Need help locating Old German Villages

+7 votes

Wilhemine's place of birth is given as:

1. Schmalinz, Preussen on her marriage record and death certificate 

2. Hinterpommern on his daughter, Wilhemine's, birth record

I have not been able to locate a Schmalinz. I have found both a Schmaling,Germany and a Schmalinsee,Germany, but I have not been able to determine if either of these are correct or if any church records are available for them.

Update: I found a Schmalenz (actually listed just a settlement) about 45 mi. west of Strousburg, France.  Would this have been considered Prussia in 1840-1930 ?

Henrich's (Dröse-9) place of birth is given as:

1. Gr(oss) Crössin, Preussen on the ship's passenger list 
2. Hinterpommern on his daughter, Wilhemine's, birth record
3. Wilhelmshof, Prussia on his marriage record

I haven't had any luck finding this location at all.

Any help would be greaty appreciated !

WikiTree profile: Minnie Droese
in Genealogy Help by Steven Beckler G2G6 Mach 2 (24.6k points)
edited by Steven Beckler
You are very lucky!!  I have been looking for years and years for a Grandfather in Prussia, found out it is Graudenz.  Still unable.  Happy for you .


3 Answers

+10 votes
Best answer

As for the second problem: Groß Crössin most likely is Groß Krössin, Kreis Neustettin, Provinz [Hinter-]Pommern, Preußen (nowadays Krosino in Poland). It does not explain the 3. mentioning as Wilhelmshof, but this might be a small part of it or even only a farm, since -hof means farm in German.

As for the first problem: this is more difficult, but I would suspect that we have to look for a similar solution, finding a place in both Hinter-Pommern and Preußen, and therefor in nowadays Poland. I would suggest Schmalentin, Kreis Greifenberg, Provinz [Hinter-]Pommern, Preußen (nowadays Smolęcin in Poland), since it sounds somewhat similar, but its not sure.

You might have a look for places in the Provinz of Pommeren here. It gives the old German and the modern Polish names.

by Danny Gutknecht G2G6 Mach 9 (91.7k points)
selected by Dieter Lewerenz

Before 1945 there existed 58 locations in Germany, which were called Wilhelmshof, 50 of them were in Preußen. The following were located in the Prussian province Pommern:

  • Wilhelmshof (state owned estate), Kreis Usedom-Wollin, Regierungsbezirk Stettin
  • Wilhelmshof (surface mine), Gemeinde Groß Tychow, Kreis Belgard, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmshof (royal brickyard), Gemeinde Zerrin, Kreis Bütow, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmshof (colony), Stadt Köslin, Kreis Köslin, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmshof (Vorwerk - farm or residence), Gemeinde Plöwen, Kreis Randow, Regierungsbezirk Stettin
  • Wilhelmshof (estate), Gemeinde Christinenhof, Kreis Regenwalde, Regierungsbezirk Stettin
  • Wilhelmshof (surface mine), Gemeinde Falkenhagen, Kreis Rummelsburg/Pommern, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg (Vorwerk - farm or residence), Gemeinde Gumenz bei Köslin, Kreis Rummelsburg/Pommern, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg (Vorwerk - farm or residence), Estate Papenzin, Kreis Rummelsburg/Pommern, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg (establishment), Stadt Pollnow, Kreis Schlawe, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg (estate), Estate Papenzin, Kreis Rummelsburg/Pommern, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg (sheep farm), Gemeinde Poblotz, Kreis Stolp, Regierungsbezirk Köslin
  • Wilhelmsburg  (Vorwerk - farm or residence), Gutsbezirk Schmolsin, Kreis Stolp, Regierungsbezirk Köslin

Meyers Gazetteer says Groß Krössin has one Evangelical church.
Thank you for your help !!

I suspected Gross Krossin was correct (an entry two lines up on the passenger list had it spelled that way  rather than with a "C") but the Wilhelmshof is the the confusing part.  Gross Kossin is 25 miles south of the Wilhelmshof Colony,  3 miles from the Wilhelmshof Surface Mine and 20 miles from both the Wilhelmshof Estate and Wilhelmshof Establishment.  Of these, depending on where he was actually from, leaves me a about 30 churches to search- none of which I have found online records for.

The Schmalinz location is the real mystery. Both the marriage and death record for Minnie, which were recorded 65 years apart, have Schmalinz (same spelling on both) as her birth location.  Is Schmalentin a likely option (I don't speak or know the language or the history of the area to know if they even sound alike).  The couple married in Chicago and did not arrive together so I am guessing that they met after immigrating.  However, the Schmalentin you suggested is only about 60 miles from both Gross Kossin and Wilhelmshof Colony so It seems like a very likely option.  Thank you again for this.

What is the difference between Pommern and Hinterpommern ?

Do you know if there are any records online for the churches in this area ?

Many Thanks !!!!!
+8 votes

Meyers Gazetteer, commonly called “Meyer’s Orts,” can be helpful. Technically, it is for the Empire after 1871, but can use useful for before that as well. The wild card search is very helpful.

by George Fulton G2G6 Pilot (666k points)
I've used it extensively without any luck with this location
+5 votes

Do you know if they were Catholic or Protestant/Lutheran?  The Catholic records for Chicago are online here: Perhaps their church marriage ceremony could provide some additional clues.  

by Tina Kobus G2G6 Mach 2 (21.2k points)
Good question. By location I would have guessed German speaking/ Lutheran/ Protestant. I do sense that that type of catgorisation was very loose in the early in the 18th Century but became firmer during the 1800s.

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