Argentia RC - Introduction

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 The Argentia parish was founded in 1835. The records included here cover the period from its 
 inception until the parish was moved to Freshwater in 1942.

 The original records are remarkably complete, starting at the inception of the parish, and 
 missing possibly a page or two.  
 Why include these records in a Red Island web site? Primarily because Red Island was part of 
 the Argentia parish from 1835 until 1942.
 The records include 6,440 Baptism, 1,962 Marriage and Family, and 544 Death Register records. 
 Of these, 778 are pseudo-marriages, most representing marriages that took place in other 
 parishes, and 204 are pseudo-baptisms, most representing names that appear in other sources. 
 [The meanings of these "pseudo" records are explained in the documentation for Baptisms 
 and Marriages.] 

 Baptism, Marriage and Death (register) records have been transcribed from copies of the 
 original parish registers. All records have been transcribed twice and extensively edited 
 and cross-checked. However, errors surely remain. Hopefully these errors are minor and will 
 not cause confusion or be misleading.

 All connections between Baptisms and Marriages, Baptisms and Deaths, and the groupings of 
 parents and children into Families, have been done manually. These connections are far less 
 than complete. Up until around 1896, neither Baptisms nor Marriage records usually identified 
 the town name, Baptisms often didn't list the mother's maiden surname or listed her by her 
 married surname, and Marriages usually didn't contain the names of the parents of the bride 
 or groom. Any help with adding missing connections would be greatly appreciated.

 The full dates for births and baptisms are shown through 1935. Starting in 1936, month and day 
 are shown as "xx-xx" (but the full dates do appear in the original records). 
 Names are spelled (or misspelled) exactly as they appear in the original records, the 
 exception being when a contraction of a first name is used to represent a full name rather 
 than a nickname (e.g. "Wm" becomes "William", "Eliz." becomes "Elizabeth", "Patt." becomes 
 "Patrick", etc). 

 Many entries in the registers were difficult to read due to soiling, water damage, faded ink, 
 poor penmanship, etc. Question marks are added in places where a transcription is unsure or 

 The registers are both large heavy books, and it is very doubtful that they accompanied the 
 priests as they visited the settlements within the parish. Some entries appear out of date 
 order. At least a few entries are missing. Various errors have been noted, including not 
 only misspellings, but entirely wrong names. It is not unusual to see variant spellings of 
 one or both of the parents' names in a Family record.  

 A unique key is assigned to each Baptism and Marriage in the form "b-ppp-ii" (book-page-item). 
 "Book 1" is the older (1835-1896) and "Book 2" is the newer (1896 forward), 
 while "Book 0" is "pseudo" records (explained in the documentation for the Baptism 
 and Marriage records). "Page" is the page within a book (since Book 1 is not numbered, 
 page numbers were assigned). "Item" is the entry on a page, counting from top to bottom.

 Indexes to baptisms and marriages are sequenced by "standard" surnames (explained in the 
 documentation for the Baptism & Marriage indexes).

 Town names have been standardized (e.g. "Point Latine" and "Latine" appear as 
 "Argentia [Point Latine]").

 Since clergymen often wrote only their initials, or wrote their names with or without titles, 
 their names have been standardized. That is, regardless of what initials, partial name, or 
 variant spelling appeared for a given clergyman, it has been converted to a single consistent 

 The Argentia parish also included other settlements at various times:

    . Mussel Harbour (Port Royal) until 1912
    . Placentia Sound until 1912
    . Long Harbour until 1918
    . Iona (Rams) until 1918
    . Red Island until 1941
    . Fox Harbour until 1945
    . Ship Harbour until 1945

 In addition, there were some surnames that appeared in the records mostly only in the first 
 few years, such as Wilson, Pittman, Hines and Movell, possibly indicating that other settlements 
 may have initially been part of this parish.
 The parish Death register is incomplete. It covers only the years 1899-1912, plus parts of 
 1922, 1926, 1927, 1930, 1931, 1932, 1933 and 1934. 

 There are doubtless places where there are small discrepencies between information shown in the 
 Parish records and in the Red Island Family Tree. The primary research for the Family Tree was 
 done around 1990 from hand written notes, while the Parish records were transcribed in 1996/1997 
 from copies of the records. The Family Tree was then updated from the Parish records. The 
 Family Tree also contains additional information provided by correspondants.      
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copyright © 2010 by Brian Hennessey
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