The District of Columbia Archives houses many genealogical records but most of these are not available online. Information about online collections is available at this website.



“Office Hours: Monday- Friday, 8:15 am-4:45 pm
Research Hours: Tuesday and Thursday, 9 am – 12 pm for land records research only, and by appointment.

Phone: (202) 671-1105

Fax: (202) 727-6076

Please email to make an appointment. In your email, describe the specific research you propose to undertake. Researchers must be scheduled ahead of time.

The genealogy records collection in the DC Archives includes:

  • Birth certificates (1874-1916)**

  • Death certificates (1874-1932)

  • Marriage certificates (1870-1965)**

  • Wills and probate records (1801-1999)

  • Administration cases (1879-1958)

  • Indentures of Apprenticeship records (1812-1893)

  • Guardianships and Administrative Bonds records (1862-1939)

** Birth certificates beginning in 1916 and marriage certificates beginning in 1966 are not yet open to public, pursuant to section 20(c) of Vital Records Act of 1981, effective October 8, 1981 (D.C. Law 4-34; D.C. Official Code § 7-219).

Additional historical records at the DC Archives include:

  • Reports of the Board of Commissioners (1874-1960)

  • Articles of Incorporation* (1870-1957)

  • Construction building permits and technical drawings* (1949-1995)

  • Recorder of Deeds land transaction records (1797-1930)

  • Engineering Commission (ED) records (1898-1955)

  • Board of Health Minutes (1822-1878)

  • Board of Architects Minutes (1925-1989)

  • DC Jail committal records (1850-1934)

  • Records of the Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority (Control Board)”


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