Difference between revisions of "Massachusetts State Vital Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)"

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== Record Description  ==
 
== Record Description  ==
  
This collection includes births, marriages, deaths from 1916 to 1920, and state amendments to vital records from 1841 to 1920. The records were obtained from the state archives in Boston.  
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This collection includes births, marriages, and deaths from 1916 to 1920, as well as state amendments to vital records from 1841 to 1920. The records were obtained from the state archives in Boston.  
  
 
=== Record Content  ===
 
=== Record Content  ===
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*The name of the intended spouse
 
*The name of the intended spouse
  
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. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:  
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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. Add this new information to your records of each family.  
 +
 
 +
For example:  
  
 
*Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.  
 
*Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.  
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Early Massachusetts vital records were recorded by town clerks. Records of births, marriages, and deaths to 1850 for about 215 towns have been published. Most of these are on microfilm and microfiche at the Family History Library. These often include information from town, church, cemetery, county, and other records. Although records of about 100 towns have not been published in book form, many of these records have been published in periodicals such as the Mayflower Descendant, with concentration on Plymouth, Bristol, and Barnstable Counties.  
 
Early Massachusetts vital records were recorded by town clerks. Records of births, marriages, and deaths to 1850 for about 215 towns have been published. Most of these are on microfilm and microfiche at the Family History Library. These often include information from town, church, cemetery, county, and other records. Although records of about 100 towns have not been published in book form, many of these records have been published in periodicals such as the Mayflower Descendant, with concentration on Plymouth, Bristol, and Barnstable Counties.  
  
=== Why This Record Was Created  ===
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=== Why the Record Was Created  ===
  
 
These records were created to keep track of the vital events happening in the lives of the citizens and to safeguard their legal interests.  
 
These records were created to keep track of the vital events happening in the lives of the citizens and to safeguard their legal interests.  
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== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections  ==
 
== Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections  ==
  
When you copy information from a record, you should also list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. 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.  
+
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. 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.  
  
 
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: [[How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]].  
 
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: [[How to Cite FamilySearch Collections]].  
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==== Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection  ====
 
==== Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection  ====
  
*“Delaware Marriage Records,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org : accessed 4 March 2011), entry for William Anderson and Elizabeth Baynard Henry, married 23 November 1913; citing marriage certificate no. 859; FHL microfilm 2,025,063; Delaware Bureau of Archives and Records Management, Dover.
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*“Delaware Marriage Records,” index and images, FamilySearch ([https://www.familysearch.org https://www.familysearch.org]: accessed 4 March 2011), entry for William Anderson and Elizabeth Baynard Henry, married 23 November 1913; citing marriage certificate no. 859; FHL microfilm 2,025,063; Delaware Bureau of Archives and Records Management, Dover.
  
*“El Salvador Civil Registration,” index and images, FamilySearch ([https://www.familysearch.org]: accessed 21 March 2011), entry for Jose Maria Antonio del Carmen, born 9 April 1880; citing La Libertad, San Juan Opico, Nacimientos 1879-1893, image 50; Ministerio Archivo Civil de la Alcaldia Municipal de San Salvador.
+
*“El Salvador Civil Registration,” index and images, FamilySearch ([https://www.familysearch.org https://www.familysearch.org]: accessed 21 March 2011), entry for Jose Maria Antonio del Carmen, born 9 April 1880; citing La Libertad, San Juan Opico, Nacimientos 1879-1893, image 50; Ministerio Archivo Civil de la Alcaldia Municipal de San Salvador.
  
 
== Sources of information for This Collection  ==
 
== Sources of information for This Collection  ==
  
<!--bibdescbegin-->"Massachusetts, Statewide Birth, Marriage, and Death Records,1916-1920," images. ''FamilySearch'' ([https://www.familysearch.org]). From the Massachusetts State Archives, Boston, Massachusetts. Digital images, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. <!--bibdescend-->
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<!--bibdescbegin-->"Massachusetts, Statewide Birth, Marriage, and Death Records,1916-1920," images. ''FamilySearch'' ([https://www.familysearch.org https://www.familysearch.org]). From the Massachusetts State Archives, Boston, Massachusetts. Digital images, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah. <!--bibdescend-->
  
 
The suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections is found in the following article: [[How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections]].
 
The suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections is found in the following article: [[How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections]].

Revision as of 20:54, 12 September 2011

FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records scheduled to become available at FamilySearch.org.
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Collection Time Period

The collection includes records for the years 1841 to 1920.

Record Description

This collection includes births, marriages, and deaths from 1916 to 1920, as well as state amendments to vital records from 1841 to 1920. The records were obtained from the state archives in Boston.

