Maine Church Records
Church baptism, marriage, and burial records are a major source of information about people from Maine.
Before 1829, a few churches kept birth and death records, but most kept marriage records. For this time period there are almost no Methodist records and few Episcopal records. You may find some records by writing to the church in a town. Records for the Congregational Church and Society of Friends (Quakers) are in the Maine Historical Society.
Before 1900 the largest religious groups in Maine were the Congregational, Baptist, Roman Catholic, and Methodist Episcopal churches. The Family History Library has some published and microfilmed church records for these groups.
A helpful list of churches existing in 1940 is:
Historical Records Survey (Maine). Directory of Churches and Religious Organizations in Maine. Portland: Maine Historical Records Survey Project, 1940. (FHL book 974.1 K24h; film 1035515 item 13.) These records show locations of over 1,700 churches and religious organizations in Maine and give a brief history of the beginning of the various religions in Maine.
Many denominations have collected their records into central repositories. Many records of the Congregational and Society of Friends churches are at the Maine Historical Society. The following archives also have important collections of Maine church records:
American Baptist Samuel Colgate Historical Society
1106 South Goodman Street
Rochester, NY 14602
Drouin Collection 1621-1967 of French Canadian records indexed at Ancestry.com. This collection has over 15 million entries for French Canadian genealogical and vital records. Be sure to search for spelling variations of the ancestor's name. This index includes Quebec notarial, vital, and church records, Acadian Catholic records, Ontario French Catholic records, early French Catholic records in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, and Wisconsin.
The Archives of the Diocese of Portland
P.O. Box 11559
510 Ocean Avenue
Portland, ME 04104-7559
The Congregational Library
14 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02108
Archives of the Diocesan House
143 State Street
Portland, ME 04101
Boston University School of Theology Library
745 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215