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Subject: [BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER] BB News No. 174 dtd. April 30, 2008
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2008 17:57:15 EDT

April 30, 2008
(c) 2008 G. J. Berghold-all rights reserved

Our 13th Year- Newsletter issued monthly as email by G. J. Berghold, BB
Editor and also available from

Current Status Of The BB: Members-1612*Surname Entries- 5326*Query Board
Entries-3919*Newsletters Archived-174*Number of Staff Members-15

EMAIL RECIPIENTS PLEASE READ: You are receiving this email newsletter because
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printed or copied from the BB Homepage. There is also an archive of previous


~SPEAKERS ON? HEAR THE "AMERIKA LIED" AT www.the-burgenland-bunch.ORG~

This first section of our 2 section newsletter concerns:

1. Burgenland Ethnic Links?
2. Size of Burgenland Family Data Base?
3. Krobotek Records
4. Burgenland Immigrant Obituaries
5. Körmend, Vas Megye, Hungary
6. Village Of Krobotek (District of Jennersdorf)


A recent question from Membership editor Hannes Graf asks "How many people of
Burgenland ethnic origin can be found in the US and Canada?" Specifically,
how many are active in some sort of ethnic club or enterprise? This of course
begs the question, how does one look for them?

Prior to forming the Burgenland Bunch, I did a lot of research looking for
Burgenland information. What I found requires peeling many layers of ethnicity.
One starts with the words: Germanic (often Teutonic), then Austrian, then
Royal Hungary, then finally Burgenland (after 1921). One can also search Hungary,
Austro/Hungarian, Vas, Sopron, Moson Megye and western Hungary

Ethnicity of American or Canadian Clubs follow a similar pattern. People of
Burgenland origin (immigrants or descendants) will be found in German or
Hungarian Clubs as well as Austrian and even some Slavic (Croatian.) There are very
few, if any, "pure" Burgenland organizations other than the Burgenlandische
Gemeinschaft or the Burgenland Bunch. Even within these organizations you will
find people mainly interested in Hungarian or Croatian family history.

BB staff member Anna Kresh supports this diversity with the following:

Anna writes: It would be extremely difficult to calculate how many
(Burgenlanders) there are in the Pittsburgh area. They are not organized that way. When
we moved here I tried for more than 25 years to find a Burgenland-related
organization because I was homesick for the Lehigh Valley Burgenland community
and all its traditional activities. Then I found the Austrian American Cultural
Society. Surprisingly the older, most active members are actually Burgenland
emigres or descendants, so there must be a lot here -- we just don't know
about them. There is a sizeable "German" population here in the Troy Hill area
and a very popular, and very active, Teutonia Maennerchor with an associated
Damenchor. Everyone refers to them as The German Club. It seems the club never
wants for new membership, for there is something going on all the time and you
can go there almost every day for German food. Many Austrians belong because
there is no specifically Austrian club in the area.

When I was interviewed by our local Butler, PA newspaper about my genealogy
work, three ladies called me because of the mention of Burgenland in the
article. They, or their husbands, were born in Burgenland. So they are here - they
are just hidden. Probably BG membership is the best indicator of Burgenland
heritage here.

ED. continuation: In Wilmington, Delaware we were members of the
Austrian/American Club along with Germans, Austrians, Hungarians and Croatians. I might
also mention that in a "purely" Burgenland organization, you might also find
that it may be fractured even further into northern, middle or southern
Burgenland or even be district or village specific.


A recent question concerned the number of possible people in the US or Canada
with Burgenland origins. While no "official" number is available, we can (1)
ask ourselves how many are members of Burgenland organizations and then (2)
try to do some sort of statistical guestimate.

The first is easy, we just add our 1600+ and the BG members and maybe those
who have posted queries to our query board-total less than 7000?

