New Jersey, County Marriages (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.

Contents

Record Description

These collections are indexes to selected marriage records for the years 1682 to 1980.

Coverage Table

The Coverage Table shows the places and time periods covered in the indexed records for this collection. Most of the records in the collection are from the time periods listed in the table; however, the collection may have a few records from before or after the time period.

County Years Covered in Index
Atlantic 1772-1779, 1781-1787, 1789-1793, 1809, 1812-1813, 1817, 1830, 1833-1880, 1884-1887, 1890
Bergen 1795-1878, 1905-1907, 1913-1914
Burlington 1676-1681, 1683-1705, 1707, 1712-1719, 1721, 1723-1725, 1727-1730, 1732-1734, 1736-1738, 1744-1748, 1750-1763, 1765-1855, 1880-1881, 1899
Cape May 1693, 1695, 1697, 1706, 1708-1709, 1713, 1715, 1720, 1722, 1734, 1749-1753, 1756-1758, 1763-1767, 1770-1775, 1778, 1784, 1786, 1791-1793, 1795-1900, 1902, 1904, 1908, 1910-1911, 1914-1915, 1917, 1920, 1927, 1929, 1932, 1937, 1940-1943, 1946
Cumberland 1777, 1789-1790, 1795-1880, 1882, 1892, 1898, 1916, 1937, 1939-1940, 1943, 1945-1947, 1952, 1963, 1967
Essex 1794-1879, 1883-1885, 1889-1890, 1893, 1897-1910, 1916, 1932, 1981
Gloucester 1082, 1660, 1671, 1674, 1679-1680, 1683-1693, 1695-1699, 1701-1878, 1880-1882, 1885-1887, 1889, 1891, 1893, 1897, 1904, 1911, 1916, 1958
Hunterdon 1184, 1519, 1632, 1779, 1789-1790, 1793-1881, 1883-1887, 1893-1898, 1908, 1913, 1919, 1929-1930, 1933, 1936, 1940, 1947
Mercer 1815, 1832, 1836, 1841, 1843, 1848-1881, 1884, 1886-1887, 1897-1910
Middlesex 1788, 1794-1886, 1889-1890, 1892, 1895-1896
Monmouth 1701, 1707, 1711, 1720, 1723, 1727-1846, 1848-1879, 1881, 1886
Morris 1747, 1775, 1790, 1795-1879, 1881, 1885, 1888, 1892-1893, 1895-1909
Ocean 1773, 1826, 1833, 1835-1836, 1838-1845, 1848-1880, 1883, 1890, 1894, 1896, 1899-1906, 1908, 1977
Passaic 1826, 1836-1851, 1853-1881, 1883-1887, 1891, 1893
Salem 1674, 1677, 1680-1684, 1686-1697, 1699-1708, 1710, 1712, 1714, 1717-1719, 1722-1724, 1726-1728, 1730-1748, 1750, 1752-1753, 1755-1780, 1784-1786, 1790-1883, 1885-1889, 1893-1897, 1899-1901, 1903-1909, 1928, 1937, 1939-1940, 1942-1943, 1945-1956
Somerset 1778, 1787-1790, 1794-1882, 1884-1887, 1894, 1897-1910
Sussex 1617, 1794-1879, 1896, 1898, 1901-1902, 1909-1910, 1935
Union 1850-1852, 1854-1878, 1897, 1903-1910, 1964
Warren 1151, 1795-1798, 1803, 1815, 1821, 1823-1879, 1881, 1883, 1885, 1902, 1963

Record Content

The earlier records usually contain less information, but often include the following:

  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Date of marriage
  • County of marriage
  • Name and title of officiator

After 1848, the following information is usually included:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Age of bride and groom
  • Whether single or widowed
  • Officiator at marriage, their title and residence
  • Names of parents
  • Occupation

After 1897, the following additional information is included:

  • Number of times previously married
  • Was marriage terminated by death or divorce
  • Birthplace of the bride and groom
  • Any impediments to the marriage which might exist
  • Parental consent, if required

How to Use the Records

To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Identifying information such as the approximate marriage date and place

Search the Collection

To search the collection fill in the requested information in the boxes on the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the individuals in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to look at the information on several individuals comparing the information about them to your ancestors to make this determination. Keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names, or variations of their name, throughout their life.
  • If your ancestor used an alias or a nickname, be sure to check for those alternate names.
  • Even though these indexes are very accurate they may still contain inaccuracies, such as altered spellings, misinterpretations, and optical character recognition errors if the information was scanned.

For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s marriage record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors. Add this new information to your records of each family. For example:

  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • Occupations listed can lead you to other types of records such as employment or military records.
  • The name of the officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the county. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other counties.
  • Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Continue to search the marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • The information in marriage records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one marriage record to another record.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
  • Search for the marriage record of the marriage partner if known.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.

General Information About These Records

Marriage information is generally handwritten on sheets of paper. After 1848, information was recorded on pre-printed forms. After 1897, forms were required from the witnesses and the bride and groom requiring additional information.

The earliest law requiring marriage registration was in 1673, but few counties complied with the law. Marriages were performed either by a clergyman or justice of the peace. In 1719, law required that marriages have a license or banns published three weeks before the marriage. In the colonial period, it is estimated that most marriages were by banns, but about 25 percent were by license. Some marriage bonds from 1711-1795 do exist. Beginning in 1795, marriages were recorded by county courts of common pleas. State registration of marriages began in May 1848.

Marriage records were created to legalize marital relationships and to protect the interests of the wife and other heirs.

Information included on marriage records is usually considered fairly reliable. Sometimes the bride or groom would lie about their age. If someone other than the groom, a relative or friend applied for the license, he may not have known all the information called for on the license.

Known Issues with This Collection

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See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Related Websites

New Jersey State Archives

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. Guidelines are available to help you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide. If you would like to get more involved join the WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

Citations for individual image records are available for this collection. Browse through images in this collection and click on the "Show Citation" box: New Jersey, County Marriages, 1682-1956

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.

"New Jersey, Marriages, 1670-1980." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2014.
"New Jersey, County Marriages, 1682-1956." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing New Jersey State Archives, Trenton, New Jersey.

 

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  • This page was last modified on 6 August 2014, at 00:03.
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