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Local heritage book Stedesdorf, Burhafe, Dunum

This local family datbase contains people.
This data was compiled by Ruth Menssen. Please refer also to her Notes and Sources. The database is not complete, and will be changed periodically. It is by no means error-free; there can be no responsibility for errors. For inquiries, changes and additions please contact: Ruth Menssen ( )
Changes will be gladly addressed in subsequent updates.

Comments from the Writer:
The OFB data comes from research on my father's line, which has its origin in the parish of Dunum, and also touches upon the parishes of Burhafe and Stedesdorf.
Since the research of patronymic lines (patronymics are derived from the father's first name - and often from surnames that change in each generation), makes it necessary to transcribe entire church book pages, one ends up with a large quantity of data, of which only a part belongs to one's own family. If one allows oneself to pursue this intensive search, then transcribing entire church books is not far off.
In addition, I have done research for friends whose family branches lie throughout Harlingerland. These families are also included in the database, as well as chance findings.

The existing database is intended to be an aid for family researchers. It is not a substitute for one's own research.
Since access to the original church books is not possible for the most part, I refer to the church book films of Ostfriesland on microfiche, (Beginning KB - 1852), which can be viewed at the

Luth. Landessuperintendentur für den Sprengel Ostfriesland,
Julianenburger Str. 23, 26603 Aurich; Tel. + 49 4941 2672
(Appointments with Mrs. Ubben)
For researchers not well acquainted with the features of patronymic naming, the following website is excellent as an introduction and for help. Rather than explain further, I refer to the homepage of Doris Reuter.
Hints for the surname search:
the spelling of family names varies considerably over the course of time. In the database not all spellings are to be found, since in the interest of simplification, I have chosen a single form of the more common names.
So one will find, for example, the present-day family name EILTS under the (old) spelling AYELTS.
One will find the name EUKEN under OYKEN; for family names with K look under C, and vice versa.

Sources Used
The data was entered using PAF (Personal Ancestral File), which was originally an English-only program. That explains a few peculiarities when printing the data. The conversion to German permits only the same number of letters as in the English version. Therefore, the German word "nach" shows as "nac" (for entries involving expressions of time), since in English the word for "nach" is "after" and is written as "aft".

In all three church book sources:

  1. Church book transcriptions of Reinhard M. Andreesen, deceased.
    These transcriptions are very helpful. The entries are to be regarded, though, with some caution. (For example, while proofing the filmed church book of Stedesdorf, I had 16 pages of corrections over a time period of 100 years.)
    In Andreesen's work an extensive number of death dates for children and those who died single are missing.
    The church book transcriptions can be seen in the
       Upstalsboom-Gesellschaft, Fachstelle in der Landschaftsbibliothek,
       Fischteichweg 16, 26603 Aurich; Tel. +49 4941 96 78 78,
       Fridays 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 - 6 p.m.
  2. Microfilmed church books in Aurich up to and including 1852 (microfiche)
  3. Filmed auxiliary books from 1800 (with various gaps during the Napoleonic era); the originals can be seen in the Staatsarchiv Aurich;
    The films can be ordered and viewed in the Mormon research centers.
    The source to the individual persons appears as Film SLC (Salt Lake City).
Parish of Burhafe

1. Church book
Marriages1650- 1695
Deaths1650- 1680 (1681-1695 gaps)

Most of the entries from earlier years are unreadable due to damaged pages.
Only people with family ties were recorded in this dataset, no single people.
For the years 1695-1800 the data by Andreeson was utilized, corrected in part by means of microfiche.
After 1800 the data from the (supplemental / duplicate? (maybe: secondary ?) books was utilized by means of filming.
(Film No. 1187 673/674, 1800-Sept. 1874), missing pages were completed by using auxiliary books in the Lower Saxony State Archives. Unfortunately the entries do not always agree with the originals (differing names, even missing entries).
An additional source used was Heyko and Eva Heyken, "The Inhabitants of Old Wittmund from 1565 - 1752." (analysis of documents involving land transactions, tax rolls, etc.)

