The Burval Name and Family Lines

The Burval surname is very rare, unique and of distinct Bohemian Czech origin. The Burval surname first appears in early 1600 Czech Land books of the Town of Polička in the Czech Rebublic. The earliest record of this family was found in the 1575 land book of the Bohemian Town of Polička. These records show Václav (Wenceslaus) to own the land rights to a small farm in the village of Trhonice. Václav did not have a surname as surnames' did not come into use until about 1620. Václav's son, Vitek, (who we call Vitek Vašků (Wencel son of Václav)) inherited the rights to the farm in 1575. These same land records show Vitek died in 1593, leaving son Jan (Jan Vítků (John son of Vitek)) heir to the farm. In 1594 Jan married Markéta Gzmplová of the nearby village of Sedliště. Later land records show Ondřej Buřvala, Řehoř Buřvala and Valentin Buřvala, as sons of Jan Buřvala of Trhonice entering into marriage contracts in 1627, 1634 and 1641 respectively. This Jan Buřvala of Trhonice is clearly the same person as Jan (Jan Vítků (John son of Vitek)) of Trhonice and thus the first to use the Buřval surname.

The Burval name is consistently found in 1600 to 1800 Czech Church records spelled as Buřvala (masculine form) or Buřvalová (feminine form). Beginning in the early 1800's through today the name is found as Buřval or Buřvalová. With few exceptions the spelling was found to be very consistent, which is remarkable for records spanning several hundred years. This consistency in spelling and rarity of the name provides considerable assurances that when that name is found in a record the person found is a member of this family. The name is spelled with a hacek accent mark over the r in the Czech Republic and in the United States the hacek mark is not used. We estimate that in the Czech Republic there are less than 300 living people with the Buřval surname and in the United States there are less than 30 living persons with that surname.

The Burval name thus originated in the village of Thronice about 1620. At that time and until 1964, Trhonice was a tradional Bohemia town geographically located on the Bohemia side of the Moravian/Bohemian border and under the administration of authorities in Polička. In 1964 the Village of Thronice became part of the traditonal Moravian Town of Jimramov. The traditional Svraka River boundary between Moravia and Bohemia was moved a few kilometers east so that Trhonice (and the Village of Sedlište) became part of and under the administration of the Town of Jimramov.

Our work to date identified two Burval family lines. One we call the Burval Family of Trhonice and the second the Burval Family of Janovice. The Burval Family of Trhonice all appear to descend from one person, Václav (c1525-1575) of Trhonice. The Burval Family of Janovice do not appear in records until the 1690's in the area of Janovice, Chrudim District, which is about 30 miles northwest of Thronice. The oldest Burval's we have documented from Janovice is Jan Buřval (c1673- ) listed as from Zdechovice, which today is the local name of the larger area surrounding the small village of Kostelec u Heřmanova Městce which includes the village of Janovice. By 1729, members of this family were listed in the church records as being from the village of Janovice. Actually recent work suggests that the Buřval Family of Janovice is directly related to the Buřval Family of Trhonice. However, until we can better determine that connection we present them as two separate families in the genealogies below.

The two family lines are:  (Click on the family line to go to that family's introduction page)