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The Internet Archive

The following map and table shows and names the 7 archival districts 77 districts (okres), with borders—and lists the principal internet archive URL for each Archive.

The district names correspond to the city where the archive is located.  For example the Brno District Archive is located in Brno. 

Step 3 - Accessing and Using the Archive

When accessing the corresponding district internet archive, use the URLs listed below rather than those listed in the balloons on the map.  There are small differences that make some of the links unusable.

 

Archival District Internet Archive URL
Praha www.actapublica.eu*
Praha City www.ahmp.cz/katalog*
Plzen www.actapublica.eu*
Litomerice matriky.soalitomerice.cz
Trebon www.ceskearchivy.cz
Zamrsk www.vychodoceskearchivy.cz
Brno www.actapublica.eu*
Opava www.archives.cz

 

*denotes sites currently limited to Czech—accessing the site with Google site translation tool works reasonably well

Note that it is possible that these URL addresses may change over time.  Also names of an ancestors village or town may have changed over the years, or they can be garbled in the pronunciation or spelling.  Another complication to be alert for is that, like in the US, the same names can used for many villages and towns. 

Step 4 – Access the Internet Archive

For Step 3 and 4 you need to access the archive websites.  Some of these sites have an English option for navigating the site, but others are in Czech or German and the English option is still under development.   For the non-English sites accessing the site using the translation feature in the Google browser can help manipulate the menus for searching to get to the correct parish book.  Learning to use the websites can take some practice, especially for the non-English sites, but the good news is that if you can navigate the indexing, the images of records (birth, marriage and death) may be retrieved.  Now it can be tricky to navigate to the specific record for an ancestor.  However, as the systems improve, this process should become easier.

Original parish records are normally recorded in long hand.  So they may be a bit daunting to read, and of course are in Czech or German, and if they are old enough even Latin.  So even having the record in hand may take some careful study and language skills to ferret out the pertinent facts, but it is worth the effort.  Once you find that first record with your own family name on it you will want more.  There will be puzzling moments and surprises.  Many find it an adventure well worth taking on.  Discovering ones roots is a special experience and one that can be shared with the whole family.  Now that there are more resources available what took years can be done much quicker.