Skip to main content

Boston (Mass.). Registry Division


Historical note

The City Registrar keeps the records of births, deaths and marriages, issues certificates of the same and marriage licenses, receives and records affidavits of, additions to, and amendments and corrections of said records, and forwards copies of all records to the office of the Department of Public Health and to outside cities and towns when nonresidents are involved. By Sections 5-8 of Chapter 2 of the Ordinances of 1954, the Registry Department became a division under the Health Department. By the Section 7 of Chapter 656 of the Acts of 1965, the Registry Division was transferred to the Office of the City Clerk.

Found in 7 Collections and/or Records:

A series of plans of Boston, showing existing ways and owners of property from Dec. 25, 1630 to Dec. 25, 1645 inclusive., 1905

 Item — Publications PB 010
Scope and Contents From the Series: Includes three bound volumes of City Engineer's reports for 1875-1897; loose copies of annual reports for 1898-1901, 1903-1910; "Tabular Representation of the Present Condition of Boston in relation to Railroad Facilities, Foreign Commerce, Population, Wealth, Manufactures, etc.", 1851; "Prevention of Floods in the Valley of Stony Brook", 1886; "Lists of Maps of Boston published between 1614 and 1822", 1902; "Lists of Maps of Boston published between 1600 and 1903", 1903; "Lists of Maps of...
Dates: 1905

Birth records

Identifier: 0330.004
Scope and Contents The Birth certificates series contains the official birth records for residents of the City of Boston. They are listed on slips of paper that read "Return of a Birth to the City Registrar." Each birth was numbered according to when it was registered - i.e. the first birth being "1" until the last birth of the year. There are records for children of Boston residents who were born outside of the city limits in the separate "Out of Town" volumes. Stillborn infants were also registered in the...
Dates: 1630-1925

Church records

Identifier: 0330.010
Scope and Contents

This collection includes transcribed registers of church records, as well as, original church records of defunct churches. Records include baptisms, marriages, deaths, communicants, covenants, admissions, dismissals, members, and gneral church history. The collection amounts to 74 volumes and spans the years from 1630-1889. The collection includes local congregations of Baptist, Congregational, Methodist Episcopal, Presbyterian, Protestant Episcopal, and Unitarian denominations.

Dates: 1630-1889

Rabbis certificates

Identifier: 0330.008
Scope and Contents

Certifications submitted to the City Registry of Vital Records of the appointment of rabbis in synagogues located in Boston.

Dates: 1893-1939

Record Commissioner's reports

Identifier: 0330.002
Scope and Contents

Published between 1876 and 1909, the Record Commissioners reports include transcriptions of early Boston town records including town meeting records, Selectmen records, births, deaths and marriages, Charlestown records, Dorchester records and other miscellaneous records.

Dates: Publication: 1876-1909

Registry Department annual reports and publications

Identifier: 0330.003
Scope and Contents Includes copies of Annual Reports for the years 1868, 1870-1871, 1873-1883, 1885, 1892-1898, 1900-1905, 1907-1910; indexes to Births in the City of Boston for the years 1923, 1928, 1931, 1934, 1945-1947, 1949-1951, 1953-1959, 1961-1967; index to marriage intentions and marriages recorded in 1894; "Bills of Mortality 1810-1849; "List of Freemen 1630-1678"; "A Series of Plans Showing the Existing Ways and Owners of Property 1630, 1635, 1640, 1645" published in 1909; and "Maps of the Street...
Dates: 1859-1965

Registry Division administrative records

Identifier: 0330.001
Scope and Contents note The Registry Division Administrative records are made up of two series, Records 1895-1910 and Works Progress Administration/Emergency Relief Act. The first series is made up of the records of the first head of the City Registry Department, William Whitmore, and his successor, Edward McGlenen. The records of William Whitmore date from 1895-1900 and contain primarily adminstrative records relating to budgeting, personel, legal issues, and and the annual Return and Registration of Births....
Dates: 1895-1908, 1933-1937