
enclosures she had filled in 18 dates of birth/death/marriage, confirmed some
others, made a few corrections -- apparently two of our female ancestors were
from Harka and Balf (Wolf) -- and provided causes of death for 6 of them.
Best of all, she enclosed ancestor diagrams taking us back one generation on
both grandpa's and grandma's families. Once again, we were astounded at the
discoveries and heart-warmed by the generosity and helpfulness. We quickly
requested another tap into their wonderful records.
Last week when, by accident I found your web-site while looking for Austrian
travel information, I was struck by how similar the sharing spirit of your
newsletters is to the experience we have had with our cousins. I hope this
doesn't sound too melodramatic but it's as though some unseen force is moving
to draw together what war and economic necessity have separated. Perhaps
others in the BB will understand.
Thanks for all the high quality work you obviously put into the BB.
NOTICE OF ALLENTOWN CALL CHRONICLE ARCHIVE CHARGES (from Anna Kresh)
Guess it was too good to last. The Allentown (PA) Morning Call newspaper is
going to begin charging a fee to download fully (I assume this means
"display") articles from their online Archives web site at
http://www.mcall.com/. See notice below from their Archives web site. I tried
using it this afternoon (1/14) and it was still free, but if you were
planning to do some Lehigh Valley research at this site I would suggest that
you do it SOON.
NOTICE: Free access to The Morning Call's online Archive of local stories
since 1984 will give way in the first quarter of 2000 to "e-commerce."
Searching will continue to be free - you will only need pay using your credit
card the cost of stories you want to download fully.
In order for schools and other not-for-profit organizations to synchronize
with their budget cycles which begin 7/1/2000 contracting for archive service
at annual rates (to be announced), The Morning Call offers to students,
teachers, and staff of any qualified entity within the The Morning Call's
service area free access through 6/30/2000. Entities desiring to be so exempt
from charges should request such on letterhead to (subject to qualification
solely at the discretion of) The Morning Call, attn. Online Archives, 101 N
6th St, Allentown PA 18105. Include all IP addresses for exempt downloading -
PCs at other IP addresses will be charged. Allow 10 days from receipt of
request for processing.
<end of notice>
OBITUARIES FROM ALLENTOWN, PA "MORNING CALL" (G. Berghold)
(from BB URL List)
Morning Call Newspaper <http://www.mcall.com> - Allentown, PA newspaper for
Lehigh Valley area; click on Archives for searchable database of birth,
marriage, death, and general articles since 1984
Having spent most of my formative years in Allentown, I like to check the
local news to see what's happening. The fact that thousands of Burgenlnders
settled there also provides much information for the BB news. I recently
searched the 1999 archives by entering the name Berghold, then Burgenland,
then Austria and finally Hungary. I found only a few Berghold entries (there
is an unlinked Berghold from the Bath area who is an avid bowler and gets
mentioned frequently; and the large Frank Berghold [grandfather's
brother]clan are busy marrying and having children). There were more
Burgenland entries, even more for Austria and many more for Hungary. As you
can imagine, many of the articles are obituaries. The older generation of
immigrants is now reaching the nineties in age and their place of birth is
mentioned. What is surprising to me is how few descendants know the name of
the deceased's village of birth. Just a few are mentioned. Many obituaries
merely say "born in Austria."
I've selected a few family names that appear in the BB membership list:
Josef Drauch, 61, of Allentown died Dec. 15, 1999; born in Austria. Son of
Erna (Jaindl)Drauch and the late Josef Drauch. Services were (held) Friday in
Heiligenkreuz, Austria! Pearson Funeral Home, Bethlehem.
Felix Hammel, 91, of Northampton died Oct. 12, 1999; born in Northampton. Son
of the late Edward and Anna (Taschnovian) Hammel. A meat cutter for
...Kornfeind's Market Northampton. Husband of the late Helen (Kochan) Hammel
who died in 1995.
Reichel Funeral Home, Northampton.
Johanna Milisits, 96, of Northampton died Aug. 31, 1999; born in Harmisch,
Austria. Daughter of the late Frank and Anna (Palkovits) Luipersbeck. Wife of
the late John Milisits. Schisler Funeral Home, Northampton.
Rose Poandl, 92, of Allentown died Jan.22, 2000; born in Eltendorf, Austria.
Daughter of the late Franz and Theresia (Doppler) Mirth. Wife of the late
August Poandl. Weber Funeral Home, Allentown.
Theresa Sommer, 95, of Coplay died Sept. 5, 1999; born in Austria. Daughter
of the late Michael and Cecelia (Weber) Kaintz. Wife of the late Ludwig
Hauke Funeral Home, Coplay.
