I mainly agree with John Hostage--it's debatable, and there should be some guidance. Just to make the counter argument:

Use of a controlled form of name for a birthplace indicates an intention to provide uniform access. Birthplace is not a subject heading, but practice now is to regard many attributes as access points with vocabularies that support uniform retrieval. If the birthplace is simply an attribute derived from sources, one could (and one can) record any found form with the appropriate field/subfield designation. But if the intent is to support uniform retrieval, using a single heading for a city where persons were born does that better.  The instruction about not using Danzig (Germany) for subject headings is implicitly about using Danzig (Germany) only for name entries. The birthplace attribute is not a name entry, either. Hence the need for guidance.

Given that in this case the city not only changed its name but its nationality, another option would be:

370 $a Gdansk (Poland) $2 naf
370 $a Germany $2 naf


On Tue, Oct 28, 2014 at 7:10 PM, Adam L. Schiff <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Use the authority record for the place as appropriate for the date of his birth.  These are attributes, not subjects.


Adam L. Schiff
Principal Cataloger
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA 98195-2900
(206) 543-8409
(206) 685-8782 fax
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On Tue, 28 Oct 2014, Bushman, Barbara (NIH/NLM) [E] wrote:

Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2014 18:15:14 +0000
From: "Bushman, Barbara (NIH/NLM) [E]" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To: Program for Cooperative Cataloging <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Use of terms in 370 which have  SUBJECT USAGE: This heading is not
    valid for use as a subject. Works about this place are entered under ...

We are upgrading the record for Rose, Gerhard, ‡d 1896-1992 (LCCN no2002101636) to RDA.  We want to include a 370 for his place of birth which was Danzig (Germany).  The record for Danzig (Germany) has a 667 which states SUBJECT USAGE: This heading is not valid for use as a subject. Works about this place are entered under Gdańsk (Poland).  What do we use in the 370, Danzig (Germany) or Gdansk (Poland)?  Is place of birth treated like a subject?



Barbara Bushman
Assistant Head
Cataloging and Metadata Management Section
National Library of Medicine
8600 Rockville Pike
Building 38, Room 1N13
Bethesda, MD 20894
301-402-1211 (fax)
[log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]gov>

Stephen Hearn, Metadata Strategist
Data Management & Access, University Libraries
University of Minnesota
160 Wilson Library
309 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
Ph: 612-625-2328
Fx: 612-625-3428
ORCID:  0000-0002-3590-1242