March 31, 2023, 6:25 pm
Genealogy-Records ›› Rhode-Island ››

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General Information On Rhode Island Genealogy Records
Rhode Island genealogy records provide a great deal of information for family tree making. If you want to learn when your family arrived in the United States, whom they married and where they lived, it can be an exciting opportunity to compile these records. You could learn a great deal about those who live in the area. What is even better is that in Rhode Island, records are readily available and some of them date back to the founding of the area. That means that even old families from the colonies may in fact be researched and discovered as part of your own.
Before you can get started with your Rhode Island genealogy records searches, you will need to take the time to learn about the state's record keeping. The oldest records available in terms of one resource are through the James N. Arnold's Vital Records of Rhode Island. It records data from 1636 through 1850 and it is all included in 21 volumes of work. This is a complete and excellent resource. However, the state did not put into place laws requiring the local residents to report the births, deaths or marriages occurring locally to the state until 1853. There are two resources for gathering data from this time.
If you are looking for any birth or marriage records from 1894 through the present time, or any death records from 1948 onward, the best resource is the Department of Health. Write to them or visit at the following address:
State of Rhode Island
Department of Health
Division of Vital Records
Room 101
75 Davis Street
Providence, Rhode Island 02908
If you are looking for vital records from prior to this time, you'll need to turn to the state's archived information. You can do that at the following address:
Rhode Island State Archives
337 Westminster Street
Providence, Rhode Island 02903
The state does provide access to those conducting genealogy reports, but they will take some time to process. In the meantime, numerous other resources can help you to create thorough Rhode Island genealogy records.
A good place to look is through the state's churches. Rhode Island was founded and established in the 1600's and many of those establishments fled from England due to religious persecution. For that reason, many established their own churches in what is now the US. Some of these very old churches served as more than just a place to worship but were also the centers of the towns. They collected data on the families that were members, including births, deaths, marriages and other details including family addresses and distant relatives. You can conduct a thorough search by contacting these churches. Sometimes, these churches also had cemeteries with a great deal of information in them.
As you work through the Rhode Island genealogy records searches, look for third party resources, too. Military records may be available after 100 years and those may include a great deal of information from the Revolutionary War onward. Turn to town clerks for more information, too.
Rhode Island Genealogy Records
Rhode Island Resource Links

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