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From: Hannes Graf <>
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2009 23:37:38 +0200

September 30, 2009
(c) 2009 - The Burgenland Bunch - all rights reserved

Our 13th Year, Editor: Johannes Graf and
Copy Editor Maureen Tighe-Brown. This issue Copy Editor: Emmerich Koller.

The Burgenland Bunch Newsletter, founded by Gerry Berghold (who retired in
Summer, 2008, and died in August, 2008), is issued monthly as email and
available online at

Current Status Of The BB:
* Members: 1748 * Surname Entries: 5597 * Query Board Entries: 4202
* Newsletters Archived: 190 * Number of Staff Members: 14

EMAIL RECIPIENTS, PLEASE READ: You are receiving this email newsletter
because you are a BB member or have asked to be added to our distribution
list. To subscribe or unsubscribe, use the change form available from our
Home page at You cannot send
email to this newsletter. If you have problems receiving the newsletter as
email, it may be read, downloaded, printed or copied from the BB Home page.
There is also an archive of previous newsletters.

This first section of our 3-section newsletter concerns:

7) OBERWART DISTRICT LDS-FILMS (by Ed & Frank Tantsits)



The popularity of our Homepage is growing month by month. In August 2009, we
had a record 11,000 plus visits with a daily average of 366.

Village Pictures:

There is a new village included at the Village Pictures Page: Schandorf


The first meeting of the Burgenland Bunch of Missouri was held at the
home of member Ron Markland on September 10, 2009. There were 20 folks
in attendance, some of whom were not direct Burgenland descendants.
The meeting
opened with a surprise telephone call from Hannes Graf in Vienna.
Realizing it was 2:15 am in Austria, the unexpected greeting was
greatly appreciated by all.

It was determined that there was sufficient interest to continue to
meet on a bi-monthly basis, with the next gathering set for Thursday,
November 12, again at the home of Ron Markland. Subsequent meetings
will be held at the homes of other members, with a tentative schedule
to be determined in November.

The group discussed several topics, including how their Burgenland Bunch
membership evolved, genealogical research sources for this area, and
causes of Burgenland emigration. Others shared visits they had made to
the “home” country.

Members were asked to identify any specific groups and/or resources
that have been helpful to them in their genealogical research such as
Hungarian church records, translators etc., and to be prepared to
share them at the next meeting. Several in attendance were interested
in learning more about how to access LDS records from Burgenland.

Linda Pehr (a Burgenlander by marriage) “volunteered” to be
responsible for the minutes. Members will receive copies of the
minutes as well as a reminder email about the next scheduled meeting.

A mission statement was developed:

The Burgenland Bunch of Missouri membership is determined to gain more
knowledge of their common heritage. This will be accomplished through
sharing research sources, contributing family stories and photos, and
exchanging information about the history and culture of Burgenland.
The ultimate goal is to develop a website devoted to the group that
can be used for sharing information, photographs and other pertinent


Our next meeting has been scheduled for Sunday, October 11, 2009, at the
Germanic-American Institute, 301 Summit Avenue in St. Paul, 1 PM to 4:30 PM.


On September 18 and 19 (Friday and Saturday), I went to New Britain with
Margaret Kaiser and visited the Austrian Donau Society to launch our
project of developing a separate module for Connecticut on the BH&R
website. Early in the day on Friday, we visited St. Mary’s Cemetery
where many of the Catholic
Burgenland immigrants are buried. The Cemetery is well kept and in a
nice area of New Britain. The day was beautiful and many gravesites of
were found.

That night Margaret and I, along with my wife Elsie, were the honored
guests of the Austrian Donau Club at its Heurigan evening festivities.
A number of BB
members from outside the area were in attendance, including Ed Ifkovits,Terry
Blank (Unger) and Geoge Tebolt, who came down from Massachusetts. The
current president of the Club, Dennis Kern, was a most gracious host
and welcomed the visiting BB members to the Club.

The Schachtelgebirger Musikanten performed at the Heurigan festivities
and there was a delicious meal for the people who were there. People
didn’t want to leave. The combo was terrific and they played great
Austrian and German music. The function lasted well into the night.
Late in the evening, Ed Ifkovits picked up a buttonbox accordion and
played a few tunes for the guests who enjoyed his
repertoire of old Burgenland songs.

The Club has been in existence since 1920 and is still thriving. It
started as a singing club and then a sick and death benefit society
was formed. Many of the immigrants who came to the New Britain area
came from the Jennersdorf Bezirk. Most migrated during the period from
the 1890’s through the 1920’s. The people who came were industrious
and worked in the many factories in the area, or were local
shopkeepers. They lived alongside one another in the Arch Street
section of downtown New Britain. Religion was an important part of
their lives. St. Peter’s was the church the Catholics attended, and St
John Lutheran Church was the adopted church of many of the
Protestants, of which there were a significant number in the
Jennersdorf Bezirk.

On Saturday we visited the Fairview Cemetery where many of the Protestant
Burgenlaenders are buried. This too is a very nice cemetery, and again the
weather was beautiful for going around the grounds of the cemetery. Later in
the morning we returned to the Club for a workshop to describe our project and
provide general information on the BB.

The people who attended the workshop were enthusiastic about what we wanted
to do and are committed to working with us to create a “Wall of Honor” to
commemorate the many Burgenland immigrants who came to the area. A plan of
action was developed and activities will be coordinated through Dennis
and Frank. The goal is to have a module up and running by the end of
the year, or early next year.


The remaining aging Burgenländer population in this area has shrunk
considerably. There are no longer any new immigrants coming to the
U.S. from the homeland. The new generation also prefers suburban
living over city life in the Passaic/Clifton area in New Jersey.
Ethnically blended marriages have also merged this generation into the
American melting pot.

The one mainstay through all these changes has been the Church of the Holy
Trinity in Passaic. It still remains the focal point of the local
Burgenländer community and tenaciously hangs on to ethnic traditions.
Other Germanic Roman Catholic groups have also experienced similar
shrinking of their local population, namely: the Donauschwaben who
immigrated from the old Austro-Hungarian Empire from the countries of
Hungary, the former Yugoslavian states and Romania. Through this
merging of common interests, the German community at the Church of the
Holy Trinity had gained strength in numbers and continued to maintain
its traditions for the last hundred years. Despite all these efforts
to maintain this German community, as a means of survival, in recent
times the Church has been forced to reach out and take on the new wave
of immigrants to the area from Mexico. At one time this area had been
predominantly German-speaking. The Church of the Holy Trinity does,
however, still remain the center of the Burgenländer community in
Northern New Jersey.

