In my list of to-do’s, the first item is finding the marriage of Vojtech Cerny and Katerina Padrta. Since I was able to find them in the 1870 census in Chicago, I figured they must have been married prior to June 1, 1870 (the census date). I had searched the parish books in Chicago for the years 1868 – 1870, but had not been able to find the marriage. Finding the marriage record is important, because if they were married in Bohemia, that would provide me with a beginning date to use when searching for immigration records.
Knowing that the marriage must have been before June 1 of 1870, I turned to the parish registries in the Czech Archives once again. I decided that I would begin by looking at 1870, then work backwards to 1869, and then 1868. It did not take long to find the record, which is shown below (I have broken it into 2 halves for easier reading):
The first column gives the date, which is 1 June 1869. The second column denotes the residences of the groom and the bride. Next is listed the Priest, and then information about the groom and the bride.
Translating the information, I was able to come up with the following:
Cerny Vojtech emigrant to America legitimate son of Vita Cerny farmer from Kojakovice no. 18 and Anny nee Kojan, farmer’s daughter from Kojakavice no. 23.
Katerina Padrta legitimate daughter of Ganor Padrta farmer from Mladosovice no. 29 and Anny nee Prdak (unsure of this name) farmer’s daughter from Suchdola no. 39.
This may not be an exact translation, but is close enough to give me a lot of valuable information.
Looking at the second half of the record, there are hash marks indicating that each was Catholic and single. In addition, the birth dates and ages of each are given. For Vojtech, 19 years of age, born 13 April 1850, and for Katerina, 23 years of age, born 15 November 1845. Next is information regarding the witnesses (names, occupation, and residence).
The final column is for any additional notes regarding the marriage. I have been unable to translate this column, but believe it gives information regarding Vojtech’s emigration and date of papers. If correct, he received authorization to emigrate to America in April 1869. He and Katerina then married 1 June 1869, and would have come to the US between 2 June 1869 and 1 June 1870 (the date of the census in which they were enumerated in Chicago). In addition, this column gives me a bonus – the signatures of both Vojtech and Katerina’s fathers giving approval for the marriage.
With this record, I have been able to extend the line back for both Vojtech and Katerina, now having the names (including maiden names) of each one’s parents. In addition, I have a birth date for Katerina, so I can now search for her baptism record. I have already located Vojtech’s baptism, but this records helps confirm the date of his birth. I have names of others close to them (the witnesses), which may provide additional information. And I have a date range in which to begin a search for Vojtech and Katerina’s immigration to the US.
All in all, a very nice record to find.