Massachusetts, Church Records - FamilySearch Historical Records

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Massachusetts, Church Records, 1630-1943
This article describes a collection of records at
United States
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Flag of Massachusetts
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Location of Massachusetts
Record Description
Record Type Church records
Collection years 1630-1943
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Multiple churches, Massachusetts

What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

This collection contains church records from 1630 to 1943, from various denominations in Massachusetts. Some of the church records come from the following:

  • First Church of Christ (Ipswich)
  • Church of Christ at Cambridge
  • Trinity Methodist Episcopal (Charlestown)
  • South Congregational Church (Boston)
  • Grace Church (Boston)
  • St. Luke's Episcopal Church (Lanesborough)

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.

What Can these Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Date of event
  • Location of event
  • Gender
  • Residence
  • Marital status
  • Name of bride
  • Name of groom
  • Names of parents
  • Name of spouse

The records may also include:

  • Birthplace of parents
  • Race
  • Occupation
  • Cause of death

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The name of the individual
  • The approximate date and or location of the event

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Add any new information to your records
  • Use the information found in the church records to search for county or state vital records, such as birth, marriage, and death
  • Search for the family in census records, both federal and state
  • Search for the family in land and probate records in the town where they lived
  • Search the town records for information on the individual and their family

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • 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
  • Try different spellings of your ancestor’s name
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names.

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in the state of Massachusetts.

Citing this Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.