Lutheran Almanacs on recently updated their “U.S., Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Church Records, 1781-1969.” As usual, the best discoveries are made by browsing instead of actually querying the search box.

One of the items in this database are Lutheran almanacs dating as early as 1844. These items are unindexed and have to be searched manually. There’s a wealth of information in these references, including items about pastors, church publications, colleges, brief (and infrequent) obituaries, and more. A quick review located an 1886 reference for William Ehmen, pastor in Gothenburg, Dawson County, Nebraska, who baptized my great-grandmother and was also her father’s first cousin.

Synodical affiliations of the pastors are included in the preface to the directory and users are advised to include that information in any images they save from the database. 

The items are not (as of this writing) indexed, but they are organized generally by year and fairly easy to follow. It’s necessary to browse the collection. The almanacs are generally classified in the “Congregational Records” collection with the “Church State” set to “General Synod” as shown in the illustration.


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