Saturday, May 24, 2014

Resources for Finding Church Records in the City of Baltimore

For Baltimore births and deaths prior to 1875, research in church records is necessary. There are several wonderful resources that can guide your search for relevant church records.

Two books by author Edna A. Kanely have been assisting researchers for years in locating Maryland church records. A Directory of Maryland Church Records, sponsored by the Genealogical Council of Maryland and published in 1987, provides a “comprehensive summary of the location and availability of Maryland church records.”[1] This book covers about 2,600 Maryland churches.

Ms. Kanely’s other book, entitled Directory of Ministers and Maryland Churches They Served, 1634-1990, can help you determine the associated church of a particular minister. As an example, a newspaper marriage announcement or a civil marriage record may provide the name of the minister that married your ancestral couple.[2] By consulting Kanely’s Directory, you can determine what church or churches the minister may have served and the associated time period(s). With that information, you can determine the availability of the records in A Directory of Maryland Church Records.

[1] Edna A. Kanely, Directory of Maryland Church Records (Silver Spring, Md.: Family Line Publications, 1987), v.
[2] The City of Baltimore has civil marriage records starting in 1851 when Baltimore became an independent city. Prior to 1851, the marriage records would be found in Baltimore County.

Debra A. Hoffman, "Resources for Finding Church Records in the City of Baltimore," Ancestral Leaves, posted 24 May 2014 ( : viewed [date]). [Please feel free to link to the specific post if you prefer.]


  1. I just discovered your blog through MD Genealogical Society's FB page. I'm looking forward to reading more!

  2. Thanks, glad you enjoyed reading my blog!