The current parish priest is Father Antonio Rodriguez, a Cuban
national. He attended the Seminary in Paderborn, Germany. He lived in
Germany for ten years prior to arriving in the U.S. He has over the
last few years become a perfect match for this parish. He conducts the
first Mass on Sunday mornings in English, followed by the 10:00 AM
Mass in German and the 12:00 noon Mass in Spanish. Additional church
functions conducted in German are: the Sunday afternoon Stations of
the Cross (Kreuzweg) during Lent; as well as The Rosary
(Rosenkranzandacht) during the months of May and October.

To date the only original all-Burgenländer organization still existing
in New Jersey is the Burgenländer Benefit Society, consisting of 41
members. Edmund Trautmann (aus Glasing bei Güssing) is President. They
sponsor an annual dinner dance.

The Church Choir - A good percentage of Burgenländer from the area are
active participants. They sing every Sunday at the German Mass.
Classic German Christmas songs are performed by the choir prior to
midnight mass annually. They also sing at funeral masses if German is

A Picnic - It takes place annually at the end of August on the Church grounds.
Home cooked goulash, all sorts of sausages and salads as well as homemade
desserts are prepared by the ladies of the parish. A band is provided with
traditional music for dancing.

The Kolping Society - Gisela Hirmann aus Gamischdorf is President.
They sponsor an annual “Faschingfest” celebrated on the Sunday prior
to Ash

The Austrian Weinfest - The initial idea came from Father Paul Kurz of
Prostrum. He was one of the parish priests at the time. The rest of
the parish embraced the idea and a tradition was born. This year will
be the 38th annual celebration at Holy Trinity Church on November 28,
2009. Chairperson is Gisela Hirmann of Gamischdorf.


Archaeologists made a spectacular discovery in the vicinity of the
Burgenland village of Strebersdorf. They found three Roman military
camps, which were once located in the centre of an ancient industrial

>From the height of 30 meters on a fire ladder, one has the best view.
But what is there in a field near Strebersdorf in Burgenland to be
admired from such a bird's eye view? A spectacular find from the Roman
period. For the first time after almost 2000 years, sticks in the
ground show the course of the ancient Amber Road and the dimensions of
the fortifications.

Researchers of the Austrian Archaeological Institute (ÖAI) discovered during
the international Amber Road project in Strebersdorf / municipality of
Lutzmannsburg three military camps of more than two hectares (ca. 5
acres or 20,000 square meters). The camps and the nearby settlement
lie directly on the most-important trade route of the Roman times.

The excavation was preceded by investigations using ground penetrating radar
and geomagnetics. With these modern scientific methods, it is possible
to see up to three meters under the earth in a non-destructive way
i.e. without a need for digging. In this way, the archaeologists
systematically examined a 21-hectare site, and this year were able to
verify three overlapping military camps following the discovery of the
settlement the year before.

The fortifications at that time were built of wooden posts, thus of
perishable material. However, their former existence can be proven by
means of geophysics. The numerous coins, parts of horse harnesses,
parts of shortswords (gladius) and segmented armours (lorica
segmentata) are real though and can be viewed. About 80 artefacts were
recovered literally at the last minute, as the excavation was closed
the following week.

"With the finds from the site, we can prove that the first of the
three military camps was built at the beginning of the 1st century AD,
during the time of Emperor Augustus," says excavation director Stefan
Groh. “That means that Strebersdorf’s first military camp is currently
the oldest fortification of a cavalry unit in eastern Austria.”
According to the current state of research, at that time Carnuntum
only had riparian forests.

The three tasks of the military:

The first item found in the dig was part of a horse-gear, which proves
the existence of a cavalry unit there and hence the importance of the
place since cavalry units were the elite troops of the Romans. The
military camp performed three tasks: first, the deployed troops
secured the trade route; second, they kept the province under control;
third, the military controlled the mining of natural resources.

"Central Burgenland was then an industrial area with rich bog ore
deposits. It was
virtually the Ruhrpott of the province," said excavation director
Groh. With geophysical research methods one can prove the existence of
blast furnaces everywhere on the site.

So under the supervision of the military, important iron was mined for
the production of arms. The smelting furnaces demanded huge amounts of
wood, which had a lasting impact on the ecology of that time.

Despite the partial closure of the spectacular discovery in central
Burgenland, the archaeologists of the ÖAI will continue digging and
investigating intensely. It is important to secure as many finds as
possible to answer the many unresolved questions about the military

7) OBERWART DISTRICT LDS-FILMS (by Ed & Frank Tantsits)

