[Using Juneau, Alaska Family History Center (FHC) resources]


EXAMPLE A:  (1820 – 1846 New York Records)

Suppose that you know that one Arthur Winter (b. 1808), his wife Ann (b. 1809), and their son William (b. 1832) arrived at the Port of New York sometime between 1830 and 1840 and later records suggest that they came from England.  To find the ship’s passenger list that shows that arrival:

1.        Use the Red Spiral Bound “Passenger Lists Port of New York” and go to New York Passenger Lists 1820-1846 to find that the film number of the film that includes Arthur in the Index is 0350305;

2.        Order the index film and find the entry for Arthur Winter.  You will find that:

a)      Arthur’s wife and child were named on his index card;

b)      How old Arthur was when he arrived;

c)       Arthur’s occupation and nationality;

d)      His last permanent address;

e)       The name of the ship on which they arrived;

f)        That they arrived on 17 October 1834;

g)      And that there are cards for his wife Ann and son William.


3.        You can then return to the Red Spiral Bound booklet (see 1 above) and use the section that gives the Microfilm numbers for the Passenger Lists for the year 1834.  The Film which will show Arthur Winter’s arrival on 17 Oct. 1834 is Film #0002270.



4.        Order Film #0002270 and search through it until you find the entries for 17 Oct. 1834.  The Index Card gave the name of the Arthur’s ship as Maroposa; it should have been Maraposa.

a)      Arthur appears on the top of the list, first 3 entries;

b)      You will find not all of the passengers were from London;

c)       The entry shows that they intended to settle in New York;

d)      You will also find that not all of the passengers were headed for the same place – some were headed for Westpoint, New Orleans and other places;

e)       You will also find that the Ships Captain or Master’s name was E. Howey, Jr. or Ebenz Howey.


5.        You can locate the same Microfilm numbers above both on the microfiche and the computer editions of the Family History Library Catalog (FHLC), using the Locality section for New York City.


EXAMPLE B:  (1897 – 1902 Port of New York Index & Passenger Lists

For this example we want to find the arrival of Mathilde Roth (b. 1817) and her six children who came to New York in 1900 to meet her husband Samuel Roth who was already here and living in New York.  To locate this record, do the following:

1.                Using the Red Spiral Bound booklet (as above example) look up the Index Film for June 16 1897 – June 30, 1902.  The entry for Mathilde Roth is on Film #0821543.

2.                 If you order that film and put it on a reader, you will find the Index Card for Mathilde Roth, which will show:

a)       That she arrived New York on 12 Jan. 1900 on the SS Pennsylvania;

b)       You’ll also find that her husband paid for her passage;

c)       That her nationality is Hungarian;

d)       That her last residence was Rimoza;

e)       And that she was going to meet her Husband Samuel Roth in New York.


Notice that the bottom right hand corner of the Index Card shows the three numbers that you need to locate this entry on the actual Passenger List.  The numbers are given as:  16-1-167.  These are the:  Group Number (Page No.), List Number (Line No.) and Volume Number.  However, the person who prepared this card made an error and the Group Number should have been 20 not 16, making the entry correctly read 20-1-167.


If you now return to the Red Spiral Bound booklet you’ll find that the film Number that contains Volume 167 showing the arrivals for 12 Jan. 1900 is Film #1403850.


If you order that film you can then locate the entry for the ship SS Pennsylvania that arrived on 12 Jan. 1900.  Looking in the lower right hand corner of the passenger list for a stamped number 20 will find the entry for Mathilde Roth.  She is on Line 1; she has 6 children with her, and the address given for her husband Samuel Roth is 644 8th Street, NYC.


If you then go to the Supplement to Manifest of Alien Passengers that is with this list (at the end of the list), you will find nationalities and related data.


EXAMPLE C:  (1902 – 1943 Port of New York Soundex Index and Passenger Lists):

To look for one Bella Begg (b. 1885) who came to New York in 1915 with her three children in route to join her husband George Begg who was living in Casper, Wyoming:

1.                Turn in the Red Spiral Bound booklet (Psgr. Lists) to the section for the July 1, 1901-Dec. 31, 1943 Index which is a Soundex Index.  Immediately following the Soundex Coding is a listing of Passenger Lists, Volume Numbers and the years they cover.  The range of volumes that cover the year 1915 is 5506-5661.

2.                The Soundex Code number for Begg is B-200.  Turning to the listing of Index film numbers you’ll find the entry that will have Soundex Code B-200 on it and the first name of Bella is film number 1379527.

3.                Order the film and search it for the Index Card for Bella Begg (note:  she is on the card as Bellz Begg).  Notice that the film has two rows of Index Cards – one side is upside down so that they can be read when you rewind the film.  Copy the three numbers given after her name.  These numbers refer to:  Number 1 = Line 1; Number 76 = the group or page number; and the number 5574 = the Volume number.

4.                Now using the Red Spiral Bound booklet you’ll find that Film #1401100 contains Volume 5574 (June 6, 1915).

5.                Order film #1401100 and find Volume number 5574 on it; then look at the lower left hand corner of the pages for a stamped number.  Work through the film until you find the Group Number (page number) 76. 

6.                You will then find that Bella is listed on Line 1; that she can read and write; that her last place residence was in Scotland (Stonehaven); that her mother-in-laws name is Elizabeth and that she lives at New Beggin Street, Stonehaven, Scotland.  You’ll also find that Bella was in the United States before, in 1906 in Casper, Wyoming; that she is now going to join her husband who lives in Casper, Wyoming (Box 7); that Bella was born in Scotland; that she came to the U.S. on board the ship SS Cameronium which sailed from Liverpool to Glasgow to New York, leaving Glasgow on 28 May 1915 and arriving New York June 7, 1915, a trip of 9 days.


CAUTION:  Not all Soundex Index Cards are created alike; see EXHIBIT “E” for sample SOUNDEX INDEX CARDS.



Needless to say, if you know that your ancestor(s) arrived at the Port of New York between June 16, 1897 and Dec. 31, 1916 and you know the exact date of arrival of the Ship on which they came to New York, you can go directly to the listing:  PASSENGER AND CREW LISTS 1897 – 1916 and pick up the film number on which they’re listed.  You’ll probably have to search the whole film to find them, however, since you won’t have helpful Line or Page numbers to guide you.  For example:  Ancestor arrived New York 8 March 1899.  The listing shows that Volume Number to be 91-92 and to be on film #1403800.


If you know what year “they” came to the U. S., and that they “probably” came to the Port of New York, you can try to guess as to what month they came; then try to find the right film number.  When you look at the number of ships that arrived in New York on a daily and weekly basis, you will find there were an enormous number of them.


For example:  There are 34 separate microfilms (#1403762 thru. #1403795) covering the arrival of Vessels at the Port of New York beginning with ships arriving on Jan. 19, 1898 and ending with the ships arriving Jan. 1, 1899.  Quite a formidable task to find the right film number by using the guessing game.