Newfoundland 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: Newfoundland Church Records, 1793-1945 .
This collection covers the years 1793-1945.
This collection contains baptisms, marriages and deaths from some Catholic and Church of England in Canada parishes. The dates may vary for each parish.
The Roman Catholic Church in Newfoundland was not instituted by church law until May 1784. It was at this time that the church in Newfoundland began to establish parishes that maintained baptismal and marriage registers. The oldest records were maintained at the Basilica Parish, St. John's and all records for the church were recorded there.
Gradually, new parishes were opened in other areas of the province. In each new parish, baptismal and marriage records were maintained.
For a list of records by localities, document type and dates currently published in this collection, select the Browse link from the collection landing page.
Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Record collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.
- "Newfoundland Church Records, 1793-1945." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013.
Baptismal records usually contain the following information:
- Name of child
- Names of parents
- Date of birth
- Place of birth
- Date of baptism
- Place where baptized
Marriage records usually contain the following information:
- Date of marriage.
- Names of the bride and groom.
- Notes if the bride or groom were single or widowed.
- Names of witnesses.
- The bride’s and groom’s ages, residences, occupations, names of parents, and birthplaces.
- Names of previous marriage partners.
- A note whether a parent or other party gave permission for the marriage.
Death records usually contain the following information:
- Name of the deceased.
- Date and place of death and burial.
- (Often) the age, place of residence, and cause of death.
- Names of survivors.
- (Occasionally) date and place of birth of deceased.
How to Use the Record
Searching the birth records:
To begin your search in the baptism records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:
- Name of parents
- Approximate year and place of birth
Searching the marriage records:
To begin your search in the marriage records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:
- Name of bride or groom
- Approximate year and place of marriage
Searching the death records:
To begin your search in the death records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:
- Name of deceased
- Approximate year and place of death
Search the Collection
To search the collection image by image select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page:
⇒ Select the appropriate "City/Town"
⇒ Select the appropriate "Name of Denomination/Parish"
⇒ Select the appropriate "Record Type and Year Range" which takes you to the images
Look at the images one by one 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. Keep in mind:
- There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
- You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
- Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life.
Using the Information
When you have found the record of your ancestor, the following will be helpful aids in your research:
- Use the age found in the marriage and death records to calculate the approximate year of birth.
- Search the names of parents found in the marriage document for a marriage date.
Tips to Keep in Mind
Small villages which did not have their own church were designated as belonging to a particular parish. Over time, some villages, chapelries or "missions" may have belonged to several parishes as boundaries changed.
The records were kept at the local parish of the church. A parish is a local congregation that may include many villages. Your ancestor may have lived in a village and belonged to a parish in a nearby larger town.
Identifying Denominations of Your Ancestor
To identify the religion your ancestor was part of, the following hints will help you in the aid of finding your ancestor:
- Some communities only had one church, so most residents would have attended that church.
- Sometimes an ancestor preferred to attend a church close to his or her home and was not so concerned about what denomination he or she attended.
- Sometimes an ancestor was strict about which denomination he belonged to and may have traveled some distance to attend his church. Check where persons of that denomination met.
To see more hints & tips about finding the denomination of your ancestor, go to the section How can I determine the denomination of my ancestor? in the Canada Church Records article
General Information About These Records
Church records are great sources for accurate names, dates, and places of births, marriages and deaths. Many people who lived in Canada were recorded in church records. The church records are vital records made by church officials. They are often called parish registers or church books. Roman Catholic Church records are sometimes called sacramental records.
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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 the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. 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.
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.
Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
|This citation example isn't from this collection. You can help by replacing this example with a citation for a record found in this collection.|
“Argentina, Buenos Aires, Catholic Church Records, 1635-1981,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 28 February, 2012), La Plata > San Ponciano > Matrimonios 1884-1886 > image 71 of 389, Artemio Avendano and Clemtina Peralta, 1884; citing Parroquia de San Ponciano en la Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Matrimonios. Various dioceses throughout Buenos Aires.
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