German SIG #Germany NALDEX report: Greater Prussia, Wuerttemberg, etc. #germany

Roger Lustig

Dear friends:

GerSIG's Name Adoption List inDEXing project (NALDEX) is progressing
slowly but surely. Volunteers who responded to my last bulletin have
transcribed most of the published West Prussia (Culm region) list of
1845, and the rest should be done soon. Only one published Prussian
list >from that time remains to be transcribed: the Koeln (Cologne)
region of the Prussian Rhine Province, which is only about a third the
size of the West Prussia list.

The other 1845 lists cover the Coblenz and Duesseldorf regions of the
Rhine Province and the Muenster and Arnsberg regions of Westphalia.
Meanwhile the search for further lists continues, and has yielded a
surprise or two. I know of two bibliographies of published
surname-adoption lists: one by Angelika Ellmann-Krueger in Avotaynu
(2000); and Lars Menk's list of primary sources in
_A_Dictionary_of_German-Jewish_Surnames_. Both of these mention some
lists published in the _Schwaebischer_Merkur_ in 1828-9 after
Wuerttemberg had decreed surname-adoption in 1828. Neither author
mentions any other lists >from Wuerttemberg.

James Bauer, the founding director of the NALDEX project, recently sent
me the project's paper archive. This includes a list published in the
Oehringen (Wuerttemberg) _Intelligenz-Blatt_ (part official county-level
governmental bulletin, part twice-weekly newspaper) in 1828, giving the
surnames adopted by 35 Jewish households in the town of Ernsbach. James
had encountered this in his own family research--indeed, the list
mentions several of his BAUERs as well as an ancestor of Werner Frank,
one of GerSIG's co-ordinators.

Also among the documents was yet another published list >from
Wuerttemberg, this one >from Mergentheim's _Intelligenzblatt_ and dating
to 1824. It had been contributed by another of our co-ordinators,
Arthur Obermayer. It's substantial, listing over 150 heads of household.

All this leads inevitably to the question: are there more of these
published lists? Did every Oberamt (county, more or less) have its own
Intelligenz-Blatt (however spelled)? Did these or other publications
include Jewish surname-adoption lists (or similar items) in the 1820s?

If you know--or even suspect--an answer, however partial, to any of
these questions, please tell me.
Meanwhile, we can always use more help transcribing, proofreading and
searching for further lists. There are probably over 1,000 manuscript
lists >from the Napoleonic era (1808 and following) >from much of western
and southern Germany. A few exist on LDS microfilms; others have been
contributed by individual researchers, but we have only about 160 to
hand. If you have scans or photocopies of such lists, or have specific
knowledge of where some of them reside, please speak up! Quite a few of
them reside in town and aristocratic archives and other small
repositories. As far as I know there has never been an effort to
enumerate these lists, let alone read them and index them.

Again: partial information is welcome, and can produce clues as to where
to search next. Researchers residing in or visiting Germany: please
keep an eye out for any and all such lists, and keep us posted. If
you're working with a researcher in Germany (especially Wuerttemberg,
but also elsewhere) please ask them about surname-adoption lists,
published or otherwise.

Don't be shy!

Roger Lustig Princeton, NJ USA research co-ordinator, GerSIG

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