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January 17, 2005

The Hamburg Passenger Lists 1850-1934

© Lorine McGinnis Schulze

If you have ancestors from central and Eastern Europe you may find that the Hamburg Passenger Lists are your most important genealogical resource you can consult. If your ancestors emigrated through the city of Hamburg, Germany between 1850 and 1934 (excluding 1915-1919), you will be happy to know that approximately 1/3 of all emigration during this time period was via Hamburg.

The lists give genealogical details, including home towns of passengers. There are also indexes to make searching easier. Unfortunately records of other European emigration from Bremen, LeHavre, Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Antwerp are not available.

The Hamburg passenger lists have two parts:

The Direct Passenger List

Passengers who left Hamburg and did not stop elsewhere en route to their destination

The Indirect Passenger List

Passengers who left Hamburg but stopped at another port in Europe before contining on to their final destination.

The Hamburg Passenger Lists and the all-important indexes can be found on over 450 reels of microfilm at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. These can be ordered in to your local FHC (Family History Centre). For all film numbers, you should consult the online FHL catalogue at

To search online ships' passenger lists for this time period, see Olive Tree Genealogy's Ships' Passenger Lists at

Don't miss my Germans & Swiss to N. America page for more resource ideas, including CDs and links to invaluable databases

Permission granted to distribute this article as long as nothing is changed, and all identifying information and URLs remain. Be sure to include the following footer:

The Hamburg Passenger Lists, 1850-1934, an explanation by Lorine McGinnis Schulze of Olive Tree Genealogy at

January 15, 2005

Tips for Searching Dutch lines in New Netherland (New York)

Question from Nancy Moffit:

"Looking for information On Volkie or Folkie VanAlstyne married on 1-29-1757 to John Crannell, Albany, the Dutch Ref. Church. Children: William H, Issaac, Martin, Robert, Marie, Margarita, and Robert."

Lorine's answer:

Always look to the baptismal sponsors for help. The Dutch lines generally used family members, so look at the children's baptisms and write out all the sponsors names.

Start with the easy ones - those with the surname you are looking for (Van Alstyne in this case). See how they are related to the mother, Folkie. Are they siblings? Parents? Cousins?

Look at the other sponsors too - are any of the female sponsors Folkie's sisters, or aunts?

Also look at the naming pattern of the couple's children - in your case my first instinctive theory would be that the first 2 sons are named after grandfathers, making Folkie's father either WIlliam or Isaac. The first two daughters may
be named after grandmothers, making Folkie's mother either Maria or Margarita.

Let's take a look --

Little Isaac had as one of his sponsors Wynant V. Aelstyn,

Little Maritie had Willem V. Aalstein as one of her sponsors.

Those are the only two obvious Van Alstyne sponsors, which makes me think that baby Isaac and Maria were named in honor of Folkie's parents.

I'd look for a child Folkie bpt to Isaac and Maria, with brothers Wynant and Willem.

So let's move on and see if we can find that --

A search of the Albany DRC shows this marriage which I really like as candidates for your Folkie's parents

1728, Jan. 23. B. Isaac Van Aalsteyn and Maria V. D.Bergh.

Can we find bpt for this couple for a Folkie, Wyant and Willem?
Here they are:

1733 Apr. 22. Folkie, of Isaack and Maria V. Aalsteyn. Wit.: Wyn. and Folkie V. D. Bergh.
1738 Apr. 23. Wynand, of Isaac and Marytje Van Aalsteyn.
1742 July 21. Willem, of Isaac and Maria Van Aalsteyn

I left in the witness/sponsor Folkie Van Den Bergh because my money is on her being your Folkie's grandmother on her mother's side. In fact, I checked, and found a baptism in 1710 to Maria, of Wynant Van den Berg and Folkje Van Hoese.

