3 Replies Latest reply on Feb 21, 2020 11:34 AM by joan stachnik

    Seeking Austrian army records prior to WWI

    joan stachnik Tracker

      HI, is it possible to search for military records for the Austrian army from the late 1800s/early 1900s (prior to WWI)? I was recently told that my grandfather (born in Witkowice, Poland [Galicia] around 1882) served in the Austrian army prior to immigrating to the US (he arrived here 1907 at the age of 25). From what I've been able to read so far, this might make sense, since it seems military service was required at that time.  And he would have had the time to serve for a few years (I think 3 years was mandatory at that time) before leaving for the US.


      Does anyone have any suggestions of possible places to search, or have knowledge of the Austrian army at that time (eg, recruitment center locations, requirements/terms for service, etc.)? I think it's unlikely that I will find anything, but I thought it was worth looking.  Any help would be appreciated.

        • Re: Seeking Austrian army records prior to WWI
          Jason Atkinson Pioneer

          Dear Ms. Stachnik,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

          For records of the Austro-Hungarian military services, to include personnel files of officers, petty officers, soldiers and public servants of the armed forces from around 1740 to 1918, contact the Vienna Kriegsarchiv within the Austrian State Archives.  Their website is here:  https://www.statearchives.gv.at/kriegsarchiv-information-in-brief


          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!


          1 person found this helpful
            • Re: Seeking Austrian army records prior to WWI
              joan stachnik Tracker

              Thank you, I will try this source. joan

              • Re: Seeking Austrian army records prior to WWI
                joan stachnik Tracker

                Hi Jason, I just wanted to provide follow-up on your suggestion. I did contact the Austrian State Archives regarding military records for those serving in the Austrian army in the early 1900s. Per the Archives, after the fall of the Habsburg monarchy in 1918, military records for persons (born 1850 to 1900) from areas outside the borders of modern day Austria did not reach the Austrian archives. These records were kept by/sent to the "successor states" and mostly destroyed. (Assuming Google translate is correct.)


                The Austrian State Archives replied very quickly to my email. Their full response in German is below (they accept questions in German or English but all responses are in German).  Thank you for the suggestion. joan


                Die Personalunterlagen der k. u. k. bewaffneten Macht (Militär-Grundbuchsblätter und

                Stellungslisten) für die Geburtsjahrgänge 1850-1900, sofern sie Personen betreffen, die ihr

                Heimatrecht außerhalb der Grenzen der heutigen Republik Österreich besessen hatten, sind

                nach dem Zerfall der Habsburger Monarchie (1918) nicht in das Wiener Kriegsarchiv gelangt. Sie

                sind gemäß den Friedensbestimmungen von Saint-Germain (1919) in den Nachfolgestaaten

                verblieben, wo sie zum Großteil vernichtet wurden.

                Das Kriegsarchiv Wien verwahrt lediglich subsidiäre Unterlagen über Auszeichnungen und

                Kriegsverluste des Ersten Weltkrieges 1914-1918 (Belohnungsanträge, Spitalsvormerkblätter

                sowie Karteien von Gefallenen, Verwundeten, Vermissten und Kriegsgefangenen).