About this collection
This collection contains birth records from Magdeburg covering the years 1874 up to and including 1903. Magdeburg is located about 80 miles west of Berlin on the Elbe River. It is the capital of the German state of Saxony-Anhalt. The first documentary mention of Magdeburg was in 805. The city quickly developed into a significant industrial center at the junction of important trade routes. By the end of the 13th century, Magdeburg was a member of the Hanseatic League and in the late Middle Ages was one of the largest German cities. The Protestant Cathedral of Magdeburg and numerous other religious sites attest to Magdeburg's important role during the Reformation. During the time period of this collection, Magdeburg was the capital of the Prussian province of Saxony. The collection includes records from 14 communities which are today boroughs of the modern city.
Beginning on October 1, 1874, local registry offices were made responsible for creating birth, marriage and death records in the former Prussian provinces. The collected records are arranged chronologically and usually in bound yearbook form which are collectively referred to as "civil registers." For most of the communities included in the collection, corresponding alphabetical directories of names were also 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
Birth records were created using preprinted forms that were filled in by hand by the registrar. In each record the date of a birth 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
- Registration Date
- Informant: Occupation, Given Names, Last Name, Maiden Name, Residence/Address, Denomination
- Mother: Given Names, Last Name, Maiden Name, Spouse, Denomination, Residence/Address
- Child: Birth Date, Time of Birth, Sex, Given Names
More about using this collection
Each record comprises one page. Additional events from the life of the child were sometimes recorded later on in the margins. These notes can contain very useful information but they have not been indexed. As a result, information from the notes will not found via the search form. In cases where the child had not yet received a name at birth, the name was later added in the margin notes. The “Informant” was often a midwife or the child's father. Under "Browse this collection,” select the Civil Registration Office and then the Year Range and Volume for the register desired. If a name directory was created, it will be found at the end of each individual volume.