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Getting started with Channel Islands research

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The Channel Islands (Norman: Îles d'la Manche) are a group of islands off the coast of Normandy, France. They comprise two separate countries: the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the States of Jersey

The Channel Islands lie scattered along the Gulf of St. Malo, their closest point to France being just 8 miles from the Cherbourg Peninsula. They are British, but do not belong to the United Kingdom. Yet in the past they were ruled by France for only 200 out of the 900 years during which they were at the centre of a tug-of-war between the two countries. They are partly in the European Union, but do not bow the knee to Her Majesty's Government in Great Britain, but loyally toast the Queen of England, as "Our Duke of Normandy".
Channel Islands consists of Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney, Sark, and Herm, Jethou, Brechou, and Lihou. All these except Jersey are in the Bailiwick of Guernsey, but the Minquiers, Ecrehous, Les Dirouilles and Les Pierres de Lecq, uninhabited group of islets are part of the Bailiwick of Jersey. 

They have their own language, a Norman-French patois is still spoken, but everyone speaks English. They have their own banknotes, but deal in familiar pounds and pence sterling.

Genealogy Helps

Tracing your Channel Islands Ancestors is a wonderful guide for Genealogy Research helps and Family History. This Author of this book is: Marie Louise Backhurst

Jurisdictions, Channel Islands Places


Jersey Parishes
 St. Helier, (the capital) - St Brelade (includes the market town and harbour of St Aubin) - St Saviour - St Clement - St Martin - Grouville (includes Gorey Village and harbour) -  St John - St Peter - St Ouen - St Lawrence - Trinity - St Mary

Bailiwick of Guernsey Parishes (and Islands)
Guernsey St Peter Port, the capital,  - St Sampson - St Saviour - St Peter in the Wood (or St Pierre du Bois) - St Martin - Forest - Castel (or Catel) - Vale - Torteval - St Andrew
Alderney St Anne

Sark St Peter 





Useful Websites

A wiki article describing this collectons is found at:

Channel Island Births and Baptisms (FamilySearch Historical Records)

Did you know?

The Society of Genealogists Library in London has the microfilm of the Guernsey Civil Registration Indices from 1842-1969.


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  • This page was last modified on 2 June 2015, at 19:29.
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