Stabile cadastre

The constantly growing financial requirements of the Hapsburg state administration, coupled with high military costs during the Napoleonic Wars, brought about the need for increased tax revenue at the beginning of the 19th century. A new land register was created to more equitably distribute the tax burden. A patent from Emperor Franz I, dated 23 December 1817, defined the requirements for the so-called Stabile cadastre (in Austria also known as Franziszeischer Kataster). All fields were to be newly surveyed, described, and categorized according to the quality of the soil. Cadastral maps were drawn up for each village at a standard scale of 1:2880 so that one Viennese inch on the map represented 40 Viennese fathoms on the ground (1 square inch equaled 1 Lower Austrian Jitro [i.e. 1 600 square fathoms]). Larger-scale maps were completed for town centers. The surveying was conducted by groups consisting of both military and civil surveyors.

The new cadastre was to be a complete and permanent list of all taxable real estate. Demarcated fields were called plots and given plot numbers. From the preliminary original map, a copy, called an Indication Sketch, was made. The Indication Sketch was a portable, colored map that was used to record changes as they occurred. The map showed the names of land owners, house numbers, types of agricultural products, and each field's quality. Objects were differentiated by color – fields in ochre, gardens in dark green, water in blue, wooden buildings in yellow, brick buildings in red, etc. In addition to the numbers allotment, the plot protocol – register of all fields, buildings, and their owners – was made out. According to the plot protocol other written parts were created, especially main book of possessions (Bezitzstands-Hauptbuch), which later replaced the  land property books.

In addition to the Indication Sketches, the original maps, known as the Imperial imprints (Císařské otisky), were also preserved. They reflect the status at the time when the mapping was done. It is important to know that these maps don't record house numbers, but only plot numbers, marked in black.   

The initial phase of mapping in Bohemia commenced in 1826 and continued till 1830. A second phase was completed between 1837 and 1843. In Moravia & Silesia,  the first phase was done between  1826 and 1830; a second phase began in 1833 and finished in 1836. In 1869, a revision (Reambulaton) was ordered; the maps and written papers were to be updated with all changes since the original survey.

Map Legend of the Indication Sketch:

Plot numbers of fields are marked in red. Owners and their house numbers are marked in black.

plot numbers

In case of buildings it is vice versa:

House House2

Sample from the Indication Sketch

On the left, we see house #36 (red number), standing on building plot #27 (black number). We're able to discern that garden plot #23 (red number) belongs to the house #36 (black number).


Sample from the Imperial imprint

The same building, but without the house number. We only see the building plot #27 (black number) and the field plot #23 (red number), but, from this map, it's not obvious to which house the garden belongs.

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 Maps of Stabile cadastre  (National archive in Prague, German language)

Indication sketches of the Stabile Cadastre.

 Written parts of Stabile cadastre  (National archive in Prague, German language)

List of field plots (Grundparzellen Protocoll) sorted by numbers as recorded in the map with information about the house number, owner, owner's status, residence, culture type, and area. 

English translation of this record

List of builings (Bauparzellen Protocoll) sorted by numbers as recorded in the map with information about the owner, owner's residence, house number, type, and area.

English translation of this record

Alphabetical index (Alphabetisches Verzeichnis) of owners and sumarization of all buildings and fields in his or her possession.

English translation of this record

WHY were they created?  To determine property taxes
WHEN were they collected?   1826-1869
WHO collected the records? Cartographic committees consisting of military and civil surveyors
WHAT information can be found? Map and exact description of buildings and fields held by ancestors
In which ARCHIVES are they held? National archive for Bohemia, MZA Brno for Moravia
In which archive FILES can they be found?  Stabile cadastre
LANGUAGE of records Czech, German
What must be KNOWN before getting started? Name of the town, district, region
Czech expression

Stabilní katastr


Indikační skica (includes house numbers in red)

Císařský otisk (shows only plot numbers)

Collections of records sorted on the territorial basis 

Southern Moravia - D9 INDICATOR SKETCHES - Moravian Land Archive in Brno

Collection of records from the whole country in one place

HISTORICAL MAPS - Central archive of the Land-survey and Land register

In this application both Indication Sketches (Indikační skica) and Imperial imprints (Císařský otisk) are available. It is important to note that only the Indication Sketches (Indikační skica) include house numbers, which are marked in red. You can find here also military and another historical maps.