Location Field and Catagory Name for regions with disputed names - Schleswig-Holstein

+4 votes
This is a specific question that may result in a more general answer.  I have an ancestor who was born in the Schleswig region during the dispute between Prussia and Denmark.  The region had both a German name and a Danish name and there were many disputes over which name to use - the Schleswig-Holstein Question remained outstanding from 1848 to 1864, and truly wasn't resolved until the end of WWI in 1918.  My ancestor reported his country of birth as either Germany or Denmark in US Census records depending on the state of the war at the time, and the reason he left was due to not wanting to be drafted into the Prussian/German military.  By the time of his death his home town was firmly in Denmark, and he identified with the Danish region (despite the very German-looking last name).

For now, I have his birth location as Tønder, Denmark, but I don't think that's right no matter what I choose.  It's currently in Denmark, which should be Danmark if I use that.  It also seems like it could be Hertugdømmet Slesvig, Herzogtum Schleswig, Schleswig-Holstein, or even Sønderjylland.  Of those, only Danmark currently has a category, but that just means one hasn't been made for Duchy of Schleswig yet.
WikiTree profile: Anton Wiegardt
in Policy and Style by Stephen Haley G2G6 Mach 2 (25.7k points)
retagged by Liander Lavoie

1 Answer

+3 votes
Best answer
Duchy of Sleswig
Herzogtum Schleswig / Hertugdømmet Slesvig
Fiefdom of the Danish Crown

Duchy of Schleswig

Schleswig or Southern Jutland (Danish: Sønderjylland or Slesvig; German: Schleswig; Low German: Sleswig; North Frisian: Slaswik or Sleesweg)


Could be debateable:

[[Category:Duchy of Schleswig (Herzogtum Schleswig / Hertugdømmet Slesvig)]]

and then for events after 1866

Schleswig-Holstein Province

[[Category:Schleswig-Holstein Province (Provinz Schleswig-Holstein)]]

and then for events after 1701-1918

Kingdom of Prussia

[[Category:Königreich Preußen]]

all though it should be [[Category:Kingdom of Prussia (Königreich Preußen)]]

I believe we are trying to use the [[Category: english name ( native name in native alphabet )]]

You may wish to wait for confirmation.

by Living Lechner G2G6 Mach 6 (69.4k points)
selected by Stephen Haley

This is really great for the Categories; I would like some further input on how to name the Duchy of Schleswig category, since it has both a German and a Danish name, but something like that may be the best solution and if there's any consensus here I'll create it.

Any thought on how to fill in the Location field on my ancestor?  Tønder, Hertugdømmet Slesvig/Herzogtum Schleswig seems pretty clunky.

As for filling in the birth location field, you should use whichever name it had at the time of his birth, regardless of changes after that.

Oh, and that discussion going on right now about native alphabets has suggested not English name (native name in native language) but rather Native name transliterated (native name in native language). Eg. Ukrayina (Україна). That way we're still using the correct language, but it's easier for English speakers to read.

As for whether to use German or Danish, that's a tougher question that I'm not sure of the answer to. Potentially a category could be created for each, they could be subcategories of each other, and cities could be subcategories of both. That's kind of what we're trying to do with Category:New Brunswick and Category:Nouveau-Brunswick.

Of concern was the 3 languages used (Should Frisian be used as well).

Wikipedia also has a problem with the disputed names?
default being (Herzogtum Schleswig / Hertugdømmet Slesvig)

Question should his profile page birth place be an address that the mapping function icon would find?

Would use one or the other language that your ancestor used in your biography. If thats possible.

You may wish to wait or contact Lianne for additional assistance.


Thanks Lianne, time lag did not see your answer when I was responding.
Okay, so for now I'm using Tønder, Hertugdømmet Slesvig as the birthplace in my ancestor, as he certainly had a personal preference to Danish.  As for the category, it sounds like creating two cross-linked categories of Herzogtum Schleswig and Hertugdømmet Slesvig is a decent answer, but I am going to wait until there's at least one other person who actually is working on an ancestor from the region during that time period before I create any categories.  There doesn't seem much point to force a decision until there's two people to put in the category, after all, and by then other regions with similar problems may have already come up with elegant solutions and know the pitfalls.

Thanks Michael and Lianne!
I *SO* love my fellow WikiTreers.  You all rock!

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