Birth and Baptismal Records in Galicia

In the year 2000, I visited Poland with two friends.  We flew into Kraków where we spent a few days sightseeing.  Then we drove to Tarnów where we stayed two nights and toured the Castle at Łańcut.  During our stay in Łańcut, we drove down to Dubiecko and Nienadowa, the village where my Dańko ancestors lived.  I previously described the Church in Dubiecko, and what I found there.  In short, I found the record for my great grandfather’s second marriage to Zofia Głowacz, but that was all.  Because time was short, we had to leave Dubiecko and Nienadowa, knowing that there were a large number of church records we didn’t have the time to examine.  We drove to the village of Kazimierz Dolny and then to Warszawa.  The trip was exciting and beautiful, and I look forward to the opportunity to return one day.

The Cathedral at Wawel Castle

Wawel Castle in Kraków

Not long after my trip to Poland, I hired a professional genealogist in Poland to go to the church in Dubiecko and search for more records about my family.  He spent a week there, and was able to take digital pictures of about 50 baptismal, marriage, and death records for my ancestors.

The church records in the former Galicia used a set of preprinted pages where the information was entered in columns, many records to a page.  In general, there were separate books for baptisms, marriages, and deaths, and within any given book, the records for a single village within the parish were grouped together.  The entries for a particular village were made sequentially during the year and are written in Latin, although annotations are sometimes made in Polish.

Baptismal Record from Galicia

The birth and baptismal records include the following information:

  • The year
  • Nrus serialis – Sequential number
  • Mensis – Month
  • Natus – (Day of) birth
  • Baptisatus – (Day of) baptism
  • Numerus domus – House number
  • Nomen Infantis – Given name of the Infant
  • Religio – Religion
  • Sexus (Puer, Puella) – Sex (Boy, Girl)
  • Thori (Legitimi, Illegitimi) – Bed (Legitimate, Illegitimate)
  • Parentes – Parents
  • Patris (ac parentum suorem nomen, cognomen et conditio ejus) – Father (and also the given name, surname and status of the parent)
  • Matris (ac parentum suorem nomen, cognomen et conditio) – Mother (and also the given name, surname and status of the parent)
  • Patrini (eorum Nomen et Conditio) – Godparents (their Name and Status)

In order to display the birth and baptismal records for my ancestors, I cut the appropriate parts of the page and pasted the header and the relevant record into a new document.  I then converted the record into a PDF file.  The birth and baptismal record for Michał Dańko, my paternal grandfather, provides the following information:

  • He was born on September 22, 1877 and was baptized on September 23, 1877.
  • His birth was the 48th birth in Nienadowa for the year 1877
  • His family lived in house number 196
  • His name was Michał [the document gives the names in Latin]
  • He was a Catholic boy and his birth was legitimate
  • His father was Jakub Dańko, a farmer whose parents were the married couple Pawel Dańko and Zofia Szymańska
  • His mother was Agnieszka Sowa, the daughter of the married couple Maciej Sowa and Katarzyna Jach
  • His Godparents were Andrzej Giergont, a farmer, and Marianna, the widow of Kazimierz [Funali?]
  • He was baptised by Father [Arkanakielski?]
  • The midwife was Agnieszka Pilch

Genealogical Trivia

Ellis Island operated from 1892 to 1954, during which time nearly twelve million immigrants arrived at Ellis Island, seeking a new life in America.

Copyright © 2006 by Stephen J. Danko

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