Guatemala, Petén, Civil Registration - FamilySearch Historical Records

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Guatemala, Petén, Civil Registration, 1877-1994
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Petén, Guatemala
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Flag of the Republic of Guatemala
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Flag of El Peten
GT Locator Map Guatemala Peten.png
Location of Petén, Guatemala
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Location of Guatemala
Record Description
Record Type: Civil Registration
Collection years: 1877-1994
Language: Spanish
Title in the Language: Guatemala, Petén, Registros Civiles
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Registro Nacional de las Personas



What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

This collection will include birth, marriage, death, indexes and other records from 1877-1994. These were created by the civil registration offices in the department of Petén, Guatemala.

The civil registration records for Guatemala cover the vital events of birth, marriages, and deaths. They are organized by municipality/city. Earlier records were handwritten in narrative style; later records were handwritten in formatted registers.

As you search this collection, you will notice that some information in the records has been blacked out. Specific privacy laws in Guatemala prohibit some information classified as sensitive from being shared with the public. The information that is blacked out may be different from record type to record type, and does not negatively affect your family history research.

Images courtesy of Registro Nacional de las Personas (RENAP).

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.

Reading These Records[edit | edit source]

These records are written in Spanish. For help reading them see:

If you speak Spanish, the following free online lesson may be helpful to learn how to use the information in these records:

To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]

You can browse through images in this collection using the waypoints on the Collection Browse Page for Guatemala, Petén, Civil Registration, 1877-1994.

What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records:

Birth

  • Birth date and place
  • Name at birth
  • Gender
  • Parents’ names
  • Parents’ residence
  • Witnesses’ names
  • Informant’s names, age, occupation, marital status, birth place, and residence
  • Document date

Marriage

  • Marriage date and place
  • Groom’s name, age, occupation, birth place, resident city, and address
  • Groom’s legitimacy and parents’ names
  • Bride’s name, age, occupation, birth place, resident city, and address
  • Bride’s legitimacy and parents’ names
  • Bride’s maternal and paternal grandparents’ names
  • Groom’s marital status
  • Bride’s marital status
  • Document date

Death

  • Death date and place
  • Deceased’s name, gender, and age
  • Deceased’s marital status, occupation, and parents’ names
  • Cause of death
  • Date, time and place of death
  • Informant’s name, age, marital status, occupation, birth place, resident city and address
  • Document date

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample Images[edit | edit source]

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • Your ancestor's given name and surname
  • Identifying information such as residence
  • Estimated marriage or birth year
  • Family relationships

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

View the Images[edit | edit source]

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:

  1. Select Municipality
  2. Select Record Type and Yearsto view the images.

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Add any new information to your records
  • Check the image the index was taken from to see if there is additional information
  • Use the information to find more. For instance, use the age listed in the record to estimate a year of birth, if that is yet undetermined
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each spouse to find a couple's birth records and parents' names
  • Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate Parishes in Guatemala and land records

I Can't Find the Person I'm Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times. Click here for a list of Spanish name abbreviations
  • Check for variant spellings of the names. When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct
  • Titles may be clues to property ownership, occupations, rank, or status within the community
  • Look for an index. There are often indexes at the beginning of each volume. In addition local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records. But be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur
  • Search the records of nearby departments
  • If you get stuck and can’t read a document or you’re not sure where to go next in your research, you can ask for help through these resources:
    • Hispanic Genealogy Research community on Facebook is a page sponsored by FamilySearch and here you may also post a question or upload an image of a document for further assistance. The Hispanic Genealogy Research page is designed especially for those who have Hispanic ancestry but may not be fluent in Spanish. Be sure to click like on the page on your first visit so you can receive information and updates from the page in your news feed
    • Investigación Genealógica en Guatemala is another FamilySearch research community page on Facebook where you can post questions and upload images of documents. The majority of the posts on this page are in Spanish but you are welcome to post on the page in English. Be sure to click like on the page on your first visit so you can receive information and updates from the page in your news feed

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in Guatemala.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.