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Contents

Introduction

Spanish civil registration records (births, marriages, and deaths) began in 1870. In recent years some large cities in Spain have begun to gather Civil Registration records in large central Civil Register archives.

Births, marriages, and deaths were recorded by the local Juzgado de la Paz, or Oficinia del Registro Civil. The records are still housed in each municipality in their local municpal archives, Juzgado de la Paz or Oficina del Registro Civil should be contacted if a certificate copy request to the Ministerio de Justicia fails.

Larger cities may have multiple civil registration districts, and smaller towns may have their own civil registration office, or belong to an office of a nearby town. To determine the political jurisdiction for the town where your ancestors came from please see the Spain Gazetteers article.

Some municipios may have civil registration records beginning as early as 1837. These births, marriages, and deaths are normally found in the municipal archive. Some of them have been microfilmed and/or digitized by FamilySearch. These early civil registration records can be found in provincial collections labeled as Municipal records. To view the complete list of records for Spain click here.

Births

Spanish civil registration birth records are among the richest genealogical records in the world. Birth records typically provide the following information:

  • Place and date of child's birth (often times they provide the exact time of birth)
  • Full name, profession and place of birth of the child's father
  • Full name and place of birth of the child's mother
  • Full name and place of birth of the child's maternal and paternal grandparents

Birth Record Tip:

Be sure to check marginal notes in the birth record of your ancestor. Often recorders will note the marriage and/or death dates of the individual.

Marriages

Marriage records are also very valuable in Spanish genealogical research. Marriage records provide the following information:

  • Date when the marriage occurred
  • Full names, marital status (single or widowed) and places of birth for both the bride and groom
  • Full names, and places of birth for the parents of the bride and groom

Marriage Record Tip:

Couples usually married in the home town of the bride (if the family still lived there).

A wiki article describing an online collection is found at:

Spain Marriages (FamilySearch Historical Records)

Deaths

Death records should not be overlooked. Death certificates often provide additional information about the deceased and his or her family. You can expect to find the following information in Spanish death records.

If the deceased was single:

  • Full name, age, occupation (if applicable), place of birth, and death date of the deceased
  • Full name of the deceased parents, and often times their places of birth
  • Cemetery where the deceased was buried

If the deceased was married or widowed:

  • Full name, age, occupation (if applicable), place of birth, and death date of the deceased
  • Full name of spouse (whether deceased or living), and often their place of birth
  • Cemetery where the deceased was buried
  • If the deceased created a will and the name of the Notary that notarized the will.
  • Sometimes living descendants (could include name of living children and other heirs)

Obtaining Civil Registration Records

Most civil registration records have not been microfilmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, however, if you are researching from outside of Spain you should perform a Place Search in the Family History Library Catalog to determine if the civil registration records for the town you are researching in have been microfilmed.

Researchers can request free copies of certificates online from the Ministerio de Justicia. For further information on how to do this see the article Order Spain Vital Records Online. If you understand Spanish you may want to view this short video that explains how to order a birth certificate online from the Ministry of Justice in Spain. The process is virtually the same to order a marriage or death certificate.

If the records you need have not been microfilmed you will most likely need to write to the archive where the records are housed. The best way to find out if civil registration records are available in the town you are researching in, and to get the address of the archive is through the Directorio de Archivos in the Censo-guia.

The Archive Directory (Directorio de Archivos) will allow you to search for nearly any archive in Spain. Each archive entry will give you an inventory of the records in that archive as well as the archive's contact information. Municipal archives may have civil registration records prior to 1870.

Other Online Sites

The following links can be used to order a certificate for any of the three provinces in the autonomous community of País VascoÁlava, Guipúzcoa, and Vizcaya.



 

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  • This page was last modified on 14 October 2013, at 21:26.
  • This page has been accessed 77 times.