A recent inquiry led me to review the holdings of Standesamt I in Berlin.
This unique civil registry office holds vital records (birth, marriage and
death records) for localities which were once German (at some point after
1874) but are now Polish or Russian. To take three random examples this
office holds birth registers for Puschdorf in East Prussia beginning in 1874
and ending in 1943. It holds marriage records beginning in 1882 and ending
in 1936 for Rabishau in Lower Silesia and death registers for Radawnitz in
Pomerania >from 1874 to 1938. Requests for information, subject to the usual
German Datenschutz laws, may be sent to Standesamt I at Rückerstrasse 9,
There is a book which details the holdings at that office --I have a
copy --but, unfortunately, this is not available on the web. Requests must
be specific by year, since that is how the material is organized. There is
no name index and no point in sending inquiries such as "Jakob Stein who
died in Radawnitz in the 1890s". You must specify the year, perhaps even
the exact date for larger localities such as Koenigsberg.
Despite these problems this resource can be valuable if you know enough to
ask the right questions. I would be interested in hearing back >from persons
who have written to Standesamt I regarding their experiences.
Peter Lande Washington, D.C. <firstname.lastname@example.org>