United States, Index to Passenger Arrivals, Atlantic and Gulf Ports (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: United States, Index to Passenger Arrivals, Atlantic and Gulf Ports, 1820-1874 .
This is a card index to passengers arriving at 70 ports along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts for the years 1820 to 1874. New York City is excluded from this index.
States covered by this collection include:
- District of Columbia
- North Carolina
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- New York
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
Ship captains kept lists of passengers to manage their finances and prevent stowaways. Later, immigration laws increased the need for passenger lists, which grew in detail. Eventually the Federal Government began to store immigrant documentation. These lists were first created to keep track of a captain's shipment and paying passengers. Later, they became a means to document immigration to the United States. Although generally reliable, passenger lists were handwritten, causing possible spelling errors.
For a list of records by surnames currently published in this collection, select the Browse.
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.
- "United States, Index to Passenger Arrivals, Atlantic and Gulf Ports, 1820-1874." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing NARA microfilm publication M334. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.
Key genealogical facts found in most immigration passenger lists include:
- Passenger's name
- Accompanied by
- Names of children, if any
- Age in years and months
- Marital status
- Country of origin
- Name of ship
- Port of embarkation
- Port of destination
- Date of departure
- Date of arrival
How to Use the Record
To begin your search it is helpful to know
- The immigrant's name
- Identifying information such as arrival date or age
Search the Collection
To search the collection by name fill in your ancestor’s name in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about those in the list to what you already know about your own ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person.
If you did not find the person you were looking for, you may need to search the collection image by image.
⇒Select the "Browse" link in the initial search page
⇒Select the "Surname Range" which takes you to the images
Look at the images one by one. Again you will need to compare the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine which one is your ancestor.
Be aware that with either search you may need to compare the information about more than one person 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.
- 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.
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.
Unable to Find Your Ancestor?
- Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
- Look for an index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
- Search the indexes and records of other ports such as New York or Boston.
- Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals with the same family number.
Known Issues with This Collection
Related Wiki Articles
- US Immigration Passenger Arrival Records
- Connecticut Emigration and Immigration
- Rhode Island Emigration and Immigration
- Virginia Emigration and Immigration
- Delaware Emigration and Immigration
- Louisiana Emigration and Immigration
- Maine Emmigration and Immigration
- Florida Emigraton and Immigration
- Alabama Emigration and immigration
- Mississippi Emigration and Immigration
Contributions to This Article
Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
United States, Index to Passenger Arrivals, Atlantic and Gulf Ports, 1820-1874" images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 30 September 2011). Jane Ewing June 27, 1953; citing Passenger Lists, Ev-Fam, image 1814; Federal Archives and Records Center, Washington, D.C., United States.