About My Book

MUNI cover

New York City Municipal Archives: An Authorized Guide for Family Historians
New York Genealogical & Biographical Society: New York, 2016
winner of the National Genealogical Society’s 2017 Award for Excellence: Genealogical Methods and Sources

UPDATE: All  print copies are currently sold out. A digital version is available here. A 2nd edition is in process and scheduled to  be published in late 2024 or early 2025.

advance praise

For the first time a treasure trove of New York City history going back to the Dutch Colonial Era is described to facilitate easy access. What a gift to genealogists, researchers, and the just plain curious!
-- David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States

This volume opens the door to one of the biggest archives in America. Any researcher, novice, or expert who is researching people in New York City will find this guide indispensable.
-- James A. Folts, Senior Archivist, New York State Archives

This new guide brings to light hitherto little-known but immensely important collections of the New York City Municipal Archives, revealing treasures never before described in published form. It is a remarkable resource for genealogists and family historians.
-- Louise Mirrer, President and CEO, New-York Historical Society

The content listed here takes years for professionals to master—now it’s available with multiple sample documents and numerous easy-to-read chronological tables. The best part—rather than just detailing what’s available, the author navigates the reader through the analysis and utilization of the documents. This volume truly fits the needs of the entire range of New York City researchers!
-- David E. Rencher, Chief Genealogical Officer, FamilySearch

This distinctive guide introduces family history researchers to the treasure trove of records available at the New York City Municipal Archives. It is an essential reference for those wishing to tap into such riches. Throughout every chapter, Goodwin guides the reader with helpful examples for analyzing and using various records, effectively breathing new life into these largely undiscovered and underutilized resources.
-- Ann D. Thornton, Vice Provost and University Librarian, Columbia University

table of contents

Chapter 1: Vital Records (1795–1949)
Chapter 2: Coroner and Office of Chief Medical Examiner Records (1823–1955)
Chapter 3: City Cemetery Burials (1872–1980s)
Chapter 4: Bodies in Transit (1859–1953)
Chapter 5: Civil War Volunteer Soldiers' Family Aid Fund (1861–1867)
Chapter 6: Almshouse Records (1758–1953)
Chapter 7: Assessed Valuation of Real Estate (1699–1979)
Chapter 8: Department of Buildings (1866–1970s)
Chapter 9: Property Cards (1939–1990s)
Chapter 10: Farm Histories from the Dutch Period through the Mid-19th Century
Chapter 11: New Amsterdam Records of the Dutch Colonial Era (1642–1674)
Chapter 12: Common Council/City Council Records (1675–1977)
Chapter 13: Court Records (1683/4–1987)
Chapter 14: Old Town Records (1644–1898)
Chapter 15: Richmond County Clerk Records (1706–1947)
Chapter 16: City and State Censuses
Chapter 17: City Directories and Civic Directories (1802–1988/89)
Chapter 18: WPA Federal Writers' Project New York City Unit (1935–1943)
Chapter 19: Photography Collections (1850–2013)

chapter structure

  • Introduction (background information including, where applicable, the laws that created the record set)
  • Description (detailed description of the records available)
  • Sample Records
  • Suggested Citations
  • Analyzing and Using the Records
  • Accessing the Records
  • Selected References

An appendix features a table of the Wards of the old City of New York