Places to Search

Passenger Lists

Passenger Arrival Lists
by Loretto Dennis Szucs

What fires the imagination more than the image of our own immigrant ancestors first setting foot on American soil? Your family's arrival in the United States is an important part of your personal history. There may be a passenger arrival list that shows your ancestor's name—and hopefully a lot more about him or her.

Rediscovering Passenger Lists
by Kory L. Meyerink, AG, MLS

Since 1820, over 60 million persons have arrived at more than 100 different ports in the United States, bringing with them unique cultures, histories, and family stories. Their new lives were generally better than the lives they left behind, but in climbing the social ladders of the United States, personal histories began to be obscured. Information about ancestral homeland, occupation, social status, even the family name were often jettisoned to make way for the "new American."

Taking the Plunge on Ships' Passenger Lists
by George G. Morgan

What I have learned over the years, though, is that there really is a huge collection of passenger lists available. Most of the records have not been digitized and placed online on the Internet or in databases, but there certainly are indices that can help you locate where to search for the originals, or for microfilm and scanned images.



See also: GenDirectory: Passenger Lists and Live Roots Genealogy Search