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England Gotoarrow.png Cornwall Gotoarrow.png Cornwall Parishes

Guide to Launceston St Mary Magdalene, Cornwall family history and genealogy: parish registers, transcripts, census records, birth records, marriage records, and death records.

Launceston St Mary Magdalene, Cornwall
Type Ancient Parish
Civil Jurisdictions
Hundred West
County Cornwall
Poor Law Union Launceston
Registration District Launceston
Records begin
Parish registers: 1559
Bishop's Transcripts: 1608
Ecclesiastical Jurisdictions
Rural Deanery Trigg Major
Diocese Exeter
Province Canterbury
Legal Jurisdictions
Probate Court Court of the Bishop (Consistory) of the Archdeaconry of Cornwall
Location of Archive
Cornwall Record Office


Parish History

LAUNCESTON (St. Mary Magdalene), a borough,market-town, and parish, and the head of a union, in the N. division of the hundred of East, E. division of Cornwall, 20½ miles (N. E. by E.) from Bodmin, and 213 (W. S. W.) from London. There are places of worship for Independents, Wesleyans, and other dissenters.[1]

Launceston St Mary Magdalene is an Anceint parish historically in the Diocese of Exeter but in the modern Diocese of Truro. With St Stephen by Launceston, Cornwall and St Thomas by Launceston, Cornwall it forms the Launceston benefice in the Diocese of Truro.

The Tudor church was built in 1511-1524 by Sir Henry Trecarrel as a memorial to an infant son.

The ornate carvings in granite originally carved for the mansion he began to build at Trecarrel, Lezant have survived. The tower of the church dates from the 14th century, an earlier church and graveyard having previously occupied the site.
The modern Roman Catholic Church is dedicated to the martyr Saint Cuthbert Mayne; it was built in the Byzantine style and opened in 1911.
The churches at St Stephen by Launceston, Cornwall and St Thomas by Launceston, Cornwall form distinct parishes neighbouring the Ancient Parish.

England Jurisdictions 1851. may assist to search neighbouring parishes. 


Civil Registration

Births, marriages and deaths were kept by the government from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is Free BMD.

Church records

Launceston St Mary Magdalene, Cornwall Genealogy parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

BIVRI = British Isles Vital Records Index (Ancestry) - (£)[2]
BOYD = Boyd's Marriage Index (FindMyPast) - (£)[3]
COPC = Cornwall Online Parish Clerks - free[4]
FMP = FindMyPast - (£)[5][6][7]
FREG = FreeREG - free[8]
IGI = International Genealogical Index (FamilySearch) - free[9]
PALL = Pallot's Marriage Index (Ancestry) - (£)[10]
Launceston St Mary Magdalene, Cornwall Genealogy Parish Online Records


Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
BIVRI 1559-1812


COPC 1667-1911
1559-1837, 1879-1913
FMP 1650-1837 1560-1837 1813-1837

IGI 1681-1772 1563-1753

Images of parish registers are available online in historic records (formerly Record Search) Images refer to Cornwall County Record Office reference: P 118

The image collection for the parish is titled Launceston and refers to the image conversion for

Parish registers for Launceston, 1852-1950  Church of England. Parish Church of Launceston

Banns, 1879-1931.
2276117 Items 9 - 10
Baptisms, 1852-1949. Burials, 1852-1950.
2276156 Items 7 - 10

Cornwall Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource is the Cornwall Online Parish Clerks page for the parish

The history registers and much more have been contributed by the Online Parish clerk for Launceston Phillipa Stout.

Census records


Census records from 1841 to 1911 are available online. For access, see England Census Records and Indexes Online. Census records from 1841 to 1891 are also available on film through a Family History Center or at the Family History Library. The first film number is 241275.

Poor Law Unions

Launceston Poor Law Union

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to [county] Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

There are many maps and gazetteers showing English places. Valuable web sites are:

  • 1851 Jurisdiction Maps
  • Vision of Britain

Web sites

Add here any relevant sites that aren't mentioned above.


  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 33-37. Date accessed: 20 March 2013
  2. 'British Isles Vital Records Index - 2nd Ed. Breakdown of Records', Genoot, accessed 21 November 2013.
  3. Percival Boyd, A List of Parishes in Boyd's Marriage Index (London: Society of Genealogists, 1987). Digital version at FamilySearch Books Online.
  4. 'Coverage by Parish,' Cornwall Online Parish Clerks, accessed 2 December 2013.
  5. 'Cornwall Baptisms', Find My Past, accessed 25 November 2013.
  6. 'Cornwall Marriages', Find My Past, accessed 25 November 2013.
  7. 'Cornwall Burials', Find My Past, accessed 25 November 2013.
  8. Cornwall Coverage', FreeREG, accessed 18 November 2013.
  9. Hugh Wallis, 'IGI Batch Numbers for Cornwall, England,' IGI Batch Numbers, accessed 22 November 2013.
  10. Pallot's Marriage and Birth Indexes, Guide to Parishes. Digital version at FamilySearch Books Online.


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