Town/Village Film #

B-M 1828-1895 700654
Death 1828-1895 700655
B-M-D 1828-1895 700656
Deutsch Schützen
B-M-D 1828-1895 700697
B-M-D 1828-1888 700671
B-M-D 1888-1895 700672
B-M-D 1828-1895 700648
Birth 1895-1903 700406
Birth 1904-1920 700407
Marriage 1895-1920 700408
Death 1895-1920 700409
Birth 1828-1862 700690
Birth 1862-1895 700691
Marriage 1828-1895 700691
Death 1828-1895 700691
B-M-D 1845-1852 700692
B-M-D 1852-1855 700692
B-M-D 1856-1867 700692
B-M-D 1867-1877 700692
B-M-D 1878-1895 700692
Birth 1895-1920 700523
Marriage 1895-1920 700524
Death 1895-1920 700525
B-M-D 1861-1895 700740
B-M-D 1852-1895 700749
Birth 1895-1901 700313
Birth 1900-1904 700314
Birth 1905-1906 700315
Birth 1907-1920 700316
Marriage 1895-1906 700317
Marriage 1907-1920 700318
Death 1895-1903 700319
Death 1903-1920 700320
B-M-D 1828-1895 700750
B-M-D 1828-1872 700659
B-M-D 1872-1895 700660
B-M-D 1828-1895 700674
B-M-D 1828-1895 700685
Birth 1895-1920 700371
Marriage 1895-1920 700372
Death 1895-1920 700373
B-M-D 1828-1895 700687
Markt Allhau
Birth 1828-1895 700644
M-D 1891-1895 700644
Markt Neuhhodis
Birth 1895-1906 700613
Birth 1907-1920 700614
Marriage 1895-1920 700615
Death 1895-1920 700616
Birth 1895-1902 700462
Birth 1903-1920 700463
Marriage 1895-1920 700464
Death 1895-1906 700465
Death 1907-1920 700466
B-M-D 1828-1895 700713
Neumarkt im Tauchental
B-M-D 1828-1895 700661
Neustift an der Lafnitz
Birth 1895-1906 700350
Birth 1907-1920 700351
Marriage 1895-1920 700352
Death 1895-1920 700353
B-M-D 1828-1895 700668
Birth 1895-1906 700258
Birth 1907-1920 700259
Marriage 1895-1920 700260
Death 1895-1920 700261
B-M-D 1828-1872 700662
B-M-D 1873-1880 700663
B-M-D 1881-1895 700664
Birth 1895-1902 700262
Birth 1903-1920 700263
Marriage 1895-1920 700264
Death 1895-1906 700265
Death 1907-1920 700266
B-M-D 1828-1895 700665
B-M-D 1828-1895 700666
B-M-D 1828-1895 700667
Birth 1895-1920 700455
Marriage 1895-1920 700456
Death 1895-1920 700457
Birth 1895-1906 700458
Birth 1907-1920 700459
Marriage 1895-1920 700460
Death 1895-1920 700461
Birth 1828-1862 700707
B-M-D 1862-1895 700708
Death 1885-1895 700709
Birth 1828-1895 700710
Marriage 1828-1883 700711
Marriage 1883-1895 700711
Death 1828-1895 700711
Birth 1895-1902 700514
Birth 1903-1927 700515
Birth 1918-1920 700516
Marriage 1895-1899 700517
Marriage 1899-1920 700218
Death 1895-1903 700519
Death 1904-1920 700520
Birth 1828-1853 700721
Birth 1854-1895 700722
Marriage 1828-1895 700722
Death 1828-1877 700722
Death 1878-1895 700723
Birth 1828-1895 700724
Marriage 1828-1895 700724
Death 1828-1869 700724
Death 1870-1895 700725
B-M-D 1834-1895 700726
Rotenturm an der Pinka
Birth 1895-1898 700630
Birth 1899-1903 700631
Birth 1904-1917 700632
Birth 1918-1920 700633
Marriage 1895-1920 700634
Marriage 1907-1920 700635
Death 1895-1902 700636
Death 1903-1920 700637
Birth 1828-1892 700751
Birth 1892-1895 700752
M-D 1828-1895 700752
Sankt Kathrein
B-M-D 1828-1895 700714
Sankt Martin in der Wart
B-M-D 1828-1895 700704
B-M-D 1828-1895 700658
Siget in der Wart
B-M-D 1828-1895 700705
Birth 1895-1903 700617
Birth 1904-1920 700618
Marriage 1895-1920 700619
Death 1895-1906 700620
Death 1907-1920 700621
B-M-D 1828-1895 700741
Birth 1828-1895 700742
Marriage 1828-1861 700742
Marriage 1861-1895 700743
Death 1828-1895 700743
B-M-D 1841-1895 700744
B-M-D 1863-1895 700646
B-M-D 1828-1895 700647
Weiden bei Rechnitz
B-M-D 1828-1895 700652
B-M-D 1828-1895 700748

8) BB-MEMBER OBITUARY (by Kathy Bossert)

Joseph H. Tanzos

Joseph H. Skip Tanzos, 79, of Nazareth died August 10, 2009 in his home. He
was the husband of Elsie (Yagerhofer) Tanzos. They celebrated 57 years of
marriage on April 26. Skip was born November 1, 1929 in Wilson, Pa. Son of
the late Joseph and Elizabeth (Lakatos) Tanzos. He worked at the former St.
Regis paper Co., Nazareth, for 37 years retiring in 1984 as comptroller. He
was a member of Holy Faith Catholic Church, Nazareth, where he was a formal
C.C.D. Teacher. He was a life member of the Holy Family Sick and Relief
Society. He coached little league baseball for 16 years. He was a former
secretary of PALS. He was a former treasurer, secretary and auditor for
Bushkill Township. He was a 1947 graduate of Nazareth High School. Skip was
a loving family man who greatly enjoyed his children and grandchildren.
Survivors: Wife Elsie; daughters, Kathleen wife of David Bossert, Bethlehem,
Joanne wife of Stephen Solderitch, Wind Gap, Monica wife of Joaquim DaSilva,
Hellertown, Marie wife of Scott Beil, Nazareth; sons, John and wife Sandy,
Wind Gap, Mark and wife Patti Jeanne, Nazareth, Matthew and wife Jennifer,
Nazareth, 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was predeceased
by sister, Mary Jane Tanzos.

Newsletter continues as number 191A.

From: Hannes Graf <>
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2009 23:40:06 +0200

September 30, 2009
(c) 2009 - The Burgenland Bunch - all rights reserved

The second section of this 3-section newsletter includes:

1) FAMILY-BAUER: 1-76 - MORE TO LOVE... (by Paul A. Bauer)
2) THE BARROWS OF SCHANDORF (courtesy by Ferdinand Mühlgaszner)

Main Theme: Schandorf - Cemba - Csem

1) FAMILY-BAUER: 1-76 - MORE TO LOVE... (by Paul A. Bauer)

Armed with only an obituary of my grandfather Michael (Mihaly) Bauer
(1889-1961), and two birthday lists, one from my father of his 8
brothers and
sisters, and the second from one of my father's sisters list of
relatives in
an Austrian village, I began the arduous task of tracking down and
connecting with family members. It took some six years of on and off
searching in my spare time to connect and then organize one of the
family reunions this family ever had, or would dream of having.
Several reasons explain why I needed to discover my family and unite
them. For personal needs, a lonely upbringing with no siblings, very
few contacts
with my father's brothers and sisters, and young childhood memories
of my
"great" grandfather Michael motivated me. For my own immediate
family, my
reasons were to provide them with a connection to their family for
generations to come.

