Rhode Island

This guide was last updated in 2011

Locating records of genealogical interest in Rhode Island is more straightforward than the rest of New England because all vital, land, and probate records are kept in the relevant town or city hall.

Records of births, deaths, and marriages have been kept since the 1630s, but they are more complete after 1700; obtain copies from the town clerk or state Vital Records Office (www.health.ri.gov/records).

Indexes to some Rhode Island vital records and state census enumerations for 1885, 1905, 1915, 1925 and 1935 are at FamilySearch.org.

Further resources for Rhode Island research include Rhode Island Historical Society (www.rihs.org/libraryhome.htm) and the Rhode Island Genealogical Society (www.rigensoc.org/publications.htm). An index to the Rhode Island Historical Cemetery database can be accessed free online at www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~rigenweb/cemetery.


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