In Massachusetts' records, Vol. I, page 9, under date of July 26, 1631, "Charlton, Misticke & the newe towne" are mentioned. March 6, 1632, the bounds were established between Charlestowne and Newtowne.

May 2, 1638, Massachusetts' records, Vol. I., page 228. "It is ordered that Newtowne shall be hencefoward be called Cambridge."

March 13, 1639, the bounds between Cambridge and Watertown were established, and October 7, 1641, the bounds between Cambridge and Boston.

November 12, 1659, a grant of 1,000 acres of land was made to Cambridge, which was renewed October 19, 1664.

March 20, 1712, a part of Cambridge was established as the town of Lexington.

June 4, 1755, a part of Cambridge was annexed to Waltham.

April 18, 1761, and March 6, 1802, parts of Charlestown were annexed to Cambridge.

February 24, 1807, a part of Cambridge was established as the town of Brighton.

February 27, 1807, a part of Cambridge was established as the town of West Cambridge.

January 27, 1816, a part of Cambridge was annexed to Brighton.

February 12, 1818, and June 17, 1820, parts of Charlestown were annexed to Cambridge.

March 17, 1846, Cambridge was incorporated as a city. The act of incorporation was accepted by the town March 30, 1846.

April 27, 1855, a part of Watertown was annexed to Cambridge.

April 30, 1856, bounds were established between Cambridge and Somerville and a part of each place was annexed to the other.

February 25, 1862, bounds were established between Cambridge and Belmont and West Cambridge, and parts of each place were annexed to Cambridge and parts of Cambridge to each of those places.

April 29, 1862, bounds were established between Cambridge and Somerville and parts of each place were annexed to the other.

April 19, 1880, a part of Belmont was annexed to Cambridge.

March 10, 1885, a part of Watertown was annexed to Cambridge.

April 28, 1891, bounds between Cambridge and Belmont were established and a part of each place annexed to the other.

March 9, 1898, bounds were established between Cambridge and Watertown and a part of each place annexed to the other.

March 29, 1898, bounds were established between Cambridge and Boston.

February 16, 1906, bounds between Belmont and Cambridge were readjusted.

May 5, 1911, bounds between Cambridge and Arlington were established, to be accepted by city council and selectmen. May 22, 1911, they were accepted by the selectmen of Arlington, and on May 31, 1911, by the city council of Cambridge.

1765, 1,571   1820, 3,295   1870, 39,634
1776, 1,586   1830, 6,072   1880, 52,669
1790, 2,115   1840, 8,409   1890, 70,028
1800, 2,453   1850, 14,825   1900, 91,886
1810, 2,323   1860, 86,060   1910, 104,839

When places other than Cambridge or Massachusetts are named in the original records, they are given in the printed copy.

In all records the original spelling is followed.

The various spellings of a name shoud be examined, as items about the same family or individual may be found under different spellings.

Marriages are printed under the name of both parties. When a marriage appears without the intention recorded, it is designated with an asterisk.

Additional information which does not appear in the original text of an item, i.e., any explanation, query, inference or difference shown in other entries of the record, is bracketed.

A general guide to how to use these pages.

If you are new to this site, or haven't used the site a lot, please be sure to read the rest of this page. Even if you have used this site a lot, a refresher may be helpful due to the changes that have been introduced.

You can research the records alphabetically or chronologically within surname. Images of the pages from which the transcriptions were done, and the title pages, are available for most towns. A list of abbreviations used is available.

Alphabetic - This is the most common way that the published vital records were presented. All of the same given names were arranged chronologically with names that had middle initials or middle names followed the others. Nicknames would appear alphabeticall according to the spelling, i.e. Nabby, the nickname for Abigail, would be with the names beginning with the letter "N."

In this version, the names are sorted based on the most common spelling. Abbie, Abby, Abigail, Knabby, Nabby, etc., will all appear together and will be chronological. Middle initials and middle names have no influence on the order.

Note: There are going to be errors in the indexing of the names. A woman named Abiel may have been recorded as Abby. The indexing will have her with the Abigails. Please notify me with the Contact page about errors and they will be fixed within a couple days.

Chronologic - The chronologic sort will be most helpful with surnames having lots of entries, especially births. Records that had a missing date, or part, have had the missing portions replaced with zeros and will appear ahead of the others.

Page images - The icon at the left of each record is a link to the image of the page from which the transcription was done. The transcriptions are a tool. The image is the source. It is your responsibility to copy the image for your documentation. Also, the title page should be copied. There is a link to the title page in the navigation bar on transcription pages and image display pages.

Abbreviations - Each town had its own abbreviations used in the published records. Most of these are the same. The abbreviations for the headstones (GR), private records (PR), churches (CR), etc. are all different. There is a link to a list of all abbreviations used for the town in the navigation bar of the transcription pages.

Errors - There are two types of errors.

  • Errors in the published records - It is known that errors are in the published records. Not many, to be sure, but they are there. Where I have found them, or have been informed and provided sufficient documentation, the records have been annotated. This appears in red at the end of the line.]
  • Transcription errors - Even with the best of proofing, errors occur. If you find one, use the Contact link at the top of the page and tell me about the error. I need to have the town name, type of record, page number, what the error is and what it should be. It facilitates matters if you copy and paste the record in error into the e-mail.

Miscellaneous - As the opportunity has provided, I have tried to research names that had only initials or an initial and a surname to find the full names. Where I've been successful I've added the name in red, i.e. J.R. appears as J[ohn] R. or J[ohn] R[ussel].

The alphabetic and chronologic sort orders and many planned improvements require that towns be transcribed. If you can spare two, or more, hours per week to help with the transcribing, write me.

With the exception of the few people helping with transcribing and indexing, I am the only person working on this project. I do all of the technical work. I correct errors. I put transcriptions into final format. I design the pages. This takes a tremendous amount of time and money. If you find this site useful, please donate what you think it is worth to you by going to the donations page.