The parish-archive in Sayn is to now be reached under:


An archive for Abbey Sayn from knights’deeds to layout plans

It is a veritable treasure trove that Dietrich Schabow has put together.  For two years the local historian went through the Sayn abbey  and collected all the pieces of writing from the cellar to the attic that he was able to find within the Premonstratensian walls–  from century old layout plans, to medieval „knight“-deeds, to a pile of genealogical trees of Sayn families.  Now the work is nearly completed: a well-structured church archive has been set up, which quantatively and qualitatively speaking contains precious treasures and which is no doubt of more than local importance as the abbey once was.

On the old stately oak table there are still piles of the cardboard folders in the new archive room of the Sayn abbey as well as leather bound writings from 16th century next to rolls of parchment. The old documents some of which are from the early middle ages speak of earls, knights and Barons, of fortifications,  fiefs and the gold mark, but then also, only three book copies further below the others all put together by the passionate local historian in „Storm of history“, of totally banal new age occurrences – in the „Church calendar 1982“ for example.

After all the church archive that Dietrich Schabow has put together in what has been the hard work of more than two years, covers a long time frame and many subjects. All documents, photographs, books and painting, that he could find in the Sayn abbey and that deserved being kept, have been registered. What work this has been can only be imagined by someone who knows how the original state of the folders in the old Premonstratensian walls. There has not been a systematic preservation of „literary“ time witnesses of whatever nature until now. The findings, some of which are precious have now been systematized in the archive. Schabow found them spread out throughout the abbey. Furthermore the work of the cataloging is not nearly finished. Each book, each document has been at least scanned by Schabow to be able to catalogue the title, content and the date , to be able to feed the computer’s catalogue that the bishopric has provided. „Indeed I have been given very substantial financial help from Trier and the society “, says Schabow gratefully. Not only the pc-supported archive system was provided by the employees of the diocese, but they also helped in person with some of the small tasks. After the very detailed catalogisation –1325 titles are listed (!) – the bishopric software and the computers of the Trier archive took over the job of sorting the listings in accordance with specific criteria. Almost at the click of a button the entries went from the catalogue to the places they belonged to. In the sub section „certificates“ for example, or in the units“, „Parish and local history“, „Church and chapels“, „Parish house and ancilliary buildings“, „Church fortune administration“ or „Tradition“. In future a single click is enough for Dietrich Schabow to find the documents now in cardboard boxes with the same numbering.  Regarding the ordering of the archive maps and card board boxes and the writing on them Werner Hackenbruch and Rudi Nett of the  „Thursday men“ have helped considerably.

The archive is to be accessible for all persons who can prove having a valid interest.

Of particular interest for the Sayn locals could well be a whole pile of ancestor tables that Father Ibald who studied the documents in the 30s of 20th century and made presents of them at gold weddings and important birthdays. „I have been able to find and alphabetically catalogue more than 100 such family trees that – in some cases - go back as far as three hundred years “,Schabow explains. The archive is also exciting and interesting in many different places. The title „working income from parish clerks“, going back to 1818, by way of example or the „List of absences from school in Sayn for the year 1868“...

Annette Herrmann  (Rhein-Zeitung from 15.09.2005)

Meanwhile the catalogue has been printed with a register and as a word file and has already been used for the  search for information by those from science and for those looking to find out about their ancestry . Appointments can be made by telephone or by E-Mail: Dietrich Schabow 02622/4161 oder Dietrich.Schabow@t-online.de. The catalogue can also be viewed in the archive of the bishopric Trier and in Landeshauptarchiv Koblenz and the branch office in Rommersdorf .

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