German Genealogy Sample Letter - Archives


1. After the word "über", fill in the name of your ancestor, after "geboren", his birth date, and after "in", his place of birth.

2. Enclose the equivalent of $15 (or if in the United States, a money order or foreign bank draft and 2 International Reply Coupons from your post office). (See caveat below concerning sending money orders overseas).

3. Address envelope to:

Standesamt (Staatsarchiv or Stadtarchiv) der Stadt (town)
Street Number
Zip Code Town



Dear Madam; Sir,

In order to complete my family history, I am in need of more precise offical data on the family of _______________, born _______________ in ____________________.

I would kindly like to ask you to send me a complete excerpt from your birth-/marriage-/death registers for the person mentioned above.

Should you be able to let me have, in addition, the birth-, marriage-, or death records of his/her parents, who are said to have lived in the same place, I would be most grateful for your assistance in this matter.

To cover your fees, I am enclosing $15. Should you incur additional expenses, please let me know.

Sincerely yours,

Your name
Your address


Sehr geehrte Dame, sehr geehrter Herr!

Zur Vervollständigung meiner Familiengeschichte benötige ich nähere amtliche Angaben über die Familie des/der _______________, geboren am _______________ in ____________________.

Ich bitte Sie freundlichst um Übersendung eines vollständigen Auszuges aus Ihrem Geburts-/ Heirats-/ Sterberegister zur vorstehend genannten Person.

Sollte es Ihnen möglich sein, mir ebenfalls Auszüge über Geburt, Heirat oder Tod seiner/ihrer Eltern anzufertigen, die im gleichen Ort gewohnt haben sollen, so wäre ich Ihnen auch für diese Hilfe sehr dankbar.

Zur Deckung Ihrer Gebühren lege ich $15 bei. Sollten Ihnen weitere Auslagen entstehen, so bitte ich Sie, mir dies mitzuteilen.

Für Ihre Hilfe danke ich Ihnen herzlich im voraus.


Your name
Your address

***Please read the following concerning payments to Germany:

The most convenient and economical way to send money overseas is to use a credit card for payment. Then you avoid bank fees and get a good exchange rate. For small amounts you might consider sending European cash, which you should be able to procure at most banks, with a somewhat worse exchange rate and also an exchange fee. For larger amounts you might want to send a bank wire. Checks drafted in foreign currency may also be obtained from International Currency Express Inc. for a US$10 fee. Or call +1-888-278-6628.

In Germany, International Reply Coupons (IRCs) can only be redeemed for postage, and even then only one coupon per piece of outgoing international mail. Thus IRCs are not a general means of payment. International postal money orders are not accepted in Germany.


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