Discover your ancestor in rare early records documenting emigration from Britain from 1636 to 1815.
Each result provides you with a transcript and image of the original records.
Depending on the type of document, the images of the original records may include additional details such as marital status, former residence, and nationality of settler.
You may even discover, for example, that your ancestor was part of a company of strolling comedians, who left their country to ‘follow their calling’. This company departed from Arundel in 1774 for ‘the Island of Zealand’ on the ship Ranger. Ralph Todd was the shipmaster. There were 19 members in their group with two marked as children. From the last names, we can infer that some in the group were related. For instance, Frederick Fisher, aged 48, and Maria Fisher, aged 30, were likely the parents of Frederick Fisher, 10, and Paul Fisher, 3.
Please note that those traveling to the Americas were emigrating; most of those traveling to the near continent were on business or leisure trips.
Included in this collection are the following pieces from The National Archives (TNA):
AO 3/144 – List of settlers enrolled for Canada under the government regulations at Edinburgh, 1815
CO 1/8 – America and West Indies, colonial papers, 1634-1635: early passenger list to New England – ‘Francis’ of Ipswich at folios 100-102, ‘Elizabeth’ of Ipswich at folios 103-105, and ‘James’ of London at folios 184-185
CO 1/9 – Privy Council and related bodies: America and West Indies, colonial papers – Early passenger lists to New England 1636-1638
CO 324/55 – Persons naturalised in American colonies 1740-1761 – Described by the TNA catalogue as ‘Colonial Office and Predecessors: General Entry Books, Series I. Entry Books, Series I: Commissions, Instructions, Petitions, Grants, Orders in Council, Warrants, Letters, etc. Names of persons naturalised in the American colonies’.
CO 324/56 – Persons naturalised in American colonies 1761 – Described by the TNA catalogue as ‘Colonial Office and Predecessors: General Entry Books, Series I. Entry Books, Series I: Commissions, Instructions, Petitions, Grants, Orders in Council, Warrants, Letters, etc. Names of persons naturalised in the American colonies’.
E 140/167/6 – Gravesend register: list of passengers who passed through port of London from March to October 1669
T 47/9 – Weekly emigration returns to New World 1773-1774
T 47/10 – Weekly emigration returns to New World 1774-1775
T 47/11 – Weekly emigration returns to New World 1775-1776
T 47/12 – Emigration returns from Scotland to America 1774-1775
Do you know the name of the ship your ancestor sailed on? You can narrow your results by specific ship name using the ship name search field. Even if you cannot find your ancestor’s name in these records, you may be able to learn more about the ship that carried your ancestor to the New World.
If you have an idea of where your ancestor sailed from or to, you can use the ship departure port or destination field to select a specific place, thus narrowing your result.