massachusetts map

Your Guide to Researching Massachusetts Ancestors

Wikipedia's Massachusetts entry gives facts and information about the state and you can click on any of the links at the bottom of the page for information about a county, city or other local information.

See also Wikipedia's List of Counties in Massachusetts
List of Municipalities in Massachusetts

Massachusetts State Facts and Information
( Move your cursor over the map to locate a county; Click on a county on the map to get facts and informaton for that county)




* Basic Guides *Statewide Sites of Interest * Maps *
*Websites of Libraries, Archives and Societies * Records *
* Share Research * More Links *

Basic Guides to Massachusetts Research

Books you might purchase or use in a library include

  • Audiotapes of lectures taped at genealogy conferences with the word "Massachusetts" in the title.

Each of the three reference books listed below has a small section covering each state that includes maps, historical information, vital records coverage and a bibliography of resources for that state. (note: some libraries may have earleir editions; those are usable)

  1. Handybook for Genealogists ( 11th edition) (find in a library)
  2. Ancestry's Redbook, 3rd ed, revised. (find in a library) (see above for online copy)
  3. The Family Tree Resource Book for Genealogical Research (find in a library)


Statewide sites of Interest

Next, see what is available for your counties of interest at at one of these statewide sites. For each, use the county selection list to find out what is available for the various counties. Content will vary, but in usually you wil find the GenWeb site to be the most robust. All are volunteer driven sites; all data free, but as time goes by, the upkeep of many of these sites seems to be falling by the wayside.

Websites of Libraries, Archives and Societies


bibles, diaries and family papers,
cemetery, census, church, city directories,
histories, court & legal, military, land and property, naturalizations, newspapers, probate, vital

Use the place name search of the Family History Library catalog a to find out what has been filmed covering the state, counties and towns of Massachusetts

Remember: In New England states records at the town level are especially important.

Bible, Diaries and Family Papers : For general information, see Guide to Bible Records, this website

Cemetery: For general informaton, see Guide to Cemetery records, this website

Census: For general inforamtion, see guide to census records, this website.

Church: For general information, see Guide to Church Records, this website.

City and County Directories: For general information, see guide to City and County directories, this website.

County and Local Histories: For general informaton, see guide to county histories, this website

Court & Legal; For general information, see guide to law libraries, this website

Land & Property: For general information, see guide to land records, this website.

Military; For general inforamtion, see guide to military records, this website

Naturalizations; For general informaton, see guide to naturalizations, this website

Newspapers: For general information, see guide to newspapers, this website

Probate: For general inforamton, see guide to probate records, this website

Tax Records

Vital: For general information, see Guide to Vital Records, this website.

Queries & Help

  • Check the Massachsetts Genweb county pages for look up volunteers in that county.
  • Random Acts of Genealogical Kindnes: Massachusetts -- please read their guidelines if this is your first request.
  • Gen Forum Boards -- all state only.
  • Ancestry/Rootsweb message boards -- there is one for the full state and one for each county.

More Links

* Cyndi's List Massachusetts Page
* Linkpendium Massachusetts Links
* Ancestors Massachusetts Resource Guide
* Rootsweb: Massachusetts
* Genealink's Massachusetts Page
* Access Genealogy's List of Massachusetts Links
* Genealogy Today's State Gen Site: Massachusetts


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This page last updated June 27, 2011