Missing details on your ancestor? Check civil registrations!

I just finished reading a record that provided fantastic details on who was in a military detachment, what they did and even their spouses. It’s the kind of document any military historian would dream of having – except Luxembourg’s military records aren’t easily accessible.

So what was it? A civil registration. During the French occupation, citizens were required to bring witnesses to record births, deaths, and marriages. Those witness statements include the person’s name, age, occupation and occasionally, the relationship between the witness and the person giving the statement.

Unfortunately, the only way to find these references is to read through the civil registration page by page. But if you’re interested in finding out these precious details about your ancestor’s life, the time and effort are well worth it.

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Exciting News: French Civil Registration in the Indexing Process

Have you not been able to find your ancestor’s birth, death or marriage certificate, because you’re not sure where the event took place? Wishing the records could be computer searched?

FamilySearch just made that wish one step closer to becoming reality. French language civil registrations have been added to their indexing projects, which means they’re being prepared to become searchable. Of course, at the current rate, we may be waiting a few years.

If you read French, you can speed up the process by jumping to help. Details are available at https://familysearch.org/indexing/projects/LuxembourgCiviRegistration17961923PartB?type=IIS#!/.  Please share the information, so we can get the project done soon!


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Want to learn more? Chat session opportunity!

Hi all!

I’ve had a number of requests for chances to learn more about Luxembourg genealogy, so I’ve decided to try something new. This Friday, April 14th, 2017 at 7 pm Eastern, I’m going to be running a free half hour question and answer chat session on Google Hangouts. Bring your Luxembourg and Luxembourg American research questions, and I’ll do my best to answer them.

How do you sign up? Use the contact form below to provide me with your name, email address and any comments. I’ll email out an invitation for the hangout.  Max registration will be 15.

Hope you can come!

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Translation Tip: What is this word?


The second word is annee (forgive the missing accent)… But what’s the first?

6 eme.  Sixth.

How do I know? Eme is the equivalent of the English, th. It usually follows dates.

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Tuesday’s Tip: What does seeing “Dutch” on a Luxembourger record mean?

I just had a great question from a client working on a Luxembourger project: what does seeing “Dutch” on a Luxembourger record mean?

It’s usually a mistake. Since Luxembourgish, the language spoken by most Luxembourgers, is considered a German dialect, Luxembourgers were often called “Deutch” (German) by outsiders. This got misheard by an English speaker and recorded as “Dutch.” So, chances are high it doesn’t mean much.

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Church Record Sunday: 5 Hints for Navigating Luxembourg’s Church Records

My client project has crossed back into the eighteenth century – and I’m spending time delving into church records.

Here are five hints to make your search a little easier:

  1. Most records are in Latin.
  2. Most parishes have underlined the last name of the person described in the record. In some cases, both the last name and child’s first name will be underlined.
  3. The use record will generally begin with “die” to indicate date.
  4. 8bre means October; 9bre means November.
  5. If you’re looking for baptismal records, look for the word “filia” (to indicate girl) or “filius” (boy).
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Tuesday’s tip: take a second look at your ancestry DNA results

Ancestry DNA has jut added a new feature, called Genetic Communities.

Based on DNA and family trees, it allows you to view the path your ancestor might have taken from Europe to the United States…

And one of those communities includes Luxembourgers.

If it’s shown up in your results, please let me know. I’m curious to hear accurate it was or was not!

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