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Hungarian Genealogy: Research Tip #9

The theme of today's tip is: Military Record References

Through-out Hungarian research, it isn't uncommon to come across a notation on a baptism, marriage or death record that mention a soldier's military service. A very large majority of the notations mostly appear on the marriage record of the individual. Within this article, I'm going to show you examples and discuss how to interpret these notes.

I'm going to begin with a notation from a marriage record that's very important to me. It's from the marriage record of my 3rd-great-grandparents, József Gombás & Zsuzsánna Gulyás. It was one of the first records I ever found, when I began my own genealogy research well over 13 years ago.

"Férfi, Gr. Pállfy 14 huszár ezred
44 századábán káplár. Szül:
1845. Soroztarver 1866 14/3.
Szabadság levele kelt Marburg
1869 29/10 (:Jelentetett:)"

The above is an image and transcription of the notes from the marriage record of József Gombás & Zsuzsánna Gulyás. Let's analyze the transcription line-by-line:

Férfi, Gr. Pállfy 14 huszár ezred
Groom/Husband, Count (Gróf) Pállfy (actually Pálffy) 14th Huszár (a type of light-cavalry originating in Hungary) Regiment

44 századábán káplár. Szül:
[Corporal in-] 44th Company. Born:

1845. Soroztarver 1866 14/3.
1845. Enlisted 14 Mar 1866.

Szabadság levele kelt Marburg
On-leave letter dated Marburg

1869 29/10 (:Jelentetett:)
29 Oct 1869 (:Published/Recorded:)

All together, it means that József Gombás was a Corporal in Count Pálffy's 14th Huszár Regiment, 44th Company. He was born in 1845. He enlisted on 14 Mar 1866 and was on-leave as of 29 Oct 1869 via a letter from Marburg.

Another great example is for the marriage of a man named Imre Rácz, in 1878. Here is an image of the notation:

"Vl. besorozt. 1875
a 24 gy. ezr. 8 comp."

The above transcription translates out to the following:

Vl. besorozt. 1875
Groom (Vőlegény) enlisted 1875

a 24 gy. ezr. 8 comp.
the 24th Infantry Regiment (gyalog ezred) 8th Company.

All together, it means that the groom, Imre Rácz, enlisted in 1875 into the 24th Infantry Regiment 8th Company.

It's difficult to to make sense of these notations sometimes, because of the confusing abbreviations (such as the ones above: gy., ezr., etc). Here is a list I created to help with the military term abbreviations:

br. = báró = Baron
ddr. = dandár = Brigade
ezr. = ezred = Regiment
fhdgy. = főhadnagy = Lieutenant
gr. = gróf = Count
gy. = gyalog = Infantry
gy. ddr. = gyalog dandár = Infantry Brigade
gy.e. = gyalog ezred = Infantry Regiment
gy.ezr. = gyalog ezred = Infantry Regiment
gy.hdotly. = gyalog hadosztály = Infantry Division
h. = honvéd = Private (in Infantry)
hdgy = hadnagy = 2nd Lieutenant
hdotly. = hadosztály = Division
ho. = hadosztály = Division
hsz. = huszár = Hussar/Huszár
hsz. e. = huszár ezred = Hussar/Huszár Regiment
kat. = katona = soldier
loszd. = lovasszázad = Squadron
lov. = lovasság = Cavalry
őrn. = őrnagy = Major
örv. = örvezeö = Lance Corporal
otg. = osztag = Section
szbg. = szabadság = On-leave
szbglt. = szabadságolt = On-leave
szk. = szakasz = Platoon
sz. = század = Company
szd. = század = Company
szdos. = százados = Captain
tbk. = tábornok = General
t. = tiszt = Officer
zlj. = zászlóalj = Battalion
zszlj. = zászlóalj = Battalion


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