Maryland Emigration and Immigration
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|Local Research Resources|
How to Find the Records[edit | edit source]
Online Databases and Resources[edit | edit source]
- 1500s-1900s All U.S. and Canada, Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1500s-1900s at Ancestry; index only ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland; Also at MyHeritage; index only ($)
- 1607-1830 Scots On the Chesapeake, 1607-1830 at Ancestry; index and images ($)
- 1820-1870 Atlantic and Gulf Ports, Passenger List Card Index, 1820-1870 at MyHeritage - index & images ($)
- 1820-1964 Baltimore, Passenger Lists, 1820-1964 at FamilySearch; index & images
- 1820-1869 United States, Passenger and Crew Lists - Passenger Lists Of Vessels Arriving At Baltimore, Maryland, 1820-1869 at Findmypast; index & images ($)
- 1820-1891 United States, Passenger and Crew Lists - Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists 1820-1891 at Findmypast; index & images ($)
- 1820-1897 Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists Index, 1820-1897 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; index & images; Also at MyHeritage; index & images ($)
- 1820-1948 Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists, 1820-1948 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; index & images
- 1820-1957 United States, Passenger and Crew Lists - Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists, 1820-1957 at Findmypast; index & images ($)
- 1890-1930 Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Baltimore Steamship Arrivals, 1890-1930 at Ancestry; index only ($)
- 1891-1943 Baltimore, Maryland Passenger Lists, 1891-1943 at MyHeritge; index & images ($)
- 1895-1956 United States, Border Crossings from Canada, 1895-1956 at MyHeritge; index & images ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland
- 1897-1952 Maryland, Baltimore Passenger Lists Index, 1897-1952 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; index & images ($)
- 1940-1944 Alien Registration, 1940-1944, index
- 1950-1956 Maryland, Piney Point Crew Lists, 1950-1956 at FamilySearch - How to Use This Collection; index and images
- 1954-1957 Maryland, Baltimore, Passenger and Crew Lists of Vessels and Airplanes, 1954-1957 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; index & images
- New Early Settlers of Maryland
- Overseas Origins of Immigrant Servants
- To Maryland from Overseas at Ancestry; index and images ($)
- Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild
Cultural Groups[edit | edit source]
- British Aliens in the United States During the War of 1812, e-book
- Germans Immigrating to the United States - Maryland at MyHeritge; index only ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland
- Italians Immigrating to the United States at MyHeritge; index only ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland
- Russians Immigrating to the United States at MyHeritage; index only ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland
- 1920-1939 Germany, Bremen Emigration Lists, 1920-1939 at MyHeritge; index only ($); includes those with Destination of Maryland
Passport Records Online[edit | edit source]
- 1795-1925 United States Passport Applications, 1795-1925 at FamilySearch - How to Use this Collection; index & images
- 1795-1925 - U.S. Passport Applications, 1795-1925 Index and images, at Ancestry ($)
Offices to Contact[edit | edit source]
Although many records are included in the online records listed above, there are other records available through these archives and offices. For example, there are many minor ports that have not yet been digitized. There are also records for more recent time periods. For privacy reasons, some records can only be accessed after providing proof that your ancestor is now deceased.
National Archives and Records Administration[edit | edit source]
- The National Archives (NARA) has immigration records for arrivals to the United States from foreign ports between approximately 1820 and 1982. The records are arranged by Port of Arrival (See Part 5).
- Order copies of passenger arrival records with NATF Form 81.
- You may do research in immigration records in person at the National Archives Building, 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20408-0001.
- Some National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) regional facilities have selected immigration records; call to verify their availability or check the online Microfilm Catalog.
- Most Baltimore passenger lists are on microfilm at the Maryland Historical Society and the Baltimore City Archives.
- Libraries with large genealogical collections, such as the FamilySearch Library in Salt Lake City, Utah and the Allen County Piblic Library also have selected NARA microfilm publications.
Maryland Ports in NARA Records[edit | edit source]
- Annapolis, Maryland, 1849
- Baltimore, Maryland, 1820-1897 and 1891-1957
- Havre de Grace, Maryland, 1820
- Piney Point, Maryland, 1950-1956
U.S. Citizenship and and Immigration Services Genealogy Program[edit | edit source]
The USCIS Genealogy Program is a fee-for-service program that provides researchers with timely access to historical immigration and naturalization records of deceased immigrants. If the immigrant was born less than 100 years ago, you will also need to provide proof of his/her death.
