Begin Main Content Area

Ethnic & Religious Ancestry

Many researchers have difficulty finding information on their ancestors in the general genealogical resources available. In some instances, such as slaves and native Americans, records were scanty, not consistently recorded, or recorded in less well known collections and databases. These ancestors as well as immigrants of many nationalities may have had their surnames spelled in a variety of ways in different records of the same time period.

Often persons of a particular religion or ethnic group immigrated and migrated in the United States with relatives or groups of persons of the same ethnic or religious background. Native American ancestors may have been moved onto reservations. Knowing the tribal background and history is helpful. The links suggested here will often provide records, helpful background information, or researchers with similar interests to assist the genealogist.

African American

AfriGeneas - African Ancestored Genealogy

Christine's Genealogy - AfricanAmericans

Freedmen's Bureau Online


Philadelphia Archdiocesan Historical Research Center


Church of the Brethren

Brethren History & Genealogy


Pennsylvania Dutch FamilyHistory & Genealogy

Pennsylvania German Society

Germany GenWeb Project


Japanese-American Family History Resources 



American Jewish Archives

Ellis Island: Search Jewish Passengers

International Tracing Service

Pittsburgh Jewish Newspaper Project


Family Tree Magazine Ethnic Toolkit




Church Records of the Western Pennsylvania Conference

United Methodist Archives Eastern Pennsylvania Conference


Moravian Church Genealogy Links

Native American

Native American Ancestry

Native American Resources


Polish Genealogical Society of Connecticut and the Northeast


Quaker Heritage


Finding Your Swedish Roots

National Danish-American Genealogical Society

Swedish Colonial Society

Welsh & Scotch-Irish

Welsh & Scotch-Irish Settlers of Pennsylvania & Virginia