The Catholic Church and its members have a rich history in St. Louis. Spanish, French, German, and Irish citizens became new members, thus creating new parishes.
If your ancestors were Catholic, records await you. The St. Louis Archdiocese Parish records are on microfilm and are available at the History and Genealogy Department at St. Louis County Library Headquarters and at the Family History Library.
To use the records successfully, researchers need to know where their ancestors lived. Then locate the closest parish to the residence. Carefully look at the background of the parish. If your ancestor was Irish, he probably did not belong to a German Catholic Church Parish. Likewise, the Czechs did not join an Irish parish.
Records that are more recent are in English, but the early documents are probably in the native language of the church. By learning a few key words, such as born, married, died, in that language, researchers can work their way through the foreign language.
The family knew your ancestors by their given name; however, the church record may include their religious name. Do not overlook the correct record.
The Guide to St. Louis Catholic Archdiocesan Parish Records provides some background information on each parish and outlines the available records.
Catholic cemeteries’ burial information in index form is available on the St. Louis Genealogical Society Cemetery CD number one, available at CD Products, and up-to-date information is available on the St. Louis Catholic Cemeteries website.
St. Louis Archdiocese — History
St. Louis County Library has indexed The History of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis: A Condensed History of the Catholic Church in Missouri and Saint Louis. You will find biographies of various church members from all St. Louis Catholic churches. For further information on this resource and to locate the index go to St. Louis County Library – Local History Indexes – Archdiocese of St. Louis.
125th Jubilee of St. John Nepomuk Parish, St. Louis, Missouri, 1877–1952. St. Louis: privately printed, 1979.
Bachhuber, Claire Marie. The German-Catholic Elite. Ann Arbor, Michigan: St. Louis University, 1984.
Catholic Parish Jubilee Histories. St. Louis: Central Bureau of the CCUA, 1999. [The microfilm records are available at St. Louis County Library with a listing of the parishes included on their website.]
Centennial of St. Wenceslaus Society of St. John Nepomuk Parish, No. 1 of Catholic Central Union: St. Louis,1856–1956. St. Louis: Centennial Jubilee Committee, 1956.
Dempsey, James. Diamond Jubilee of St. Agatha Church, 1871–1946. St. Louis: St. Agatha Church, 1946.
Faherty, William Barnaby. Dream by the River: Two Centuries of Saint Louis Catholicism, 1766–1973. St. Louis: Archdiocese of St. Louis, 1973.
Faherty, William Barnaby. From One Generation to the Next: 160 Years of Catholic Education in Saint Louis. St. Louis: Catholic School Office, 1978.
Faherty, William Barnaby. The Catholic Ancestry of St. Louis. St. Louis: Archdiocese of Saint Louis, 1965.
History of the Archdiocese of St. Louis. St. Louis: Western Watchman Publishing, 1924.
Hughes, Christine Human. Guide to St. Louis Catholic Archdiocesan Parish Records. St. Louis: Friends of the St. Louis County Library, 2001.
King, E. Louise. The Parish Family of Holy Rosary: October 6, 1991. St. Louis: privately printed, 1991.
Official Catholic Directory. New York: P. J. Kennedy, 2004.
Rahill, Peter J. Catholic Beginnings in St. Louis. St. Louis: Bureau of Information, Archdiocese of St. Louis, .
Rothensteiner, Rev. John. History of the Archdiocese of St. Louis in Its Various Stages of Development, from A.D. 1673 to A.D.1928. 2 volumes. St. Louis: Blackwell Wielandy Co., 1928.
Saint Joseph’s Church, Clayton, Missouri: Centennial Program. St. Louis: St. Joseph’s Church, 1942.
St. Louis Archdiocesan Parish Records. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1991–1994. [242 rolls of microfilm]
St. Louis Genealogical Society. Catholic Baptisms St. Louis, Missouri, 1765–1840. St. Louis: St. Louis Genealogical Society, 1982.
St. Louis Genealogical Society. Catholic Marriages, St. Louis, Missouri, 1765–1840. St. Louis: St. Louis Genealogical Society, 1982.
St. Louis Genealogical Society. St. Louis Catholic Burial CD-ROM. St. Louis: St. Louis Genealogical Society, 2003.
Sanchez, Jose, and Hilda Willman. Sanctuary in Soulard: the First 150 Years of Saints Peter and Paul Parish: 1849–1999. St. Louis: Sts. Peter & Paul Parish, 1999.
Schild, James. House of God: The Historic Churches and Places of Worship of the St. Louis Area. Florissant, Missouri: Auto Review, 1995.
Schnepp, Gerald J. Province of St. Louis, 1908–1983: The First Seventy-five Years. St. Louis: Marianist Press, 1985.
The Centennial of Holy Cross Parish: 1864–1964. St. Louis: privately printed, 1964.
Yearbook of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, August 1990. St. Louis: Catholic Center, 1990.
Last Modified: 08-Feb-2019 10:33