Immigration Records Available[edit | edit source]
- A-Files: Immigrant Files, (A-Files) are the individual alien case files, which became the official file for all immigration records created or consolidated since April 1, 1944.
- Alien Registration Forms (AR-2s): Alien Registration Forms (Form AR-2) are copies of approximately 5.5 million Alien Registration Forms completed by all aliens age 14 and older, residing in or entering the United States between August 1, 1940 and March 31, 1944.
- Registry Files: Registry Files are records, which document the creation of immigrant arrival records for persons who entered the United States prior to July 1, 1924, and for whom no arrival record could later be found.
- Visa Files: Visa Files are original arrival records of immigrants admitted for permanent residence under provisions of the Immigration Act of 1924.
Requesting a Record[edit | edit source]
- Web Request Page allows you to request a records, pay fees, and upload supporting documents (proof of death).
- Record Requests Frequently Asked Questions
Finding Town of Origin[edit | edit source]
Records in the countries emigrated from are kept on the local level. You must first identify the name of the town where your ancestors lived to access those records. If you do not yet know the name of the town of your ancestor's birth, there are well-known strategies for a thorough hunt for it.
Background[edit | edit source]
Colonial Period[edit | edit source]
Most colonial ship records contain little information about the passengers. Generally the list of passengers was a partial list and included names of the most important men. Women and children were often not listed. Since the captains were not required to give their records to anyone, they kept the records themselves, destroyed the records, or did not keep any records. Most of the records that survive have been published.
- The Early Settlers of Maryland: An Index to Names of Immigrants Compiled from Records of Land Patents, 1633 - 1680, in the Hall of Records, Annapolis, Maryland. Skordas, Gust. 1968; reprint, Baltimore, Md.: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1974.
British Immigrants[edit | edit source]
Maryland's early settlements and population centers clustered around rivers and other waterways that empty into the Chesapeake Bay. Its economy was heavily plantation-based and centered mostly on the cultivation of tobacco. Britain's need for cheap labor led to a rapid expansion of indentured servants, penal labor, and African slaves.
White settlers in colonial Maryland were primarily from the British Isles. In 1660 many English immigrants began settling the Eastern Shore (east of Chesapeake Bay) in what is now Wicomico County. Nearly all British immigrants to colonial Maryland came either as servants or convicts. Maryland received more indentured servants than any other colony.
The earlier colonists settled along Maryland's rivers and bays, as these were the primary routes of transportation. By about 1740, English, Scottish, and Scotch-Irish immigrants began moving into the Appalachian section of western Maryland.
From 1611 to 1776, more than 50,000 English and Irish felons were sentenced to deportation to American colonies over the centuries. These include Irishmen who rebelled against Cromwell's army in 1649. The 1755 Census of Maryland reveals the distribution of transported convicts across the colony.
African Americans[edit | edit source]
Slave labor was introduced in the early decades of the seventeenth century when slaves from Barbados were imported to labor in the tobacco fields of southern Maryland. Vast numbers of Blacks were later shipped directly from Africa to the Chesapeake.
In the early years, the line between indentured servants and African slaves or laborers was fluid, and white and black laborers commonly lived and worked together, and formed unions. Mixed-race children born to white mothers were considered free by the principle of partus sequitur ventrem, by which children took the social status of their mothers, a principle of slave law that was adopted throughout the colonies, following Virginia in 1662. During the colonial era, families of free people of color were formed most often by unions of white women and African men. Many of the free black families migrated to Delaware, where land was cheaper.
Influenced by a changing economy, revolutionary ideals, and preaching by ministers, numerous planters in Maryland freed their slaves in the 20 years after the Revolutionary War. Across the Upper South the free black population increased from less than 1% before the war to 14% by 1810. Compared to some other states, blacks were better established both before and after the civil war. Nearly half the black population was free before the war, and some had accumulated property. Half the population lived in cities.
For many more sources on Maryland African Americans, see:
German Immigrants[edit | edit source]
The largest group of non-British persons in the colonial period were Rhineland Germans who were encouraged by Maryland officials to settle in the rich farm lands of western Maryland in the 1730s and 1740s. Many of these Germans came through Philadelphia. A few Dutch, Swedish, Huguenot, and Acadian refugee families also came to the colony.
Many of the customs lists and indexes include the birthplace or city of last permanent residence of German immigrants. This is because most Germans who came to Baltimore left from the port of Bremen, and the lists of ships arriving from Bremen often give this information.