Record Content

Key genealogical facts found in birth records may include:

  • Name of the child
  • Gender
  • Names of the parents
  • Birth date
  • Birthplace
  • Christening date (if the source is a church record)
  • Family History Library Microfilm and item numbers for the source materials

Key genealogical facts found in marriage records may include:

  • Name of bride and groom
  • Date of marriage license
  • Age of bride and groom
  • Race of bride and groom
  • Residence of bride and groom
  • Birthplace of bride and groom
  • Name of bride and groom’s father
  • Occupation of bride and groom
  • Maiden name of bride and groom’s mother
  • Number of times previously married
  • Date of marriage
  • Place of marriage
  • Name of person performing the marriage
  • Witnesses to the marriage
  • Residence of witnesses

Key genealogical facts found in death records may include:

  • Name of the deceased
  • Sex, race, marital status, and age of the deceased
  • Dates of death and burial
  • Birth date and birthplace of the deceased
  • City, county, and state of death
  • Name and location of the cemetery where buried
  • Frequently included the country or state (and sometimes the town and county) of birth for the deceased
  • Names of parents, often with maiden surname of the mother
  • Name of the informant, often a child or other family member
  • Residence or address of the deceased, if foreign-born
  • Whether the deceased was single, married, widowed, or divorced at the time of death
  • Occupation of the deceased

How to Use the Record

Use these records to help you learn more about your ancestors. The information could help you identify family relationships and lineages as well as direct you to original records of your ancestors, which may contain additional information.

Birth Records

In birth or christening records, if a surname is not listed for the child, the recorder often assigns the father’s surname to the child. This surname may not be correct. So if you are looking for a birth or christening, search by the given name of the child, adding parents' names and as much locality information as is permitted.

Marriage Records

When searching for your ancestor's marriage record, it is important to know the following:

  • The county where the marriage occurred
  • The name of the person at the time of marriage
  • The approximate marriage date
  • The marriage place
  • The name of the intended spouse

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. Add this new information to your records of each family.

For example:

  • 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.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment records or military records.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • 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.
  • Use the marriage number to identify previous marriages.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

Death Records

Use the information from the index to obtain a copy of the original death certificate as explained on the website. Remember that these indexes may contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

When searching the index it is helpful to know the following:

  • The place where the death occurred
  • The name of the person at the time of death
  • The approximate death date

Any Vital Records

Compare the information in the record -- whether for Birth, Marriage, or Death -- to what you already know about your ancestor to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination.

When you have located your ancestor’s 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. Add this new information to your records of each family.

For example:

  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find or verify their 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 (while he or she was a child) to locate church and land records.
  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment records or military records.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county.
  • The name of the undertaker or mortuary could lead you to funeral and cemetery records, which often include the names and residences of other family members.
  • Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the deceased who may have died or been buried 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.

If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Check for a different index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

Keep in mind:

  • The information in these records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another record.

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

Record History

Early Massachusetts vital records were recorded by town clerks. Records of births, marriages, and deaths to 1850 for about 215 towns have been published. Most of these are on microfilm and microfiche at the Family History Library. These often include information from town, church, cemetery, county, and other records. Although records of about 100 towns have not been published in book form, many of these records have been published in periodicals such as the Mayflower Descendant, with concentration on Plymouth, Bristol, and Barnstable Counties.

Why the Record Was Created

These records were created to keep track of the vital events happening in the lives of the citizens and to safeguard their legal interests.

Record Reliability

Information listed on vital records was given by an informant. Learn the relationship of the informant to your ancestor. The closer the relationship of the informant to the ancestor and whether or not the informant was present at the time of the event can help determine the accuracy of the information found on the record.

Related Websites

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

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.


Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. 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.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.

Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection

  • “Delaware Marriage Records,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 4 March 2011), entry for William Anderson and Elizabeth Baynard Henry, married 23 November 1913; citing marriage certificate no. 859; FHL microfilm 2,025,063; Delaware Bureau of Archives and Records Management, Dover.
  • “El Salvador Civil Registration,” index and images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 21 March 2011), entry for Jose Maria Antonio del Carmen, born 9 April 1880; citing La Libertad, San Juan Opico, Nacimientos 1879-1893, image 50; Ministerio Archivo Civil de la Alcaldia Municipal de San Salvador.

Sources of information for This Collection

"Massachusetts, Statewide Birth, Marriage, and Death Records,1916-1920," images. FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org). From the Massachusetts State Archives, Boston, Massachusetts. Digital images, Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

The suggested format for citing FamilySearch Historical Collections is found in the following article: How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.