Posted by Ancestry Team on April 1, 2015 in Collections

Do you have North Carolina ancestors?  Well you may need to take a day off from work or tell your family you simply aren’t available.

Ancestry has launched North Carolina, Marriage Records, 1741-2011 and this data collection includes images of marriage bonds, licenses, certificates, and registers from 87 different counties.

On the data collection page, check out the browse section on the right hand side to see which counties are available and what records are included for that county.

Check the browse section on the right side of the data collection page to see what is available.
Check the browse section on the right side of the data collection page to see what is available.

And check each entry you find for your ancestor.  This search for Newman Alexander and Catherine Carpenter gives me two entries:

 

Check each search result to see if they point to different images.
Check each search result to see if they point to different images.

 

Don’t assume they are the same.  One is to a book that abstracts marriage records, the second is to an actual bond.

And if you are doing African American research in North Carolina, you may discover some critical clues.

In 1866, An Act Concerning Negroes and Persons of Color or of Mixed Blood made provisions for the legal registration of the marriages of recently emancipated slaves.

The recording of the marriages took place mostly around 1866, they reference the joining of couples living as man and wife dating back to 1820, and possibly earlier.

The details on these records typically only give the names of the bride and groom, the year, and sometimes the month they began living together as man and wife. Sometimes they also include the names of their former owners, making these a powerful genealogical tool for those researching their African American roots.

Example of a slave marriage record.
Example of a slave marriage record.

 

Happy Searching!

Thanks to Juliana Szucs for the information on the African American records in this collection.

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Since my wife and I are from North Carolina and we are African Americans, this collection has been a “gold mine”. I been at it for 3 hours already.

  2. Jean

    Beware! About the third record I looked at has serious indexing errors. In Buncombe County, NC, John L Lawrence & Myrtle L Logan were married on 9 Jun 1925. Not 24 Feb 1901 as indexed.

  3. Christinia Daniels-Johns

    I have found my g grandparents marriage lic. and my gg-grandparents lic. Also found out what my gg grandparents on g great grandfather side name were.

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