Dominican Republic Catholic Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: Dominican Republic, Catholic Church Records, 1590-1955 .
Title in the Language of the Record
República Dominicana. Registros parroquiales de la Iglesia Católica.
This collection includes Catholic church baptism, marriage, and burial records from 1590 to 1955 for parishes throughout the Dominican Republic. For a complete list of all the parishes in contained in this collection, see the Parishes of the Dominican Republic coverage table.
The records are in Spanish, but some may include some Latin words; see the section "For Help Reading these Records" for access to translation helps.
The records in this collection were created in different Catholic Church jurisdictions throughout the Dominican Republic. Authorized priests received an order from the Queen of Spain to record the events of baptism, marriage, and burial of his parish jurisdiction. The records were to be recorded in registers that were kept at the parish level archive, and a copy was sent to the diocesan archive for preservation.
Earlier records were handwritten in narrative style, and later records were handwritten in formatted registers. Depending on the priest, some records have more information than others.
The Catholic Church records of the Dominican Republic are the best reliable source for genealogical research. For research after the civil registration implementation in 1944, it is suggested to research both civil and church records and to compare the information.
|You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Dominican Republic, Catholic Church.|
Baptism records usually contain the following information:
- Date and place of baptism
- Birth date
- Parents’ names
- Grandparents’ names
- Godparents’ names
Marriage records usually contain the following information:
- Date and place of marriage
- Names of bride and groom
- Groom's age, origin, civil status and occupation
- Groom's parents' names
- Bride's age, origin, civil status and residence
- Bride's parents' names
- Witnesses' names
Burial records usually contain the following information:
- Date and place of death (keep in mind that death records for women may be filed under their married name)
- Name of deceased
- Age, civil status, and origin of deceased
- Cause of death
- Parents' names
- Burial place
How to Use the Records
Some record sets have indexes; these indexes were created at the end of the year. Copy errors could have been made in the index, so you want to find the actual record to verify the information is correct. Using the index is a helpful way to find the actual record.
If indexes are available, check these for the name first. Indexes are usually located at the beginning of a group of images, at the end or in individual folders. Find your ancestor’s name and look for the locator information next to the name (such as page, entry, or certificate number). This will help you find the record you are looking for in the collection.
For burial records, the information in records is usually reliable, but depends upon the knowledge of the informant.
Regarding marriage and burial records, name changes, shortened names, or nicknames may have been used by your ancestors, so pay attention to other relationships (parents, spouse, siblings, children, etc.) that can confirm whether you have the right person/record.
Search the Collection
To search by image:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse" on the initial collection page
⇒ Select the "Province"
⇒ Select the "City or Town"
⇒ Select the "Parish"
⇒ Select the "Record Type and Years" which takes you to the images.
Search the collection by image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.
As you are searching it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor's given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence, age, and family relationships. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.
For Help Reading These Records
These records are in Spanish. For help reading the records, see the following wiki articles:
- Spanish Genealogical Word List
- Latin Genealogical Word List
- Reading Spanish handwritten records
- Script tutorial for Spanish
Using the Information
To learn more about using the information in civil records, view this lesson for free: La Investigación Genealógica en República Dominicana - Spanish
- Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
- Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
- Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
- The name of a marriage officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the province. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other provinces.
- Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
- Use the marital status to identify previous marriages, that is, whether a divorce or death dissolved a previous marriage.
- Witnesses often were relatives of the parents.
Tips to Keep in Mind
The birth of a child must be registered within 30 days of the birth. After that, it is considered a late registration and has penalties. Therefore, if parents knew they wouldn't meet the deadline, then to avoid the penalties, many children were not registered.
When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
Continue to search the marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
Continue to search the indexes and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have lived in the same area or a nearby area.
Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
Unable to Find Your Ancestor?
A boundary change could have occurred and the record of you ancestor is now in a neighboring state or region, or your ancestor immigrated to another country. Search the records of nearby areas or immigration/emigration records Dominican Republic, Miscellaneous Records (FamilySearch Historical Records).
Civil records are also a good substitute when baptism, marriage, and burial records can’t be found or are unavailable Dominican Republic Civil Registration (FamilySearch Historical Records).
|FHL Place Dominican Republic items or FHL Keyword Dominican Republic items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog.|
Known Issues with This Collection
For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.
- Current Diocese in the DR
- Archdiocese of Santo Domingo
- Online maps
- Online history
- Online genealogical resources
Related Wiki Articles
Contributions to This Article
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found it. This will help you or others to find the same record again.
Keep track of records where you did not find information about your ancestor so you and others will not waste time looking through these records in the future.
Citations for This Collection
|The citation for an image is available on each image in this collection by clicking Show Citation at the bottom left of the image screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Dominican Republic, Catholic Church.|
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.
- "Dominican Republic, Catholic Church Records, 1590-1955." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Catholic Church Diocesan Archives, Country-wide, Dominican Republic.
- This page was last modified on 9 July 2014, at 14:47.
- This page has been accessed 9,537 times.
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