Archiver > BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER > 2000-06 > 0961079772

Subject: [BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER-L] BB News No. 82 dtd 15 June 2000
Date: Thu, 15 Jun 2000 10:36:12 EDT

(issued biweekly by )
June 15, 2000
(all rights reserved)

"I don't know where I'm, going, but I know something of where I came from!"

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newsletter section "B". Introductions, notes and articles without a by-line
are written by the editor. This first section of the 3 section newsletter
contains the articles: Otto Habsburg Visits Rotenturm, Death in Köszeg,
Persistence Pays Off & Jordan Street-Allentown PA, The Angels Smiled-A Trip
Report-Illmitz, Apetlon & Pamhagen (contains source of name Tschida), Ethnic
Cleansing Destinations & Zanegg and Translating Names & Ancestral Stories.


When 88 year old Otto von Habsburg, son of Austria's last Emperor Karl, and
his wife Regina recently (May 2000) visited the town of Rotenturm in Southern
Burgenland, even the town's long time socialist mayor Franz Pomper declared
this to be the finest hour of his political career - during which, amongst
other things, he has been a member of parliament and chairman of the
"Bundesrat" (one of the two chambers of the Austrian parliament).

Mayor Pomper proudly presented Otto von Habsburg with a new version of the
document in which the head of the Habsburg family had been awarded honorary
citizenship of Rotenturm already in 1935. Otto was also able to see the chair
in which his father had been crowned King of Hungary in Budapest on 30 Dec
1916, which is kept as a special treasure by the local Catholic church.

Emperor and King Karl had passed through Rotenturm when he tried to regain
power and reestablish a monarchy in Hungary in 1921. He had crossed the
Styrian border with the help and in the company of Count Thomas Erdödy (who
was the landlord of Rotenturm).

FRIEDRICH FISCHER'S DEATH IN KÖSZEG (Fritz Königshofer writes to Viktor

Viktor, I am having a one day stopover in Budapest on the way from Kazakhstan
to Albania. I visited the National Library and did some checking. Among
others, I found they have hardcopies of the Günser Zeitung of the pre-WW II
years 1931 till 1938.

The issue of February 28, 1939 indeed has an article about the death of
your grandfather. I'll send you a complete transcription once I find time
for it, but the essence is that Friedrich Gratzl [sic], youngest son of the
late mill owner Johann Gratzl, died on Wednesday (which I believe would have
been February 24) of 1937 after a long bout with "Lungensucht"(tuberculosis,
galloping consumption, phthisis). His age was 43. He was a "Diurnist" or
"Beamter" at the Realschule of Köszeg. He left behind a widow and five
underage children.

Perhaps Albert Schuch (whom I copy) could enlighten the term "Diurnist."
The term has come completely out of use in today's German. I believe it had
two meanings, namely either a day-laborer (not applicable in this case) or an
office employee or scribe, something equal to or less than a
"Kanzlist"(office holder), but similar. Perhaps, he had the title as he was
no longer able to work as a teacher due to his illness. Realschule was an
Austro-Hungarian term for a high school with technical orientation (i.e.,less
emphasis on liberal arts and languages than a grammar school).

PERSISTENCE PAYS OFF (Phyllis Sauerzopf and Angela Latta)& JORDAN STREET.

Good news! Down below is a message from Angela Latta. The John Troutman that
the Sacred Heart Church (Allentown, PA) told her about IS him!!!! That is
surprising that the name was changed to Troutman! A newly found cousin of
Angela's from Oberwart did mention his wife to be Christina, even though the
church records list her as Justina. This is wonderful news for the family.
Their grandfathers grave has been found!!!!Thanks for your help.
Phyllis Sauerzopf

Phyllis, ...Also received the death certificate re Frank Troutman, and it's
him!!! People often mistake Traupman for Troutman, or maybe he too changed
his name to Trautman! Well, wife is listed as Christina (meaning Justina),
birth date is Dec. 31, 1875, should be 1874. Birthplace: Austria. Died:
Dec. 17, 1945 at age 69 (2 weeks before his 70th birthday). Informant's
signature: John Troutman, Bob's father! Looks like he died at 458 N. Jordan
St., Allentown, PA. I wonder if that's a hospital or nursing home.

