Whether you are a seasoned genealogist or just interested in your family history, our archives staff is here to help you discover your family roots.
The archives holds copies of baptism, marriage, and burial registers of every open and closed parish within the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. Please note that the archives does not have sacramental registers for parishes that were once in the territory of the Archdiocese but are no longer; please contact the current diocese that the parish resides in.
What records can I access?
Due to privacy concerns, baptism and marriage records are closed for 100 years from the date of creation; baptism and marriage records prior to 1920, and death records prior to 1953 are available for genealogical research.
How can I access records?
Online Access through Find My Past
- Sacramental records from the earliest date through 1920 for baptism and marriage registers and 1953 for burial registers are available online. Findmypast is a subscription service but a 2 week free trial is available for first-time users.
Submit a Request to the Archives
- The Archives accepts genealogical requests by mail or online form. Telephone and email requests are not accepted and we are unable to host in-person researchers. Genealogists can request up to four specific names and sacraments with each submission (ex. 2 marriages and 2 baptisms) for a $25 fee. The Archives can only search for specific requests and is not able to research general family trees. Requests normally take 2 to 4 weeks to process.
What should I do to prepare?
Whether submitting a request to the archives or using online resources, there are a few details you’ll want to locate beforehand to make the most of sacramental record collections. For each record, we recommend having the following information:
- Name of the individual who received the sacrament (for baptisms, include parents)
- Parish where the sacrament was received
- If you do not know the parish, the individual’s address or city ward at the time of the event or the name of the officiating priest
- Note: baptismal records can contain records of other sacraments, i.e. baptismal records often contain marriage date and parish
If you have trouble finding this information, it can be helpful to consult civil records. Please see our Resources page for more places to look.
Genealogists can request baptism, marriage, and death records from 1920 or older.
Baptism: Name, date of birth, date of baptism, parents’ names, witnesses, name of priest.
Marriage: Groom’s name, bride’s maiden name, witnesses, date of marriage and priest.
Death: Name of person, date of death, place of internment. *some records include age or cause of death
Expect a 2-4 week turnaround on all genealogy requests sent to the archives. For more immediate needs, researchers are encouraged to use the digitized collection at Find My Past.
You will receive a copy of the original record as it appears in the parish sacramental register. The majority of records are recorded (or partially recorded) in Latin.
Names will often have Latin spellings – endings such as -us and -am
Henricus for Henry, Willelmus/Gulielmus for William, etc.
We do not provide English translations for genealogy records. For help deciphering Latin terms, please see the below key terms:
- Birth (nati, natus, genitus, natales, ortus, oriundus)
- Baptism date (datum baptismi)
- Birth date (datum nativitatis)
- Birth place (locus nativitatis)
- Cemetery (cemeterio)
- Christening (baptismi, baptizatus, renatus, plutus, lautus, purgatus, ablutus, lustratio)
- Child (infans, filius/filia, puer, proles)
- Death, died (obiit, defunctorum, defuncti)
- Father (pater)
- Godparent (patrini, levantes, susceptores, compater, commater, matrina)
- Marriage date (datum matrim)
- Married together with (matrimonium contraxit cum)
- Mother (mater)
- Name and residence (nomen et residentia)
- Parents (parentes, genitores)
- Priest’s name (nomen sacerdotis)
- Witnesses (testes)
- When (quando)
- Where (ubi)
- Years of age (aetatis)
To determine place of residence, we suggest searching vital records (birth, marriage, death), census records, and city directories. Please see our Resources page for more help!
- Calvary Cemetery, Walnut Hills, 1865-current, began as parochial cemetery for St. Francis de Sales
- Christ Cemetery, Liberty and Vine, 1819-1828, affiliated with Christ Church, graves were moved to other Catholic cemeteries after Christ Church relocated in 1822; those that remained in 1858 were removed for construction of St. Francis Seraph and placed in the St. Francis Seraph crypt
- Gate of Heaven Cemetery, Montgomery, 1947-current
- Guardian Angels Cemetery, Mt. Washington, 1904-current
- Holy Rood Cemetery, Glendale, 1887-1920s
- Mount Notre Dame Convent Cemetery, 1860-current, affiliated with the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur
- Mount St. Joseph Cemetery, 1883-current, affiliated with the Sisters of Charity
- Our Lady of Victory Cemetery, Delhi, 1852-current
- St. Aloysius Gonzaga Cemetery, Bridgetown North,1868-current
- St. Bernard Cemetery, Colerain,1867-current
- St. Clare Convent Cemetery, Mt. Healthy,1896-current, affiliated with the Franciscan Sisters of the Poor
- St. James Cemetery, White Oak, 1843-current
- St. John the Baptist Cemetery, Colerain, 1860-current
- St. John’s Cemetery, St. Bernard, 1849-current
- Old St. Joseph Cemetery, Price Hill, 1843-current
- New St. Joseph Cemetery, Delhi, 1854-current
- St. Mary’s Cemetery, Mt. Healthy, 1861-current, began as parochial cemetery for Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
- St. Mary Cemetery, St. Bernard, 1873-current
- St. Michael Cemetery, Madisonville, 1859-current, parochial cemetery for St. Michael, which was renamed St. Anthony in 1891
- St. Patrick Cemetery, North College Hill, 1865-1977, began as parochial cemetery for St. Michael the Archangel
- St. Peter Cemetery, Fairmont, 1843-1849, after the cemetery closed, graves were moved to Old St. Joseph’s
- Sts. Peter and Paul Cemetery (old), Reading, 1859-1881
- Sts. Peter and Paul Cemetery (new), Reading, 1880-current
The archives holds very few orphanage records:
- St. Vincent Home for Boys
- St. Joseph Infant Maternity Home
The Chancery holds records for Mt. Alverno Protectory for Boys (institutional records and student registers located at Mt. Notre Dame Archives), St. Joseph Infant Asylum, Mount St. Mary’s Training School for Girls, Convent of the Good Shepherd, Baum St., and Our Lady of the Woods (Girls Town).
Records not located at Archdiocesan offices are:
- St. Aloysius Orphanage, Children’s Home of Cincinnati, Cincinnati Orphan Asylum (also The Convalescent Hospital for Children), located at the Cincinnati History Library & Archives (CHLA)
- Bethany Home for Girls and Boys, records at the Archives of the Community of the Transfiguration
- St. Joseph, Dayton, records kept by Catholic Social Services and Wright State Libraries
- St. Peter Orphanage, later St. Joseph Orphanage, Cincinnati, records at St. Joseph
Orphanages were often run by men and women’s religious communities, such as the Sisters of the Good Shepherd, Religious of the Sacred Heart, Sisters of St. Joseph, Society of the Most Precious Blood, and the Brothers of the Poor of St. Francis. If the institution you’re researching was run by one of these religious communities, it may be helpful to contact that particular organization for assistance.