How real is this? Could I really find ancestors and cousins in
Europe? All
hope relied on one piece of 1969 paper that I received from my distant
mother sometime in the late 1980's. My mother, divorced since I was
stayed in contact with my father's sister, Rita. In 1969 Rita went
to visit
family in a small village named Schandorf (Cszem; Cemba), located in
southern part of the Burgenland province of Austria, some 500 meters
the Hungarian border. I had heard some faint stories and family talk
of my
ethnic background and was very curious to find the truths and dispel

The most used tool in my bag was the Internet. I used the Internet
extensively in searching as well as using investigative skills I
acquired in
my professional and business service. What I did was a simple search
white page browsing through Austrian white pages of names and
matching them to names and addresses of people that were on a nearly
35 year old list. I could not believe the connection I found but had
doubts that I
would still be successful in confirming these names after such a
long time
past. I was very pessimistic that if I made the calls that they
would not
understand me or remember anything about cousins living in America.
But I
relied much on my experience I had living in West Berlin for four
years and
made the calls.

Another tool that helped me a lot was during my Internet searches I
the Burgenland Bunch (BB) website and organization. I was amazed
that this
website and group was dedicated to just only Austrian-Hungarian
Family History. This site was specific to the region of my
ancestors. I felt
very lucky.

To do any serious research, I had to learn the environment and
history of
Burgenland. The BB group helped me understand the various
transitions of the province and village names, and surnames
associated with them. They even had an 1856 house list with my
family's name in the village. Today I am still astounded that this
site continues to grow and stay active due in part to
the many family researches, individuals, and historians that keep it

The moment of truth was about to come after several weeks of setting
up and
organizing family branches on an easel with presentation paper of what
little information I already had. I drew a wire diagram so I could
the relationships when I was calling. After conducting numerous
searches on
the Internet, I made the long-distance call to Europe and made my
contact with Emmerich Bencsics, at #95 Schandorf, Austria. This was
the same address on my aunt's paper, and husband to my cousin
Elizabeth Bauer, now both in their late 70's. I couldn't believe
that they were at the same address. This is not so common in America
where people are so mobile and fluid.

We did not understand each other on the phone, but I mentioned in
German, names that he was familiar with. Being frustrated and
wanting to
help, he put me on the phone with his wife Elizabeth who he hoped
understand me better. Elizabeth was not any more promising, but I
understood her some and she told me that her daughter would be
better to understand English and to call her. Her mane was Edith
Mühlgaszner of Schandorf, married to Ferdinand also all living in
Schandorf. After contacting Edith, who confirmed the relationships,
she gave me a contact in Connecticut, USA: Pamela Eltrich, daughter
of Apollonia Bauer Csencsics, now with the American name spelling;
Zencey. Edith had some recent contact a few years ago with Pam and
had an email address. Thus now I was armed with a solid contact in
the United States. The surname Zencey in America is a new surname
made up by one new immigrant from Schandorf with the name Csencsics.
It was original, and there may be just a couple hundred. However for
me the Zencey name was a familiar name in my hometown, Anchorage
Alaska. There I was familiar with a Matthew Zencey. He was one of
the opinion editors of our local newspaper, and he was familiar with
me as a local politician. But before I was going to call the opinion
editor of the newspaper, I needed to verify a potential
relationship. That's when I called another Zencey in Connecticut,
Susanne wife of Carl Zencey, brother to Matt. She confirmed Matt's

The rest is history, summed up in Matt's editorial piece "Not So
The Zencey's were all related to me from my grandfather's sister
Agnes Bauer who married Karol Csencsics in Schandorf after returning
from her first
immigration to America in 1907 at the age of 16. Agnes and Karol,
Charles Zencey, produced several family branches on the east coast of
America with one branch going to Alaska. In just a few of weeks of
learning my new family members in Alaska, I found after talking to
Pamela Bauer-Zencey-Elterich-Takasch at her home of in Trumbull,
Connecticut, that I had more family members in Anchorage from my
grandfather Michael's side from his first son Joseph, my Uncle.

In the end, in the Last Frontier state of Alaska, I had 17 cousins
in the same city. Thus began my quest to bring them in and meet them
with what would begin with small reunions to the biggest to come.I
was so excited of the new finds; I had to go meet them. I don't know
what came over me, but I had the time, the opportunity and means to
travel from Alaska to New York and Connecticut and meet new family
members. Within the month, I was flying to New York. There, with my
laptop and using a family database software, I laid out the family
trees and went through the confusing task of explaining all the
relationships that I found so far. Every chat gave me more clues,
and more names of other family members. Interestingly, one of my
first cousins had heard of me many decades ago, and last thought I
was dead. I went to their homes with no agenda but to introduce
myself and peak their curiosity about their family that they were
not fully aware of. My genuineness and sincerity led to trust and
eventually able form more reunions. One reunion had 11 members
coming to Alaska on an invitation, my new cousins trusting me as a
stranger coming into their lives. In 2005, the third reunion counted
for about 25 members.

Month after month, and after 3 years, new names were being added to
tree. However, I felt that if we did not make a connection to
Europe, we
would not fulfill the completion of the family tree, and bind an
element to the root, because there in Schandorf, Austria, is where
it all
began. Most astounding to this is that I was beginning to feel that
Bauer's and all other surnames that followed from this tree had a very
unique circumstance. Schandorf, Austria, today a village of 300 was
the home for all of us. The seeds of many American families can
trace their beginnings there to this day with living relatives and
immaculate graves sites, one of which contains my great grandfather
mother, Josef (1855) and Anna (1869) Bauer.

So 15 Americans packed their bags and made the trip to Schandorf,
and gathered on the last Sunday of July 2007. That year Schandorf
celebrates the uniting of immigrant descendants. For the Bauer's and
Zencey's, it was 100 years to nearly the month and year that my
grandfather Michael and his sister Agnes immigrated to America,
1907. The trip to Schandorf was very successful. Our European
cousins made it a great affair involving the whole village that
included historical research and presentations on the families that
immigrated to America from their village. If it was not for their
family branch of Ignaz and Marie Bauer staying in Schandorf, we
would not have had such a close connection to our roots and the
original home town. The research and historical validation would
have been more difficult and maybe suspect.

