Thursday, March 25, 2010

What is Lääni? Do I need to care?

Genealogists from USA are used to thinking about entities like counties and states. Which makes transitions to Finland some times difficult.

"Naturally" Finnish towns (or parishes) have been grouped by our government. But

a) that grouping has been done and redone over centuries, the latest change was this year
b) there are different groupings for different things, for example tax records vs. court records

For basic genealogy, using church records, you only need to pay attention to
- Parish (~town)
- Village
- Farm

In the countryside everyone is noted as living on farm. Occasionally there can be a separate page or two for per village for those people who did not live strictly speaking on any farm. But sometimes these people have also be noted on the farm page.

Number and size of villages can vary a lot by geographic area. An easy way to locate a list of villages is via Hiski : Choose a parish from the list and click "selected". On the next page click the link at the bottom of the page "More information about this parish". And the next page contains the names of the villages. Among other useful information but more about that later.

1 comment:

  1. Ah, this is helpful - will try it out with the information I have on my grandmother-