"Kontributionkataster" Records for the Years 1772-1773

(Prussian Land Registration Records for Taxation in Kashubia - what is now Poland)

By: Peter von Pazatka Lipinsky (First Published 2006)

Here are a few examples of the Kontributionkataster / census records from the years 1772 - 1773 for the villages of Lipienitza/Lipnica, Prondzona, Kiedrowitz/Kiedrowice, Briesen/Brzesno and Borzyszkowo/Borzyszkowy. For most of these villages there is also a written government farm land and forest assessment to be able to forecast the approximately yearly harvest of grain, such as barley, oats and rye. The assessment for the forest would be for the yearly harvest of building lumber and fire wood. Only the head of each household was enumerated by name. All other members of the same household, including servants, were also recorded. Widows were listed by their husband’s name. Children ages were recorded for both male and female as: “12 years and under” or “12 years and over”. Anybody under 12 years of age was listed as “small” people. In the summary of all households for the village of Kiedrowice, the count of all inhabitants is shown as:

44 big people and 20 small people.

The amount and variety of life stock owned by each household was also counted and recorded. For example: Kasimir Trzebiatowski from the village of Prondzona had the following life stock: 4 Oxen, 2 Cows and 1 pig. In the village of Prondzona there were only 8 horses in total, of which Jakob Koberskie, Jakob Depka, Albrecht Lipinski and Mathias Zemminski each owned 2 horses. In the census for the village of Orlowo the following inhabitants have been listed by name and occupation:

Stan (nislaus) Deczinski = Game warden / Joseph Masckowski = Cook / Johann Schney = Gardener / Sczeberski = Wagon builder.

The next 10 villagers have been listed as "Dannicker's", which is a farmer with a few acres of land but working with his own team of horses or oxen for the owner of the manor. Next listed are 3 Gärtners, which are land owners of about 7 - 8 acres, a small land holding. The direct translation of a "Gärtner" is a Gardener. But this would be misleading, unless one would consider 7 - 8 acres of land a large garden. (Maybe a market garden?) Then there is the Shepherd's widow and a Szlatkowska , also a widow listed. (The "a" on the end of the name tells us that she is a lady / female).

Now we find 1 only Ratteyer listed. No, he is not hunting "Rats". A Ratteyer is the coachman for the owner of the manor, driving the owner of the manor around in his horse drawn coach. A Ratteyer also has a team of horses or oxen with a wagon from the manor to haul freight etc. for the manor, when not driving his boss around.

Nexct we see 5 " Instleute " and the Shepherd listed. The Instleute are farm workers who live in rented accommodation. Most likely renting from the manor and working for the manor estate.

Lastly, there are 9 " Lose Weiber " listed. ( 9 loose women ). No, these are not " Ladies of the night ". These are old and worn out from hard labor single or widowed ladies, too old to work and with no real income. They often live alone or live with their daughter or son. These old ladies had to depend on hand outs from friends, relatives and the church. These old Prussian census’ may not give the family researcher specific event dates, i.e. birth, marriage or death, but a lot of information is still contained in these records.

P.S. The forgoing story is based on copies from the so called " Marburger Auszüge ", which are typed copies from micro films of the original records of the 1772 - 1773 Prussian census. Please note: These are not LDS micro films. The original documents are located at the Prussian Privy archive in Berlin, Germany. Copies of the micro films have also been deposited in Polish archives.

Attached Copies from 1772-1773 Prussian Census:

Prussian Census for the village of Borzyzkowy 1772-1773

Many of the listed names here in the 1772 census are well known to all of us. The village of Prondzona is the cradle of the Pradzinski's.

Brzesno, many of our ancestors lived in this village.

The village of Kiedrowice. The cradle of the Kiedrowski's..

Lipienitz / Lipinitza. The cradle of the Lipinski's.

The village of Orlowo and its inhabitants in 1772.

The economical assessment by the Prussian government of all the farm land belonging to the village of Brzesno.

The economical assessment by the Prussian government of all the farm land belonging to the village of Przondzona.

The economical assessment by the Prussian government of all the farm land belonging to the village of Liepenitz / Lipinitza / (now Lipnica).