The second involves some mental gymnastics. We know we had 40,000 Burgenland
immigrants 1880-1924 with about a 25% return or a net of 30,000. To that we
can add about 2000 before 1880 and maybe as many as 15000 after 1924. A
guestimate of 47,000-50,000 immigrants todate. Assuming 25 years per generation, a
family birth rate of 2, and an average actuarial life span of no more than 75
years, we have geometric totals of:

1880? -1924-32000 had maybe 64,000 children who in turn had 2 each etc., we

>From earlier migration:
1924-64000 (none still living) who had
1949-128,000 (all still living?) who had
1974-256.000 (all still living?) who had
1999-512,000 (all still living?)
Total possible living descendants from first migration 896,000.

>From later migration (1924 forward) we had 15,000 less 25% return equals
11250 who had 2 children each or 22, 500

1949-45,000 (half still living?) who had
1974-90,00 (all still living?) who had
1999-180,000 (all still living)
Total possible living descendants from second migration 292,500

Total todate: 896,000+292,500 = 1,188,500 or 1.2 million (rounded)
descendants with a possible link to the Burgenland. Given 5000 BB and BG members, about
.4% so we have lots of people still to contact!

You can adjust these estimates by increasing or decreasing families and many
immigrants married other immigrants (which would remove one immigrant per
marriage from the family estimates, etc.) but I'd estimate that we are still
CANADIAN POPULATION. Of course many descendants today may not realize that, giving
our work major importance in linking today's populations with the Heimat.

That 40, 000 immigrant estimate and the 25 % return rate are solid figures
from emigration studies. The rest is just conjecture.

3. KROBETEK RECORDS (from Tom Steichen & Ed Malesky)

Select Krobotek Birth, Marriage and Death Records

During Fall 2007, BB member Ed Malesky worked with LDS films of the church
records for Kroboteck (Hungarian: Horvatfalu; Croatian: Hrvatski Kut) to
research his mother's Ehritz family. He eventually digitally photographed "virtually
every page from 1825 to 1890 with an Ehritz on it (about 900 photos). I then
extracted all the Ehritz information. There were about 260 birth records, 53
marriage records and 103 death records."

He recently shared his work with the BB and we have added the extracted
information to the BB web pages. The data can be found via a link near the bottom
of the home page that is titled "Select Kroboteck Church Records: BB Member Ed
Malesky's extracts of 260 birth records, 53 marriage records and 103 death
records." A direct link to the master page is:

The digital photographs will also be made available to interested researchers
after we determine a method for distribution.


* Mary Remsing, 87, of Nazareth, formerly of Bath, died March 28, 2008 in St.
Lukes Hospital, Fountain Hill. She was the wife of Joseph Remsing, who died
January 5, 1993. Mary was born Jan. 31, 1921 in Moschendorf, Burgenland,
Austria, daughter of the late Ignatz and Mary (Laky) Gaspar Deutsch.

* Felix S. Schuch, 99, of Nazareth, died April 5, 2008, in Eastwood Nursing
Center, Wilson. He was the husband of the late Mary (Domitrovits) Schuch, who
died on June 29, 1998. Felix was born on Oct. 23, 1908, in Grossbachselten,
Burgenland, Austria, a son of the late Paul Schuch and Maria (Groller) Schuch
Paukovits, and a stepson of the late John Paukovits.

* Emil C. Simitz, 91, of Coplay, died April 18 in Lehigh Valley
Hospital-Muhlenberg, Bethlehem. He was married to Gisela (Schanta) Simitz for 66 years.
Born in Jakobshof, Hungary, he was the son of the late Franz and Maria (Stanko)

* Edward R. Novogratz died at his home in Northampton April 9, 2008, age 76.
Born in Northampton to Frank and Stella (Yaksitz) Novogratz, Ed's father came
from St. Kathrein. Stella was born in Allentown and raised in Kroatisch
Tschantschendorf. Her parents were Andreas Jaksits from Eisenhüttl and Anna
(Jandrisevits) from Kroatisch Tschantschendorf.

*Hermine "Minnie" Keglovitz, 80, of Nazareth died Tuesday, April 22, 2008.
She was the daughter of the late Rudolf and Sabina (Wiener) Schrantz. She was
born November 5, 1927, in Stockertown, grew up in Luising, Burgenland, Austria
and returned to the United States in 1946. She was the wife of the late Frank
J. Keglovitz who died March 21, 1985.


