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  Before statehood in 1812 the Roman Catholic Church was dominant in Louisiana. Few Protestant churches flourished. From 1812 to 1900, the largest religious groups in Louisiana were the Roman Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, and Lutheran churches.[citation needed]


The earliest church records were Roman Catholic marriage records that began in 1720 and baptism records that began in 1729. Most records are kept at the local churches. The Family History Library has a small collection of Louisiana church records, including Roman Catholic and Baptist sources. Also see the 45 volumes of civil and church records from southern and southwestern Louisiana published by Donald J. Hebert (see Louisiana Vital Records).

Guides to help you locate Catholic, Protestant, and Jewish records are:

  • Hebert, Donald J. A Guide to Church Records in Louisiana, 1720-1975. Eunice, Louisiana.: D. J. Hebert, 1975. FHL Collection book 976.3 K23h, fiche 6051420 or 6010583
  • Guide to Vital Statistics Records of Church Archives in Louisiana. New Orleans, Louisiana: Louisiana State Board of Health, 1942. FHL Collection book 976.3 V2w; film 1305374 items 2-3; fiche 6051101

You can also write to the following addresses to learn where their records are located:

Contents

Roman Catholic

Diocese of Alexandria
4400 Coliseum Boulevard
Alexandria, LA 71303
Phone: (318) 445-2401
Fax: (318) 448-6121

The diocese includes the parishes of: Avoyelles, Caldwell, Catahoula, Concordia, Franklin, Grant, LaSalle, Madison, Natchitoches, Rapides, Tensas, Vernon and Winn

Diocese of Baton Rouge Archives
1800 South Acadian Thruway
Baton Rouge, LA 70808
Phone: (504) 387-0561
Fax: (504) 336-8789

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 2028
Baton Rouge, LA 70821-2028

This diocese has collected all parish registers in its area and indexed them. The diocese includes the parishes of: Assumption, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberville, Livingston, Pointe Coupee, St. Helena, St. James, Tangipahoa, West Baton Rouge and West Feliciana

Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux Archives
205 Audubon Avenue
Thibodaux, LA 70301
Phone: (985) 446-2383

The diocese includes the parishes of: Assumption, LaFourche, St. Martin, St. Mary and Terrebonne

Diocese of Lafayette
1408 Carmel Ave.
Lafayette, LA 70501
Phone: (337) 261-5652

The diocese includes the parishes of: Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary and Vermilion

Diocese of Lake Charles Archives
414 Iris Street
Lake Charles, LA 70601
Phone: (337) 439-7400

The diocese includes the parishes of: Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron and Jefferson Davis


Archdiocese of New Orleans Archives
7887 Walmsley Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70125-3496
Phone: (504) 861-9521
Fax: (504) 866-2906

The Archdiocese includes the parishes of: Orleans, Jefferson, St. Bernard, St. Charles, St. John the Baptist, St. Tammany, Plaquemines and Washington

Archives of the Diocese of Shreveport
3500 Fairfield Avenue
Shreveport, LA 71104
Phone: (318) 868-4441

The diocese includes the parishes of: Bienville, Bossier, Caddo, Claiborne, DeSoto, East Carroll, Jackson, Morehouse, Ouachita, Red River, Richland, Sabine, Union, Webster and West Carroll

The Drouin Collection

Early U.S. French Catholic Church Records, 1695-1954 ($) (Ancestry). This database only contains the French Catholic parish records from the United States in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, and Pennsylvania. It is the U.S. part of the U.S. and French-Canadian Drouin Collection. For more details see "The Drouin Collection: Six Databases"

The types of records include baptisms, marriages, and burials as well as confirmations, dispensations, censuses, statements of readmission to the church, and so on. They are written mainly in French, as well as English, Latin, and Italian.

Baptist

Historical Commission
Southern Baptist Convention
901 Commerce Street
Nashville, TN 37203-3630
Phone: (615) 244-0344
Fax: (615) 782-4821

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons)

Early church records, for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for Louisiana Wards and Branches can be found on film and are located at the LDS Family History Library in Salt Lake City. The film numbers, for each ward, can be locate through the Family History Library Catalog . Or by refering to Jaussi, Laureen R., and Gloria D. Chaston. Register of Genealogical Society Call Numbers. 2 vols. Provo, Utah: Genealogy Tree, 1982. (FHL book 979.2258 A3j; fiche 6031507). These volumes contain the film numbers for many (but not all) membership and temple record films.

Methodist

Centenary College of Louisiana
Magale Library, Cline Room
Shreveport, LA 71134-1188
Phone: (318) 869-5170
Fax: (318) 869-5004

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 41188
Shreveport, LA 71134-1188

Lutheran

University of New Orleans
Earl K. Long Library—Archives and Manuscripts Division
Lake Front
New Orleans, LA 70148
Phone: (504) 286-6556
Fax: (504) 286-7277


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