Rhode Island Marriages (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Rhode Island Marriages, 1724-1916 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Rhode Island, United States
Rhode Island flag.png
Flag of Rhode Island
US Locator Rhode Island.png
Location of Rhode Island
Record Description
Record Type Marriage Index
Collection years 1724-1916
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City


What is in the Collection?

This collection is an electronic index of marriages for the years 1724 to 1916 taken from the following sources:

  • Indexed church records
  • Civil registrations
  • The Internet indexing project sponsored by the LDS Church

Church records and civil registration were official sources and are some of the most reliable sources of family history information.

This index is not complete for any particular place, region or time period. This collection may include information previously published in the International Genealogical Index or Vital Records Index collections.

Collection Content

Coverage Map

To see a coverage map of FamilySearch's holdings of Rhode Island marriages, click here.

Coverage Table

The Coverage Table shows the places and time periods of the original records in this collection. The table indicates how many records the collection has from each place. Most of the records in the collection are from the time periods listed in the table; however, the collection may have a few records from before or after the time period.

Locality Births and Christenings, 1878-1914 Marriages, 1724-1916 Deaths and Burials, 1802-1950
Bristol 36,370 9,113 15,005
Kent 55,522 17,931 37,573
Newport 67,068 21,955 46,329
Providence 623,637 131,389 572,911
Rhode Island 128,850 42,426 155,789
Washington 40,070 12,876 18,462
Total 951,517 235,690 846,069

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

For details about the contents of these records and help using them see the wiki article Marriages Vital Record Index Collections (FamilySearch Historical Records).

The records in this collection include the following information:

  • Name
  • Name of spouse
  • Marriage date and place
  • Family History Library Microfilm and item numbers for the source materials

The records may also contain the following:

  • Parents' names
  • Date and place of birth
  • Spouse's date and place of birth
  • Age
  • Marital status
  • Race

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • The place where the marriage occurred
  • The names of the persons at the time of marriage
  • The approximate marriage date

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:

Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

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.
  • 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.
  • Remember this is only an index, not the original records.

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

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s marriage record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Print or download a copy of the record, or extract the genealogical information needed. Add this new information to your records of each family.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
  • Use the parent’s birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • Use the marriage number to identify previous marriages.
  • The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one marriage record to another record.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other counties.
  • Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

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

  • The records are very brief, so it is easy to confuse individuals in the index. In addition, an individual may be listed multiple times with slight spelling variations of their name.
  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • Look for another index. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
  • Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur.
  • 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 that may be your ancestor.
  • Search the FamilySearch Catalog to see if other records for this place are available.

For a summary of this information see the wiki article: United States, How to Use the Records Summary (FamilySearch Historical Records).

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:

"Rhode Island, Marriages, 1724-1916." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Index based upon data collected by the Genealogical Society of Utah, Salt Lake City.


Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for Rhode Island Marriages, 1724-1916.


How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.