American Indian Church Records

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A number of denominations in the United States proselyted among the American Indians. Some of the more active groups who sent missionaries among the native population were:

  • Catholic
  • Methodist
  • Moravian
  • Mormon (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
  • Presbyterian
  • American Indian Mission Association (mentioned in a treaty)

The records created varied among the denominations. Some kept records of individuals who were baptized or who joined with that denomination. Some kept only reports of activities among the native tribes or groups. Some have preserved correspondence with their respective oversight boards and/or government offices.

It was not uncommon, when records of Indian individuals were kept, to list those individuals under a "Christian" name, rather than their native name. This makes it more difficult to determine whether or not names in the church records are for the same individual as those in government records.