J’cans Urged to Trace Family History

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The Registrar General’s Department (RGD) is encouraging Jamaicans at home and abroad to take advantage of its genealogy research facility, which is aimed at encouraging persons to trace the origins of their family history.

The RGD has been conducting genealogy research through its Island Records Office since 1999 and has carried out over 2-thousand researches since that time.

The Island Records Office has a record pool dating back to the 1600s and provides assistance to all individuals, professional researchers, such as genealogists and historians, students and ordinary Jamaicans carrying out historical and genealogy searches.

Production Manager at the RGD, Desmond Davis, explained that prior to mandatory registrations in Jamaica, the Church of England (Anglican Church) kept baptismal records and it is from this pool that the early records are drawn.
Mr. Davis said that the information can be utilized in numerous ways.

Mr. Davis said the cost of the research is $1500 dollars per hour and people are encouraged to do at least three hours search for it to be meaningful.

He added that special arrangements can be made for university students to go in to the RGD and work on research projects.