Newfoundland Vital Statistics - FamilySearch Historical Records

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at
Access the records: Newfoundland Registers of Vital Statistics .


Collection Time Period
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This collection contains records dating from 1753 to 1893.

Record Description
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Burial records were not systematically gathered for this collection so only a very small number are found in the collection.

Record Content
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Baptism Records may contain:

• Date of birth

• Place of birth

• Parent’s name (often just the father’s name)

• Name of child

• Sex of child

•Date of baptism

• Religious denomination of child

• Parishes were baptized.

Marriage Records may contain:

• Date of marriage

• Place of marriage

• Name of groom and bride

• Age (if known)

• Bachelor or Spinster

• Occupation

• Religion Denomination

• Residence at time of marriage

• Witnesses for each marriage.

Burial Records may contain:

• Name of Deceased

• Date of Burial

• Place of Death

• Name of Deceased

• Religious Denomination

• Age

• Place of Birth (on some records only)

• Place of Internment (on some records only)

How to Use the Records[edit | edit source]

The information in some of these records may not be complete. Because the transcription project was so large and because some of the names in the registers may not have been clearly legible, mistakes may have been made. It is advisable to check the original registers whenever possible.

Record History
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Civil registration started in Newfoundland and Labrador in 1891 and 1892. At that time, all clergy were required to register every baptism, marriage, and burial conducted within their jurisdiction. Prior to 1891, no central registry existed, so the only record of a baptism, marriage, or burial was the one held by the church.

During the 1930s and 1940s, Sir John Charles Puddester was disturbed that the original parish registers were in bad condition and some of the records had been lost in fires and other disasters. So, he initiated a program of transcribing the pre-1891 church records. Burial records were not requested, although some churches did submit them. The collection is not complete because many clergy and churches did not respond to the request. The collection contains mostly Protestant records; only 6 of the 124 volumes are Roman Catholic records.

Why This Collection Was Created?[edit | edit source]

Civil registration did not exist in Newfoundland and Labrador until 1891 or 1892. The Newfoundland Registers of Vital Statics were created in order to gather birth and marriage information from churches for the time period before 1891.

Record Reliability[edit | edit source]

These records are generally reliable, but not all churches and clergy responded to the request for records, so the collection is not complete. Also, because most of the records were handwritten and then copied, there may be transcription errors and mistakes in the spelling of some individuals’ names. It is important to check for alternate and similar spellings.

Related Web Sites[edit | edit source]

Newfoundland Grand Banks - Genealogy

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

Related Wiki Articles[edit | edit source]

Canada Archives and Libraries

Known Issues with This Collection[edit | edit source]

Important.png Problems with this collection?

Newfoundland, Vital Records, Birth - 1840-1949, missing 1871-1891 and delay births for 1860-1871.

Heading is Incorrect. Newfoundland, Vital Statistics, 1753-1893 Trinity North Trinity (Church of England) Marriage 1859-1891, Vol. 63.  Should be: Department of Health and Welfare of St. John's Newfoundland.

Contributions to This Article[edit | edit source]

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 Historical Records/Guidelines for Articles.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections[edit | edit source]

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the Wiki Article: How to Cite FamilySearch Collections

Please add sample citations to this article following the format guidelines in the wiki article listed above.

Examples of Source Citations for a Record in This Collection[edit | edit source]

"Newfoundland, Vital Statistics, 1753-1893." index and images, FamilySearch ( accessed 31 March 2011. entry for William Champion and Rosanna Mansfield, married September 13, 1874; citing Mariage Records, Flowers Cove, Flowers Cove (Methodist), Marriage 1874-1890, Vol. 95, Image 1, number 2; Newfoundland Department of Public Health and Welfare, Provincial Archives of Newfoundland, St. John's Newfoundland.

Sources of Information for This Collection:[edit | edit source]

Newfoundland registration of Vital Statistics, 1753-1893, images, FamilySearch (; from Newfoundland. Department of Public Health and Welfare. Registers of Vital Statistics collection, 1753-1893, Provincial Archives of Newfoundland, St. John's, Newfoundland. FHL microfilm, 18 rolls. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.

Newfoundland Vital Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)