Re: Galicians in the Austro-Hungarian army #galicia
Celia Male <celiamale@...>
First of all, thanks to all who have written to me. I need to
1. Here we are not talking about regiments, generals, protocol,
rules, deployment, uniforms, battles, supplies, horses, equipment,
costs, salaries etc. These will be very-well documented in the
Vienna archives. We are talking about individual soldier's records.
2. I have been very successful in finding military records in
Vienna. I received a really enormous dossier on my Viennese
great-uncle [born in the 1860s] including exact measurement of his
short sight, his swimming and cycling abilities, character,
enthusiasm, absence, punctuality, sicknesses etc etc etc, so I know
exactly what these dossiers look like. But I am talking here of
*Viennese*-born family. In about 2004, I also retrieved the data at
The reason I have not asked for more records for my enormous
Viennese family [not Galician!] is that shortly after this, the cost
of obtaining records became prohibitive. And they are unlikely to
tell me much, genealogically, I do not know except for
3. Cost: it is now very expensive to obtain any data. Even a search
which reveals *nothing* is expensive - probably 60-80 dollars!
4. I have no known Galician forebears, but I have been asked many
times before about "individual" Galician records. I had long
discussions in Vienna at the Kriegsarchiv and *everytime* I have
been told exactly the same thing.
After WW1, when the Habsburg Empire collapsed, according to the
conditions of the peace treaties, the *individual* Galician records
were repatriated. Similarly, the military records of the individual
Bohemian, Moravian and Hungarian soldiers were repatriated. That is
what I was writing about.
Read this re the resultant confusion:
5. There are official annual books [housed at the Kriegsarchiv and
other reference libraries] which contain much information about
individual regiments nand list the names of their officers. I do not
think the ordinary soldiers are listed. These are known as
"Schematismus" (army lists). See
6. Vienna records are *not* misfiled. My great-uncle was an ordinary
reservist >from Vienna and his records appeared in a few hours!
It is that these records of other Habsburg nationals are just not
there, except in unusual circumstances. The reason Fay's Polish
records were in Vienna was probably that this man was a high-ranking
officer and perhaps had served in Austria itself, and also won some
medals and awards!
Similarly, Galicians who came to Vienna in WW1 and served there
would probably have their records in Vienna.
But for the vast majority [99%?] of Habsburg Jewish soldiers this
was not the case, so these records will not be in Vienna!
7. Eleanor mentioned a man who lectured at the NY conference. I am
not sure who this was. Christoph Tepperberg is one of the leading
experts on the military archives in Vienna and here is one of his
papers: The Austrian War Archives in Vienna (Kriegsarchiv Wien) and
its Records Pertaining to Personnel. In: East European Genealogical
Society 8 (2000), S. 9-24
Dr Tepperberg is/was? Director of the Kriegsarchiv. He will confirm
what I have written above. I believe the above paper discusses the
records which were repatriated. This is what he wrote on July 4,
2000. See: http://hwk.best.vwh.net/gottscheebb/messages/993.html
Apart >from this, for starting genealogical research in Austrian War
Archives in Wien you have to know place and year of birth of the
person in question, and/or the military unit in which he was on duty.
Without this initial data no research can be started.
8. The Kriegsarchiv, Vienna is indeed one of the largest military
archives in the world. It contains a wealth of information. If you
look at this reference you can see the type of data that can be
retrieved: See Table 2: Size of horses in the Habsburg Military -
and also Fig 2: Size of horses and height of soldiers in the Habsburg
Monarchy [1765- 1805]
But if you are looking for the dossier on say Simon Pollak, a
reservist serving in a Lemberg cavalry regiment, you will have no
luck. The size of the horses in this regiment may however have been
documented as well as the cost of their upkeep - and this data may
indeed still be in Vienna!
Celia Male [U.K.]