The Catholic Heritage Archive

The Catholic Heritage Archive

Welcome to what will be the most comprehensive online collection of Roman Catholic records for Britain, Ireland and North America. Up to 100 million records. Only on Findmypast.

An introduction to the collection

An introduction to the collection

The Roman Catholic Church is the largest Christian denomination in the world. Despite popular belief that it has few adherents in Britain and the US, it has always been a significant component (up to 25%) of the population. It has some of the oldest and best preserved genealogical records ever created, however they have never been easy to use. Until now. 

The project - which we launched in January 2017 - aims to digitise the historic records of the Catholic Church in Britain, Ireland and North America. Millions of records covering various parts of the US, England, Scotland and the whole of Ireland are already available within the collection and more records are due to be added throughout 2018

The sorts of records you are likely to find include:

- Baptisms 

- Marriages 

- Deaths & Burials

- Congregational records and more

In 2017, we published the Registers for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia in the USA and the Archdioceses of Birmingham and Westminster in England. Philadelphia records begin in 1757, Westminster and Birmingham in 1657. 2018 will bring records from the Archdiocese of New York, a groundbreaking project which will provide the opportunity to discover early American immigrants for researchers all over the world. We will also publish materials from the Archdioceses of Baltimore, Cincinnati, Chicago, Wilmington and Toledo in the United States. Our international collection is growing, too, with Westminster, Liverpool, Middlesbrough, Northampton, and all Scottish Archdioceses and Dioceses.

We have collaborated closely with the Catholic Church to bring these millions of records and images to your fingertips for the first time ever.

Learn more

Learn more

Learn more about this incredibly significant release, what the records can tell you and the background of the Catholic Heritage Archive on our blog. While you're there, let us know what you discover in the Catholic Heritage Archive!

Understanding the records

Understanding the records

Religious records can sometimes be hard to use, particularly where there has been a prevalence of the use of Latin. We've put together this comprehensive guide to understanding the records in the Catholic Heritage Archive.

Searching Irish Catholic Parish Registers

Searching Irish Catholic Parish Registers

Part of this massive project is 10 million Irish Catholic Parish Registers which will be free for anyone to view, forever. Find out how to make the most of searching this incredible Irish family history resource here.

Common Latin terminology

Common Latin terminology

Roman Catholic records through the ages have often been written in the Catholic Church's lingua franca, Latin. It can help to have a basic understanding of Latin terms when exploring Catholic records, so we put this primer together.

Your Catholic record questions, answered

Your Catholic record questions, answered

We asked Findmypast users for their questions about the Catholic Heritage Archive, which we then put to our in-house experts to answer. Read what they said here, and see what you can discover in these records.