Stephen Tarafas, 73, of Northampton died Dec. 5, 1999; born in Northampton.
Son of the late Joseph and Sophia (Kolar) Tarafas. Husband of the late Olga
(Reszetar) Tarafas. Reichel Funeral Home, Northampton. (Ed. Note-this is a
Pinka Mindszent, Hungary family-part of my genealogy.)
Joseph Teklits, 95, formerly of Nazareth died Jan. 14, 1999; born
Szentpeterfa, Austria-Hungary. Son of the late Frank ans Mary (Temmel)
Teklits. Husband of the late Mary (Milisits) Teklits. Reichel Funeral Home,
Joseph Vollman, 80, of Allentown died Aug. 22, 1999; born in Burgenland,
Austria. Son of the late Joseph and Anna (Deutsch) Vollman. Husband of
Theresa (Haftl) Vollman. Reichel Funeral Home, Northampton.
These are just a few of the Burgenland names I found. If you have ancestors
from the Lehigh Valley, it would be worthwhile to search the Morning Call
archives which are available from 1984 to date. The archives can be reached
at http://www.mcall.com Click on "Archives." I suggest you set the number of
items to be listed at a high number like 200 so you don't miss any. Search
first on your family names, then try Burgenland, then Austria and Hungary.
DERIVATION OF SURNAMES (suggested by Anna Kesh)
One step every genealogist should take is to research the origin of their
names. This is a specialized field called "Onomastics" or "the science of
names". There are many books on the subject and I've mentioned some in
previous newsletters. It's not my intention to pirate some of this work,
although I have considered writing an article mentioning the origin of some
Burgenland names as they do fall into special categories not found
everywhere. My own name "Berghold" is not too common and has at least four or
five origins, but only two of these origins stem from southern Austria. The
name can mean (with an "e" on the end) "vineyard worker" (southern Germany)
or "mountain smallholder" (Styria). I don't feel I have enough data to
prepare such an article as yet, although we have discussed some BB names in
The main purpose of this article is to get you started looking into the
origin of your name. Anna Kresh recently forwarded a nice synopsis of the
general origins of Germanic names. We want to share it with you (with Roots-L
permission). Remember that if your surname is a Germanic one, it can well
mean that your Burgenland ancestors migrated from some other Germanic region
and the type of name may be a clue as to where that place was. If this
article gets you started, consider adding one of the books mentioned to your
Anna writes: I got the following from the Northampton County mailing list. Is
there anything here we can use for the newsletter?
From: Laura D Lahneman <>
Date: Tuesday, January 18, 2000 5:04 PM
Subject: [PANORTHA-L] definitions of surnames
I thought I would send these definitions around again. For all the
newbies this may help to define your family name. I am researching the
Lahneman/Lahnemann family name. Any info you can offer would be
Names derived from profession of first bearer:
Arzt - doctor; Bader - barber: Bauer - farmer; Bauman(n) - builder;
Becker - baker; Brenner - distiller; Brauer, Breuer - brewer,
brower,brewster; Eisenhauer, Eisenhower - iron cutter, miner; Farber -
painter; Fischer - fisher; Fleischer - butcher; Gebauer - peasant or tiller
of the field; Gerber - tanner; Kellerman - worker or dweller in a wine cellar
or tavern; Kessler - coppersmith, own who sold or made cettles; Kramer
-merchant; Krieg, Krieger - war, warrior, in Yiddish could mean tavern
keeper; Kuster (Kuester) - sexton, Kunstler - artist or skilled artisan;
Lederer, Lederman(n) - leather maker, tanner; Lehrer - teacher; Lesser
-custodian of a forest, game keeper; Lichtermann - one who lit
lamps,lamplighter; Lichtman - candle maker; Maurer - stone mason;
Mehler(Mahler) - painter; Mehlinger, Mehlman(n), Melman - one who works with
flour; Metzger - butcher; Muller - miller; Nachtman(n) - night watchman;
Pfannnenschmidt - maker of pots and pans; Postman(n) - postal worker,(also a
person from Postau); Puttkam(m)er - person who cleans rooms; Rader -
wheelwright, one who makes wheels; or a person from Raden (moor, reedy
place), one who thatched with reed; Reifsneider, Reifsnyder - one who made
barrel hops; Reiter - horseman, also one who cleared land for tilling;
Richter - judge or magistrate; Saltz, Saltzman(n) - one who processed and
sold salt; Sandler - one who carts sand, repairs shoes, a cobbler; Schafer
(German with Umlaut) was a sheperd; Schenker - one who kept a public house;
Scherer - one who shaved others, a barber; Schlosser
- lock smith; Schluter (Schlueter, Schluter with Umlaut) - the keeper of
supplies; Schmidt - smith; Schmuker, Schmu(c)kler - one who decorates,
ornaments; Schneider and Schroeder - tailor; Schultz, Schultheis - village
mayor; Schreiber - secretary or scribe; Schreiner - cabinet maker; Schubert -
one who made or sold shoes; Schulman(n) - school or synagogue man;
Schumacher, Schu(h)man(n), Schuster - shoe maker, cobbler; Steinhauer - one
who cuts and breaks stone; Studebaker - one who prepared or sold pastries;
Wagner - wagoner, wagon maker; Weber - weaver; Wechsler
- money changer.
