Saturday, 30 June 2012

Family tree - Part 3 Parish registers

Parish registers are baptisms, marriages and burials these can be found via local
record offices, libraries, online and some churches still hold theirs. They can be a
great companion to certificates and before 1837 they are used instead of certificates.

Local register offices and libraries will probably only hold local records. Some do have
 holdings on microfiche/microfilm for other parishes, so please be aware of this before
 making a special journey. Contact each local record offices directly for information.
You will also need to contact the record offices to find out if they or the church hold
the records for the village/town or city you require. Libraries are great for local records
although check that they have the records on microfilm/microfiche that you require
 before attending.

Online parish registers are a bit hit and miss but they are growing everyday and should
always be backed up with seeing the original record. 

Online sources

Sussex OPC (FREE)
Devon OPC (FREE)
Cornwall OPC (FREE)
Somerset OPC (FREE)
Wiltshire OPC (FREE)
Hampshire OPC (FREE)
Dorset OPC (FREE)
Essex OPC (FREE)

Freereg (FREE)

WARNING there are many incorrect registers always check with the original record.

Find my past (Subscription or credits)
Ancestry (Subscription)
The Genealogist (Subscription)

To use Freereg to search for your ancestor type the forename, surname and/or year as 
highlighted, then choose up to 10 counties and press search.

There are quite a few records missing and coverage details can be found on the site.

To use Ancestry fill in as much or as little as you know, although the more you fill out the 
less matches you will receive. Please be aware of transcription errors so play around 
with the info you add ie changing spelling of surname/forename etc

As in all records apart from original records there is a margin of error so always check
 the original records where available.

1 comment:

  1. My mum's hobby is researching her family tree! My dad bought her a laptop a few years ago and since then, she is obsessed! I have often been up to our local Archives at the Discovery Museum in Newcastle and also to the Archives further up North in Northumberland. You are right about the Parish records - some can be misleading, especially if names are mis-spelled!

    My mum has found out loads of interesting info about her family. I am always interested in seeing how the same names were passed down in the family and what jobs our ancestors did. Couples seemed to have huge families back in the 'old days' and often babies, or even the mothers died at childbirth. The free internet resources are fab though - and I am so happy to see my mum gaining much enjoyment out of her hobby!