Remember that those sponsors for baby Folkie in 1733 were Wynant and Folkie Van Den Bergh? No doubt they were the maternal grandparents! Again, my money is on Wynant and Folkje being the parents of Maria who married Isaac Van Alstyne who were in turn the parents of your Folkie Van Alstyne.

So now you have several more family lines you can start working on - Van Den Bergh and Van Hoesen....

All you need do is start going back through those Albany RDC records and checking who fits where.

In this case everything fits, the age of Folkie at marriage, parents names, bpt sponsors -- but I'd double check, make sure all the facts fit!

For help with New Netherland Genealogy see my Olive Tree Genealogy New Netherland New York section

The Albany DRC records are online, see CHURCH RECORDS OF NEW NETHERLAND for a list of available free records.

Be sure to check out my Van Alstyne pages

I think Isaac, the father of your Folkie was the s/o Martin Van Alstyne. Here's the bpt I think is his

1703 Isaac, of Marten Van Aalstein and Jannetje Cornelisse. Wit.: Cornelis and Maria Bogaart.

And now you have the fun of working on the rest of your lines!

Free New York Church Records online

This week Olive Tree Genealogy has added the following free church records for New York:

View the index of all free New York church records transcribed and published on Olive Tree Genealogy

To see what records have been uploaded or updated this month go to Jan. 2005

View the list of additions and updates to free records since Jan. 2003

January 12, 2005

Grace Church, Jamaica, Queens County, New York Records online

Records from Grace Church, Jamaica New York have just been added to Olive Tree Genealogy. Baptisms 1780-1810 are now online at
Baptisms 1780-1810

This adds to the existing online records for Grace Church, Jamaica (Queens) Baptisms 1710-1731 at
Baptisms 1710-1731

Also uploaded Grace Church, Jamaica New York Marriage Records 1769 to 1810. It is at
Marriage Records 1769 to 1810

This adds to the existing online records for Grace Church,Jamaica (Queens) Marriages 1710-1731
Marriages 1710-1731

Tombstone Recordings from Grace Church, Jamaica New York have also been added. They are at
Tombstone Recordings

For an index of all free New York church records transcribed and published on Olive Tree Genealogy, start at
New Netherland New York Church Records

January 11, 2005

Oddities of Searching Ellis Island! What have you found?

by Robert Jerin FN1

Since the subject was brought up about searching Ellis Island I thought I would give some insight into what I have found.

First let me say that for over a year now I have not used the "regular" Ellis Island org site, even though I am a member. I have found that the web page that Dr Morse has created is much superior, allowing a better chance to find your "missing immigrant".

Here is a link to his site. FN2

1. Transcibed data base online
The greatest problem I have found is in the modern day transcribing of the data base. Many manifests are difficult to read and letters can be mistaken for the wrong letter.

  • S & L
    Some common errors were made when transcribing names beginning with the letter S. For instance if I do a search for the name LJUBANOVIC the search finds 39. However if I enter enter SJUBANOVIC the search finds 5 and... upon examination of the manifest they are all in fact spelled LJUBANOVIC.

  • u and n
    Using the same surname as in example (a) I now will search for names beginning with LJ. The search finds 6 LJNBANOVIC and looking at the original ship manifest finds they are all in fact LJUBANOVIC. So instead of the original 39 found there are in fact 50 records for LJUBANOVIC immigrants.

  • c and e
    For this example I'll use the name KATIC. A search finds 288. However if we use a "Begins with search" KAT we will find another 13 mistakenly transcribed as KATIE, once again the manifests show KATIC.

  • c and o
    The "Begins with" search for KATI finds 1 KATIO. In fact the manifest shows the spelling to be KATIC. So instead of 288 KATIC immigrants Ellis Is had 302 with that surname pass through the gates!

  • a and o
    Again using KATIC, I changed the spelling for the search to KOTIC. Now this one is tricky as both surnames exist. The search found 9. Of those 9 there are in fact 3 that are KATIC.

