Ohio Episcopal Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)
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|Record Type||Church Records|
What is in the Collection?
Entries are recorded in register books in columns or in paragraphs without columns. Church records in the United States can be found in the churches, church archives, or university archives. They normally records christenings, confirmations, marriages, and deaths.
An infant’s christening usually took place within a few days or few weeks of the birth, depending on the religion. Some churches, such as the Baptists, baptized only adults not infants. Members of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints blessed their infants when they were a few weeks or a few months old.
Many religions tested the church knowledge of those that had been baptized as infants and then confirmed them a member of that religion. Frequently, a person’s age at confirmation was between 14 and 20.
To know who were members, Churches were required to record the date a person was baptized into the Christian religion. Many churches also recorded the date of birth along with the date of baptism. Church were also required to record the burial and marriage dates of the members of the local congregation. Only some churches performed confirmations and were required to record the names of those that were confirmed members of the church.
Church records are considered a primary source. They are usually reliable because they are kept by the minister, or a clerk appointed by the minister, who usually recorded an event at or very near the time it occurred.
What Can These Records Tell Me?
Genealogical information in church birth and christening records is:
- Birth and christening dates and places
- Names of parents and children, witnesses and godparents
Genealogical information in church confirmation records:
- Names of parents and children
- Birth and christening dates and places
- Ages of children confirmed
Genealogical information in church death and burial records is:
- Names of persons, their parents, spouses and children
- Birth, death and burial dates and places
- Ages of persons
- Places of residence
Genealogical information in church marriage records:
- Names of husbands and wives, parents and witnesses
- Birth, marriage and divorce dates and places
- Ages of husbands and wives
- Places of residence
How Do I Search the Collection?
Use christening and birth records of christenings (baptisms) to identify a person’s birth date and place. They are an excellent substitute for civil birth information.
Use church records of confirmations to identify a person’s birth date and place or his or her age. If only the age is given, use it to calculate the person’s birth date.
Use church records of deaths or burials to identify a person’s birth date and place. Use age at death or burial to calculate a person’s birth date. They are an excellent substitute for civil death information.
Use church records of marriages to identify a couple, the marriage date and place, and to begin compiling a family group. They are an excellent substitute for civil marriage information.
What Do I Do Next?
Indexes and transcriptions may not include all the data found in the original records. Look at the actual image of the record, if you can, to verify the information and to find additional information.
I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?
- Copy the citation below, in case you need to find this record again later.
- Use the age or estimated birth date to find other church and vital records such as birth, baptism, marriage, and death records. (Make sure that if it’s a marriage article, you take the word marriage out, if it’s a birth article, take the word birth out, etc.)
- Use the information found in the record to find land, probate and immigration records.
- Use the information found in the record to find additional family members in censuses. Witnesses were usually family members.
- Repeat this process with additional family members found, to find more generations of the family.
- Church Records were kept years before counties began keeping records. They are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.
I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?
- If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname. This list can help you find possible relatives.
- If you cannot locate your ancestor in the locality in which you believe they lived, then try searching records of a nearby town or county.
- Try different spellings of your ancestor’s name.
- Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
- Check the info box above for additional FamilySearch websites and related websites that may assist you in finding similar records.
Citing this Collection
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. 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. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.
- "Ohio Episcopal Church Records." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Episcopal Churches, Ohio.
Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):
How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
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