Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Record Description

These collections include the following:

  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882 (NARA M425)
  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945 (NARA T840)

The passenger lists are digital copies of the original records. The earliest records are handwritten pages. Later records are usually handwritten on pre-printed pages. The records are arranged by the date of entry into port.

A Soundex Index is available for the years 1883 to 1945.

The soundex index is a phonetic index that groups together names that sound alike but are spelled differently, for example, Stewart and Stuart. The index cards are filed according to the soundex number associated with each family name and then by given names. For more information on soundex indexes and help with coding names and using the index, see the wiki article: Soundex

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.
You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.

Record Content

Lists for the years 1798 to 1882 generally include the following information:

  • Name of immigrant/passenger
  • Place of birth
  • Age and gender
  • Occupation
  • Name of country to which passenger belongs
  • Port of departure
  • Date of arrival
  • Name of ship

Lists and soundex index cards for the years 1882 to 1948 generally include the following information:

  • Name
  • Birth place
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Occupation
  • Nationality
  • Last permanent residence
  • Destination
  • Name and address of relative or friend
  • Port and date of entry
  • Name of ship

The index cards also list the volume, page, and line number in the passenger lists.

How to Use the Record

To begin your search it is helpful to know

  • The full name of your ancestor
  • The approximate date of immigration

If you do not know this information, check the census records after 1900.

Search the Collection

To search by index:
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

If you did not find the person you were looking for, you may need to search the collection image by image. To browse by image:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒Select the "NARA Roll Number and Description" category 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.

For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:

Use passenger lists to learn an immigrant’s place of origin; confirm their date of arrival; determine their foreign and “Americanized” names; and find records in his or her country of origin such as emigrations, port records, or ship’s manifests

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.
  • If your ancestor had a common name, be sure to look at all the entries for a name before you decide which is correct.
  • Continue to search the passenger lists to identify siblings, parents, and other relatives in the same or other generations who may have immigrated at the same time.
  • If your ancestor has an uncommon surname, you may want to obtain the passenger list of every person who shares your ancestor’s surname if they lived in the same county or nearby. You may not know how or if they are related, but the information could lead you to more information about your own ancestors.
  • When you select an image to view, sometimes the manifest includes more than one page, and when you use the "click to enlarge manifest" link, the image that appears is not always the first page of the record. You may need to click on the "previous" or "next" links to view the remaining pages of the full manifest.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Check for variant spellings. Realize that the indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings and misinterpretations.
  • Try a different index if there is one for the years needed. You may also need to search the passenger lists year by year.
  • Search the indexes of other port cities.

General Information About These Records

Passenger arrival lists known as customs manifests date back to 1820. Congressional action in 1891 resulted in federal immigration officials recording the immigrants’ arrival. Arrival lists was used by legal authorities to gather personal information about immigrants prior to the person being allowed to live in the United States.

The information was supplied by the immigrant or a traveling companion (usually a family member). Incorrect information was occasionally given, or mistakes may have been made when the clerk guessed at the spelling of foreign names.

Other Searches

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Don't overlook FHL Place United States, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia items or FHL Keyword Pennsylvania, Philadelphia items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see Pennsylvania Archives and Libraries.

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

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 support@familysearch.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.

Related Websites

Passenger Ship Records of Pennsylvania

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citations for This Collection

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.

Collection citation for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882." Index and Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing NARA microfilm publication M425. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.

Record citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.

Image citation:

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 Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.

Collection citation for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945." Index and Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing NARA microfilm publication T840. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.

Record citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.

Image citation:

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 Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 29 August 2014, at 15:48.
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