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US: Religious Records-Part 1
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This course focuses on religions which had a significant presence in the developing new land in America, prior to 1800. While the basic tenants of various religions, particularly Protestantism and Catholicism were being debated in Europe prior to 1800, it is the culture and beliefs of the immigrants who settled in America which is of interest to us. A greater understanding of these developments will greatly assist any search for genealogical sources and resources of information.

The course material will follow a format whereby first the religion and its main subcategories are identified, then given a brief historical sketch and a timeline for context. Next, a listing and discussion of available records and their location, including addresses and websites is offered for the various religious groups. Lastly, tips and suggestions are given to further assist a search for information.

Course Content

Module 1
Introduction & Historical Background
Note about Web Addresses
Introduction to Religious Records
• Traditions from England
• Different Colonies, Different Denominations
The Records
• Questions You Will Need to Answer
• How do I know to which religious denomination my ancestor belonged?
• How do I know which specific congregation or church my ancestor would have attended?
• How can I find out where the church records pertaining to my particular ancestor are held today?
• What types of church records can I expect to find for my ancestor?
• What strategies can I use to make church records most effective in my research?

Module 2
Roman Catholic Church
• Florida
• Louisiana
• New Mexico
• California
• Texas
• Maryland
• Pennsylvania
• Kentucky
• Illinois
• Indiana
• Michigan
• Timeline
• Catholic Records
• Parish Registers
• Baptism
• Marriage
• Confirmation
• Death
• Marriage Dispensations
• Parish & Diocesan Histories
• Priests and Religious Sisters / Brothers
• Repositories
• Diocesan Archives

Module 3
Southern Anglicans
Congregational Church
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Unitarians & Universalists
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Episcopal Church (Anglican)
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories

Module 4
Luthern / Reformed Churches & English Quakers
Lutheran Church
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Reformed Churches (Dutch and German)
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
English Quakers
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories

Module 5
Scots / Scots-Irish Presbyterians, English Methodists & Baptists
Presbyterian Church
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Methodist Churches
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Baptist Churches
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories

Module 6
Monority Sects In Colonial America
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Mennonites & Amish
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
Brethren Churches
• Timeline
• Records and Repositories
References & Research Materials
• Introduction
• Records
• Roman Catholic Church
• Congregational Churches
• Unitarians & Universalists
• Episcopal Church (Anglican)
• Lutheran Church
• Reformed Churches
• English Quakers
• Presbyterian Church
• Methodist Church
• Baptist Churches
• Moravians
• Mennonites & Amish
• Huguenots
• Dunkards (Church of the Brethren) & Other Brethren Groups

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