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18 October 2012

Denmark Marriages, 1635-1916

 The Jewish history of Denmark is almost 400 years old. In 1622, Denmark became the first of the Scandinavian countries to allow the Jews to settle on a permanent basis. King Christain IV, invited the Sephardic communities of Amsterdam and Hamburg to establish communities in the city of Gluckstadt. Those who accepted this invitation were for the most part traders, financiers and jewelers.

 There were some Jewish communities that existed from the beginning of the seventeenth century in other areas under Danish rule, but this was the beginning of Jewish life in Denmark. The Jewish population of Denmark slowly grew over time. By the end of the 1700's there were close to 2000 Jews in Denmark, which about 75% of those in the city of Copenhagen.
In 1814, the Jews were granted civic equality and in 1849 they received full rights of citizenship. These two events led to more and more Jews wanting to live in  Denmark. The numbers reached about 3,500 Jews by the mid 1800's and about 6,000 by the early part of the 1900's. Until the end of the 1700's hundreds the Jewish community was strictly orthodox, then in the early 1800's Reform Judaism was introduced.
In the collection of the Family History Library are the records of the Mosaic Congregation of Copenhagen (Film numbers 44,590-44,595). These records cover the time from 1693-1953. Included are the births, marriages and deaths. Below is the 12 August 1813 marriage of Aron Philip to Hanne Moses Cantor. 

These records were microfilmed in 1950, so the quality is not the highest of quality. However, many of these records have now been indexed at They are included as part of the Denmark, Marriages, 1635-1916 database.

 When that same marriage is search for here, the following is the result.

 The images are not included at this time, however the names and dates are given , as well as the Family History Film number. To access this collection at FamilySearch, just follow the link below.

As always, Family Search is a free database that can be searched from your home.

15 October 2012

At the 2012 International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS) conference held in Paris, France this past year, Dr. Jeff Malka received the lifetime achievement award for his incredible work in Sephardic Genealogy. His work and the work of other genealogists can be found at the website. The homepage of that site (below) is easy to follow and makes it very simple to find databases for your own are of interest.

The tabs down the side will lead you to an incredible amount of resources, from Sephardic history, surnames and family trees. The websites by country tab is one that I find most useful, as it will take you directly to the databases that exist that will be most helpful for your own research. The list of those countries (below) covers the Sephardic world.

Anyone with Sephardic family should make this site a regular part of your research. Congratulations to Dr. Malka for this great honor.

04 October 2012

Texas, Birth Certificates, 1903-1935

 It seems that almost daily new databases are becoming available at that will be a benefit to those researching their Jewish ancestors. One of the new databases should be very helpful to those whose families settled in the state of Texas. Texas, Birth Certificates, 1903-1935 is now available in the Historical Collections of FamilySearch.
So many of our Jewish ancestors entered the United States through the Port of Galveston and then made their homes in Texas. This database is not only name searchable but also includes the original images. As of now it has over 1.5 million images and 3.1 million records. Those numbers will continue to grow as the records are added to. When you search by name, a transcription of the original certificate is made available. The record below is the transcription for the 1913 birth of Moses Rosenblatt.

The transcription gives the majority of the information including names of the parents and date and place of birth. However, if you click on the view image tab, you may find additional information. For this entry the original does indeed add more details.

We now know the father was a butcher and both parents are identified as being Hebrew. It should be noted that since this database contains records from many different jurisdictions not all the records look the same or provide the same information. Regardless, it can be a very useful tool for Texas Jewish families.