England, London Electoral Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records scheduled to become available at FamilySearch.org.|
This collection This project contains Electoral Registers captured at the London Metropolitan Archives. The records contain lists of names and addresses of registered voters. The register of persons entitled to vote at any election of a member to serve in parliament, or to serve on the county council of the county of London. The records cover the years 1836 to 1965.
In 1832, the Reform Act created electoral registers. These registers recorded individuals who qualified to vote in the national elections for representation in parliament. The qualifications changed over the years. There were also electoral registers that covered local elections. Boroughs of large cities had their own electoral registers and their own qualifications for being listed in the registers. In 1878, boroughs combined their registers for the national and local elections. Other places combined their registers by 1885. Registration was suspended and no electoral registers were created during the World Wars: 1916–1917 (1915–1917 for Scotland) and 1940–1944. In the early years, registers covered only about 7 percent of the population. By 1867, they covered about 11 percent. Until 1918, the registers list only men because women were not allowed to vote. Until 1971, the registers listed only those 21 years of age or older.
Registers have been published annually with few exceptions from 1832 to the present. Before 1884, the registers are arranged by polling district and then alphabetically by surname. After 1884, they were arranged by polling district and then by street. Most of the registers have been published.
Electoral registers were created to determine who could vote. If an individual’s name did not appear in the register, he or she could not vote. Since the government required the electoral registers, the reliability of the records would be high with respect to the place of residence and the name of the individual.
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.
- "England, London Electoral Registers, 1836-1965." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Metropolitan Archives. London.
The registers usually give the following information:
- Given name and surname of each voter
- Place of abode (residence)
- Nature of qualification (what qualified the individual to be included in the register)
- Name of property or street
- Sometimes handwritten notes may have been added, giving such information as who the person voted for, when the voter died, or the removal of the voter.
How to Use the Records
To begin your search, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:
- Name of ancestor
- Approximate year and place of birth
Search the Collection
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors 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 several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.
For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.
Using the Information
The electoral registers may help you determine the residence of an individual and how long that person lived there. You may also be able to determine your ancestor’s social status and to locate other records in which that person might appear.
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Contributions To This Article
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
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Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
|This citation example isn't from this collection. You can help by replacing this example with a citation for a record found in this collection.|
“Argentina, Buenos Aires, Catholic Church Records, 1635-1981,” images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org: accessed 28 February, 2012), La Plata > San Ponciano > Matrimonios 1884-1886 > image 71 of 389 images, Artemio Avendano and Clemtina Peralta, 1884; citing Parroquia de San Ponciano en la Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Matrimonios. San Ponciano, La Plata.
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