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Getting started with Jalisco research
Welcome to the Jalisco page! FamilySearch Wiki is a community website dedicated to helping people throughout the world learn how to find their ancestors. Through the Jalisco page you can learn how to find, use, and analyze Jalisco records of genealogical value. The content is variously targeted to beginners, intermediate, and expert researchers. Please visit the help page to learn more about using the site. The Jalisco Page is a work in progress, your contributions and feedback are essential!
State-level jurisdictions in Jalisco (as in all Mexican states) have varied over time.
During the colonial period, Jalico was part of the Intendancy of Nueva Galicia, which was part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Guadalajara, which is the modern capital of Jalisco, was the capital of Nueva Galicia and hosted an "Audiencia" or royal court which administered most of northern Mexico and much of the present day Southwestern United States.
Since genealogical records during the colonial period and early post-independence period were maintained by the Catholic Church, ecclesiastical jurisdictions are very important. Guadalajara has served as the seat for a diocese and in more recent times an archdiocese. The territory of the archdiocese has shrunk with time as new dioceses were carved out. Currently it covers most of central Jalisco, with seperate dioceses existing for the Altos region and with the extreme north of the state belonging to the diocese of Zacatecas.
Within the diocese, there are various parishes, which have been split up over time into smaller and smaller parishes, thus going back in time, it is often necessary to investigate the parish to which a village or town belonged before it had its own parish.
On the civil side, the state was divided into various cantons at the time of independence, which were later split into municipalities. Civil records are kept at the municipal level.
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