Sterbebücher. Stadt- und Hospitalarchiv Schwäbisch Hall, Schwäbisch Hall, Deutschland.
About this collection
This collection contains death records from Schwäbisch Hall covering the years 1876 up to and including 1950. Schwäbisch Hall is the largest city in the district of the same name in the German state of Baden-Württemberg. Between 1802 and 1934 the official name of the city was Hall. It is situated along the Kocher river about 37 miles northeast of Stuttgart. Historically, the city was closely connected to the local saltworks industry and to an imperial coin mint established in the Middle Ages. The half-penny coins produced there were called "Hellers." These coins were particularly widespread in southern Germany from the 13th to the 19th century and gave rise to the German idiom "auf Heller und Pfennig" meaning "down to the last penny." With such a diminutive value even the smallest of debts could be paid. During the time period of this collection, until 1918, Schwäbisch Hall belonged to the Kingdom of Württemberg. The collection includes records from another 9 communities located within the modern confines of the city.
Beginning on January 1, 1876, birth, marriage, and death records in the former German Empire were created by local registry offices. The collected records are arranged chronologically and usually bound together in the form of yearbooks. These are collectively referred to as "civil registers." Complementary alphabetical directories of names may also have been created. While churches continued to keep traditional records, the State also mandated that the personal or marital status of the entire population be recorded.
What you can find in the records
Death records were created using preprinted forms that were filled in by hand by the registrar. In each record the date of death usually differs from the date it was registered. Depending on the individual form or on the formulations used by the registrar, you may find:
- Sequential or Certificate Number
- Informant: Given Names, Last Name, Maiden Name, Occupation, Residence/Address, Denomination
- Deceased: Occupation, Given Names, Last Name, Maiden Name, Age, Denomination, Residence/Address, Place/Date of Birth, Spouse/Parents, Place/Date of Death, Time of Death
- Beginning in 1938, the records may also include a Cause of Death and cross references to corresponding birth and/or marriage registers
More about using this collection
Each record comprises one page. Additional events from the life of the deceased were sometimes recorded later on in the margins. These notes, sometimes referred to as "narration," can contain very useful information but they have not been indexed. As a result, information from the notes will not be found via the search form. The “Informant” was usually a relative of the deceased. In later years death information was often submitted by hospital administrators.
These records also document casualties (Kriegssterbefälle) from the Second World War. Records for some of the dead were only later made available by the "German Office for the Notification of Next-of-Kin of Members of the Former German Armed Forces who were Killed in Action" (WASt) in Berlin. Under "Browse this collection,” select the Civil Registration Office and Year Range of the register desired.