In 1784, Joseph II. issued an order to replace rabinate circumcission books by standard record books similar to Catholic parish books. The birth records, marriage records and death records were collected at district rabinates. Local rabbis or school teachers were ordered to collect those data ( see an example of Novy Jicin). The accuracy of such records was verified, because duplicates (control records) were kept by local Catholic priests. In fact, Catholic priests often copied only the records which were already collected at district rabinates ( see examples of duplicate records).

The original rabinate records were heavily damaged during WWII., but duplicate records were allowed to serve as original records to partly fulfill the gaps. Interestingly, sometimes the Jewish records could be also found within regular Catholic parish books between the records of Catholic inhabitants ( see an example in Zbyslaw parish book of the year 1840).

Besides the Birth/Marriage/Death Records one can also study the Books of Familiants (1760-1849) and the Jewish Censuses (1653, 1724, 1783, 1793, 1799, 1811). More can be found in our article at: Austria-Czech SIG

Archival system in Czech Republic is subdivided into 7 regional archives:

Central Bohemia Archives in Prague 4 plus 12 district archives
Western Bohemia Archives in Pilsen plus 9 district archives
Southern Bohemia in Trebon plus 7 district archives
Eastern Bohemia in Zamrsk plus 9 district archives
Northern Bohemia in Litomerice plus 11 district archives
Central Moravia in Brno plus 15 district archives
Northern Moravia in Opava plus 11 district archives

Many catholic parish books are online today. Please see the map with links to digital sources.

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