Puerto Rico Getting Started

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Puerto Rico Getting Started[edit | edit source]

Where to Start[edit | edit source]

  • Write down what you know
Pedigree Chart
Family group sheet
  • Gather records you may already have
Gather Family Information
  • Organize what you know
Organize and file materials
  • Contact family for any useful information, stories, and records they may have.
  • Know the town of origin:

Probably the most important piece of information you will need to begin research in Puerto Rico is the name of a specific town in Puerto Rico where your ancestor lived.

Puerto Rico Locating Place of Origin
  • Ask for help
Help from Family History Centers

Puerto Rico Finding Records[edit | edit source]

Types of Records[edit | edit source]

  • Jurisdctions

Places are usually written from smallest to largest:

Barrios, Municipality, Country

When a church parish is known it is written in this manner:

Parish, Barrios, Municipality, Country
  • Civil registration: The system by which a government records the vital events (births, marriages, and deaths) of its citizens and residents.
  • Catholic church records: Baptisms or christenings, marriages, and burials created by Catholic churches.

Online Records[edit | edit source]

  • The most up to date Puerto Rico online records:

Puerto Rico Online Genealogy Records

  • Civil registration records online:The Civil Registration records are located on the municipality level,

Puerto Rico Guided Research contains links to civil registration collections.

  • Church Records: FamilySearch has Catholic Church records from the Archdiocese of San Juan Historical Archive.

Puerto Rico Guided Research contains links to Catholic Church collections.
Puerto Rico Catholic Church Records - FamilySearch Historical Records is a wiki article describing the Catholic Church Records collection.


Puerto Rico Quick Start Guide[edit | edit source]

Research Strategies[edit | edit source]

  • Who to search for?

If you don’t know the names of the parents, but you know the name of a spouse and/or the names of some of the children:

  1. begin with a marriage search
  2. search for the birth/baptism record for one of the children

Names and Locations Known[edit | edit source]

  • Puerto Rico: Ancestor's birth, marriage, or death location and names of parents, children, or spouse are known:

Puerto Rico Guided Research contains links to the best record resources

Names and Locations Unknown[edit | edit source]

  • Puerto Rico: Ancestor's birth, marriage, or death location and names of parents, children, or spouse are NOT known:

Guided Research What else you can try gives additional guidance and resources to find information for your ancestor.

Finding a locality[edit | edit source]

  • Google
  • Wikipedia (Spanish version works the best)
  • Try a keyword search in the FamilySearch Catalog for Puerto Rico Gazetteers

Online resources[edit | edit source]

For other online resources please review the Wiki article Hispanic Genealogy Resources Online