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Genealogy: Primary Records & Documents

This guide is highlights the most important indexes, tools, and resources for those doing genealogical research and family history. Although the Library does not support Genealogy, we do collect many resources for researching family histories.

I need to find primary records & documents

Primary source materials include such resources as vital records [births, marriages, and death], abstracts of wills, court records, town records, city directories, church [parish] registers, land deeds, military lists, and family folklore. Many of these collections include detailed indexes that often contain family surnames.

I need to find city directories

City directories offer the family historian an opportunity to locate an ancestor at a specific time, in a specific place. The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy provides an interesting discussion of the usefulness of city directories in genealogical research.

Other city directories available in the Jones Media Center:

Baltimore, Maryland

Boston, Massachusetts

Concord, New Hampshire

Dover, New Hampshire

Illinois Towns

Iowa Towns

Keene, New Hampshire

Nashua, New Hampshire

New York, New York

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Washington, DC


(Text and resources taken from the print edition of: Jaccaud, Robert D, comp. Passages to Family History: A Guide to Genealogical Research in the Dartmouth College Library. Rev. ed. Hanover: Dartmouth College Library, 1994).