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Portuguese-American Genealogy

A guide on some resources for those interested in Portuguese-American genealogy.

Vital Records

"Vital records most commonly refer to records such as birth and death certificates, marriage licenses and divorce decrees, wills and the like. These records are created and held by local authorities (state and municipal/county), with possible exceptions for events overseas, in the military, or in the District of Columbia. They are not considered Federal records; therefore they are not held by NARA (National Archives and Records Administration)"

The types of vital records that will be of relevance to someone looking for their Portuguese ancestors might occur in one of two places:

Microfilm Collection 3rd Floor Carney Library

Available on the third floor of the Claire T. Carney Library are the microfilms of the birth-marriage-death records of the Azores. These materials were microfilmed by the Church of Latter-Day-Saints and available for public consultation during library hours. Please note that library and archives staff will not provide genealogical or translation assistance for these materials; there are not indexes available and thus researchers must know which island and village their ancestor lived on, as well as which year the event they are researching took place. For those who are unable to use the microfilm in person, these records have been digitized by the Government of the Azores (note that the search ability and records are in Portuguese, with no translation available).

Archives and Special Collection Librarian

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Chelsea Fernandes
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Claire T. Carney Library
Archives & Special Collections
Room M07
285 Old Westport Road
Dartmouth, MA 02747