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December 2003

Vol. 2 Issue 12


Böhmerwald Museum

Contact: Gernot Peter

My name is Gernot Peter, I am living in Austria near Vienna and I am interested in doing family research. My ancestors come from Fürstenhut and Buchwald, and over I collected informations on over 9000 people, mostly from the Böhmerwald. My great grandmother was born Strunz, 3 uncles and one brother of hers also went to Oshkosh and St. Paul, I recently found their descendants and they gave me a hint to your homepage. It makes me very happy to see that also in the US people remember the Böhmerwald! I go there once or twice a year and it is really nice out there. I have a lot of pictures of Fürstenhut and I am also taking care of a small Böhmerwald-museum in Vienna with over 13,000 exhibits (books, photographs, paintings and so on).


          Museum Brochure          

 I also have Selbitschka (Selwitschka) in my family tree and might be able to help you find your ancestors. I know a man (Franz Selwitschka) from Heinrichsbrunn near Mauth who has collected a lot of information on the Selwitschka family in Bavaria (who originally came from Bohemia). 

He had information that got my SELWITSCHSKA side of the family back to about 1775. (PK)



These places of origin were mentioned in Oshkosh records and I never did any research on them----Slavonia, Koyatonowbolja.


Last month I was contacted by a researcher from Canada looking for information on the surname PIMISKERN. His ancestors had gone to Canada after WW II from the village of Kapetanovo. I searched thru Ellis Island and found Alois PIMISKERN that came from the village Kapetanovopolje, which is the same name for the German Kapetanovo. Alois came to America in 1903. He was going to Oshkosh to see his brother Kantius PIMISKERN at 521 9th Street. On this ship was also the LEHN family from the same village going to Steelton, PA. During my search I found many people from this area that went to work in the steel mills at Steelton. I also found Adel PIMISKERN going to Oshkosh in 1913 to see a brother-in-law, ? KOLLER?. 

Kapetanovo Polje (Kapetanovo), is in Slavonia. Apparently there was a group of people from the Böhmerwald that moved to Slavonia.

Other names that came from there include: HABLE, HOPFINGER, SPANBAUER, KINDERMANN, KÖLBL.

He is:

Konrad Pimiskern

The Pimiskerns were the first "forest rangers" of the Bohemian Forest. Through a system of canals, sections of wood were floated down to the Danube and sold as fuel. In the 17th century, there was an economic crisis in the region resulting from decreased fuel log supply. The land owners (royalty) determined to do a better job of managing the resource so they created a royal position called the Pimiskern (steward or keeper (pimis) of the seeds (kern)). The first Pimiskerns were three brothers Spanbauer. By Konrad Pimiskern, email Nov. 2003

His surnames include Pimiskern, Spanbauer, Wagner, Reidl, Kölbl.


I did some research and this is what I found:


Hopfinger, Maria Strivecovice, Hungary 1904 Th. Hopfinger
Hopfinger, Maria " 1904 433 8th street
Hopfinger, Anna " 1904  
Kölbl, Maria Kapetanovopolje, Hungary 1904 Gothard Kölbl
Kölbl, Kilian " 1904 531 9th street
Kölbl, Adelhaid " 1904  
Kölbl, Wilhelm " 1904  
Koller, Alois " 1903 Th. Hopfinger, 433 8th
Kölbl, Franz " 1903 brother Kölbl, 433 8th
Szoresck, Johann Srezicova 1903 Th. Hopfinger, 433 8th


From this website:

Geography of the Region

Slavonia (Serbo-Croatian Slavonija, Hungarian Szlavónia)  is in present-day northeastern Croatia.


  • North: Drava and Danube Rivers

  • East: Syrmia

  • South: Sava River

  • West: Croatia

History of the Region

Slavonia was part of the duchy of Croatia-Slavonia, which accepted the king of Hungary as its 
overlord as of 1102 AD. Croatia had two bans who were rulers representing the king: one for 
Croatia proper and one for Slavonia, which also had its own diet. Over time, however, Slavonia, 
with the nearby direct influence of Hungary, grew closer to Budapest and after 1442 started 
sending its deputies to the Hungarian diet. Eventually, this caused it to lose its distinct status.

Slavonia included the city of Zagreb, where a Roman Catholic diocesan see had been established
 in 1093. It was subordinated to the Hungarian archdiocese of Kalocsa.

