Thanks to the Internet, it’s much easier to search for your German ancestors today than when the book was originally written. All of the major archives and many of the smaller ones, as well as church parishes, have websites containing contact information and information on their holdings. Correspondence can now often be handled more quickly and less expensively via e-mail. An ever increasing number of databases with information relevant to German ancestor-hunters—passenger lists, cemetery records, surname directories, etc.—has greatly improved opportunities for research.
While these developments in no way alter the nature of the records or the research techniques described in this work, readers should be aware that the growing list of websites, online databases, and CD-ROMs devoted to German genealogy have made the task of locating your German ancestors immeasurably easier.
This edition of the book includes website and e-mail addresses whenever possible, covers the newest facilities and records available to researchers, and lists the online resources that will be invaluable in your search.
The Hamburg Passenger Lists 1850–1934 are now available online.
Microfilms of the most comprehensive collection of Nazi files are available for public search at the National Archives at College Park, Maryland.
Digitized copies of the International Tracing Service’s records pertaining to Holocaust Victims are in the process of being transferred to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.
In 2005 the German Emigration Center opened in Bremerhaven, and in 2007 it won the prestigious European Museum of the Year Award.
The late Angus Baxter is also the author of In Search of Your British & Irish Roots, In Search of Your Canadian Roots, and the prize-winning In Search of Your European Roots.
Comments on Previous Editions
"In Search of Your German Roots is a comprehensive guide. . . . It bears repeating that it is designed to trace your German ancestry in all the German-speaking areas of Europe, from the Baltic to the Crimea, from Czechoslovakia to Belgium. And it is designed so that you seldom have to leave your home, for like all books by Angus Baxter it shows you how to conduct your research by correspondence; how to work in your own home, at your own pace, using the resources of libraries and archives or the records of church and state."--Germanic Genealogist, Vol. 10, No. 2, 1996
"The book contains numerous lists: lists of churches, dates and lists of time periods for people who migrated to Russia, state, city, and parish archives (Protestant and Catholic), and in addition to the associations in North America, Mr. Baxter has provided a list of genealogical societies in Europe. . . . In Search of Your German Roots will most definitely provide you with a very comprehensive guide to locating your German ancestor. It is an orderly description and you need to use it in an orderly manner to gain the greatest benefit."--German Genealogical Society of America (Jan/Feb 1996)
"This edition is an update of the original edition published in 1985, and it therefore includes details of changes brought about by the reunification of Germany. It contains German addresses with the new five-digit postal code and covers changes in local government, the locations of record offices, and record-keeping practices. Baxter's work is recommended for public library collections as well as genealogy collections in academic libraries."--American Reference Books Annual, 1995