I have compiled a list of reference material and resources I’ve used during my research of Hungarian Prisoners of War during WWII, via my notes. I hope the readers on my blog and others will find it useful. The material relates to prisoners in Russian captivity as well as aids in other WWII European theaters of conflict; including, but not limited to K.I.A., M.I.A. statistics, and historical documentation. This is a recommended list of resources only and by no means complete. I am not a “professional researcher,” though I am including suggestions, to aid in your own research. Since this “list” is quite extensive I will break it down in various posts, over a period of time. If you have any questions or corrections, please let me know.
1. Persee Scientific Journals: “Persée is a program which was created for the digital publication of scientific journals in the field of the humanities. The entire printed collection of journals is digitized and published online through a portal which offers access to the collections as well as advanced functionality which help and enhance use of the portal’s resources. The journals are selected by an editorial board, thereby guaranteeing the collection’s scientific coherence.”
- This is a wonderful data base I came across that has varies language search options (other than French). When researching foreign archives and databases I have found Google Translate extremely helpful and fairly accurate in directing me to the correct data sites and archives. Using the “keyword” Hungarian in the “all field” search I found 716 results which can be reduced to more specific archives, publications, abstracts, articles, etc. Specific fields can also be used in various “languages”, “dates” and “targets in text.” Entering the term “Hungarian Prisoners of War” yielded 19 results and the keyword “gulag” resulted in 64 results.
**Remember that research is like a puzzle which takes time to piece together. It is also “detective” work with clues. Take what you find from one database or website, make notes and use it as a building block to work upon. This is also a way to confirm and verify information. Some archives I have found only consist of a directory of holding, where other include the entire document. If you can not find something in a certain archive, make an index note and use it to search another.**
2. Hungarian Military History Museum (Hadtorteneti Intezet es Muzeum): “The Military History Archives scientific public collections continuously operating since November 1918, which was organized by the Institute operates under the command directly subordinate. Our Archives specialized state archives, over which the Department of Human Resources, State Secretariat for Culture and the Director of Archives Special Inspector carries out professional supervision. The role of a military past, the Hungarian military history written record of collecting, preserving and making it usable for research. Purpose of the Ministry of Defense and the Hungarian Defense Forces, as well as their direct supervision or military organizations, as well as collecting, storing, processing and preservation, as well as the provision of research for the development of the researchers generated during operation of archival materials and their predecessors, controlled. In addition to serving researchers, historians and genealogists, local history is available.”
The databases of this archive include:
- WWII POW Records: The Department of Defense Military History Museum (HM HIM) and KFKI ISYS Information Technology Ltd. started working together in the summer of 2001. In the 1990’s the Russian State received, processed in the former Soviet POW camp deaths of Hungarian data using the latest information technology and analytic tools and techniques. The data base has records of 65,170 POW documents (Soviet/Hungarian), 40,670 Soviet cemetery records, 65,170 Russian POW cemetery data sheets, 42,000 Hungarian soldier & forced labor deaths, burial information, circumstances and 28,000 Eastern front Hungarian K.I.A. records.
- You can conduct an entire database search of all archive; using combinations of first name, surname and birth date. The Hungarian word “KERESES” means search!
- Library Catalog: The catalog contains the documents obtained in 1996. The earlier in the card catalog is still available.
Rank and Collection Directory: “Collections containing the name of the professional officer corps in the details of “Royal Hungarian Army and Gendarmerie name books” – German original term of: Schematismus. You can find them in the current year professional Soldiers and csendőreinek basic data: date of birth, date of entry into service, awards, years overdue. These data repositories are more or less intermittently span the decades of modern Hungarian history, but of the names of previous centuries can be found in the collection. The XVIII. century up to 1944 volumes are indispensable foundations of scientific research in military history, both in terms of family history. The ongoing digitization of volumes.”
- In addition the museum has links to these various sections. Here the links are in English, where on the site they are mostly in Hungarian (Google translate, not perfect but extremely helpful.):
The accuracy of the data: (By the archives) The databases contain different fields, the accuracy (or how meaningful. Actual data) is variable, depending on the data source. Data on the Russian / Soviet origin makes interpretation of the original Cyrillic script, which the Latin-Hungarian prisoners of data was recorded. The data obtained in this way converted back to Latin betűssé, but despite the use of modern methods of data cleaning, unfortunately, there may be inaccuracies. Database of Hungarian origin, communicate reliable, more accurate information about the deceased.
- Having a separate program, many of which are available as free downloads/use online can help with converting names and words so that search engines can properly process it. This is especially helpful if not vital in researching archives in Russian. Englishonlinetranslator.com is good; the other is translationBabylon.com (English last name translations.) These both can be used online.
Have a great weekend everyone, and I hope this sort of makes up for my short memoir post! PLENTY more resources to come!! Comment with questions if you need more information; I’ll try to answer as soon as I can!
Kati, (P.S. Vacation memo in weekly wrap!)