Herzlich Willkommen bei Taufepedia!

Taufepedia is a custom Wiki with the following goal: To leverage the power of crowdsourcing to index, transcribe and translate every old german-language Parish Register (aka Kirchenbuch) ever. Thus making the full text of every old german-language baptism, confirmation, marriage and burial record browsable and searchable online for free.

That's a hugely ambitious goal that we're unlikely to ever fully accomplish. But if we succeed in cataloging and presenting even a small fraction of those old church records here on Taufepedia, that alone would be a major and worthy accomplishment.

Also, if you're engaged in a One-Place Study of a German-speaking (or formerly-German-speaking) village or city, Taufepedia offers an excellent tool to assist your research. Begin transcribing or indexing a church book from your Place, and share that information here on Taufepedia.

Let's break down the 3 major tasks:

  1. Index: The most important information contained within old church records is the Vital Info for each individual – Name, Birth Date, Parents' Names, etc. So the most important task here on Taufepedia will be to crowdsource the collection of this Vital Info into a free online searchable Database.
  2. Transcribe: The full text of the church record, however, sometimes holds the key to advancing your research. Old german church records are notoriously difficult to decipher – even for native german speakers – due to the archaic handwriting script used. Here on Taufepedia you can collaborate on deciphering the full text of difficult-to-read church records of your german ancestors while sharing your work with the world. Like any good Wiki, Taufepedia offers versioning, diffing and reverting tools to help make collaboration easier and to protect against vandalism. Taufepedia also offers full-text search which makes searching the complete text of those old church records easy.
  3. Translate: Taufepedia also offers tools to enable the collection and sharing of English-language translations of those full-text church records.

If Taufepedia gains traction, it will be a major boon to all amateur genealogists with German ancestors.


One important limitation on the scope of this project deserves special mention. There are a multitude of privacy laws in various European countries which restrict access to vital records published within the past 100 years or so. We here at Taufepedia understand and respect that. Therefore we will only allow records from before the 20th Century to be cataloged here on Taufepedia. Cataloging every german-language church record from before the year 1900 is a huge task. That alone should keep us busy for a while. :)


Taufepedia is a project started by Todd Ditchendorf, a genealogy enthusiast and software engineer mit Vorfahren aus Elsaß, Hesse-Darmstadt und Westpreußen.

The project's name is a portmanteau – a combination of the german word for baptism, Taufe, and of course, encyclopedia.

Learn more about the ideas behind Taufepedia, and goals of this project on the About Page.

User Guide

Learn about the technical (and not-so-technical) conventions used here on Taufepedia from the Taufepedia User's Guide.

Social Media

Follow Taufepedia on Twitter.

Getting Started

Before you get started, please read the Taufepedia User's Guide first (it's not long).

Then, visit the Parish Index to see if your Parish is already listed.