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If you are concentrating your genealogical search in Croatia and you need to pinpoint a location, then you can start with the new telephone listings which have recently been established. The Croatian telecommunications company HPT has added a central Internet site for Croatian telephone listings. For those surnames not found in the current phone books Adam Eterovich (2527 San Carlos Ave., San Carlos, CA) can provide locations for any surname in Croatia.
At this point be as precise as possible and narrow down the location by country, county, town, and village or city district. Use atlases to pinpoint target locations. Gazetteers are useful not only in locating places, but older gazetteers are helpful in locating places whose names have changed over the course of time, or having a nomenclature in several languages. Skolska Knijiga of Zagreb has put out a modern atlas of Croatia in 1993 in both Croatian and English versions. The Croatian title is Zemljopisni Atlas Republike Hrvatske. For the period between the two world wars you will need both atlases or maps showing the old Yugoslavia and parts of eastern Italy, and for the period before World War One you will need atlases or maps of covering south-western Austrian-Hungary. When examining locations for any of these periods, consult a gazetteer for that region. Allgemeines geographisch-statistisches Lexikon aller ostereichischen Staaten has coverage of the Austrian part of Austria-Hungary, mainly Istria, Dalmatia, and parts of Slavonia. For internal parts of Croatia before 1919, the Hungarian gazetteer Magyar neve: Hatarokon Tuli helysegnev-szotar might be useful.
If you are searching for genealogical information for a particular location within Croatia, vital records (births, marriages, and deaths) need to be located. Much of the current records going back to 1945 are in local civil administrative offices, and parish records from this time period should be found in local parishes. Prior to 1945 there were no civil registrations, so records need to be sought from archives and churches. Luckily, many 19th century and earlier church records have been moved to Regional Archives. Parts of the earlier records have been microfilmed by the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.
For records kept by a parish church or a local archive, you can write a letter expressing your interest in a particular individual. Include the dates such as birth, marriage or death along with the name of the person. A sample letter in Croatian can be used as a guide. Most parish priests will reply and though no monetary funds are asked, it is good practice to include a small contribution for the effort of searching old records, typing a reply and postage. Croatian archives are the other main source for church records prior to this century. Croatian archivists will normally charge you for their work, and rates can vary, but be prepared to pay a little more than for professional research carried out in North America. The Croatian National Archive (Hrvatski Drzavni Arhiv) located in Zagreb is main depository of old church records for many parts of the country.
Organized genealogical research essentially involves the location of records
which verify family connections. Most Croatian material will of course be
located in Croatia. The type of records available are described in Tom Edlund's
presentation of Croatian Records at Family History Library.
Some Croatian records generally from about the 1700s through to about 1850
have been microfilmed by the Latter-Day Saints Church and are available on
microfilm through the Church's Family History Centers. A professional genealogical researcher can be of help, if you do not know
where to located original records. The following list of researchers and groups
specialize in certain areas:
Some Croatian records generally from about the 1700s through to about 1850 have been microfilmed by the Latter-Day Saints Church and are available on microfilm through the Church's Family History Centers.Microfilming of Records for Croatia also by Mr. Edlund, gives an overview of the records available. There are numerous Family History Centers around the world, in particularly in North America. Usually, it is a good idea to check if there are any Centers in your community, since the Centers offer a convenient place to order microfilm and to used other genealogical resources. For Croatian records from about 1850 to the present, you will find there are few microfilmed sources available. For this information you will have to write to the original source of the records.
A professional genealogical researcher can be of help, if you do not know where to located original records. The following list of researchers and groups specialize in certain areas:
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