Körmend was an important city for Burgenland inhabitants. It was an important
market town and one of the seats of the Batthyany family. It was on the road
connecting Graz with Budapest. It is still an important Hungarian city and the
area contributed many immigrants to the Americas.

Correspondent writes:

Hello, I am new to the Burgenland list. My ancestors are from the town of
Kormend in present day Hungary. I would like to research the town of Kormend and
find out more about its history. When I google Kormend I see references to
Burgenland. Official Hungarian web sites on the town make no reference to
Burgenland. Can anyone help me to figure out when Kormend was a part of Burgenland
and for how long? Do people in Kormend identify as Burgenlanders or as
Hungarians? Did the population of Kormend consist mostly of immigrants from Burgenland?

Reply: Kormend, Hungary (pop. 12500) and a good portion of today's Burgenland
were part of the Hungarian Megye (county) of Vas. In 1921, much of the
counties of Vas, Sopron and Moson, but not Kormend (all in Western Hungary) were
given to Austria (Treaty of Trianon) as a result of the dismemberment of the
Austro/Hungarian Empire. Kormend therefore is not part of Burgenland-first named
as a Province Of Austria in 1921. Thus people from there were and are
Hungarians although there was also a German-speaking minority, ethnically cleansed to
Austria and Germany after WWII.

Most of the population has Hungarian (Magyar) origin but there were German
and Croatian speaking settlers over the centuries. Religion is mostly RC with
some Lutheran and Reformed (Calvinist). Kormend is a little too far east to be
included in the Burgenland Bunch research but see our website for possibly more

Kormend remained in Hungary and is one of the larger cities of today's
Hungarian Vas Megye. It is at the junction of many major (Rt 8)roads. It is along
the Raba River and was first mentioned in the year 1238. Royal charter granted
by Hungarian King Bela IV in 1244. Three other villages were added to it in the
last century. Your immigrant ancestor may have also come from one of them
-they were Alsoberkifalu, Felsoberkifalu and Horvatnatalja. Aristocratic family
and owners of the domain prior to WWI were the Batthyany-their palace is now a
national monument.

Correspondent writes further: I'm trying to figure out where my SCHREINER
ancestors may possibly have come prior to showing up in the Kormend 1796 census.
SCHREINER seems like Germanic names, so I thought maybe they could have come
from Burgenland, since it's now in Austria. But since it used to be part of
Hungary and much of the population was ethnic Hungarian, I might have to look

Reply: Yes-Schreiner is definitely Germanic (means "cabinet maker" from the
Latin "scrinarius"). There is a shortened form as well-"Schrein". After the
second siege of Vienna (1683) most of western Hungary was depopulated by the
Turkish forces (killed, taken as slaves, etc. famine and plague. Many villages
were empty of people so the crown as well as aristocratic families put out a call
for settlers. They offered all sorts of inducements, no military service for
a while, tax breaks. even money etc. Most of the settlers then came from
western Austria (Styria and Lower Austria) or southern Germany-Bavaria, Swabia,
even the Palatinate (Rhein-Hesse today). A little later 1750's on there was also
the Donau-Swabian movement of thousands of colonists down the Danube and
creating villages in southwestern Hungary.

Before 1600-most names in your area were Magyar or Slavic-after that Germanic
names appear until they almost replace all the others. I believe our
immigrant (to the US) ancestors mostly stem from these later colonists. As you say,
the records seem to support that.

It is very difficult to trace these colonists to their places of origin-I've
traced mine to the area around Graz about 1650 but no definite links. The best
I can suggest is that you use the online phone lists to search for
concentrations of the names you are researching-that will give you possible nearby
places of origin, but finding the birth-marriage links is almost impossible. The
best you can hope for is that some record (church or land inventory) may mention
the place of origin-I've seen a very few that way. Some villages also have an
oral history of their peoples' place of origin. I don't offer much hope.