In Austria we all agreed on a reunion in 2009 for the Europeans to
come to
New York City, original home sites of the immigrants from Schandorf. I
thought this would be simply a nice gesture to our European cousins
for what
they did for us in Schandorf. However the more I thought about this,
more I began to realize the ramifications of what I just planned
for. If this American-European reunion would happen, it would be the
biggest. Since
2004, the reunions were just small gatherings that started with 6
and up to
25-30. Now there would be about 40-50, the biggest reunion because
of the number of families that branched out since the early 1900's
were mostly still
located around the New York City metropolitan area. Close to a
majority of family members would attend.

As the months leading up the next 2009 reunion continued, I kept
more cousins in America. I couldn't stop. After each success, I had
to find
more. I did not want any family members left behind. This was an
factor for me as I searched more and more. Almost every new story I
across I found a new family member, but many of the stories were
tales of
discontent, bitterness, and loneliness. I know I was brought up
alone, but I
couldn't understand why so many siblings who had so many family
members felt alone and angry. It was just the times and hardships
they endured. I had a new goal; I was not going to let any
discontent stop me from bringing these
people together. Many of us were getting old, many of us didn't know
the number of families they were related to, and many did not need
to leave
without knowing. In the end we are all related, we are more than
friends, we
are more than acquaintances, more than some work associate, we are
all of
the same blood. We have common idiocycricies and quirks that unite us.

If this reunion was to be successful and meaningful, and because it
include a large group of people, several things had to happen. The
of the idea and purpose had to be continuous. The announcements had
to be
early enough to plant the seed a year out. It had to be thorough
with facts
and brief stories that would peak interest in the family. The
location was
important so that most people, especially the elderly could attend.
The location was also significant to the historical aspect of the
family history.
It had to be amicable for everybody, the elders, the middle-aged,
and the
young. A program and agenda was needed. Some say, why structure? The
most important element was to have a structure for the reunion, just
enough for keeping things organized, keeping people busy,
interested, but just enough so that it did not appear to be a
commercial or convention event. That was important. Planned
attractions around the area needed to be included leading up to the
big and final day event.

A variety of networking tools were used, such as a family website
that was
kept current, Facebook type accounts, emails, phone calls, and yes,
regular Postal letters were needed for those without electronic means.
Communications was an on-going, weekly activity 60 days before the
Even to the day before the reunion we did not have firm numbers.

Family reunion-July 2009 in Trumbull, CT

So on a very bright sunny Sunday in July, a gathering of 76 people
with a common ancestral heritage took place to meat, eat, drink and
introduce themselves and their cousins and share stories with one
another. A reunion of families in common was not to be trivialized
to a mere daily interruption and inconvenience of our busy lives. It
was an event that brought strangers together, and for many of us for
the first time to socialize on a different level of commonality.

Ancient philosophers described us as social animals and what
opportunity for
all of us to participate in a gathering of common ancestors and
provide a
memory for our children to share in a long lost traditional event.
This reunion in July, 2009, was the most attended involving family
groups from all over the United States and Europe. The theme was a
continuation from the Schandorf reunion of '07 of learning more
about each other, about our family history and roots, and about the
immigration to America from Schandorf Austria. We planned the
lodging and chaperoned our European cousins to Manhattan, Ellis-
Liberty Island, the Hudson Valley, and Connecticut. The sad part of
all this for me is that during the interim of searching over the
past 6-8 years I had missed cousins who passed away. Time was
crucial, and the day after the reunion I found two more cousins on
Long Island, Richard and Harry Stefany (Stefanits) in their 80's,
sons of Victor and Katharina (Bauer) Stefanits from Schandorf. Only
76 of the potential 126 made the journey. It is not over; I hope the
next reunion will bring together over a hundred.

2) THE BARROWS OF SCHANDORF (courtesy by Ferdinand Mühlgaszner)

Seven boards line the path to the barrows of Schandorf. The path leads
to the Iron Age graveyard lying in the Schandorf forest. This
burial ground consists of impressive burial mounds up to 16m high.
Most of the barrows date from the Hallstatt period around 750 BC,
others from the elder Roman Iron Age.

The area around Schandorf was one of the first populated areas in
southern Burgenland. Around 750 BC, the region was booming due to
the mining and smelting of iron ore south of Schandorf. The then
powerful iron princes of the Hallstatt period were based at the loop
of the Pinka river in Burg. The local earth castle consisted of a
plateau of approximately 600m x 250m and offered natural protection
against invading enemies. Through the iron melting the "Iron Barons"
became very rich and powerful. They buried their dead in several
graveyards in the hills to the south, southeast and east of the
castle. More than two hundred huge mounds were created as lasting
memorial monuments for the dead in what is now the Schandorf forest.

Inside Hill 41, which was excavated at the southern end of Group I
in 1933, a stone packing and a grave chamber of huge stone slabs
was found. The finds - two needles with more than one pin head,
conical neck vessels with black-red paintings and figural attachments,
a bronze vessel, and iron tools - suggest that it was a man's grave.
The black-red painting on a conical neck vessel also shows a stylized
illustration of a man with a wide-brimmed hat, that was typical for
festive costumes.

In the Elder Iron Age (Hallstatt culture) from the 8th century BC
onwards there was a significant economic boom in the region of
Schandorf-Burg-Eisenberg. The peasants of that time increasingly
specialized in the production of the sought-after and expensive
metal iron. While at first the iron was only used for jewelry and
with the spreading of new technology, the new raw material was
generally used for the production of tools of all kind.

In the forests of the districts of Oberpullendorf and Oberwart
about 20,000 glory holes and 1,200 slag places each with 3 to 10
smelting furnaces, mostly dating from the late La Tène period, are
today's evidence of iron mining in central Burgenland. The most
common type is a 1 meter wide, originally nearly 1.5 meters
high sunken cupola furnace with an attached work pit. This type of
furnace is known as the "Noric smelting furnace, type Burgenland"
named such due to the location where it was typically found.

The dead were burned in their festive costumes in funeral pyres. The
ashes of the dead were buried in burial chambers together with
pottery vessels, which contained food and drink for the netherworld,
the burned costume and arms, tools and jewelry. Above these
chambers, in weeks of work, the relatives of the deceased often
piled up mounds of earth as memorial monuments.

