Rosshaupt in black and white


Where was the Egerland?

The Egerland, before 1945-6, was in Western Bohemia, a part of the Sudetenland. Much of it had been settled by Germans. The Regierungsbezirk Eger or Government district of Eger was 7,466 square kilomenters and had a population of 803,300 inhabitants by 1939. The people who settled there were from the region of Upper Franconia and the Upper Palatinate. It was a landscape favored by nature. There were rich agricultural lands, health resorts like Karlsbad, Marienbad, Franzensbad, and St. Joachimsthal that brought many cure-seeking visitors to the district. Silver and radium were found around St. Joachimsthal and Kaulin. Precious clays surrounded Kalrsbad and Wildstein, and brown coal was located near Falkenau. The district was heavily wooded, with industries that took advantage of these rich forest resources.

Source: Bartl, Ernst, "Egerland, einst und jetzt," 1959


Why the Egerland is Important to Me

Rozvadov/Rosshaupt in southwestern Egerland

A month ago, I discovered a book at the secondhand bookstore at the Milwaukee County Airport. It was in three languages, German, English, and French. The author was Ernst Bartl and it was called "Egerland, einst und jetzt," or Egerland Once and Now."

Two weeks before, I had verified the home villages of my Gosz ancestors - tiny places that I could not locate on any map I owned. I did know that these villages were located at the far western edge of Bohemia. As I scanned through a book about an unfamiliar place, I found a detailed map of the Egerland, with the villages I had been seeking. Serendipity in action. For the first time that day I was glad that my sister's flight was two hours late, and that I was so bored I was looking at every German book in the bookstore!

While my plan to write a novel of my Rhineland ancestors is still my primary goal, I also want to continue learning about the homelands of my Bavarian and Bohemian forebears. I want to learn all I can about the Egerland, its history and everyday life. And, as I read this useful book that was lucky enough to find, I am taking notes, right here on this blog. I'll be able to find them when I'm ready to use them in fleshing out my Gosz family history. This book will lead to other information.

Why not share all that with anyone else who is interested? No reason I can think of.