(Ed.Note-I grew up at 621 N. Jordan St. No. 458 is a row house on the left
side of the street heading north between Gordon & Liberty Streets, across
from the Jute Mill (rope and twine) on the site of what was a prison camp for
Hessian soldiers following the Battle of Trenton. Nice row homes up rather
high with a double set of concrete steps with iron railings going up to nice
porches. A tree lined (horse chestnuts and maples) street which once had
trolley tracks in the middle for the Seventh Street Loop which came east on
Washington St. to Jordan, traveled south on Jordan and then turned west at
Gordon Street heading "down town."

Before the Jute Mill was built (red brick with a green cast iron fence and
heavy screened windows), the view would have been toward the Jordan Creek
Valley looking across to Horlacher's Brewery. This valley was prone to
flooding but contained the main lines of both the Lehigh Valley and Reading
Railroads. Between Jordan Creek and the Lehigh River were Allentown's main
ethnic neighborhoods with spillover to Jordan Street and as far west as 5th
Street and a few streets on the east side east of the Lehigh river.

Bridges over the Jordan were at Tilghman, Gordon, Linden and Hamilton
Streets. Over the Lehigh, they were at Tilghman (Union Boulevard) and
Hamilton. On the ne corner of Gordon and Jordan Streets was a cast iron horse
trough with a drinking fountain. As kids we'd drift there on hot summer days
to splash water and have a cool drink. We'd fish for suckers under the creek
bridges. The Mill was a kids' source of rope ends and odd bits of lumber to
make skate scooters. We'd return home by walking the Lehigh Valley Railroad
double tracks behind the mill, sometimes dodging the "Black Diamond Canadian
Limited" on the way to Toronto and the many local freight trains carrying
lots of coal. All seven blocks of Jordan Street from Hamilton Street to
Tilghman Street contained many Burgenland families. From Tilghman Street
north was mostly Italian with only a sprinkling of Burgenland immigrants.

This Jordan street area was like an ethnic village (it could have been called
"Jordansdorf") with many ethnic taverns (6), clubs (3), butcher shops (6),
mom & pop stores (5) and bakeries (2) on neighboring streets in the immediate
area. One A&P at 4th & Allen.

There were 2 movie theaters (Franklin and Towne and four fast food (hot
dog-soda-ice cream) shops (Ralph's, Marco's, Yocco's and one that was always
changing hands) within easy walking distance. Two churches served the area,
Catholic Sacred Heart of Jesus, 4th & Gordon, Dubbs Memorial Reformed, 5th &
Allen and many Lutherans attended St. Peters Lutheran on Ridge Avenue some
distance east. There was a cigar factory (White Owl) at 4th & Green and 2
Textile Mills, Sondra at Jordan & Allen and Royal at Jordan & Tilghman. One
school, the Allen Public School (later a catholic elementary school) at 4th &
Allen. Other schools (including Allentown Central Catholic High School)and
churches were within walking distance. Except for not having a Gemeideamt,
and the many city amenities and lack of agriculture, it was very close to
being a Burgenland community, at least in spirit. The streets and shops
resounded with south Burgenland German. (END OF EDITOR'S BREAK)

ANGELA LATTA continues:

Burial, Dec 20, 1945, Sacred Heart, Allentown. Occupation: Ashman, owned
the business. What's that? Ashman. One who collects ash?

(Ed. Note-yes, most homes were heated by coal so there was lots of ash. The
city would collect trash and wrapped garbage but not ash. You put your ashes
out in a container and the ashman would pick them up and dump them in his
truck and cart them away. We dumped ours in the field behind our house to
build up the bank supporting our yard wall and also added some to the

Well, when I called Sacred Heart Church, they had a Frank Troutman listed,
the only one with a name sounding like that. No Traupman. So it must be
him!!! The church gave me the location of the grave. I know I have it in
one of my books. Apparently there's a person at the cemetery in the late AM,
and early PM that will be happy to show us where the grave is. We just need
to give the location details, and he/she will know where it is. Well, we
found it! Hallelujah!! Bob is going to be really excited!...Angela

NAME TSCHIDA (by Kathleen Kelly)

Ed. Note: In Newsletter no. 81B, in an article about first trips to the
Burgenland, I mentioned that if you go unprepared, your chances of success
will not be good. I also said that I knew of members who got lucky and ran
into help. When this happened, I said the angels smiled. Here is such a case.