So far there are five barrow fields of the Hallstatt culture known
in this region with a total of 285 burial mounds. The smallest group
with 30 hills is in Badersdorf, a larger group of 84 hills at
Eisenberg in the municipal areas of Burg and Felsöcsatár. The
largest number of Hallstatt burial mounds in this region is located
in Schandorf forest, divided into three groups of 150 (Group 1), 11
(Group 2) and 9 hills (Group 4). The 73 lower hills of the groups 3
and 5 are not of the Hallstatt type, they were built in the earlier
Roman Iron Age. The burial mounds are round and have relatively
steep slopes. At the foot of many of these mounds are circular
ditches, still visible today, from where the earth was taken to
build the mound.

Earth bridges can also be found across the ditches. Most of the hills
are higher than 10 meters, the biggest ones are up to 16m high with a
diameter of 35 to 40 meters.


Year Schandorf Oberwart district Burgenland

1869 641 57.163 100 254.301 100
1880 697 60.038 105 270.090 106
1890 670 62.355 109 282.225 111
1900 724 63.494 111 292.426 115
1910 719 61.520 108 292.007 115
1923 638 57.515 101 285.698 112
1934 624 59.552 104 299.447 118
1939 562 56.445 99 287.866 113
1951 536 52.691 92 276.136 109
1961 448 51.933 91 271.001 107
1971 409 53.506 94 272.319 107
1981 392 53.647 94 269.771 106
1991 342 53.783 94 270.880 107
2001 310 53.365 93 277.569 109
2009 289 53.516 94 283.118 111

Newsletter continues as number 191B.

From: Hannes Graf <>
Date: Tue, 29 Sep 2009 23:41:37 +0200

September 30, 2009
(c) 2009 - The Burgenland Bunch - all rights reserved

The third section of this 3-section newsletter includes:

1) SCHANDORF-CEMBA-CSEM CHRONICLE (courtesy by Ferdinand Mühlgaszner)

The name's background

The name of Schandorf originates from the old Hungarian name of
"Csem". In 1244 it was first mentioned in documents originating from a
lineage called "genus Chem". Around 1150 the German forms of the name
were used due to the Bavarian settlement. These were different types
like Schämendorf, Tsemensis, Schendorf and Schöndorf. The Croatian
name Cemba also has its origin in the Hungarian Csemben - which means
"in Csem".

