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California Church and Bible Records

California Church records undoubtedly are a abundant source of information for the genealogical and historical researcher. In many parts of California, church records predate civil records. They for this reason record vital occasions, supplying birth, marriage, and death information which may often be lost. Aside from providing names and dates, church records may expose associations between people and depict a family’s standing in the community. In addition, records of a personal nature are not uncommon, and these could provide a glimpse into an ancestor’s persona or habits.

Prior to California County and city governments collected vital records, many people noted significant dates, events, and names in their family Bible. Family Bibles are important research tools. Even though the dates are not guaranteed, Family Bibles are a tangible link with past generations.

There are no centralized repositories dealing with church records in California. Scattered records can be found in genealogical publications, the DAR compilations, and on microfilm. The Spanish missions have played a central role in California’s religious history.

Printed secondary sources of transcribed cemeteries exist for most California counties. The California State Society of the DAR has collected hundreds of such records. Transcripts are housed both at the national DAR and with some local chapters and libraries.


California Cemetery Records

Do you need to get information from California cemetery records? If so, this is a task that is relatively easy, and it will not cost you a whole lot of money. Yes, there probably will be a fee, but it will be minimal, to cover administrative costs at the cemetery. California cemetery records contain a wealth of information about your ancestors from the state, and they can lead you to even more ancestors that you may not have even known about. If you are trying to create a family tree, this is an excellent way to gather a lot of the information you are going to need for your research.

California Cemetery and gravestone inscriptions are a rich source of information for family historians. For Definitions of all Cemetery Terms See Symbols on Gravestones and Their Interpretations

Be Prepared for a Lot of Work – When you are putting together a family tree using California cemetery records and other documents, you can expect to put a lot of work into your project. But, unlike other jobs, this is not really going to seem like work. Once you begin digging into the California cemetery records, you will probably find that the information is so fascinating that your project is not work, but a labor of love that is fun to work on.

Using California cemetery records is a good way to learn a lot about your ancestors. Of course, these are not the only records you are going to be using, but California cemetery records are an excellent place to start.

What Can You Learn? – California cemetery records hold a lot of important information that is going to be vital to your research. For example, if you want to know how an ancestor died, you can usually find out from California cemetery records. This is important to know, and you may even find that there is a family history of a certain health issue. Learning this from cemetery records may not only help your research, but it could end up saving your life, or the life of one of your loved ones. Other things you can learn from California cemetery records include the name of the attending physician at the time of death, names of the deceased’s family members, location of death, and more.

Research In California Cemetery Records – Printed secondary sources of transcribed cemeteries exist for most California counties. The California State Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) has collected hundreds of such records. Transcripts are housed both at the national DAR (see page 13) and with some local chapters and libraries. They are also available on microfilm through the FHL and the Sutro Library in San Francisco . A complete set of the DAR records (more than 180 volumes) is also in the California Room of the California State Library. Included in this collection are census, newspaper, cemetery, court, Bible, and family records.

Most cemeteries previously located in San Francisco were “moved” out of the city in the 1930s to South San Francisco and Coloma in San Mateo County, for example.


California Cemeteries


Famous People Buried in California Cemeteries