  • K and R
    Searching for RATIC found 11 entries. While I did not lookt all the manifests I did find at least one that was in fact KATIC. To verify this we can simply look at other
    entries on the manifest and will find the manifest authors Karolina entry where the K looks just like his entry for what the transcribers saw as RATIC.

  • r and z
    One example of this transcribing error can be found with the name KNEZOVIC. There are some transcribed as KNEROVIC but examination of the manifest shows they are in fact KNEZOVIC

  • y and z
    Example KNEZEVIC are sometimes mis-transcribed as KNEYERIC.

  • Foreign influence
    In the case of some Croatian surnames the Croatian V, which sounds like the English V, that is vee, has been replaced on some manifests with W. This could be a German influence of either the manifest author or the owner of the surname, as the German W sounds like vee. Example: MIHALJEWIC, which should be MIHALJEVIC. Maybe the manifest author was of German background or the owner thought that the foreign spelling would be chic

  • given name surnames reversed
    The typical manifest had the given name first surname last. However some had surname first. That along with the unfamiliar names (unfamiliar to the volunteer transcribers) made the job of transcribing a challenge. Using KATIC as a given name last name beginning with M, finds 5 immigrants. In fact the surname on 4 of those is KATIC. One manifest the author appears to have alternated between having the given name first, while other entries the surname was first!

2. Wrong spelling on the manifest
While most names were written on the manifest correctly I have found a few with minor errors. However those minor errors are enough to cause one to miss an immigrant in a search. Here is the first example I found searching for Croatian surnames, MIHALJEVIC. Using a begins with MIHALJE we will find 2 listings for MIHALJEVIZ, a non-existant spelling. The manifest clearly shows MIHALJEVIZ, which is wrong. I noticed that they both departed from Le Havre, France. And since have found other Croatians traveling out of French ports had their surnames misspelled with a IZ instead of the correct IC.

It if important to try many variants of the surname as possible to find your immigrant. Also remember to enter the given name as a surname when searching. Another tip is to learn something about the language and naming customs of the
ethnic group of the person you are searching for. This is important as we generally think in English. I know that this is important from my Croatian research. Often times people are searching for someone named John or George or Mary... those names do not exist in Croatian with those spellings! However for John we can search for Ivan or Ivo, George may be Juraj or Jure and Mary could be Marija, Mara or Marica.

Lorine's Note: Robert Jerin first posted this excellent tutorial on searching Ellis Island records on a Rootsweb mailing list. It is published on Olive Tree Genealogy Blog with permission of the author
Robert Jerin
Croatian Heritage Museum
Eastlake Ohio
Lorine's Note: Steve Morse has other superior search engines for other online databases such as census, immigration (Ships passenger lists), death records, prison records and more. They are found at

January 10, 2005

Finding a Loyalist (Tory) Ancestor

There is no one list of Loyalists, and it is a misconception to think that there is.

There were lists of approved Loyalists, but there was more than one, they are all different in varying ways, and no one list is considered the final word.

For example the Crown Lands Department created lists of Loyalists based on various sources. This is the Crown Lands (aka Old UEL List). It contains approximately 6,000 names but only about half are qualified UEL.

The Executive Council devised a different list from various district rolls. This lists is called the Executive Council UE List. This list, considered more accurate than the Old UEL List, contains about 3,000 names but is *not* complete.

*Both* these lists, which were first drawn up in the 1790s, have been altered since they were written. The important thing to remember is that when/if you consult
these lists, a negative result (your ancestor's name does not appear) does not necessarily mean he is not a qualified Loyalist!

The first place you should look for a possible Loyalist ancestor is in the land records, for Loyalists and their families were granted land in accordance with their
military rank and dependants.