The historical developement

According to the large number of archeological excavations, the area
around Schandorf was one of the first settled places in southern
Burgenland. Some excavations date from the late New Stone Age (in the
6th millenium BC). Very interesting finds from the middle New Stone
Age (around 4000 BC) that were found in the forests around Schandorf
and belonged to the government, document the early settlement. At the
beginning of the Iron Age Schandorf became more famous due to the iron
ore mined in the south of the village around the Pinka River beween
Burg and Eisenberg. It was the custom of that time that the dead were
burned and their ashes together with a burial gift of food and drink
were put into earthenware vessels and then buried in mounds. In the
forests of Schandorf there's one of the biggest and most famous burial
hills in Europe. The iron mining in this region was at its height at
around 300 BC until Christ's birth.
During the Roman Empire this area was densely populated, but the
economy changed to more agriculture and the products were sold in
nearby Savaria (Szombathely/Steinamanger). At the end of the 6th
century, the Awares and the Slavs wandered into this region. Most of
the names of the rivers in southern Burgenland come from the Slavic
language. On his campain of conquest between 791-805 Karl the Great
drove back the Awares. Now the Bavarians came to settle down in this
area and started a new rural and nobel way of economy. At this time
the christianising of the population also began. In the 2nd half of
the 9th century, the Magyars set pressure on the Carolingian Empire.
After the Battle at Lechfeld on Aug. 10th, 955 they had to draw back
and finally settled in the Pannonian Lowland. In 976 the Babenbergans
conquered the East German Mark. That was the beginning of the
Hungarian Kingdom.
At this stage a new developement arose, which was very important for
the following fate of the west Hungarian region. Today's Burgenland
became a borderland. In 1043 under the reign of the Emperor Heinrich
III, the deviding line to the Hungarian Kingdom was finally drawn
along the rivers March, Leitha and Lafnitz. The Hungarian Kings
created so called "frontier guarding settlements" to secure the
border. Schandorf also became a border guarding settlement and it
developed to a village of its own called "Kleinschandorf' (which means
Little Schandorf).
Due to the invading of the Tartars, King Bela IV (1223-1270) was
forced to reinforce the fortress lines and to build up a new system of
frontier fortresses. He awarded the village Burg to the members of the
Csem lineage ruled by Earl Mod. This place had been conquered before.
In the Charter of Feb. l0th, 1244 Schandorf was first mentioned. The
parish of Schandorf was also founded at the same time. Schandorf split
from the early parish of Großpetersdorf and then became the Mother
Parish for Hannersdorf, Burg, Kleinpetersdorf, Welgersdorf and
Woppendorf until 1520, for Kisnarda till 1936 and for Schachendorf
until 1939. The church building of Schandorf is of Romanesque origin.
It probably emerged from an old chapel on occasion of the raising to a
parish. The new construction was planned in a way so that the church
could also be used as a place of refuge. Later on the house of God was
rebuilt a couple of times.
The members of the Csem lineage ("genus Csem") were knights of
service. Although they enjoyed the freedom of nobility, duty for the
King in war was compulsory for them and they did not belong to the
high nobility. As the economic structures kept on developing, new
dominating authorities seized possession of more and more property. In
1489 the castle was destroyed. At the end of the l5th century, those
estates melted together with the estates of Schlaining, after the
owner of Schlaining, Andreas Baumkirchner, had taken possession of it.
In 1527 King Ferdinand I gave the estate to the Earl Batthyany of
Güssing, but it was finally taken over by the Earl in 1539. The
Batthyanys possessed the whole property including Schandorf.
The war against the Turks in 1529 brought serious consequences for
this region. The estate in Schlaining was terribly struck by looting
and fires. Several farms were deserted. The owners of the estates were
forced to do something about the disastrous agricultural situation.
Most important of all was to get the deserted farms settled again. On
May 17th, 1524 King Ludwig II agreed to let the landowner Franz
Batthyany settle some of his villeins from Croatia on the west
Hungarian estates. The resettlements with its highest rate between
l538 and 1545 were planned and organized very well. The Croatians in
Schandorf have probably come from the Batthyany estate in Garignica.
The cultivation of 1576 proves the Croatian settlement in Schandorf
very clearly. By this time the village had become a community with an
enormous majority of Croatians and a remarkable Hungarian minority.
The report of the Canonical Visitation of 1697/98 already calls the
parish a "pure Croatica". The new settlers were usually free from
taxes and slave duties for a certain period of time.
Agricultural crises, plague epedemics and other occurances kept
deserting farms and villages at regular intervals. Starvation followed
and the people of this generation became impoverished. The inhabitants
of the villages were the ones most affected by all those economic
crises and wars. This is also documented in Schandorf by the varying
number of inhabitants. But still the village has remained Croatian
till today, because there haven't been any more settlements since
then. The Reformation, the big mental and religious revolution, forced
by Martin Luther, Jan Calvin and Ulrich Zwingli, brought about changes
also in the west Hungarian territory. At this time, Schandorf became
Calvanistic and Stefan Szilagy became the first known pastor in
1612/13. In 1628, the main Protestant Synod took place in Schandorf.
In the middle of the 17th century, Schandorf became Catholic again.
The attempt to transfer another protestant pastor to the village ended
by banishing him in 1658. Because of the church's arguments, but
mainly also for economic and social reasons, this region had to cope
with many rebellions.
The Bocskay revolt in 1605, the Bethlen revolt in 1621 and the
Kuruzzen wars (1704-1708) devastated the country with fire and
looting. Before 1757 the village church was renovated and a new roof
was set on it. The three altars, a high altar and two side altars,
which dated from the 17th century, were replaced by a plain Baroque
altar. The chalice from 1762 was bought by the parish. In 1764/65
there was a revolt by the farmers in the Komitat Vas to protest
against the burden of taxes and working duties. The villeins refused
the payments and services partly or even completely. It was the Maria
Theresian land reform that brought an equal resolution for all
subjects. But it took many legal proceedings against the landowners -
also in Schandorf - until the manorial system was brought under
control. In the following years, the development of the west Hungarian
region was rather calm. In 1835 the church was enlarged and renovated.
The magnates were still in command of the political leadership.
Neither the lower nobility nor the farmers, and least of all the
common workers, had political rights. In March 1848, there was a
revolution in Hungary and ten days later on March 13, it also broke
out in Vienna. Imperial troops led by Fürst Windischgrätz and Croatian
troops led by Ban Jela?i? from Croatia could suppress the democratic
movement within half a year. The ideas for a democratic state that
caused the revolution were shattered. The farmers however could
improve their situation considerably. The privileges of the
aristocrats and the subservient spirit were abolished. The farmers
achieved their right of having their own property and so they were
allowed to keep the land they had already been cultivating. For the
loss of land due to the new liberty for the farmers the landowners
were paid off by the state. But this was very difficult and often
caused a lot of misunderstandings, also in Schandorf, where both
Rechnitz and the priest of Schandorf were owners of some estates. By
levying direct and indirect taxes, taxation was basically modernized.
The aristocrats and the farmers became equal and they paid taxes
according to their amount of property.
Now it was necessary to have a land register. Each village was
prompted to have a land register and its taxation. The measurement of
property in Schandorf was ended in 1858 and then the first land
register was started. The total area of Schandorf was 1,959 acres and
590 fathoms. Until 1890 the land register was kept in the district
court of Steinamanger and then it was handed over to the district
court of Oberwart. In 1940 it was renewed. The registrated village
covered an area of 1,120 hectares, 7 ares and 52 square meters. In
l97l there was a joining of acres. The resolution of 1848 also brought
about a new way of administration to the state. The villages were
subordinated in all important matters to "Komitat" authorities which
were a kind of earldom authority (a judge office). These overtook most
of the duties the village judge (who was the mayor) originally had.
>From 1852 on the mayor was called " the head of the village" or
village chairman. Court proceedings were taken over by the juridical
The municipalities had their own administration - the municipal
council. That consisted half of elected burghers and half of aged
burghers with the highest taxation. In 1860 the Hungarian
administration called up the local court. A judge (the mayor), a
vice-judge, at least two men in the jury and the notary formed the
aldermen. Minor offences went through the court of the aldermen. The
expression "judge" is translated from the Hungarian word "biró" and
until today the mayor in Schandorf and other Croatian speaking
