Colonial (U.S.) Research Guide

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Year range
1600 - 1776

This Research Guide seeks to guide you to the best resources for researching the U.S. colonial era (1620-1776). Please add your favorite resources as well as a link to your User page if you are actively researching this time period.


Colonial New England

Resources for researching Colonial New England (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island).

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Colonial Mid-Atlantic

Resources for researching Colonial Mid-Atlantic (New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland).

Colonial South

Resources for researching Colonial South (Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, etc.)

Colonial Era Records in England

It wasn't uncommon for early colonial immigrants (and later ones too) to also own or be entitled to inherit property back in England (and Scotland and Ireland).

  1. University of Nottingham's Learning Skills for Historical Documents provides guidance and assistance for researchers. Using original records for the first time can be quite daunting. The handwriting can be hard to read; unfamiliar words and phrases are often used; and it can be difficult to know which documents to use in order to find relevant information. 'Historical Skills' units give advice relating to using and understanding old records.

Colonial Researchers on WeRelate