The Mesznego Records

By: Peter von Pazatka Lipinsky (First published in 2003)

When I visited the village of Borzyszkowy in 1998, I knew that some day, I had to come back to this place.( Please see KANA spring issue No. 2 / 1999) Somehow, I felt that I did not accomplish everything I set out to do on this visit. Now, 5 years later I did come back again, trying to discover more of my Kashubian family roots. I felt like Indiana Jones, discovering an old long lost treasure, when I came across the old Mesznego Records from the parish of Borzyszkowy. What are these old Mesznego records, dating back to the 1700's ?

The Mesznego records, consisting of about some 175 pages, are a written account of the contributions made by the parishioners to the church in the village of Borzyszkowy. The page shown here ( second picture ) is a list of the people living in the village of Prondzona in 1848. These people however did worship in the church in Borzyszkowy and were therefore part of that parish. The Mesznego records start in the year 1727 and go to the year 1896, with some years missing in between. These records start earlier then 1727, but the records before 1727 could not be found. While these records may not be as complete as one could hope for, these records can still provide a lot of historical information to the people with roots in Borzyszkowy, as well as from the nearby villages.

Most of the villages from the surrounding area of Borzyszkowy are listed in the Mesznego records. These records show the name of the parishioner, the amount of land the individual parishioner owned at the time (1848) , as well as the amount of grain he contributed to the church treasury. The contribution is usually split up, with 1 Scheffel ( bushel ) of grain going to the Pfarrer (Priest) and ½ Scheffel of grain going to the organist. Depending on the time frame, the entries are either recorded in German or in Polish. In Polish the contribution is shown as : 1 Korzec of Zyta = 1 bushel of rye. However, these records do not reveal such information as, date of birth, date of marriage or date of death. All the familiar names which we are accustomed to see and read about from this area, are listed in these records, such as the Rekowski's, Trzebiatowski's Kiedrowski's, Pradzynski's, Gliszynski's, Cieminski's, Rudnik, Hapka, Myrzka, Zmuda, Wirkus, Szyprit, Mrozig, Gruchalla, Ostrowski's, Gostomski's, Palubicki, Tyborczyk and many more. All names which we know and recognise. In the case of the Pazatka Lipinski' name, there are over 20 entries on as many pages listed.

For a small donation to the Kashubian Instytut in Gdansk, we will copy and mail to you  (at our expense) all relevant pages with your family name. (one family name per donation only) Some of the donated funds will also go to the parish of Borzyszkowy. A full account of all donations will be provided upon request.

These Mesznego Records have never been micro filmed or published before.

This is a brand new discovery of research material

(Above) This is the very first page of the "Mesznego" records which start in the year 1727. On the left hand you can identify the names Rudnik, Hapka, and Trebiatowski. Pages in later years show the names more clearly.

(Above) The Mesznego Record for the year 1848 from the parish of Borzyskowy for the parishioners from the village of Prondzona.