The EWZ files were created between 1939 and 1945 by the Einwandererzentralstelle (Immigration Center) of the German government. They contain information on approximately 2.9 million ethnic Germans who were processed by the center for immigration and naturalization during the war. These files presumably include data on all of the Mennonites who made their way to Germany in the Fall of 1943, as well as information on their immediate ancestors. While some of the information was collected in Russia, the bulk of it was obtained in German occupied territories after 1943. The index below, containing just under 8,800 entries (a number of individuals are listed more than once), represents only a small portion of those Mennonites who appear in the EWZ files.
These files, representing a small portion of a much larger collection of files from the German Ministry of the Interior, were captured by the U.S. Army near the close of World War II. This collection of files was of extreme importance because it contained the files of the German S.S. The Berlin Document Center was established to process these documents. Later they were all microfilmed by the United States government before being returned to Germany. The U.S. microfilms are housed at the National Archives II complex at College Park, Maryland. More information on the EWZ files is available in an article by Tim Janzen published in the Mennonite Historian and the German Genealogy page.
This index was extracted from a number of Einwandererzentralstelle (EWZ) index files compiled by Elli Wise and other volunteers. Most of these files are currently available on the Odessa website. The Mennonite extraction index was compiled by first identifying common names belonging to Mennonites who lived in Russian and Ukraine. The index was then expanded to include everyone listed in the applications for these people, including non-Mennonite parents of a spouse. It is probable that some Mennonites have been missed from the list, or that some families have been included that had no relationship with a Mennonite or with the Mennonite Church.
One should first search for individuals in the alphabetical listings. Once an individual has been identified, a search in the individual EWZ index extract files will locate the individual within their family grouping.
Note: Those file without active links will be added shortly.
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