Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882  and Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.
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CID1921481
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, United States
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Seal of the National Archives
Record Description
Record Type Passenger Lists
Record Group RG 85: Records of the Immigration Naturalization Service
Collection years 1800-1945
Microfilm Publication M425. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Philadelphia,1800-1882. 108 rolls.
  T840. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Philadelphia,1883-1945. 181 rolls.
National Archives Identifier 4492386 414
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
National Archives and Records Administration


What is in the Collection?

These collections include the following:

  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882 (NARA M425)
  • Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945 (NARA T840)

The passenger lists are digital copies of the original records. The earliest records are handwritten pages. Later records are usually handwritten on pre-printed pages. The records are arranged by the date of entry into port. Passenger arrivals records do not exist from July 1, 1948 to November 30, 1954. Passenger arrival lists known as customs manifests date back to 1820. Congressional action in 1891 resulted in federal immigration officials recording the immigrants’ arrival. Arrival lists was used by legal authorities to gather personal information about immigrants prior to the person being allowed to live in the United States. The information was supplied by the immigrant or a traveling companion (usually a family member). Incorrect information was occasionally given, or mistakes may have been made when the clerk guessed at the spelling of foreign names.

A Soundex Index is available for the years 1883 to 1945.

The soundex index is a phonetic index that groups together names that sound alike but are spelled differently, for example, Stewart and Stuart. The index cards are filed according to the soundex number associated with each family name and then by given names. For more information on soundex indexes and help with coding names and using the index, see the wiki article: Soundex

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.
OR
You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.

What Can these Records Tell Me?

Lists for the years 1798 to 1882 generally include:

  • Name of immigrant/passenger
  • Place of birth
  • Age and gender
  • Occupation
  • Name of country to which passenger belongs
  • Port of departure
  • Date of arrival
  • Name of ship

Lists and soundex index cards for the years 1882 to 1948 generally include:

  • Name
  • Birth place
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Occupation
  • Nationality
  • Last permanent residence
  • Destination
  • Name and address of relative or friend
  • Port and date of entry
  • Name of ship

The index cards also list the volume, page, and line number in the passenger lists.


Collection Content

Sample Images


How Do I Search the Collection?

You can search the index or view the images or both. To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • The name of your ancestor
  • At least one other piece of information

Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.

  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page.

  1. Select NARA Roll Number and Description

Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.

  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page.

  1. Select NARA Roll Number and Description

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images.


For more tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

Whenever possible, view the original records to verify the information and to find additional information that might not be reported. These pieces of information can lead you to additional records and family members.


I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the information to find other records such as emigrations, port records, ship’s manifests, birth, christening, census, and land records.
  • Learn foreign and “Americanized” names
  • Use the information to find additional family members.
  • Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

I Can’t Find Who I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • Try viewing the original record to see if there were errors in the transcription of the name, age, residence, etc. Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you identify possible relations that can be verified by records.
  • If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby locality in an area search.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name while searching the index or browsing through images.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Search the indexes and records of Pennsylvania, United States Genealogy.
  • Search in the Pennsylvania Archives and Libraries.
  • Search in the FamilySearch Library Catalog

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.


Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.  

Collection citation for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882." Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing NARA microfilm publication M425. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.


Record citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.

Image citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1800-1882.

Collection citation for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945:

"Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945." Index and Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing NARA microfilm publication T840. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.


Record citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.

Image citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Passenger Lists, 1883-1945.


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