Looking for emigrants from the Hesse region?

Ever since I published my blogpost about emigrants from the Rhineland area, I received the question “Does a database like this exist for other areas, too”? And I always had to say “I’m sorry, I don’t know”.

But a few days ago a great blogpost from Ursula Krause from Rootseekers popped up in my timeline. She found a way to get similar data for the Hesse region. Once I saw it, I dove deeper into the database to have a look what you can find in it. And this blogpost is the result.

I got great feedback on my Rhineland blog from readers who found long researched ancestors and I hope this one will help as many if not more.

What is this database?

It’s the “Auswanderer-Nachweise” (emigration statements) at the Hessian State Archive in Darmstadt. I have to say one thing upfront: This collection is not complete as it is based on the volunteering work from 2 genealogists before WW II. As most of the statements have been destroyed during the War this collection might be the only source of emigration data from the region.

Where do I find it?

That’s a bit tricky, but stay with me, we will go step by step. First you need to go to the archival information system Hessen – here is the direct link to the English translation: https://arcinsys.hessen.de/arcinsys/start.action?request_locale=en

You will find this page:


As you can see, the navigation bar on the left is not translated. Use the first submenue “Staatsarchive” to get here:


As mentioned above, the collection can be found at the State Archive in Darmstadt. Use the “Navigator” link to access the overview of collections:


You need to watch out for “R Sammlungen und Karteien”



Don’t leave me now, we are almost there!! On the next page look out for the signature HStAD (Hessisches Staatsarchiv Darmstadt) R 21 B and use the Navigator link again


Once done, you are finally where you need to be to start your search. The page looks like this.


Use the navigation bar on the left to search for your ancestor’s last name. I used one of my main names NICOLAUS as an example.


I used the arrows in the upper navigation bar to go back and forth. Well, I started with it, after 10 clicks, I just typed the page number in the light grey box and waited where I would end up. I picked ELISABETH NICOLAUS, just to show you what kind of information you can expect: name, (maiden name if she would have been married), origin, emigration date, emigrated to, age, birth date, confession.

Clicking on “detail page”, I receive even a bit more information.


Under “Bemerkungen” (remarks) I receive the information of her parents and that Elisabeth travelled with the parents and 4 siblings. There are no original images available, this information comes from index cards only. But once you found them here and know their origin, this gives you a hint in which church records you can search your ancestors now.

As mentioned before this collection is not complete. Don’t be frustrated if you don’t find your ancestors. But I keep my fingers crossed that you will!


2 thoughts on “Looking for emigrants from the Hesse region?

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