Talk:World Archives Project: USHMM - Czech Republic, Social Welfare and Repatriation Records of Holocaust Survivors, 1939-1948

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Feel free to add to or edit information in this discussion tab as necessary. Please take time to become familiar with the General Keying Standards and be sure to read all instructions on the main project page. (Please note that in case of a discrepancy, project level instructions always trump general keying standards.)

Extra Keying Helps

You can use Google translate for Czech to English. Click the keyboard icon in the corner to enter Czech characters.

Czech Characters

The following are part of the Czech language: haceks (carons), acute accents

á č ď ě é í ľ ň ř š ť ú ů ý ž

The following are not part of the Czech language but are common in German-origin surnames: umlauts

ä ö ü

You are very unlikely to encounter any breves such as "ĕ" though it looks VERY similar to "ě", or macrons such as "ū".

Useful Vocab

Note: The forms of many of these words may vary with grammar. Feel free to edit or expand this section, more is better!

  • Velkou Britanii = Great Britain
  • jsem se narodila = I was born
  • jménovany se narodila =the applicant was born
  • můj =my
  • jeho=his
  • svůj=his
  • její =hers
  • v =in
  • a =and
  • dcera = daughter
  • syn= son
  • otec = father
  • matka = mother
  • manželka =wife
  • manžel =husband
  • choť = husband
  • babička =grandmother
  • dědeček =grandfather
  • ženatý = married (male)
  • vdaná = married (female)
  • sňatek =marriage
  • rozvedený =divorced
  • žemrel =died
  • adresa = address
  • bydliště = residence
  • neznámo = unknown
  • změna jméno = change of name

Content Notes

The images appear in utterly random order, one does not follow another. No attempt should be made to pull information from one image to another, as the images are NOT in sequence. Also because of this, it is very unlikely that you will be able to mark any images as duplicates.

Discussion on Prefixes

The following are common prefixes, not on the list.

  • pan, or pán, or p = Mr
  • paní, or pí, = Mrs
  • slečna, or sl = Miss
  • Ing or inž... for Engineers, I think
  • JUDr = Juris Doctor (Dr of law)
  • MUDr = Medical Doctor

Discussion on document days

There has been considerable disagreement amongst keyers on what does and does not qualify as a document date. Here are some guidelines.

What does qualify (preferred):

  • a date at the top or bottom of a letter, especially in the standard form {Place} {Date}
  • a date in a field labeled document date, or the like

What does not qualify:

  • References within the text to events, such as the date of future plans, the date a law was passed, etc.

Grey areas: (only when a preferred date cannot be identified)

  • Stamps
  • Latest log entry

Discussion on aliases and Czech Grammar

One of the major issues with the Czech projects has been how the Czech language handles names. They change the name depending on how it's used. For example Jindřich becomes Jindřicha, Karel becomes Karla, and on. Sometimes keyers are entering these alternate forms as separate people, sometimes as aliases. But in reality they are neither. I prefer, by far the nominative form (the actual name) when I can get it (in the absence of which, they must be keyed as written).

Discussion on place names and Czech Grammar

In a similar manner to personal names, place names also change depending on usage. For example: Brno becomes Brně, Praha (Prague) becomes Praze, Vídeň (Vienna) becomes Vídni. Like the personal names, I prefer the nominative form when possible, but likewise, key as seen when the nominative form isn't available in the text of the document.

Discussion on full address vs City and district only

The actual rule on these states that if there is a separate field for the street address to only key the city or district. After arbitrating a couple hundred of these I have determined that you hardly ever get an actual separate field for the street address. Meaning that most of the time it gets to be keyed in full. So if in doubt, key the full address.

Discussion on inferring surnames

I'd like to share my thoughts on this topic. I don't feel that it is very useful for a person to be known by only their first name if it is possible to avoid it. Especially as the images in this collection won't be published. I feel that it will be acceptable to infer the wife's surname from her husband, or the children from their parents.

Common Keying Errors Found by Reviewers

This project uses diacritics (accents) - please be sure to key them as seen.

