Rhode Island, Vital records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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

Contents

Collection Time Period

The records cover the years 1893 to 1898 and 1900 to 1953.

Record Description

The collection consists of the following:

  • Certificates and registers of births (1846-1898, 1901-1903)
  • Marriages (1901-1903)
  • Deaths (1901-1953)

The collection was acquired from the State Archives in Providence.

Record Content

The key genealogical facts found in the birth records may include the following information:

  • Child’s name
  • Child’s gender
  • Birth date
  • Birth place
  • Registration date
  • Race
  • Parents' names
  • Parents' residence
  • Father's occupation
  • Parents' birth places

The key genealogical facts found in the marriage records may include the following information:

  • Full names of bride and groom
  • Marriage date
  • Marriage place
  • Residence of bride and groom
  • Age of bride and groom
  • Groom’s occupation
  • Birth place of bride and groom
  • Parents of bride and groom
  • What number of marriage for bride and groom
  • Officiator

The key genealogical facts found in the death records may include the following information:

Rhode Island, Vital Records DGS 4261697 646.jpg
  • Name of deceased
  • Death date
  • Death place
  • Age in days, months, and years
  • Marital status
  • Cause of death
  • Occupation
  • Birth place
  • Name of parents
  • Social Security number
  • Birth date
  • Military service
  • Surviving spouse
  • Race
  • Education
  • Residence
  • Parents' names
  • Informants' names
  • Informants' residence
  • Place of burial or removal
  • Undertaker’s name and address

How to Use the Record

To begin your search, it will be helpful to know the following:

  • The approximate date the event occurred
  • The place the event occurred
  • The name of the individual or individuals, such as the bride and groom, infant, or deceased

Compare the information in the records to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination.

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 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 birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • The name of the officiator may be a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county.
  • Use a marriage number to identify previous marriages.
  • The name of the undertaker or mortuary could lead you to funeral and cemetery records, which often include the names and residences of other family members.
  • Compile the 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.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have been born, married, or died 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.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

Keep in mind:

  • The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1900.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one marriage record to another record.

If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Search for the marriage record of the marriage partner if known.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

Record History

Records of births, marriages, and deaths have been kept by town clerks since the 1630s. In 1700, the laws concerning vital records registration were made more specific, and the records after that time are more complete.

Why the Record Was Created

These records were created to keep track of the vital events happening in the lives of the citizens and to safeguard their legal interests.

Record Reliability

These records are generally reliable but can vary depending on the knowledge of the informant.

Related Websites

Rhode Island Genealogy and Vital Records 

Related Wiki Articles

Rhode Island Vital Records

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.

Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection

  • “Delaware Marriage Records,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 4 March 2011), entry for William Anderson and Elizabeth Baynard Henry, married 23 November 1913; citing marriage certificate no. 859; FHL microfilm 2,025,063; Delaware Bureau of Archives and Records Management, Dover.
  • “El Salvador Civil Registration,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 21 March 2011), entry for Jose Maria Antonio del Carmen, born 9 April 1880; citing La Libertad, San Juan Opico, Nacimientos 1879-1893, image 50; Ministerio Archivo Civil de la Alcaldia Municipal de San Salvador.

Sources of information for This Collection

"Rhode Island, Vital records, 1893-1898, 1900-1953." FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org). Rhode Island State Archives, Providence, Rhode Island. FHL microfilm, 241 reels. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

The suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections is found in the following article: How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.


 

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  • This page was last modified on 21 August 2014, at 19:27.
  • This page has been accessed 675 times.