How to read Polish records #poland
So, I learned that a library not terribly far >from me was a
FamilySearch affiliate and that I'd be able to see microfilm online
within their walls. So, I went up there, armed with a list of film
numbers and Akta numbers and promptly failed at figuring it out. I was
able to get to the films, but I then realized that I really didn't
know how to use the Akta numbers to get to where I was going. I
originally thought that the Akta was simply the record number, so if I
looked through and found it, I'd be fine. This worked for one single
record out of the 20 I tried. I struggled greatly on the others. Add
to that the fact that I can't read Polish and that I was attempting to
look for names within the text as well as as look at the Hebrew
signatures at the bottom for clues, and it was not a great outing.
Is there an online resource that can help me learn,especially as a
non-Polish reader, how to use film numbers and Akta numbers to get
what I'm looking for?
First of all if you find the record you can post it on ViewMate on jewishgen.
Secondly you must be aware that records of Poland are in cyrillic handwriting
(russian) >from 1868 to 1914, otherwise are in polish handwriting. To learn how
to read the record, if in polish, see the reference by Judith Frazin: A
Translation Guide to 19th-Century Polish-Language Civil-Registraction Documents,
if in russian, see the reference by Jonathan Shea: In Their Words or both of
their updated references. Also for russian there is the very helpful website:
http://www.shtetlinks.jewishgen.org/Kremenets/kmain.html run by Kremenets Shtetl
The record numbers (Akts) start at #1 each year. Following the last Akt of each
year, you will generally see the index for the preceding Akts. If the record has
not been indexed by www.jri-poland.org, check the index which has surnames
listed alphabetically by first initial. . After you have located the Akt number
for a record, go backwards through the images to get to the actual record.
Polish records use Latin characters and so it will be relatively easy to a
surname on the index list. If you are looking for a record >from Cyrillic years,
it will be simple to locate if the record has already been indexed by
researching: KOUFAX/KOVACS of Grodno, Belarus