Archdiocese of Boston: New searchable records for Holbrook, Ipswich, Lowell, Peabody, and Whitman

Portrait of Archbishop John Joseph Williams
Portrait of John Joseph Williams, Archbishop of Boston, Massachusetts, USA, first Archbishop of Boston. Author unknown. Public Domain courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Today we have added 14 new volumes to Massachusetts: Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston Records, 1789-1920. Today’s additions include 5 different parishes: Holy Ghost in Whitman, St. Joseph in Holbrook, St. John the Baptist in Peabody, St. Joseph in Ipswich, and St. Mary in Lowell.  This update provides over 1,600 new pages, and nearly 200,000 searchable names.

The Church of the Holy Ghost in Whitman was originally a mission of Abington. The church was erected by Father McQuaid in 1880 and dedicated by Archbishop John J. Williams. Williams was the first Archbishop of Boston.

On March 13, 1887 Holbrook became a parish independent of St. Mary’s of Randolph. Construction began almost immediately, and on May 3, 1888 Father Kelley had completed St. Joseph’s church and it was dedicated by Archbishop Williams.

Peabody held a fair in May of 1870 to raise funds to aid the new parish in Peabody. St. John’s church was sufficiently completed by Christmas of 1871 for Father Gray to celebrate a Mass there. The church was officially dedicated on November 30, 1879, and Archbishop Williams dedicated the altar that morning.

Construction of St. Joseph Church in Ipswich began in 1871 under the direction of Father Shahan. It was dedicated by Archbishop Williams in 1872.

St. Patrick (Lowell) was the first Catholic church in Lowell, established in the 1830s. As the Catholic population grew, St. Peter (Lowell) became the second Catholic church in the area. By 1847, the parishioners of St. Patrick’s were ever greater in number. A new building was purchased, and St. Mary (Lowell) was dedicated by Bishop Fitzpatrick. When St. Patrick’s church was enlarged, it enveloped St. Mary (Lowell) and the church was closed. This volume contains the marriages for St. Mary’s parish from 1847-1861. The baptisms for St. Mary’s are already available online, as part of the volume St. Patrick (Lowell) Baptisms 1847-1878, Part 2.

We’d like to thank out dedicated team of volunteers for their work on this update, including; Shaune-Marie Berg, Lisa Butler, Lesley Chidester, Michelle Cohen, Gail Delfosse, Amelia Devin Freedman, Eldon Gay, Nina Hayes, Paula Hines, Carolyn Jack, Nancy Johnson, Arlys LaFehr, Rick Lageux, Aidan Largey, Barbara Macken, Katherine Marshall-Mayer, Stacey-Rae McCue, Therese Mosorjak, Matt Murphy, Daria O’Connor, Kathy Oberley, Bob Rainville, Julie Roffo, Sara Stinson, Sam Sturgis, Alicia Svenson, Rhonda Wilson, and Mary Alice Yost. If you would like to become part of the team working on rewarding genealogical projects, please contact Rachel Adams, Database Services Volunteer Coordinator via email at

The new volumes are listed below:

  • Holy Ghost (Whitman) Baptisms, 1887-1897
  • Holy Ghost (Whitman) Baptisms, 1897-1920
  • Holy Ghost (Whitman) Confirmations, 1898-1920
  • Holy Ghost (Whitman) Marriages, 1897-1908
  • Holy Ghost (Whitman) Marriages, 1908-1920
  • St. John the Baptist (Peabody) Baptisms, 1874-1877
  • St. John the Baptist (Peabody) Baptisms, 1874-1906
  • St. John the Baptist (Peabody) Marriages, 1875-1908
  • St. Joseph (Holbrook) Baptisms, 1887-1914
  • St. Joseph (Holbrook) Confirmations, 1890-1904
  • St. Joseph (Holbrook) Marriages, 1887-1907
  • St. Joseph (Ipswich) Baptisms, 1889-1910
  • St. Joseph (Ipswich) First Communions and Confirmations, 1896-1925
  • St. Mary (Lowell) Marriages, 1847-1861

Please note: This database is available to Individual-level and above NEHGS members only. Consider membership.