This resource details the arrivals of approximately 89,000 individuals who sailed to Baltimore in the nineteenth century. The information was extracted from National Archives Microfilm Series M255, Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Baltimore, 1820-1891. While the entire microfilm series spans 50 rolls, this Family Archive covers rolls 1 through 8 and includes individuals who arrived between September 2, 1820 and May 28, 1852.
Most Baltimore passenger lists were collected following the 1833 enactment of a Maryland state law that required passenger lists be submitted to the mayor upon a ship’s arrival. The information collected on those passenger lists and preserved on this database can help you create a well-rounded picture of your ancestor’s arrival in America.
As you know, it is often the little details that help bring your family history to life. Because of this, we included more than just the basic information available about a person on the actual microfilm. For example, you’ll often learn the type of ship an individual sailed on. Types of ships include:
- Bark: A ship of three to five masts with the after mast fore-and-aft rigged.
- Brig: A two-masted square-rigged sailing ship.
- Galliot: A small galley propelled by sails and oars.
- Ketch: A large fore-and-aft rigged boat with two masts.
- Schooner: A fore-and-aft rigged sailing ship.