This work embraces as complete a collection of early New York marriage licenses as could be put together from official sources. With its various supplements, it comprises records of about one-fourth of all marriages that took place in New York prior to 1784, when the practice of issuing marriage licenses fell into disuse. In brief, it contains approximately 25,000 entries arranged alphabetically under the names of both brides and grooms, each giving the date of the license and a reference to the precise location of the original record.
The main body of the book consists of a reprint of the monumental Names of Persons for Whom Marriage Licenses Were Issued by the Secretary of the Province of New York, Previous to 1784, originally published in 1860. The supplements, additions, and corrections we have appended to this basic work consist of (1) a 48-page “Supplementary List of Marriage Licenses,” originally published by the University of the State of New York as a State Library Bulletin in 1898; (2) 44 pages of additions and corrections by Robert H. Kelby entitled “New York Marriage Licenses,” which appeared in The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record between 1915 and 1916; (3) 19 pages of additional marriage licenses, by Kenneth Scott, which appeared in the Record (1967) as “New York Marriage Licenses, 1639-1706;” and (4) an index to Dr. Scott’s article, published here from manuscript.
“This work represents as complete an edition of printed public records in one volume as can be obtained.”–Connecticut Nutmegger (Dec. 1977).