You can read more about this and about how to search in the UCLP (Upper Canada Land Petitions) for your ancestors at

You can also consult the following Loyalist Resources:

  • Haldimand Papers - papers and correspondence of Haldimand, Sir Frederick from 1758-1784
  • Loyalist Claims and Conversion List, 1790-1837 - Audit Office 12 and 13
  • The Loyalists in Ontario: The Sons & Daughters of the American Loyalists
  • District Loyalist Rolls
  • United Empire Loyalist Lists

All of these sources (plus the UCLP) are fully explained at

You will also find the microfilm reel numbers (if applicable) and location of each source.

I always start with the UCLP because it is indexed (UCLP Index) *and* if your ancestor is found, you may be lucky enough to find a wealth of genealogical information in his/her petition(s) for land grants.

After thoroughly searching the UCLP (and being very creative with spellling!!), I move on to the other sources, leaving no stone unturned.

For more info on Loyalists and resources online, you can consult

There you will find dozens of links to online sources of information. Also check the right hand nav bar on my page for links to articles and online databases


January 9, 2005

USA Census Comparison Chart

Questions you should ask yourself about USA Census Records online:

  1. Does the site have on-line census images with linked indexes?
  2. What kind of census indexes does the site have - head of house only, or every name?
  3. Does the site have only census images?
  4. Are there census Indexes only?

Compare and then decide which set of census records will best help you find that elusive ancestor

See the Quick Start Comparison Chart for USA census from 1790 - 1930 Census

January 7, 2005

Ships Passenger Lists to New York before 1664

Olive Tree Genealogy has an exciting new project! I have begun to reconstruct ships passenger lists for ships from Holland (Netherlands) to New Netherland (New York) before 1664.

All "passenger lists" for travel from the Netherlands (Holland) to New Netherland (present day New York) between 1654 and 1664 came from the debit side of the West India Company Account Book. This account book showing who owed money when they arrived is the source for previously published lists of passengers to New Netherland/New York. The credit side has not been published. Lists for ships that sailed before 1654 simply do not exist.

Thus we do not have complete passenger lists for this time period. Many of the previously published lists are flawed. Many names of those who sailed are not found, as they paid their passage money ahead of time.

In some cases, I've been able to reconstruct names for a ship list that has never been published before! In other cases, I've been able to add names to previously published lists. This is an Olive Tree exclusive.

The full list of 82 ships and names of passengers on these ships sailing to New York from 1624 to 1664 is found at

I reconstructed the names of those sailing on various ships from several primary sources. Please note that not every source was used to reconstruct every ship. I have indicated which sources were used for each individual

Abstracts from Notarial Documents in the Amsterdam Archives by Pim Nieuwenhuis published in New Netherland Connections in series Vol. 4:3,4; Vol. 5:1-3

Early Immigrants to New Netherland 1657-1664 from The Documentary History of New York

Settlers of Rensselaerswyck 1630-1658 in Van Rensselaer Bowier Manuscripts

E. B. O'Callaghan's Calendar of Historical Manuscripts in the Office of the Secretary of State, Albany NY

New World Immigrants: List of Passengers 1654 to 1664 edited by Michael Tepper

Emigrants to New Netherland by Rosalie Fellows Bailey, NYGBR; vol 94 no 4 pp 193-200

De Scheepvaart en handel van de Nederlandse Republiek op Nieuw-Nederland 1609-1675 unpublished thesis by Jaap Jacobs

January 2, 2005

Greek, Italian, Spanish, Minorcan & Turkish Colonists in Florida 1768

Olive Tree Genealogy has an original research project reconstructing names of colonists of Greek, Italian, Minorcan and Turkish origins to Florida in May 1768.

Eight ships sailed under the direction of Andrew Turnbull. Lucie Servole Myers has reconstructed the names of 431 passengers on board the 8 ships and allowed Olive Tree Genealogy to publish this.

The ships and names of passengers are organized in the following immigrant groups:

Passengers from Spain

Passengers from Greece

Passengers from Corsica

Passengers from Canary Islands

Passengers from Italy

Passengers from Balearic Islands

Good luck to everyone looking for an ancestor! As always, this Olive Tree database is available for free for all researchers.