Krobotek, district of Jennersdorf was known as Horvatfalu, district of
Szentgotthard, Hungary prior to 1921. It is now part of the southern Burgenland
community of Weichselbaum along with Rosendorf (total population of all three
villages is 884). There is an RC chapel but the parish church is in Weichselbaum
(Church of Maria-Bild-1793) and the civil records are in Mogersdorf.

There are Roman ruins in the area, which was later settled by Cistercian
monks from the monastery of Heiligenkreuz, Lower Austria about 1184. They built
the cathedral at St. Gotthard about 1187. The villages were probably part of
those cathedral holdings. It is not known when Krobotek was first founded. The
entire area was subjected to pillage and plunder during the Turkish Wars and
Hungarian rebellions.

Krobotek is a German speaking linear village with only 360 inhabitants,
mainly engaged in grape and wine production. Located in the Raab Valley, near the
Grieselstein woods, the area contributed immigrants to the Auswanderung. The
first from Kroboteck was Karl Schmidt (b1883) who settled in Allentown, PA 1898.
There were many early Ehritz families in Krobotek-see BB record webpage.
Gasthaus Deutsch in Weichselbaum was sold to the Deutsch family by Maria Ehritz in
1959. Only one Ehritz family is now listed in the 1993 phone book (under

Newsletter continues as number 174A.

Subject: [BURGENLAND-NEWSLETTER] BB News No. 174A dtd. April 30, 2008
Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2008 17:57:38 EDT

(Our 13th Year- Issued monthly as email by )
April 30, 2008
(c) 2008 G. J. Berghold-all rights reserved)



The second section of this 2 section newsletter includes:

1. BH&R Website Hits A Milestone
2. Borderland Book Availability
3. Tale From First Generation Descendant Of 1950's Hungarian Auswanderung
4. ORF-Austrian Radio Burgenland Section
5. Slavery During Time Of The Turk-Village Of Purbach
6. "Amerika Lied"-BB Songbook

1. BH&R WEBSITE HITS A MILESTONE (By BB staff member Frank Paukovits)

The Burgenlanders' Honored and Remembered (BH&R) website hit a milestone in
March 2008. The Remembrance List of deceased Burgenlaenders reached 4,000 in
March when Kim DiRoberts, a BB member, added the name of her uncle Fabian Hütter
to the site. Fabian Hütter was born in 1924 in Tschanigraben. He immigrated
to the U.S. as a boy, and lived in Allentown most of his life. He served in the
U.S. Army during WWII and passed away in 2004. He is buried in the Long
Island National Cemetery, a cemetery for veterans and their spouses in Farmingdale,
New York.

It's fitting that someone in the BB added the name, because so many of its
members have such strong feelings for their ancestry and deceased family
members. Kim has been a BB Member for about four years. She was born and raised in
The Bronx, but now lives in Arizona. Her family roots are from both Italy
(father's side) and Burgenland (mother's side). She first researched her Italian
roots, and is now actively researching the Burgenland side of her family, which
are largely from the Hungarian/Burgenland border area near Radling.

Bob Strauch and Margaret Kaiser have been invaluable in the development of
the site and adding to its content. Bob, with the help Ed and Frank Tantsits,
has been able to significantly increase the Remembrance List for deceased
immigrants from the Lehigh Valley enclave. That segment of the site alone includes
more than 3,000 names. Considering that we not only include the names of the
people, but the towns in Burgenland where they came from, and for many women
their maiden names, is noteworthy. Because of the number of people in our
database and the information provided, I believe the site should become more and more
useful as a research tool for our BB members as time goes on.

Also, I have identified a significant number of people who could be added to
the site from the South Bend enclave, if I could identify the cemeteries where
they are buried. I have the information, but would need someone to go to the
library in South Bend to look at the obits. My guess is that it would take
just a few hours, and we could probably add another hundred names to the site. I
know we have a number of BB members from the South Bend area, and maybe
there's someone in the area who would be willing to help. If so, please send me
e-mail at

Additionally, I encourage all of our members to take a look at the BH&R site
(there's a link to it on the BB Homepage) and let me know if they have any
names that they would like added of relatives that are not yet included. It's a
great way to honor and memorialize the people who provided us with such fond
memories and traditions that most of us hold so dearly.


