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Your Ancestor's Godparents Were Probably Relatives

Lene Dræby Kottal
Your Ancestor's Godparents Were Probably Relatives

Do you have children? If they are baptized, I am sure you put some thought into whom to have as godparents at the baptism. So did your ancestors! Information about godparents cannot only help identify ancestors via cluster research, but it can provide information about them which would otherwise not be found in public records.

Details about Godparents Revealed a Premarital Encounter

I don't know how my 3rd great-grandparents Frederik Pedersen Juhl and Maren Jensen courted each other, but I do know that they had known each other for more than a year when they married on 8 November 1860.1 Frederik and Maren were both godparents at the baptism of Peder Christian Nissen on 31 July 1859.2 Both events took place in the church Agerskov Kirke, which is shown in the photo above.3

Frederik and Maren's first child, Line Cathrine was born 1 February 18614 about three months after the marriage, which shows that they knew each other well when they married. My next research step for information about Frederik and Maren's relationship is to find them in the 1860 census taken on 1 February, which was a couple of months before their daughter was conceived.

Trying to identify godparents can take a lot of time, but it is often rewarding.

 

Source References:

  1. Agerskov Parish (Nørre Rangstrup District, Haderslev County), Parish Register 1851-1860, minister's book, folio 123 verso to 124 recto, Copulerede [Marriages], 1860: no. 10; image copy, The Danish National Archives, Arkivalieronline (https://www.sa.dk/ao-soegesider/da/billedviser?bsid=200872#200872,38038269 : accessed 25 February 2022).
  2. Agerskov Parish, Parish Register 1851-1860, minister's book, folio 27 verso to 28 recto, Fødte Mandkjøn [Male Births], 1859: no. 19; image copy, The Danish National Archives, Arkivalieronline (https://www.sa.dk/ao-soegesider/da/billedviser?bsid=200872#200872,38038174 : accessed 25 February 2022).
  3. Hubertus, "Agerskov Kirke I Sønderjylland," photograph; image copy, Wikimedia Commons (https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20345725 : accessed 25 February 2022), created 14 July 2012. The image is shared under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.
  4. Agerskov Parish, Parish Register 1861-1868, minister's book, folio 39 verso to 40 recto, Fødte Kvindekjøn [Female Births], 1861: no. 4, Line Cathrine Juul; image copy, The Danish National Archives, Arkivalieronline (https://www.sa.dk/ao-soegesider/da/billedviser?bsid=200873#200873,38038424 : accessed 25 February 2022).

 

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