Names derived from location of homestead:
Zumwald - at the forest; Kaltenbach - cold creek; Waldschmidt - smith at/in
the woods. Meer - from the sea, ocean; Borg (northern German) or Burg - from
or near a fortified castle; Bullwinkel - corner where bulls were kept; Adler
(zum Adler) - eagle, may have derived from a house name; Rabe - crow.
The place a person came from:
Cullen from Koeln/Cologne; Dannenberg, town of Dannenberg - pine tree covered
mountain, three places in Germany; Dresdner from Dresden; Halpern or Halperin
- one who came from Heilbronn in Wurttemberg; Mel(t)zer - can be a brewer or
a person who came from Meltz; Berlin, Klutz and Lowenthal- place names in
Germany; Silberg - two place names in Germany; Stein -numerous villages in
German-speaking countries; stone, rock, marker; Sternberg - name of ten
places in Germany; Shapiro, Shapira, Shapero, Shapera - one from Spyer, in
the middle ages spelled Spira, and by Jews spelled Shapira; Pollack - one who
came from Poland; Frank - from Franconia; Rockower, Rockow - ow is frequent
and only in the low lands of Germany; Schlesinger - one who came from Silesia
or Schleusingen in Thuringia; Schwei(t)zer - person from Switzerland, but
also a dairyman.
First names of first bearer:
Friedrich, Fritz, Albrecht (Albright), Dietrich, Dietz, Eberhard(t),Georg(e),
Heinrich, Heinz, Hinz, Konrad, Kunz, Ludwig, Lutz, Ott(o), Paul(us),
Names derived from a physical or other characteristic of first bearer:
Altmann - old man; Hellmann - light man; Dick - fat person; Klein -
short; Lange - the long one; Kurz - the short one. Lustig - happy person;
Grossmann - the big one; Rot(h)bart - red beard; Weiss - white appearance;
Schwar(t)z - black appearance; Schwarzkopf - black haired; Sus(s)man -
affectionate person; Unruh - agitator or trouble maker; Schatz - treasure;
Stamm, Stump - trunk (as of a tree); Stammler -stutterer; Stock - stick, tree
Dating back to the old Germanic world:
Albrecht (Albright), Die(d)trich, Gu(81)nther, Hagen, Hildebrandt,
Hillenbrand, Oswald, Siegfried (Seyfried). Short forms: Konrad-Kunz,
Names of saints:
Lukas, Matthias, Matthaeus, Paulus, Ruprecht and Nikolaus, which became
After days of the week: Montag, Freitag, Sonntag; or Month: May (Mai).
Relating to objects/materials:
Hammer - hammer; Nagel - nail; Knopf - button, Stahl - steel; Eisen -iron;
Erzberger - ore mountain; Gold - gold; Silber - silver; Baum -tree; Holz -
wood; Stroh - straw; Keller - cellar, storage space.
Diminutives (-chen, -lein, -lin) can indicate regional origin. Examples:
Buechlein, Boeglin. Allemanic (Switzerland, Alsace, Baden) endings in -li;
Swabian: -le; Bavaria/Austrian: -erl; North German: -gen, -ken.
Schleswig-Holstein and Friesland share the North-European tradition of adding
-sen or -so(h)n to the father's name: Hansen, Claussen, Petersen, Petersohn,
Where immigration from the northeastern provinces of Mecklenburg and
Pomerania was strong, you will find names ending in -ow (but note that Polish
and Russian have that ending too).
Hans Bahlow, Dictionary of German Names, 1993, 641 pp., $22.50, ISBN
0-924119-35-7, Max Kade Institute for German-American Studies, University of
Wisconsin-Madison, 901 University Bay Drive, Madison, WI 52705
George F. Jones, German-American Names, 1995, 320 pp., $25.00, ISBN
0-8063-1481-8, Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. 1001 N. Calvert St.,
Baltimore, MD 21202-3897
>From the Max Kade Center's Teaching Unit: GERMAN-AMERICANS AND THEIR
CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE AMERICAN MAINSTREAM CULTURE: GERMAN NAMES AND WORDS
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(Newsletter continues as no. 73B)