Kathleen Kelly () writes:

I wanted to let you know that I was briefly in Austria -- 4 days in Vienna
and 3 days exploring Illmitz, Apetlon and Pamhagen, the villages my maternal
g-grandparents came from. This was an unexpected trip, and I have to thank
Bob Unger who posted the Austrian Airlines ("AA") special in the BB
Newsletter. I attended a wedding in Washington, D.C. and just before leaving
for the event, I found out that I had a break in my case load that gave me
some free time. I secured a flight on AA and one week later I was in
Austria. (Because the trip came about so quickly I was not as prepared for
research as I would have liked to have been.)

The trip highlight was visiting the Burgenland villages. I stayed in Illmitz
which is a charming place and full of tourists who partake of the various
boating and outdoor activities near Neusiedler am See, including bird
watching. Upon arrival I walked around town and met a lovely woman, Paula
Adrian, who works at the Kunstwerkhaus in the center of town. She
immediately enlisted to help me find out about my ancestors, and meet as many
people as possible. That same day she introduced me to two other
townspeople, and by breakfast the next morning the family who run the Pension
where I stayed, Familie Klein, had learned of my interest in the area and
they took me to the Gemeinde, and to visit the parish priest. The latter was
able to locate my g-grandmother's baptism records and give me the address of
where she lived. Later the Klein's researched what that address corresponded
to now and it turned out it was directly across from the church and the house
built on the site in 1930 has been enlarged to include a store. The current
owner, Peter Klus, took me through the entire property and gave me a history
of it. He also knew of Prof. Walter Dujmovits in S. Burgenland.

As everyone else who has traveled to Burgenland has found, the people were so
kind, helpful and hospitable. I was invited to several homes, people drove
me around the area, I was given photographs of Apetlon from 1902, and they
all asked me to come back and stay longer.

Paula drove me to Pamhagen one day. There is no public transportation from
Illmitz to Pamhagen, the most rural of the three villages I visited, and it
seemed a little forgotten in time. The Gemeindeamt there is open only Friday
9 am to noon. There is currently no parish priest; he was suspended due to
"problems with women." A woman I met in the village offered to do some
research for me and asked me to send her as much information as possible.

I had lunch in the Wirtshaus zum Turkenturm where I meet more people. The
owner, Herr Steiner, is an amateur historian and he gave me photocopies of an
old map of the area, of the local history, and he explained that the origin
of most of the people in Pamhagen is from the Bayern - Allgav region, etc.
(Bavaria). He told me an interesting story of how he had researched the
origins of the name Tschida which is Hungarian. During the second Turkish
invasion in the 17th century, the Turks kidnapped children as they traveled
toward the gates of Vienna (some children could also be from "the door of
Vienna"). They used these children as cow herders, milk maids, etc. When
the Turks retreated and had no further need for the children, they abandoned
them. The children were nameless and no one knew where they came from. The
Hungarians called them "tschidas or csidas" which means "man on a horse" or
"rider" referring to these Turkish horsemen. Apparently the Turks also
"drafted" non-Muslim young men to educate and train them to serve as
officials of the Ottoman Empire. These were often the sons of poor shepherds
and herdsmen who were very proud they advanced in the Empire based on merit
and achievement, and not due to the chance of birth.

If you would like additional information, or comments, please let me know. I
am leaving town today and I will be back June 9th. I want to thank you and
all the other BB contributors for the outstanding work you do. I have
learned a great deal through the newsletters, and other members have been
very generous with their help and comments. I am delighted I found the BB!
Thank you again. Kindest regards, Kathleen Kelly.


In the last newsletter Robert Hayes writes about the "ethnic cleansing" that
took place in the former towns of St. Peter & St. Johann Hungary. I too have
relatives that were removed from that area after WWII. I would like to relate
some information that might be helpful to other BB members that had relatives
from that area.

After WWI the area of west Hungary where ethic Germans lived was detached
from Hungary and became the Austrian province of Burgenland. In the northern
part of this area the proposed boundary was to extend father east than the
current Austrian - Hungarian boarder. What happened was the new Czechoslovak
government wanted to insure that it had rail access to the south and the
ports on the Adriatic. It did this by demanding that one of the rail lines
from Bratislava was to run through Austria and one through Hungary so neither
nation would have complete control of rail commerce. The rail line that was
to be in Hungary ran through St. Peter - St. Johann. This meant that these
towns and others along that line and eastward were to remain in Hungary even
though ethnic Germans populated them. In total this left some dozen villages
and some 20,000 Germans in Hungary. The following is a list of those villages
with their German and Hungarian names:

German Towns
Karlburg - Oroszvár, Ragendorf - Rajka, Straß-Sommerein - Hegyeshalom,
Kaltenstein - Levél, Wieselburg - Moson, Marria-Gahling - M. Kálnok, Ung.
Kimling - M. Kimle, Zanegg - Mosonszolnok, St. Peter - Szt. Péter, St.Johann
- Szt. János.