Most images have multiple documents on them.  If the documents all relate to the same person, enter the latest date and only key the name once. If the documents concern different people, make sections for each person.

Document order: in order to facilitate alignment in arbitration it would be helpful if documents were read in the same order. This also makes a difference in accuracy as section headers cannot be moved independently in arbitration. I suggest reading the documents like you would the panels in a normal comic book (left-to-right), and not a manga (right to left). It will make less of a difference when we hit the a-review sets, but for now everything has been arbitrated.

Names of months. Quite often the only arbitration has been to the names of the months. There is quite a complicated rule in how do determine the correct month format. It has to do with the language the document was written in. If the document is in English, use English format, for German, German, and for Czech, Czech. I suppose for bilingual forms go with the language the person who actually filled out the document wrote in.

Calculating Year of birth. We don't calculate the year of birth from age without specific instructions to do so. Most especially don't use the date from a document that the age isn't written on as a basis for such calculation.

Keying as seen. Marriage status and nationality are fields that are keyed as written, however is acceptable to say someone is married when you see a phrase like "My husband John is in the army...."

Lost in translation: please don't translate place names, nor infer the country when it's not stated. Likewise don't omit the country when it is explicitly listed.

I have at least one keyer who is doing an excellent job of understanding the data, and for mining it for all it's worth, but whose accuracy rate doesn't reflect this. The reasons boil down to key as seen, and inference of what isn't actually stated. Since this keyer is really doing a pretty good job, I don't him to be discouraged by his present accuracy rate. No translating Londýn to London, Švýcarsko to Switzerland, or looking up the country of certain towns. I know it's very tempting.

Questions and Answers

If you have a keying question that is not answered on the project page or in any of the information above, click “EDIT” and ask it here. (If you click on Rich Editor you won't have to worry about formatting your entry.) Then click “WATCH” at the top right on this page and you will be notified via email when an update has been made.

Q:  Meaning of "příslušný" ?

I have a list (Red Cross, I think) in Czech of camp internees giving details of each person including DoB and PoB. With regard to Birth details, I am coming across phrases like "Narozen 5.5.1915 Budapest, příslušný Palota-Medzilaborce" which translates literally as "Born May 5, 1915 Budapest, appropriate Palota-Medzilaborce." I *think* this might mean that the person was born in Budapest but was living in Palota-Medzilaborce when they were interned or managed to flee the country. Could someone clarify this? Is it information that should be keyed, eg in Previous Residence field?   - Michelle M.

Q: I am working on this project, and  I keep coming across the same name, that of an official of the Repatriation Mission for Great Britain - sometimes printed and/or signed on a letter, sometimes pre-printed on the official form that someone has filled out. Should I be keying this guy each time I see him on an image? (That is what I have been doing.) - Michelle M.

A: In the Project Instructions it states, "Do not key the names of government or other officials as the goal is capture information about the people whom the document is about, not the people who administered or signed the documents." It sounds like this individual is an official and shouldn't be keyed.

Q: Month spelling

I have come across a typed letter with the  date given as 11, júla 1945. There is no reference to júla in any of the information you have given us about months, though Google Translate says that it is a Czech form of July. In your drop-down list the standard form for July is given as červenec with the only alternative given as července. Do I key as seen in this case, or stick to project instructions to "only key the standard version of the month"?   - Michelle M.

A: The instructions state to key the name in bold that is referenced. If we end up splitting this project into smaller parts we will amend this instruction to key as seen. I appreciate your question.

Annafechter 23:23, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

I've noticed that some of the documents I'm seeing (maybe 10% of them) are images of page 2 and 3 of a 3-page questionnaire.  So you get the person's address, occupation, etc., but it's hard to tell even his or her name except from the signature at the end, and there's no birth information.  I don't know what happened to page 1.  I guess there's nothing to be done about it but it's too bad.  Am I missing soething?


If you have a suggestion or would like to make an addition to the project page, click “EDIT” and post your suggestion here. (If you click on Rich Editor you won't have to worry about formatting your entry.) Then click “WATCH” at the top right on this page and you will be notified via email when an update has been made.