#IamNextGen Spotlight: German Geography in the Days of Our Ancestors: How to Navigate German Geography

In this second installment of our new guest blog series #IamNextGen Spotlight, Dallas of Turning Hearts Family History and Genealogy Blog explains how to navigate the challenges of German Geography.

German Geography in the Days of Our Ancestors: How to Navigate German Geography

One issue we deal with in German Geography is Exclaves and Enclaves.

Exclave – a portion of a state or territory geographically separated from the main part by surrounding alien territory (of one or more states).

Enclave – a territory, or a part of a territory, that is entirely surrounded by the territory of one other state.

Let’s take a look at maps that show us the various territories and geography of Germany.

















Just look at this map from Germany in 1648. Look at the complexity and the many enclaves and exclaves.
















The map above is the largest Germany ever was. If it was ever in Germany than it was in Germany in this period.













When recording a German place include town, county, province which can include (state, kingdom, principality, counties, free cities) and country (Germany). There are 38 entities (units) in Germany.

How do we determine the name of the corresponding counties, provinces? Use the Meyers Gazetteer. This will be your go to resources for finding key information for Germany cities, counties etc.

One important key to remember is that you should not change the official spelling of German towns, counties and provinces to english because you will not be able to find those names in a map. However use Germany instead of Deutschland because Germany is the international index name used by family history programs.

Find Dallas online at Turning Hearts Family History, on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Original blog post can be found here

Dallas is an adventurous son, the FUN uncle and college student living in the great state of Minnesota. I attend Brigham Young University during the year and come home during the summer. Family History is my passion and I love helping others catch the wave of finding their personal history. I started family history when I was 13 years old and have gained a love for it ever since. While on my mission for my church in Arizona I participated in family history and helped many start their personal discovery. Besides family history I enjoy playing racquetball, watching movies and binge watching my favorite tv shows.