Croatian Towns
Sarndorf - Csuny, Pallersdorf - Bezeneye, Kr. Kimling - Horvátkimle

Hungarian Towns
Wüstsommerein - Pusztasomorja
Mixed German - Hungarian
Ung. Altenburg - Magyaróvár

During WWII this population was largely left alone at first, except for
recruiting drives for volunteers for military service. In 1944 the demand for
soldiers required that men be drafted. They had their choice of service
either in the Hungarian army or in the German Waffen SS. Most seemed to
choose for service in the German Waffen SS where they largely served on the
eastern front.

After WWII the Germans that were living in that part of Hungary were
ethnically cleansed. There were some 10 transports that removed them in April
1946. They were only allowed a suitcase for their possessions. Everything
else was confiscated, (Homes, property Livestock etc.) without
compensation. A list of these transports and their destination is as follows.

1. 12 April 1946 from Zanegg, Hungary to north Baden, Germany (Kreis Mosbach)

2. 14 April 1946 from Zanegg, Hungary to north Württemberg, Germany(Kreis

3. 17 April 1946 from Zanegg, Hungary to north Württemberg, Germany(Kreis

4. 19 April 1946 from Zanegg, Hungary to north Württemberg, Germany(Kreis

5. 20 April 1946 from St. Peter, St. Johann to north Württemberg,Germany
(Kreis Ludwigsburg)

6. 23 April 1946 from St. Peter, St. Johann to north Württemberg,Germany
(Kreis Sinsheim)

7. 24 April 1946 from St. Johann to north Baden, Germany (Kreis Öhringen) &
north Württemberg, Germany (Kreis Esslingen)

8. 25 April 1946 from St. Johann, Hungary to north Baden, Germany(Kreis

9. 15 May 1946 from Straß-Sommerein, Hungary with people from
Ragendorf, Karlburg, Kaltenstein, Straß-Sommerin and Wieselburg to
Bavaria,Germany(Kreis Karlstadt) and Hessen, Germany (Kreis

10. 20 May 1946 from Wieselburg with people from Leiden, Ung. Altenburg and
any remaining people to Hessen, Germany, (Kreis Eschwege)

Along with these transports many people had already fled the area to Austria
and Germany when the Russians approached near the end of WWII and many moved
into Burgenland to be with relatives before the forced deportation. In all
some 20,000 people were cleansed from this part of Hungary. Many of these DPs
still reside in the areas they were transported to. A search of the German
phone directories in these areas will probably disclose where these people
currently are. There is a positive side to all of this. Since these people
lost everything when they were removed, there has been an effort to record
their past history and that of their 'lost' villages. As a result there are
many publications on the history and genealogy of these towns. These are of
great help to anyone researching this area. One of these publications is
where I got my information.

As I mention in my e-mail, many publications were generated by these refugees
from Hungary in order to preserve their history. Some of these books are
listed in the Donauschwaben Heimatbucher site on the web. Some of the books I
used for information are: "Der Heideboden" by Johann Neuberger a 32 page
booklet about the region in Wieselburg (Moson) county, Hungary that includes
all of the 'lost' villages.

Another booklet (50 pages) I have was published on the dedication of a
monument in Germany on the 50th Annniversary of deportation of all these
ethnic Germans from this region in Hungary. This is the source that lists the
trains and to what county in Germany these people were sent.

A booklet by Johann Neubergwer on the origin and meaning of the family names
in the town of Zanegg.

The second most useful book I have is "Das Was Zanegg" by Johann
Neuberger.This is a very comprehensive work on Zanegg (Mosonszolnok). It
covers the history of the town with many pictures of the people and
buildings. Some of the features that I have found most useful are: 1)
complete listings of the tax roll censuses of 1546, 1552, 1566, 1670, 1700,
1770 & 1849. 2) An explanation of the terms used in the church records and
how the Latin, German and Hungarian terms match up. 3) A complete listing of
the houses in 1946, who was living in them then and to what town in Germany
these people
were deported to.

