The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide

Discover your roots in Eastern Europe! This thorough guide to finding your Polish, Czech, and Slovak ancestors will give you the research tips, strategies, and language skills you need to succeed.
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Details

Discover your Eastern European ancestors and trace their stories from American shores back to the old country. This in-depth guide will walk you step-by-step through the exciting—and challenging—journey of finding your Polish, Czech, or Slovak roots. You'll learn how to identify immigrant ancestors, find your family's town of origin, locate key genealogical resources (including online and microfilmed records), decipher confusing foreign-language records, and untangle the region's complicated history. The book also includes timelines, sample records, resource lists, and sample record request letters to assist you in your research.

Whether your ancestors hail from Warsaw or a tiny village in the Carpathians, The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide will give you the tools you need to track down your ancestors in Galicia, Silesia, Bohemia, Moravia, Ruthenia, and other areas of Eastern Europe.

Who Should Get This Book

You'll love The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide if…

  • You have ancestors from Poland, the Czech Republic, or Slovakia but don't know how to begin searching for them.
  • You've hit a brick wall in your search for Czech, Slovak, or Polish genealogy and need ways to work around it.
  • You're looking for more information on the history, languages, and record-keeping practices of Eastern Europe.

What's Inside

The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide features:

  • The best online resources for Polish, Czech, and Slovak genealogy, plus a clear research path you can follow to find success
  • Tips and resources for retracing your ancestors' journey to America
  • Detailed guidance for finding and using records in the old country
  • Helpful background on Polish, Czech, and Slovak history, geography, and naming patterns
  • How the Three Partitions of Poland and the Austro-Hungarian Empire affect genealogical research and records
  • Information on administrative divisions to help you identify where your ancestors' records are kept
  • Sample letters for requesting records from overseas archives
  • Case studies that apply research concepts and strategies to real-life research problems

Excerpt: Sample Tips

Here are some tips you'll find in The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide:

1. Brush up on your European history. Knowing the major events and players in Eastern European history can help you navigate border changes and give you insight into your ancestor's life. Was your ancestor's village in the Austrian or Russian partition of Poland? Did your ancestor immigrate during a major military conflict? An overview of the region's history can give you answers to these questions and enrich your research.

2. Mark your tracks. Since your family history quest will likely span years or even decades, it can be easy to forget what you've already searched. Keep a research log to document what names and locations you've searched for and in which sources you've looked. This will prevent you from duplicating your efforts and help you source your material.

3. Have an ear for language. Your Eastern European ancestors likely spoke (and were recorded in) a language you don't speak. Learn the basics (phonetics, genealogical vocabulary, etc.) of your ancestors' language and the language used in record keeping—be it Polish, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, German, or Russian—to help you decode records and account for spelling mistakes in records.

4. Start with yourself. While genealogists chiefly want to learn about their ancestors, you have to take your research one step at a time. Instead of searching for information on a potential distant ancestor, begin with what you already know about you and your immediate family. What family stories have you been told? What do you know about your parents and grandparents? Working backward this way will help you ensure you're looking for the right people in records.

About The Author: Lisa A. Alzo

Lisa A. Alzo is a freelance writer, instructor, and lecturer specializing in Slovak/Eastern European genealogical research. Lisa has written nine books (including the award-winning Three Slovak Women) and hundreds of magazine articles in publications including Family Tree Magazine, Your Genealogy Today, Internet Genealogy, Reunions Magazine, NGS Magazine, and The Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly. Lisa is a contributing editor for Family Tree Magazine and teaches online courses for Family Tree University and the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. She frequently speaks at national conferences, genealogical and historical societies, and webinars and has appeared on radio and TV shows in Pittsburgh. Lisa also chronicles her family history adventures on her blog, The Accidental Genealogist, and keeps followers up to date about her writing and speaking engagements on her website.

Contents of The Family Tree Polish, Czech, and Slovak Genealogy Guide:

Part 1: Linking Your Family Tree Back to Polish, Czech, and Slovak Localities

Chapter 1: Your Polish, Czech, and Slovak Heritage

Chapter 2: Jump-Starting Your Polish, Czech, and Slovak Research

Chapter 3: Identifying Your Immigrant Ancestor

Chapter 4: The History of Poland

Chapter 5: The History of the Czech and Slovak Republics

Part 2: Getting to Know the Old Country

Chapter 6: Understanding Eastern European Geography

Chapter 7: Languages, Surnames, and Given Names

Part 3: Tracing Your Family in Poland, the Czech Republic. and Slovakia

Chapter 8: Vital Records

Chapter 9: Census Records

Chapter 10: Military Records

Chapter 11: Printed Records

Chapter 12: Heritage Travel and Onsite Research

Part 4: Advanced Sources and Strategies

Chapter 13: Putting it All Together

Chapter 14: What to Do When You Get Stuck

Appendixes

Appendix A: Understanding Polish

Appendix B: Understanding Czech

Appendix C: Understanding Slovak

Appendix D: US Genealogy Archives and Libraries

Appendix E: Civil Record Archives in Eastern Europe

Appendix F: Church Record Archives in Eastern Europe

Appendix G: Sample Letter to Request Records

Appendix H: Polish, Czech, and Slovak Societies

Appendix I: Publications and Websites

Index

Additional Info
Additional Info
SKU T9928
Author/Speaker/Editor Lisa A. Alzo
Product Type Book
Binding Paperback
ISBN 13 9781440343278
Number Of Pages 240
Skill Level Beginner, Intermediate
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