Looking for birth records

by Liz

My 4th great grandfather was born 11 Aug 1752 in Colmar, Haut-Rhin, Alsace Lorraine, France and came to America on November 19th, 1771 on the ship " Tyger " from Alsace-Lorraine.

How can I find his birth records to ascertain the names of his parents?

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Some good and bad news about your Alsace relative
by: Suzele

Hi Liz,

First off I want to wish you lots of luck in your Alsace genealogy searching!

Some great information for you...your 4X great grandfather (if he was born in Colmar) is from Alsace and not Lorraine. Not at all.

Colmar is 100% in the Alsace region.

In 1752 Alsace and Lorraine were not yet joined together (well, really just parts of Lorraine, not all of it) until 1871 by the Germans.

And some more good news!

If you know where he was born (as in the actual village or town-which you do), getting the records is usually not a problem.

Ok, so now we have to talk about some bad news, 1752.

Although it's not horribly bad news.

France didn't have official state records yet. So the only place you might find them is in the church records.

And we have Protestant and Catholic records. If he was Protestant, and you can find the records, they might be easier to read.

They could be in French or German (hope they are not in German...it's so hard to read old German script-even if you understand German).

If he was Catholic, the records are probably in Latin. My personal experience with Catholic records has been extremely unpleasant.

Priests with the worst penmanship you can imagine.

There's always a chance that the records have been lost (if they ever existed) because of war, fire and 350+ years of who knows what.

I wish you all the luck in the world!
And I hope you find what you need.


Likely Lutheran
by: Liz

Thank you for all that information, the Alsace-Lorraine combination came from Ancestry, which seems to update everything historical to newer designations. Johan Jacob Menges and his wife while in Pennsylvania attended two Lutheran churches and the family was Lutheran down through my generation so any church records would likely be Lutheran. How do I search those records?

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