Annegret Wenz-Haubfleisch: Cadastral Documents

Annegret Wenz-Haubfleisch (Hessisches Staatsarchiv Marburg, DE)

Studied secondary school teaching studies in History, English Studies and Pedagogy at the Philipps University Marburg and the Portsmouth Polytechnic. Archival traineeship at the City Archives of Detmold and the Archives School in Marburg. Since 2006 deputy director of the Hessian State Archives and since 2014 also consultant at the Hessian Regional Archives. Responsible for personnel and planning as well as various collections. Publications in the field of cadastral maps in Hessian-Kassel.


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Cadastral Records

[Chart: cadastral register and map]
Cadastral registers came into being for taxation purposes of real estate. Compared to other German territories the Hessian State was a pioneer in creating these records in the course of a great, systematic tax reform in the 18th cent. They exist in basically the same form and with identical contents until the present day all over Germany and in many European countries.
Thus over centuries we have a continuous documentation of the development of property with respect to ownership, usage, and taxation.

Along with the tax reform the whole country was measured, town by town, village by village, and especially parcel by parcel and depicted in maps. Also these kinds of maps have continuity until the present day.
In the course of time a variety of cadastral documents was developed. In my presentation, however, I will focus the type which contains the most complete set of information and is of the greatest continuity in form and contents. With respect to period I will concentrate on the beginnings in the 18th cent. For an example I chose the village of Roth, some 13 km south of Marburg whose cadastral register was established in 1773.

1. Form and amount of and access to documents
Chart: Title of the Holding
Chart: Amount of this Type of document
Chart: Physical Appearance and Structure:
– Registers of real estate: Books (mostly very thick), material: paper
– Maps: paper, mostly drawn upon linen; great variety of sizes (Charts and also oversized roles)
– Physical Storage: Boxes on shelves (registers); folders in drawers or roled on shelves (maps)
– Order of documents:
– Registers of real estate: alphabetical by location
– Maps: by shelfmark
Chart: Metadata and Access
Chart: Digitisation
Chart: Layout
Registers of real estate (Kat. I-III): organized in columns, in the majority of cases using printed forms, in Gothic print though; the information is handwritten; the registers were updated, therefore they are complicated in structure
– Maps: drawn and colored by hand; contain also corrections and updates; the updates are in red, therefore relatively easy to identify

2. Biographical Data
Chart: Upper part of cadastral register
We now come to the biographical data contained in the named sources. Biographical information in the strict sense is on top of the left page, in the middle part: there we read “Johann George Weber” and other names – that means: ownership of parcels is updated, as already mentioned, with some further updates on top of the right page
In the first column there is the localization of each parcel by map [D] and number of parcel [147]
It is followed by the size of the parcel [Acker, Ruthen]
Then its usage is described, in this case: house, barn, cowshed, yard; names of neighbors
The taxable value of the parcel comes next (“Thut an Steuerkapital”)
Then expenses which reduce the amount of tax (“Hiervon wird abgegeben), finally the real taxable value of the property (“Bleiben würcklich zu versteuern”)

Chart: Updating (“Fortführung”) of cadastral registers
In the last column there is a reference to another folio in the cadastral book and this explains why the property on the left side is crossed out
If we go to folio 1064a, we find a new owner: Herz Stern
On the left page, in the middle is parcel D 147 and a reference to the old folio 511.
From the printed text in the columns and the size and color of the paper you can conclude that new sheets of paper were added to the cadastral register. For about 100 years these books were in use and constantly updated.
When a new measurement and in this context a new numbering of the parcels began under Prussian rule in 1876 they took care to establish a concordance to the old system.

Chart: cadastral maps
At last one more view on the cadastral map, to show you where Johann George Weber and his successors’ farm was situated. D 147 is on main road opposite the church. The maps are the topographical visualization of some of the biographical data in the registers.
Chart: Importance of the holdings
Chart: What archivists would like computer scientists do

Kataster I Roth (Krs. Marburg), B 2, B 4 (1773) Karten P II, Nr. 8711, Bl. D (Ortslage Roth), 1766/69

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Diesen Blogbeitrag zitieren
Elisabeth Steiger (2016, 21. März). Annegret Wenz-Haubfleisch: Cadastral Documents. European Archival Blog. Abgerufen am 26. Februar 2024, von

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