Massachusetts Vital Records Index (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.
Access the records: Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915Massachusetts Marriages, 1695-1910, and Massachusetts Deaths and Burials, 1795-1910.
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Collection Time Period

This index covers events from 1639 through 1918.

Record Description

The index is an electronic database of information transcribed from original records.

Record Content

The key genealogical facts found in birth index entries 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

The key genealogical facts found in marriage index entries may include:

  • Name of the bride and groom
  • Names of the parents
  • Marriage date
  • Marriage place
  • Family History Library Microfilm and item numbers for the source materials

The key genealogical facts found in death or burial index entries may include:

  • Name of the deceased
  • Gender
  • Names of the parents
  • Name of the spouse (if married)
  • Death or burial date
  • Death or burial place
  • Family History Library Microfilm and item numbers for the source materials

How to Use the Record

Use this index 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.

In birth or christening records, if a surname is not listed for the child, the indexer 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.

Record History

For over 30 years, volunteer indexers extracted this information from microfilm copies of the original records. In 1998, a few of the entries were published on 7 CDs by the Family History Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as the "North America Vital Records Index." This index is an index of the births, marriages, and deaths throughout Massachusetts. The index is not necessarily complete for any particular place or region.

Why This Record Was Created

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sponsored this index to help individuals find information about their ancestors.

Record Reliability

Church records and civil registration were official records and are some of the most reliable sources of information available for those who were born, married, or died in Massachusetts.

Related Web Sites

This section of the article is incomplete. You can help FamilySearch Wiki by supplying links to related websites here.

Related Wiki Articles

Massachusetts Vital Records

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.


Sources of Information for This Collection

"Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915," database, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/). Index entries derived from digital copies of originals housed in various repositories Massachusetts.

"Massachusetts Marriages, 1695-1910," database, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/). Index entries derived from digital copies of originals housed in various repositories Massachusetts.

"Massachusetts Deaths and Burials, 1795-1910," database, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org/). Index entries derived from digital copies of originals housed in various repositories Massachusetts.

Each entry in this index has a source listed. The index may be a compilation of records from a variety of sources, including the following:

  • Family Records
  • Church Records
  • Civil Registration

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.

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

  • Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915. digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: January 20,2011). Birth of Mary Anne Ogden, 11 April 1863, Webster,
  • Massachusetts. film number 1428035. Massachusetts Marriages, 1695-1910. digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: January 20,2011). Marriage of Danial J. Thomas to Emma Somens, 1 March 1881, film number 1888085.
  • Massachusetts Deaths, 1841-1915. digital images, From FamilySearch Internet (www.familysearch.org: January 20,2011). Death of Nettie O Hawks, 6 March 1859, Heath, Massachusetts, film number 960175.