New Hampshire Church History

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Historical Background[edit | edit source]

Before 1900 the largest religious denominations in New Hampshire were the Baptist, Congregational, Episcopal, Methodist, Presbyterian, and Roman Catholic churches. In early New Hampshire, the Congregational church predominated.

Ministers[edit | edit source]

  • Carter, Nathan Franklin. The Native Ministry of New Hampshire. Concord, N.H.: Rumford Printing, 1906. (Family History Library book 974.2 D3c.) This book contains biographies of native-born clergy of the Protestant denominations. It often mentions the minister’s name as well as the names of his parents and spouse. It is well indexed.
  • Lawrence, Robert F. The New Hampshire Churches. N.p.: Claremont Manufacturing, 1856. (Family History Library book 974.2 K2L; fiche 6046841.) This source comprises histories of the Congregational and Presbyterian churches in the state, with notices of other denominations. Included are names of ministers and dates of service. It also contains many interesting incidents connected with the first settlement of towns. The records are arranged by county and then towns within a county.

For a history of the Baptist Church, see:

Hurlin, William. The Baptists of New Hampshire. Manchester, N.H.: New Hampshire Baptist Convention, 1902. (FHL film 1697589 item 8.)

Episcopal[edit | edit source]

The Episcopal Diocese of New Hampshire
63 Green St.
Concord, NH 03301
Phone: (603) 224-1914

Roman Catholic[edit | edit source]

Diocese of Manchester
153 Ash Street
P.O. Box 310
Manchester, NH 03105
Phone: (603) 669-3100
Fax: (603) 669-0377

In the Diocese of Manchester, each individual parish keeps records of baptisms, first communions, confirmations, marriages, and deaths. These records are not centralized in the Diocese of Manchester. To contact the parishes in the State of New Hampshire, please utilize our online directory. Parishes that have been merged or unified with another parish are listed under closed churches and will indicate where the sacramental records are maintained (namely, in the unified or merged parish).
  • Many Catholic marriage and baptismal records have been published, particularly for larger parishes. The New Hampshire Historical Society and the American-Canadian Genealogical Society have the best collections.
  • As the Diocese of Manchester was not established until 1884, it is possible that some records may be maintained by predecessor dioceses (the Diocese of Portland, Maine or the Archdiocese of Boston).
  • In addition, some limited sacramental records are maintained in the Diocese of Manchester archives. See the Archives Listing for a records held. The Archives Office makes its materials available to researchers within the parameters of canon law, and state and federal laws, and diocesan policy. Contact the Archives Office for more information.

The diocese includes the counties of: Belknap, Carroll, Cheshire, Coös, Grafton, Hillsborough, Merrimack, Rockingham, Strafford and Sullivan