Ancestry contributes significant investment to make records from over 150 parishes across the greater Boston area available online

LEHI, Utah and SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 08, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, today announced joining the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) Historic Catholic Records Online Project, a unique undertaking to digitize Massachusetts Catholic records from the late 1700s to the early 1900s. The collection includes approximately 10 million names.

The Historic Catholic Records Online Project marks the first time a significant number of sacramental records from any U.S. - based archdiocese have been made available in an online digital format.

“The detailed documents in this collection are a critical resource for researchers, historians, and genealogists, especially when secular records are spotty or lost,” said Brenton Simons, President and CEO of the New England Historic Genealogical Society. “We’ve worked with Ancestry as a trusted collaborator on several projects over many years including making vital records, city directories, and state censuses more accessible and we are thrilled to be working with them again on this new important project. This collaboration will help ensure that a large number of family historians will be able to connect with their ancestors through the information in these records.”

The records within the bound volumes contain several sacraments of the Catholic Church, including baptism, confirmation, holy communion, marriage, holy orders, and the anointing of the sick. They provide a unique snapshot of the microcosm of diverse cultures in Boston and the threads of these cultures across time. 

Images of the oldest records from Boston’s earliest parishes such as Holy Cross and Holy Trinity are available to browse now on, New England Historic Genealogy Society’s award-wining website. Transcripts of the records will be available to Ancestry’s more than 2.7 million global subscribers as the project progresses. Images of the records will be accessible through a membership on

“We’re honored to participate in this important effort, our subscribers have been waiting for these records a long time,” said Todd Godfrey, Vice President of Global content at Ancestry. “We hope to expand our work in digitizing these important records with Catholic Diocese and Archdiocese across the U.S. and around the world.”

The Boston collection adds to a growing list of global Catholic records available on, including records from the United States, Mexico, Ireland, and Canada.

To search millions of Catholic records available on Ancestry visit  More information about the Historic Catholic Records Online Project can be found here.