Philippines Civil RegistrationEdit This Page
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The recording of civil events in a person's life, such as birth, marriage and death, required valid evidence, therefore making these records very reliable.
Until 1889, there was no central civil administration to collect, interpret, and preserve the civil registration records. Most vital records from before 1889 come from Catholic parish and diocesan archives.
In 1889, the Spanish government created the Central Office of Statistics (Central Estadística). This subdivision of the Bureau of Civil Administration (Dirección General de Administración Civil) required each parish priest to periodically give the government a detailed list of the births, marriages, and deaths in his area. Although the Catholic clergy had previously maintained such records and even occasionally submitted them to the government, this was the first time that they had been required to regularly submit detailed reports. This system continued until the end of the Spanish administration in 1898.
After the Philippine Revolution of 1898, the church and state became separate. Within the first few years, officials responsible for civil registration were appointed in each municipality. In 1922, the Civil Records Centralization Act required “all municipal secretaries to submit quarterly reports on all registration matters to the Chief of the Division of Archives.” In 1930, civil registration became mandatory and, in 1932, the Bureau of Census and Statistics was created to oversee all civil registration in the Philippines. It was not until 1940 that most registrations began to be recorded.
The records of birth, marriage and death provides important information of events in a person's life; therefore, it became necessary for legal authorities to record and keep these events in their citizens life, in formal books, for the benefit of civil and personal purposes.
- This page was last modified on 6 February 2016, at 23:59.
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