The Early Records of the Town of Providence

Guy standing in front of ship

The City of Providence, Rhode Island, in its twenty-one printed volumes of The Early Records of the Town of Providence, has what is probably the finest and most complete set of transcribed verbatim early records of any town in New England. These volumes contain 5156 printed pages of an estimated total of 2,080,000 words …

It is impossible to over-emphasize the value of these early Providence records. Outside of the territory of the colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, nothing exactly like them is to be found in any town in New England. All other towns were integral parts of the colony in which they were first established, while Providence, originally a town founded by Roger Williams in 1636, did not become part of the colony until 19 Mar. 1643/4 when Roger Williams obtained a patent for Providence Plantations under which the town of Providence, Portsmouth and Newport became a colony; consequently the early Providence records contain all the usual town records and in addition many more that are properly those of a colony.

These records, therefore, are not only the source for the history of the Town of Providence but also for the State of Rhode Island, and in no small measure are the foundation for all seventeenth-century political, religious, educational, and social history of this general area.

- Richard LeBaron Bowen, Index, The Early Records of the Town of Providence (1949)

 

Index

 

 

 

 

Volume I

Being the first book of the town of Providence, otherwise called the Long Old Book with Parchment Cover

 

 

 

Volume II

Being the second book of the town of Providence, otherwise called the Town old book, the Short old book, the Old burnt book and sometimes called the Book with brass clasps

 

 

 

Volume III

Being part of the third book of the town of Providence, otherwise called the Book with the brass clasps

 

 

 

Volume IV

Being part of the third book of the town of Providence, otherwise called the Book with the brass clasps

 

 

 

Volume V

Being part of the third book of the town of Providence, otherwise called the Book with the brass clasps

 

 

 

Volume VI

Being part of Will book no. 1, otherwise called the first booke for Providence Town Councill perticulior use

 

 

 

Volume VII

Being part of Will book no. 1, otherwise called the first booke for Providence Town Councill perticulior use

 

 

 

Volume VIII

Being part of the book of records of town meetings no. 3, 1677 to 1750 and other papers

 

 

 

Volume IX

Being part of the book of records of town meetings no. 3, 1677 to 1750 and other papers

 

 

 

Volume X

Being the book called Town council no. 1, 1692 to 1714, and containing the records of Providence Town Council

 

 

 

Volume XI

Being the book of records designated as “Town meeting no. 1, 1692-1715”

 

 

 

Volume XII

Being the book called Town Council no. 2, 1715 to 1732 and containing the records of the Providence Town Council

 

 

 

Volume XIII

Being the book called Town meeting no. 2, 1716 to 1721 and containing the records of the Providence town meeting

 

 

 

Volume XIV

Being the first book for the recording of deeds and called Deed book no. 1

 

 

 

Volume XV

Being the Providence town papers vol. 1, 1639-April 1682, no. 01-0367

 

 

 

Volume XVI

Being the records contained in Will book no. 2 from Sept. 12, 1716 to Jan. 5, 1728

 

 

 

Volume XVII

Being the Providence town papers vol. 2 April 1682-March 1722, no. 0368-0717

 

 

 

Volume XVIII

Being official records and documents of title and proceedings relative to the north burial ground

 

 

 

Volume XIX

Being official records and documents of title and proceedings relative to the north burial ground

 

 

 

Volume XX

Being the first part of the second book for the recording of deeds and called Deed book no. 2

 

 

 

Volume XXI

Being the beginning of the second part of the second book for the recording of deeds and called Deed book no. 2.