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December 25, 2021, 09:03

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Metric books of the Evangelical Lutheran and Roman Catholic churches of the city of Moscow before 1917. Main Archive of Moscow

The service already contains Jewish and Muslim books, as well as a large number of records of Orthodox parishes.

In service Glavarchiv “My family” for Catholic Christmas in the open access appeared about 100 metric books Catholic and Evangelical Lutheran churches of Moscow. The earliest of them date back to 1694. Thanks to the documents posted here, users from all over the world will be able to learn more about their ancestors who lived in Moscow until 1917.

“Exactly a year ago we launched the My Family service. Now it has become one of our most popular projects: the number of its users has exceeded three million people, 10 percent of which are residents of other countries. During this year we have published all the Jewish and Muslim books stored in the archive, most of the Orthodox records. Now, by Christmas, Catholic and Lutheran birth books have also become available to users. We are not going to be satisfied with what has already been achieved: next year we will share with the residents the metric records of the Armenian Gregorian Church, the data of the Old Believers, and we will continue to publish Orthodox books in the open access, ”said the head

Of the Main Archive Directorate of the city of Moscow Yaroslav Onopenko.

At the beginning of the last century, there were two large Catholic parishes in Moscow: at the Roman Catholic Church of St. Louis, which has been operating since the end of the 18th century, and the Roman Catholic Peter and Paul Church, which arose at the end of the 17th century on the territory of the German Sloboda (now it is the Lefortovo district) …

Before the revolution, according to the composition of the parishioners, the Church of St. Louis was considered Polish-German. The earliest records in registers of births, which have been preserved in the Glavarkhiv, date back to the beginning of the 18th century. Catholic books were divided into three types: about those born, married, and the dead. From the 18th century they were conducted in Latin until the end of the 1820s, when the recordings began to be made in Russian.

By the 1890s, there were so many Polish-speaking Catholics in Moscow that they applied for the construction of their own Catholic church – the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The new church was consecrated in 1911 and at first had the status of attributed to the Peter and Paul Church. Only in 1917 did he receive an independent parish. In this regard, only two metric books of the church have survived – for 1917 and 1919. They are kept in the fund of the Roman Catholic Peter and Paul Church.

The Church of St. Louis was called unofficially French because of the ethnic composition of the parishioners. At the end of the 18th century, the number of Catholic emigrants who settled in Moscow increased greatly. They fled from France mainly because of the revolution that took place. A new Catholic church was built for them; it was consecrated in 1791 in the name of Saint Louis. A small number of registers of births for the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century have survived. They were conducted in Russian.

The online service “My Family” begins to replenish the metric books of world religions

Evangelical Lutheran churches in Moscow already existed in the 17th century, and the Evangelical Lutheran community arose in the 16th century. The earliest metric books were preserved in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of St. Michael, located in the famous German settlement. They date back to 1694. Metric books of the second, later Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul have been preserved since the beginning of the 19th century.

Like Catholics, Lutherans recorded in separate books information about those born and baptized, married and died. At the same time, the catechumens were added to the marriages. The announcement was the procedure that was performed after the parishioners applied for marriage: after the liturgy on the next three Sundays or on holidays, the priest was supposed to announce the planned wedding. If, after the announcement, there was an obstacle to the marriage, the priest reported this to the local bishop, who took further action.

A feature of the birth books of the Evangelical Lutheran churches, as well as the Catholic ones, was that they were kept separately for each type of act records – books about those born and baptized, then books about those who were announced and married and about the dead. Moreover, each pastor in the church kept his own notes, so that in one year there could be several similar books.

To study the registers of births until the mid-1860s, the townspeople need to know German well: after all, at that time, records were kept only in it, and from the 1870s – partly in German and partly in Russian. Towards the end of the 19th century, Lutheran pastors began to write records in registers of births entirely in Russian. In addition, early books were filled with intricate Gothic type, so reading them requires special preparation.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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