villages is still called "birov". The last great change in the
Habsburg Monarchy was the Austro- Hungarian Compromise of 1867. With
that the Hungarian kingdom was alone responsible for the legislation
and administration in West Hungary, today's Burgenland. In 1868 a new
law brought equal rights to all nationalities. Hungarian was the
national language. It was free to choose the language spoken at court,
at church and in confessional schools. The Croatian language was
taught in Schandorf. Municipalities, in which confessional schools
didn't fulfil the laws anymore, were forced to install primary
schools. In 1900 Schandorf achieved the highest population rate ever.
In 1904 there were 130 school aged children in Schandorf. The Roman
Catholic school became too small. After long discussions the municipal
court agreed to build a new school. But it was not finished until
l911. Therefore Schandorf had two schools until 1938 - a confessional
one and a municipal school.
Ever since the Croatians had settled in Schandorf, the village had
always been a Croatian municipality with a Hungarian and German
minority. Even after the Hungarian government had tried to magyarize
the population with laws like -the Hungarian language must be taught
at school because each child should be able to speak and write in
Hungarian - the people in Schandorf still kept using their Croatian
mother tongue. Years of insecurity for the population of Schandorf
followed after the end of the First World War and the disintegration
of the Danube monarchy. In the peace treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye
on Sept. 10th, 1919 the village was joined to Austria, but the
Hungarians didn't agree with this decision. Only after long
negotiations and incidents caused by Hungarian guerillas, Schandorf
finally became part of Austria on Jan. 10th, 1923. Schachendorf and
Schandorf became part of Austria, Felsö- and Alsócsatár, Nagy- and
Kisnarda fell to Hungary.
And so a border was drawn between the two close villages of Schandorf
and Narda. This was a disadvantage for both villages in the following
decades. The economic situation of this area grew worse because of the
separation. The living conditions became increasingly worse also due
to the general economic crisis. A lot of people from the Burgenland
took a new chance by emigrating overseas. In 1923 the emigration had
reached its height. A lot of people from Schandorf also left their
hometown. The number of inhabitants declined enormously. From 1925
till 1927 the church was renovated inside and outside and six years
later a concrete floor was paved.
The political situation in the republic became critical and therefore
in the Burgenland as well. The main point of ideological arguments in
the new Burgenland was the question about school. The social democrats
wanted national schools, the Christian socialists wanted confessional
schools. Schandorf was quite involved in this argument. For one thing,
there was not only a national school, but also a confessional school
in Schandorf and for the other thing there was also the question about
the language being taught and spoken at school. Two of the main
political representatives in these arguments had close relations to
Schandorf. One was Koloman Tomish, born in Schandorf, the later school
inspector and a social democratic member of the Landesregierung
(government in one of the States of Austria) - and the other one was
Peter Jandrisevits, pastor in Schandorf and a Christian Socialist
member of the Landesregierung. Both were representatives of the
Croatians. Their tremendous and rather mean arguments deepened the gap
between the "red" (Social Democrats) and "black" (Christian
Socialists) Croatians. Although the worldwide economic crisis also
struck the Burgenland, the effects weren't that dramatic because the
economic structure, which was mainly farming, was rather weak anyway.
After the Civil War in February 1934 all the institutions of the
labour movement were forbidden. The pressure of Hitler and his
National Socialists grew stronger. The result of the plebiscite in
Schandorf wasn't any different from other villages in the Burgenland:
100 percent voted for the annexation to Germany.
A lot of members of the Roma ethnic group had been living in Schandorf
for quite a long time and they were also integrated in village life
very much. On command of the head of the government, Tobias Portschy,
they were forced to hard labour. Besides the Jews, the Roma were also
a group of citizens in the Burgenland, who were systematically
eliminated by the Nazi- Regime. Only a few of the 70 Roma people
living in Schandorf survived the brutal persecutions. The men in
Schandorf were called up to military service. Many dead, missing and
wounded soldiers were the price the people of Schandorf had to pay for
their Nazi war delusion.
At the beginning of April 1945 the soldiers of the Red Army arrived in
Schandorf. Two inhabitants were killed in a struggle between the
German troops who were withdrawing and the Russian army. Four houses
together with their farming quarters and four sheds were burnt down;
four houses were damaged badly and thirteen slightly. The occupation
forces were quartered in the village until Whit Monday. The situation
slowly became normal again after the offical end of the war on May
8th, 1945. When in 1947 the newspapers and radio news mentioned a
"population exchange" between Austria and Yugoslavia and that
Croatians from the Burgenland were also supposed to be evacuated, the
village council objected against these plans. During the intermediate
stage of war, the political power was spread clearly among the
Christian Socialists and other parties, but in the 50's the Social
Democrats grew quite strong and for a short period there was even a
Social-Democratic mayor.
Due to the new communist regime in Hungary, the disadvantages of being
a village next to the border increased. The contacts to the close
villages across the border in Hungary vanished. The economic situation
was very hard. Although basic living conditions were a little better
in the countryside than in the city, poverty after the war made 27
inhabitants emigrate overseas. The treaty of 1955 gave liberty to
Austria. A year later the revolution in Hungary forced many refugees
across the border. Everybody in Schandorf supplied the refugees. The
Iron Curtain, drawn by the Hungarians, made Schandorf to a village in
a dead corner for many decades. A radical change in the economic
structure followed and this also struck Schandorf very hard. More and
more people were not able to survive by farming alone and so they were
forced to look for a job as a commuter in congested areas. The
consequence was more migration. The results can be seen in the
population statistics. Within ninety years the population declined by
more than half (1900: 712, 1991: 342). Surprising is the fact that
compared to the average the population is actually overaged.
The year 1971 brought a drastic change for Schandorf. Due to the law
of a village structure improvement, a few small municipalities were
joined to one bigger community. Since then Schandorf, Dürnbach and
Schachendorf belong to the municipality of Schachendorf. As a
consequence, the primary school in Schandorf was closed and the
children of the new municipality were taught in the school in
Dürnbach. The kindergarden in Schandorf remained and is available to
all children of the three villages. In both the school and
kindergarten, the children are taught bilingual. This is important
because in the last decades German has been spoken far more than the
original colloquial Croatian.
The maintenance of the typical Burgenland-Croatian dialect of this
region, spoken especially in Schandorf, becomes more difficult. People
moving to Schandorf, who are not Croatians, the influence of the media
and the youth not using Croatian as the village mother tongue are
facts that endanger the substance of the Croatian language. The spoken
dialect is Stokavian and has clear influences from the German and
Hungarian languages. Investigations show that the Schandorf Croatian
language, compared to the morphology, corresponds in a large amount to
the Croatian literature in the Burgenland. Yet there are some
characteristic deviations. In earlier days traditions were kept up
intensively but nowadays only partly. Modern life and new social
structures replace the old traditions which had their origin in the
customs of earlier agricultural and religious life.
A very important impulse for a possible new future of the village was
brought about by the fall of the Iron Curtain at the end of June 1989.
The traditional relationship to the nearby Narda came alive again. In
spite of the negative results of the last decades, there's a chance
for a positive development in the future. The policy of the
municipality however must be specific and well planned to catch up and
the population balance must be normalized again. A working village
community is one of the main factors to realize the aim. More clubs
and organizations could contribute greatly. Besides the fire brigade,
which was set up in 1918, there is also a cultural association, which
was created in 1981 and there is the tamburizza group. Furthermore,
there is a money-savings organization and a tennis club. The political
parties are the ÖVP and the SPÖ and both parties have one intention
that is the separation from Schachendorf and to form a self governing
independent municipality again. In a plebiscite more than two thirds
of the persons entitled to vote voted for independence. In an
independent Schandorf work would surely be more positive for the
village itself.
The aims of these efforts will be to bring young families to the area,
to raise the quality of life and to raise the economic power in


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