1,390 Free Southern States Institutional Record Collections

The Ancestor Hunt regularly adds and updates new collection links, as well as searches for and fixes broken links.
(This page's most recent update is
July 2024)
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Institutional records are another class of collections that should be part of one’s genealogy research repertoire. Although most of your ancestors may not have spent time in an institution, I’ll bet that almost every family tree has several that have. So they are worth your effort to research.

Here are a few good primers for searching institutional records:

What kind of institutions and types of records can we discover?

  • Poorhouse
  • Poor Farm
  • Orphanage
  • Orphan Train
  • Mental Hospital
  • Workhouse
  • Almshouse
  • Institutional School
  • Sanitarium
  • Asylums
  • Correctional institutions

Acquiring records from each of these types of institutions may be difficult because of privacy concerns, but they are worth the effort.

Just click on your state of interest to be directed to the Free Online Institutional Records for that state:

Good Luck and Happy Hunting!

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