The most useful book I have is "Familienbuch" Zanegg" by Matthias Brasch and
Mathias Kohlmann. It has the genealogies of all the families that were living
in Zanegg in 1946 back to about 1800. What is nice here is I now have data
that extends beyond the 1895 cutoff of LDS records from Hungary. Larry Zierhut


In the absence of the facts, based purely on a translation of our names, we
often have a tendency to evolve all sorts of romantic stories about our
ancestry. We also have family traditions, stories and myths which may have a
kernel of truth but which have been embellished by succeeding generations. We
then add these to a pseudo-onamastic (science of names) definition of our

We often hear the tales about the daughter who loved the young aristocrat and
had to flee wrathful parents, the scion of an old but poor ennobled family
who went off to seek his fortune, the former aid to a King or Emperor, the
son of a noble who had to flee, the one who had to flee for political
reasons, the maid or servant to a countess seduced by the count, the ones who
followed their lovers and so forth. However, it is often in onomastic
translation alone that we can make up the wildest stories and pass them to
succeeding generations where they soon become gospel. "My grandfather told me
that" has such a ring of truth! We generally base our conjecture on
definitions of names found in well meaning but often misleading "books of
names." We forget that 500 or more years may have passed since someone first
assumed our present name (surnames for the lower classes were mostly taken in
the 1500's). In 25 or more generations, what could not have changed from the
situation, place or occupation which established that first name? Maybe that
first Müller was a miller (or worked for one) but did his descendants work as
millers? To say "my ancestors had flour mills" based on translation alone is
absurd! Were all the Smiths metalsmiths? Certainly not.

In my early youth, fed on a reader's diet of the stories of Robert Louis
Stevenson and other romantic authors, and knowing my people had an Alpine
connection, I evolved a story where the Bergholds were robber barons exacting
tolls from travelers in the mountain passes. "Berg" for mountain and "Hold"
for fortified place. What else could the name mean? Later, when I learned a
little more German, I came up with "heroes on the hill" (Berg-Helden);
doesn't that have a nice Rudyard Kipling connotation! Nice stories but just
that, stories. The reality is much simpler and much less romantic. I found
that the Bergholds were lowland vineyard workers or mountain pastoralists.
They tended grapes or herded sheep, goats and cattle and probably lived in a
small hut in the mountains. The fortunate ones did own small vineyards. More
"Heidi" story than "Kidnapped" or "Puck of Pooks Hill." No claims to a
romantic background unless you consider the slopes of the Alps
romantic-"Sound of Music" places.

We must remember, whether we like it or not, that the majority of our
ancestors were peasants, small holders or at best, artisans, and left the old
country for mainly economic reasons. As such they were on the bottom rung of
the social scale (albeit on the top rung of the courage scale). Very, very
few had any social standing or involvement in matters of great moment. If
they had much social standing or property, they didn't emigrate!

This means that we should dig for the facts rather than get involved in
pseudo-researched conjecture. In doing so, we may find that the facts are
even stranger than fiction. The Bergholds, for instance turned out to be
Lutheran religious refugees from Styria or Lower Austria and at first were
mostly day laborers or small holders. One did attack government agents during
the "commisierung" and, fearful of being hung, committed suicide as a result.
Something of a hero in his small community for defying a government edict
which was placing a burden on the lower classes. Another was caught smuggling
(customs fees between Hungary and Austria were intolerable) and paid a huge
fine, but still made enough money to give up his blacksmith job and build a
Gasthaus which still exists. Another was a schoolteacher who belabored
officials to improve teaching conditions and was successful. Another was a
retired school teacher who died under mysterious circumstances still
remembered by villagers many years later. The Bergholds greatest claims to
fame were that some served in the capacity of "Richter" of the tiny village
of Poppendorf and held minor positions of authority within the local church
or community organizations. All well documented cases of the normal everyday
life of inhabitants of a community, very similar to what most of us do today.

This is not to say that there are no romantic backgrounds. Over the many
centuries involved in our research and given the many people and situations
that arose, there certainly must be some. However, we should dig for the
facts, document them and pass them on to our descendants before they are lost
to our families forever. Join a group like the Burgenland Bunch and research
the true story of your ancestors. Much better than evolving a story without
facts which your great-grandchildren will quote as gospel.

(newsletter continues as no. 82A)

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