Member Matt Boisen writes: Just reading about the scarcity of "Borderland".
I found my copy on eBay for $14 about two years ago. I've seen one other copy
offered since then. I would advise to keep checking or use a search tool as
an alert in case a copy comes up for auction. Keep up the good work!

Staff member Steve Geosits writes: For those having difficulty in obtaining a
copy of "Borderland; A Historical and Geographical Study of Burgenland,
Austria", you can check if any libraries near you carry the book. Go to the
following link and enter your zip code.


Correspondent writes: I found the Burgenland Bunch website and although I
should be in bed sleeping.... I have been fascinated reading your archived
newsletters. My name is Julianna, I am a first generation American. I was born in
Chicago six months after my parents arrived in the USA in 1956, with my two
older siblings and only one change of clothes per person. They left their village
of Kophaza, Hungary in search of a better life and found it here in Chicago.
In reading your story and others stories I felt a certain kinship with you
because my father, a skilled cabinetmaker found employment shortly after arriving
and worked that same job until he retired.

I have had the pleasure of visiting Austria/Hungary 4 times in my life and
was able to meet a grandmother, grandfather and aunts, uncles and cousins that
still lived there. My last visit was in 2000 when I took my three daughters to
see where some of their roots are.

Over Easter, when I was visiting my 90-year-old godmother, she had given a
box to her niece that contained old photographs and some other keepsakes. Her
niece laid a small prayer book down on the table. I picked it up and as I looked
inside I saw that it was written in Croatian. This is the native tongue of my
grandparents and my parents and I asked her if she is able to read or speak
Croatian, she replied "No" and offered the book to me.

Although I know this book did not belong to my grandmother? I can't help but
feel a connection to her, who I met 44 years ago for the first time. She took
me to church that Christmas and she carried with her a small black prayer book
and followed along during the mass and she sang out loud and proud... while I
looked up at her and felt a love for a lady I never known before, the lady
whose name I was given on the day of my birth. I have no earthy possessions of
my grandparents, they were very poor people by material means, but I believe in
my heart, my grandmother was the richest lady in the world, spiritually. She
gave me something that no one can ever take from me; it's something I cannot
put into words.

That very first visit to Hungary, when I was 6 or 7 years old, lives in my
memory and is as alive today as it was when it happened. I want to tell you one
little story from that visit that is a very fond memory for me.

It was winter and Christmas time when my mother took me with her to meet my
grandparents and the rest of the family still living in Hungary. My
grandparents lived in a 2-room house. No indoor plumbing at all. There was an outhouse
and a well outside, with a wood burning stove for heat and cooking in the

Each morning my grandmother would put bricks on top of the stove and leave
them there all day. At night she wrapped the bricks in towels and placed them at
the foot of the bed, underneath huge feather blankets that they called
blazinjas (not sure of the spelling). I was just a little girl and it was so cold in
that room, but I jumped into the bed and she covered me with a HUGE feather
blanket. I felt swallowed up by it and rubbed my feet on the hot wrapped
bricks. The heat from the bricks warmed up that bed so fast and I was so warm. That
is my keepsake from my grandmother... it's very special to me and I will have
it forever.

My family surnames are Solyomi, Sinkovits, Grubits, Hienrich (or is it
Heinrich), Firtl. One day I will again return to Hungary and I will go to the church
and ask for copies of the family records so that my children and their
children's children will know a tiny bit of who they are and where they come from.
Thank you for your time and for reading my story...


(ED. Note: ORF or Austrian Radio Service has news sections by province
therefore there are a Burgenland section. In addition to local news events there are
always featured articles of local interest, often with village pictures. Two
articles recently forwarded by Bob Strauch feature Bauernbrodt (farmers' or
peasant bread) and traditional printed cloth. ORF can be reached from (click on Burgenland section) or from our homepage Internet
Links-Radio & Music Sources-ORF Landesstudio Burgenland. Bob suggests you visit
the following:)

Bread from Deutsch Bieling

A Burgenland folk-art tradition continues: the Koó Family in Steinberg

(The Bgld. delegation handed out examples of the Koó family's "Blaudruck" as
gifts during their visit last year)

Kaiser & Bob Strauch)

(ED Note: During the Turkish Wars, slaves were a valuable commodity and so
many were sent back to Istanbul that for many years the market for white,
Christian slaves was very depressed. Many villages were depopulated setting the
stage for post invasion colonization. Following is an oral tradition of such
slavery. The village of Purbach (district of Eisenstadt) was in the path of Turkish
invasion, suffered greatly and has relics of those times.)