- See the additional records listed in the FamilySearch Catalog:
Other Cultural Groups[edit | edit source]
In the 1870s and 1880s virtually all immigrants were of German origin. In the post-1880 wave of immigration, large numbers of Germans continued to come to Maryland. They were joined by Poles, Bohemians, Lithuanians, Greeks, Jews (from Germany, Poland, and Russia), Czechs, Italians, and the Irish. Records pertaining to a variety of these groups can be found listed in the FamilySearch Catalog:
- United States, Maryland - Minorities
- United States, Maryland - Minorities - Biography
- United States, Maryland - Minorities - Genealogy
- United States, Maryland - Minorities - History
- United States, Maryland - Minorities - Societies
Immigration Records[edit | edit source]
Immigration refers to people coming into a country. Emigration refers to people leaving a country to go to another. Immigration records usually take the form of ship's passenger lists collected at the port of entry. See Online Databases and Resources.
What can I find in them?[edit | edit source]
- Before 1820 - Passenger lists before 1820 included name, departure information and arrival details. The names of wives and children were often not included.
- 1820-1891 - Customs Passenger Lists between 1820 and 1891 asked for each immigrant’s name, their age, their sex, their occupation, and their country of origin, but not the city or town of origin.
- 1891-1954 - Information given on passenger lists from 1891 to 1954 included:
- name, age, sex,
- nationality, occupation, marital status,
- last residence, final destination in the U.S.,
- whether they had been to the U.S. before (and if so, when, where and how long),
- if joining a relative, who this person was, where they lived, and their relationship,
- whether able to read and write,
- whether in possession of a train ticket to their final destination, who paid for the passage,
- amount of money the immigrant had in their possession,
- whether the passenger had ever been in prison, a poorhouse, or in an institution for the insane,
- whether the passenger was a polygamist,
- and immigrant's state of health.
- 1906-- - In 1906, the physical description and place of birth were included, and a year later, the name and address of the passenger’s closest living relative in the country of origin was included.
Over the years, passports and passport applications contained different amounts of information about the passport applicant. The first passports that are available begin in 1795. These usually contained the individual's name, description of individual, and age. More information was required on later passport applications, such as:
- Birth date
- Naturalization information
- Arrival information, if foreign born
In-country Migration[edit | edit source]
- Migrations from Maryland began in the early years of the colony. Travelers generally followed the Cumberland Trail (Braddock's Road) that led west to Pittsburgh and from there to the Ohio River.
- Many people also used the Great Trading Path, also called the Great Philadelphia Wagon Road, that led southwest along the Allegheny Ridge into the Shenandoah Valley and beyond.
- Some Marylanders from Prince George's County went to the Carolinas.
- A group of Catholics from St. Mary's County settled in Nelson County, Kentucky.
- By the 1820s some wealthy young Marylanders were moving slaves from their home farms to open plantations in Mississippi and surrounding areas.
Henry C. Peden has published books on Marylanders who migrated to other parts of the country:
- Marylanders to Carolina: Migration of Marylanders to North and South Carolina Prior to 1800. Westminster, Md.: Family Line Publications, 1994. FHL Book 973 W2ped.
- Marylanders to Kentucky, 1775-1825. Westminster, Md.: Family Line Publications, 1991. FHL Book 976.9 W2p.
- More Marylanders to Kentucky 1778-1828. Westminster, Md.: Family Line Publications, 1997. FHL Book 976.9 W2pe.
- Marylanders to Ohio and Indiana: Migrations Prior to 1835. Lewes, De.: Colonial Roots, 2006. FHL Book 975.2 D2phc.
- More Marylanders to Ohio and Indiana: Migrations Prior to 1835. Lewes, De.: Colonial Roots, 2006. FHL Book 975.2 D2phc v. 2.
- Marylanders to Tennessee, 1775-1835. Lewes, De.: Colonial Roots, 2004. FHL Book 973 W2pm.
Articles have been published about Marylanders in Delaware, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia, see: Genealogical Sources in Periodicals at The Maryland State Archives. See subtitles Marylanders in [STATE].
Maryland Migration Routes[edit | edit source]
For Further Reading[edit | edit source]
The FamilySearch Library has additional sources listed in their catalog:
- United States, Maryland - Emigration and immigration
- United States, Maryland - Emigration and immigration - Colonial period, ca. 1600-1775
- United States, Maryland - Emigration and immigration - Indexes