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I’m thinking of trying to find relatives in the Czech Republic so I can learn more about my family history. Here in the US, my name is so rare that anyone who shares it is definitely related to me, but I doubt it is that rare over there (but I have no way to czech.)

Is there a way I can check if my surname is common in the Czech Republic?

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  • Rare enough in the US that a cousin looking for the same information 2 years later stumbled over this post at the top of the search results. ;) – Patricia O Mar 29 at 19:49
  • Hi Tricie. Funny seeing you here – Zachary F Mar 29 at 19:52
  • @PatriciaO Welcome to G&FH:SE. This doesn't actually answer the question. You will probably find it helpful to review our Tour and Help Centre. – sempaiscuba Mar 29 at 20:16
  • Hi, @PatriciaO Welcome to G&FH.SE! Once you've answered and asked some questions and gained some reputation points, you'll be able to use our chat room, and leave comments on questions. I'm converting your answer to a comment since it doesn't answer the question (and new arrivals can't comment yet). As already noted, there's information about the site in our help center, via the tour, and in our companion Genealogy & Family History Meta site. – Jan Murphy Mar 29 at 20:21
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I'm Czech so I could help, although you did not mention the name. Anyway, here are some sites I use for this purpose. They allow you to search surnames ("příjmení" in czech), and will show you how common it is, apart from other things. You need to be careful about diacritics though.

  • https://www.prijmeni.cz/ - In the following example you can see there are 1511 occurences of Koláček (833th most common surname, every 6797th person has it). Plus you also see there are similar surnames "Kolaček" and "Kolacek".

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There are others but these should work. Of course over time the layout can change, but I don't think it should be much of a problem using automatic translation.

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  • The name is Fojtasek, however I don’t know what diacriticals it had when my family moved from Moravia about 200 years ago – Zachary F Dec 3 '20 at 2:34
  • Or what their other family in Czechia may be using now – Zachary F Dec 3 '20 at 2:46
  • That is most likely Fojtášek: prijmeni.cz/Fojt%C3%A1%C5%A1ek – Sil Dec 3 '20 at 2:47
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Your best bet is the phone book.

Find online phone directories for Prague (because it's a large city and the books should be easy to find and the city draws people from many places around the country). Of course, if you know the towns your family is from, aim for those books.

Look for city directories (from times before phones existed or were common).
Voting records.
Vital records.
Ancestry, FamilySearch, etc.
Anything else you can find.

Check Google.
And Facebook.

If your family is Jewish, use JewishGen to search for surnames and see where yours turns up (don't worry about variant spelling).

These techniques will also tell you which countries your surname might be found in. For example, it may turn out a large number are in Slovakia, or Austria.

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