Margaret Kaiser suggests:

Andreas Grein of Purbach, a legend about Turkish slavery from Burgenland,

During the Turkish wars the wild hordes of riders advanced as far as Purbach.
On such occasions the townspeople of Purbach fled into the nearby Leitha
Mountains to seek refuge there from the hordes. During one such attack Andreas
Grein remained at home.

When the Turkish horde found Grein, they placed him in handcuffs, tied him to
a horse's tail, and thus forced him to run along behind. The Turks took Grein
back to their country, where he was housed in a stall and forced to pull a
plow by day. For food he received nuts and millet.

After seven years of terrible suffering he succeeded -- with the help of a
fellow countrywoman -- in escaping from Turkey. In October 1647, after traveling
on foot for many months, he arrived at Purbach. He stopped to rest on his own
property, about 1000 steps from the town. He then went to his home, where he
encountered his wife, who had recently remarried. She did not recognize Grein,
because of his wild appearance. After much discussion she recognized her
husband from his voice. She asked him for forgiveness, and they lived happily
together until they died. The second husband, of course, had to step aside. At the
place where he had rested, Grein erected a Holy Trinity column, inscribed
with the year 1647.
Source: Inscription on a roadside plaque near Purbach, Burgenland, Austria.

Transcribed and translated by D. L. Ashliman, July 10, 1997.

Bob Strauch adds: The Purbach town website has a page about Andreas Grein -
his house, the column, and a votive picture. The text says that according to
the legend, he was abducted at the age of 10 or 12 (he was married at that age?)


If you link to our homepage at: with your
speakers turned on, you will hear the subject song. It is a haunting melody that
brings back the time of the Auswanderung. Along with other songs, you'll find
the music and words at the BB Songbook link. The words start : "Now is the
time and hour we travel to Amerika." Next to this song you will also find the
Burgenland state anthem, the Burgenlandische Landeshymne "My native people, my
native land". When I was presented with my "Ehrenzeichen" medal in 2001, a
chorus sang this anthem and the music brought back images of my grandparents and
tears to my eyes. Other songs in our songbook may well bring back memories of
your own family immigrants.

Our Songbook is a joint effort of Membership Editor Hannes Graf and BB
President Tom Steichen. You may wish to copy the music or add it to your MP3


NOTICE (Terms and Conditions) : The Burgenland Bunch (BB) was formed and
exists to assist Burgenland descendants in their research into their heritage and,
toward that end, reserves the right to use any communication you have with us
(email, letter, phone conversation, etc.) as part of our information exchange
and educational research efforts.
If you do not want your communication to be used for this purpose,
indicate that it is "confidential" and we will abide by that request.
Correspondents who communicate with the BB without requesting
confidentiality retain their copyright but give a non-exclusive license to the BB
allowing us to forward to BB members, publish in our monthly newsletter or on our
website, and/or subsequently and permanently archive all or parts of such

The Burgenland Bunch homepage (website) can be found at:

We can also be reached from the Burgenländische Gemeinschaft web site.

Use our website to access our lists and web pages.


BB NEWSLETTER ARCHIVES INDEX and threaded search facility (enter number of
newsletter) available from: (also reached
via Home Page hyperlinks.)

Burgenland Bunch Newsletter (c) 2008 archived courtesy of, Inc.
P.O. Box 6798, Frazier Park, CA 93222-6798. Newsletter published monthly by
G. J. Berghold, Winchester, VA. Newsletter and List Rights Reserved.
Permission to Copy Granted; You Must Provide Credit and Mention Source.

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