Parish of Dunum

1. Church book, baptisms, marriages and deaths 1670-1725 (gaps 3/1692 - 7/1693)
For this time period microfilm of the original church books was used. For the time from 1726-1785 the transcriptions of Andreesen were compared with the microfiche and the missing death dates for children, etc. were added.
(Gaps 1730, baptismal and marriage entries are missing)
From 1828 - Sept. 1874 the SLC Film No. 1187 679 (supplemental / duplicate) book is the basis for the data.
Further sources: Heyko Heyken, Die Weinkaufsprotokolle des Amtes Esens von 1554-1811, Vol. II (analysis of documents involving land transactions, tax lists, etc.)

Parish of Stedesdorf

1. Church book
Baptismsab 10/1629 - 1733
Marriagesab 11/1630 - 1733
Deathsab 3/1638 - 1733

There were complications in research due to three gaps:
1.Baptisms, Marriages, Deathsfrom the end of 1653 to the beginning of 1658
2.Baptisms10/1684 - 7/1688\
Marriages1/1685 - 1/1687| the year 1688 has gaps, difficult to read
Deaths12/1684 - 1/1687/
3.Baptisms8/1725 - 1/1729
Marriages9/1725 - 4/1729
Deaths8/1725 - 10/1728

The first church book was transcribed through filming (Film SLC No. 1194105/106, right and left sides were filmed separately)
Transcriptions by Reinhard M. Andreesen are available for the later church books from 1734-1843. These were re-arranged according to the microfiche in Aurich. For the years 1844 - 1852 the microfiches in Aurich were used as sources. For 1853-9/1874 the data of the films SLC, Nr.1188001/002 were copied.

Additional Sources:
a) see above Weinkaufsprotokolle, Bd.II
b) Adelheid Ostermeyer, Stedesdorfer Protokolle 1675 - 1746
This transcription of wills, marriages and other entries in readable text was a great help. However, the attached genealogies are to be regarded in part with caution, in that they are based on the church book transcripts by Andreesen.
Since child deaths are missing in the death registers, it can happen, for example, that a little girl's death appear as Wife.

An odd thing in connection with children who died an early death should be mentioned here:
if one counts back from the exact age of death of deceased adults in order to establish their year of birth, one finds fairly often that the the birth year of the sibling who died as a small child (with the same name) comes into play.

For research in the region outside of the aforementioned parishes of Burhafe, Dunum and Stedesdorf, the following sources were used:

  1. Microfiche in the Landessuperintendentur Aurich
  2. The OSB (Ortssippenbcher = local heritage books) Ardorf, Eggelingen, Leerhafe, Middels as well as Werdum.
  3. Church book transcriptions by Andreesen from the parishes of Berdum, Blersum, Buttforde, Esens, Fulkum Funnix, Ochtersum and Wittmund (1650-1725)
  4. Filmed auxiliary books (KB-Duplicate from 1800), Film No. 1256 915/918, Wittmund
  5. Kirchenbuchamt Hannover, Hildesheimer Str.165/167, 30173 Hannover,

Translated by Karen Gebhardt Shepard

:: More links
Pfeil Federal State Lower Saxony
Pfeil County Wittmund
Pfeil Genealogie-Forum Stedesdorf, Burhafe, Dunum
Pfeil Stedesdorf, Dunum in the Genealogical Place Register GOV
Pfeil Genealogical Literature Stedesdorf, Dunum
Pfeil Stedesdorf Homepage
Pfeil Dunum Homepage
Pfeil Stedesdorf, Dunum in Wikipedia
Pfeil Geographical Location, City map Array
Pfeil Meine Stadt: Stedesdorf, Dunum
:: Contact
For further information concerning these data and, if you have additions, corrections or questions, please contact:
Ruth Menssen