Like most of its neighbors, Slavonia was conquered by the Ottoman Empire during the 16th century. 
In the Habsburg advance following the Ottoman retreat from Vienna, most of Slavonia fell to them and 
was confirmed by the peace signed at Sremski Karlovci (Karlowitz) in 1699. The rest of Slavonia was
 added at the Peace of Pozarevac (Passarowitz) in 1718. As the region was now depopulated, the 
Habsburg authorities encouraged emigration from other parts of their Empire; thus did Slavonia become
 part of the Danube-Swabian migration.

After the First World War, Slavonia was ceded from Hungary to the newly-formed Yugoslavia as part 
of the Treaty of Trianon (June 4, 1920). It was not absorbed back into Hungary during the years 1941-44 
as other neighboring regions were. Following the Second World War, Slavonia with Croatia, 
Austrian Dalmatia, southern Istria and southern Baranya, but not Syrmia (Srem), constituted the 
state of Croatia within the Yugoslavian nation. As of May 19, 1991, these areas, including Slavonia, became the new nation of Croatia.

  1. Dakovo.

a.       Gajger (Geiger), Vladimir. Die Kolonisation der Deutschen. Die Besiedlung von 
Dakovo/Djakowo, Slawonien und der Umgebung (Djakowschtina).
[E: The colonisation of the Germans. The settlement of ....., Slavonia and area.....]. 54 pages. (Djakowo und seine 
Umgebung. 3, 1985). Standort/Library:

  1. Eichendorf=Hrastovac.

 .        Weber, Jakob, Erwin Englert. Hrastovac - Eichendorf, eine deutsche Siedlung in Slavonien. 
[E: .........a German settlement in Slavonia]. 1955, Ried/Innkreis, OÖ, 
privately printed/reprinted 1985. 47 pages, village map. Contact: Darlene Dimitrie, P.O. Box 1607, 
Room B8, Windsor, Ontario, Canada N8S 3L3.

Website of a researcher for the area:

surnames page

Rosina Schmidt 

KAPETANOVO POLJE, 250 pop, 58 households from 
from Bjelovar's archive.  
The population number is from 1948.
Hello Slavonia researchers:
The Slavenian's German year book of 1942 by Branimir Altgayer lists the
following villages and the origin of most of their German inhabitants.
Zvecevo from Schlesien
Palesnik and Herzegovac from Galizien
Gasinici, Djakovacki Selci, Uljanik, Bokane, Ceralije, Rijenci from
Kapetanovo, Strizicevac, Filipovac, Toranj, Dobrovac, Mrzla Voda, Kutina
from Böhmerwald
Pakracki Antunovac from the German language island around Pressburg.
Several Boehmerwald names in these villages that show up in Ellis Island. 
But they don’t go to Oshkosh.
Toanji----Wenzel Spanbauer,
Kutina----Kindermann  to Dayton and Illinois 


Heinrich Rausch from Strizicevac to Milwaukee in 1920 per Ellis island left brother Johann in Kapetanovopolje  from country SHS ????---Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes. Croat = Hrvatska.

link from Charles Nigl

First click anywhere to go to the site, next click the glass link, then start the tour , then click the Czech Republic. There are small articles describing the villages from where the author has collected glassware.


More immigrants from Ellis Island
Szrenesak,Emma Szidurfalva, Hungary 1905  
Szrenesak,Stefanie Szidurfalva, Hungary 1902  
Zernczak, Alois  Szidurfalva, Hungary July 25, 1905 To see Brother in law Josef Blechl
Paulus, Anna Kuschwarda, Bohemia 1912 Franz Paulus
Springer, Maria " 1912 "
Hois, Kamilla " 1912 "
Penzenstadler, Barbara Szinyak, Hungary 1901  
Weiner, Karl Szidorfalva, Hungary 1905 ?
Weiner, Josefa " 1905 ?
Weiner, Terezia " 1905 ?
Szernzak, ? " 1905 ?
Szernzak, ? " 1905 ?



Books I am reading now:

  • Documents on the Expulsion of the Sudeten Germans; 1953; Compiled by Dr. Wilhelm K. Thurnwald; Association for the protection of Sudeten German interests.
  • Redrawing Nations, Ethnic Cleansing in East-Central Europe, 1944-1948; Edited by Philipp Ther and Ana Siljak; 2001; Harvard Cold War Studies Book Series.
  • Donauschwaben und Karpatendeutsche; Ludwig Schumacher; 1952.
  • Die Vertreibung der deutschen Bevölkerung aus der Tschechoslowakei, Band 1; 1984 reprint.


Special treat coming for January

Membership list of the parish of SALNAU in the year 1649.

For the villages of Perneck, Spitzenberg, Parkfried, Schönau, Hintring, Sonnberg and Salnau.

I have been able to match up over 12 ancestors names from my Researched Bohemia Names.


Contact: Peter Kinderman
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