Records in Jamaica

This guide was last updated in 2011

If you're thinking of making the trip to Jamaica to learn more about your ancestors, there are a couple of essential places to visit.

The first stop in Jamaica is the National Archives in Spanish Town, the old capital. Next is the Institute of Jamaica, Kingston, which holds family files on all the major Jamaican families and then the archive of the University of the West Indies in Kingston. Between them, they hold pretty much all the islands’ surviving birth, marriage, death and will documents, land registers and plantation records, as well as other business records and family letters, journals and bibles.

Jamaican church records 1664-1880 as well as Civil Registration records 1878-1930 and slavery records 1780-1840 can all be viewed on microfilm at the LDS London Family History Centre at Hyde Park (or ordered to be viewed at any LDS Family History Centre – visit to find details of your nearest one).

Associate FamilySearch libraries (such as the one at Solihull Public library) may also have copies of relevant microfilm records – check before visiting.

Contact details

Institute of Jamaica, Kingston
10-16 East Street
Tel: +(876) 922-0620
For remote research contact (marked for the attention of Nicole Bryan)

National Archives, Spanish Town
Corner of King and Manchester Streets
Spanish Town
Saint Catherine
Tel.: +(876) 984-5001; 984-2581



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