England Family HistoriesEdit This Page

From FamilySearch Wiki

Revision as of 23:09, 16 August 2010 by Ckwahlquist (Talk | contribs)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)

England Family Histories

A family history is a record of a specific family line or of a particular surname. Family histories are
considered compiled sources. Use a family history to gain information compiled by other people
about your family. Determining what research has already been done by others, including your
own family members, can:
• Save you valuable research time.
• Help you find information in original records more quickly.
• Help you avoid unnecessary duplication of work.
• Provide clues for further research.
What You Are Looking For
A family history which may give information about your ancestors. The information you will find
varies from record to record. These records may include:
• Names of children, spouse, parents, siblings, and other family members.
• Birth or baptism, marriage, and death or burial information.
• Dates of other important events such as immigration or land purchases.
• Age at the time of dated events.
• Place or street of residence.
• Occupations.
• Schools attended.
• Military service.
• Religious affiliations.
• Countries, counties, or places of origin.
• Other biographical data.
These 2 steps will help you find a family history.
1. Choose a surname.
By looking for information on a specific surname, you can find histories for your family and related
families. Family histories are usually listed by the surname of the family in library catalogs.
England, How to Find Family Histories
Research Guidance
Version of Data: 08/08/01
2. Search for a family history.
You can find family histories through:
• Contacting relatives.
• Internet Sources.
• Family History Centers.
• Family History Library.
• Archives and Libraries.
• Societies (family history, county, regional, and national).
Where to Find It
Internet Sources
FamilySearch Internet Genealogy Service
Many family histories are available on the Internet. You can search for family histories through
FamilySearch Internet Genealogy Service. FamilySearch Internet can search online records and
other web sites to see if they contain the information you want. To look for family histories through
FamilySearch Internet, use Search for Ancestors, Custom Search, Family History Library Catalog
- Surname Search or go to Browse Catagories, Family History Library Catalog, Surname Search.
Other Websites
The following are examples of other websites that can be searched by surname:
• Internet FamilyFinder.
• Ancestry.com (fee required).
• GenSeeker.
Links to Websites
Many websites do not provide names and dates, but link to sites that do. Examples of these are:
• CyndisList.
• GENUKI (Genealogy in the United Kingdom and Ireland).
• GenDex.
• British Isles GenWeb.
• Genealogy SiteFinder.
Family History Centers
A Family History Center may have some family histories. Family History Centers can also borrow
microfilms and microfiche of family histories from the Family History Library. There is a small fee
to have a microfilm or microfiche loaned to a Family History Center.
Family History Centers are located throughout the United States and other areas of the world. For
the address of the Family History Center nearest you, see Family History Centers.
Family History Library
The Family History Library has one of the largest collections of family histories in the world. There
is no fee for using the library's collection in person.
England, How to Find Family Histories
Research Guidance
Version of Data: 08/08/01
Sources for Previous Research in the British Isles is a publication that lists and discusses other
compiled sources available in the Family History Library. Some of these sources are available in
other archives and libraries.
If a family history is not available on microfilm, you may request a photocopy from the Family
History Library for a small fee. You will need to fill out a Request for Photocopies form, which is
available at Family History Centers. Complete the form with the library call number for the source.
Send the form and the fee to the Family History Library. Note that many published sources are
copyrighted and cannot be photocopied in their entirety.
See Family History Library Services and Resources for information about contacting or visiting
the library.
Archives and Libraries
Family histories are available in archives and libraries throughout the world. Some major archives
and libraries are:
• The British Library.
• The Family Records Centre.
• County record offices.
• Public Record Office.
Australia and New Zealand
• National Archives of Australia.
• National Archives of New Zealand.
• National Library of New Zealand (Alexander Turnbull Library).
United States and Canada
• The Newberry Library.
• The Library of Congress.
• The New England Historic and Genealogical Society Library.
• The National Archives of Canada.
• The National Archives, regional branches throughout the U.S.
Addresses for archives and libraries can be found at Ready, 'Net, Go. Select Master List of
Archives then look for library catalogs on-line.
Family history and genealogical societies extract and index many records and have collections of
research done by their members and others. There are family history societies in each county in
England. Many provide marriage indexes and publish journals and periodicals that include
compiled research to help you find your ancestor.
The Federation of Family History Societies provides coordination between these county societies
and lists addresses for each. The Federation also provides publications concerning research and
records that are available for purchase and may be found in some libraries. Examples of these
• Specialist Indexes for Family Historians.
• [County:] A Genealogical Bibliography.
• Marriage and Census Indexes for Family Historians.
England, How to Find Family Histories
Research Guidance
Version of Data: 08/08/01
Other societies you may wish to contact are:
• One name societies.
• Record societies.
• Society of Genealogists.
For more information on searching for family histories and other compiled sources, see the
Society of Genealogist's Has It Been Done Before?


Need wiki, indexing, or website help? Contact our product teams.

Did you find this article helpful?

You're invited to explain your rating on the discussion page (you must be signed in).