Norfolk Probate Records

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''[[England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Norfolk]]''  
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''[[England|England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Norfolk]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] Norfolk Probate Records'' [[Image:All Saints, Bircham Newton, Norfolk .jpg|frame|right|240x220px]]
  
The following article is about probate records in the county of Norfolk. For general information about English probate records, click [[England Probate Records|here]].
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== Getting Started  ==
  
<br>
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''Probate'' is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. Probate records include [[W genealogical glossary terms|wills]] and [[A genealogical glossary terms|administrations]]. This article is about probate records in Norfolk. For a general description of England probate records, click [[England Probate Records|here]].
  
== Description ==
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=== 1858 to the Present ===
  
''Probate'' is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. The term ''probate'' refers to a collection of documents, including [[W genealogical glossary terms|wills]], [[A genealogical glossary terms|administrations]] (also called admons), [[I genealogical glossary terms|inventories]], and [[A genealogical glossary terms|act books]]. The Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process until to 1858. This article explains about probates and how to get started to search for a will.  
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Beginning in 1858, the [[Principal Probate Registry|Principal Probate Registry]] had the authority for probating estates. Click on the link to learn more.  
  
Beginning in 1858, authority over probate matters was taken from ecclesiastical courts and put under the civil authority of the Principal Probate Registry. The '''Probates After 1857'''&nbsp;section below has a link to an article about probates after 1857.
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=== Before 1858 ===
  
<br>
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Before 1858, Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process. To search for a pre-1858 probate record in Norfolk, follow these steps:
  
== Getting Started ==
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==== Step 1. Search Indexes ====
  
Follow these steps to look for a probate record before 1858:<br>
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Here are some online indexes to probate records that include individuals who lived in Norfolk. Search these indexes first:  
  
#Discover when and where your ancestor died. If you don’t know, use the approximate date and place where they lived. <br>
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*All the indexes of pre-1858 probate records are included in the Norfolk Record Office's online catalogue,&nbsp;[http://nrocat.norfolk.gov.uk/DServe/DServe.exe?dsqServer=128.60.0.31&dsqApp=Archive&dsqCmd=Index.tcl NROCAT].  
#Go to the Court Jurisdictions section below.<br>
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*[http://www.norfolksources.norfolk.gov.uk/ http://www.norfolksources.norfolk.gov.uk/] They now have Images of Probate Records
#Click a letter or span of letters for your place. This opens an article showing a table of places and the courts that had jurisdiction over them.<br>
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*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
#Follow the steps at the top of the table to search for a will.<br>
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<br>
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Probate Indexes available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City:
  
== Court Jurisdictions by Parish  ==
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*{{FHL|198646|title-id|disp=Index to Norfolk (England) wills, 1838-1858}}
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*{{FHL|226098|title-id|disp=Norfolk peculiar jurisdictions, Index to probate records, 1416-1857}}
  
Before 1858, every town and parish in Norfolk was under the probate jurisdiction of a primary ecclesiastical court and one or more secondary ecclesiastical courts.  
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Did you find a reference to a probate record?
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*If ''yes'', go to '''Step 4''' below.
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*If ''no'', go to '''Step 2''' below.
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==== Step 2. Identify when and where your ancestor died  ====
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Determine ''when'' your ancestor died.&nbsp;If you aren't sure, use an approximate date.&nbsp; The on-line will index at [http://nrocat.norfolk.gov.uk/Dserve/dserve.exe?dsqServer=128.60.0.31&dsqApp=Archive&dsqDb=Catalog&dsqCmd=Search.tcl NROCAT]&nbsp;is very helpful in finding wills in Norfolk for pre-1858 wills.&nbsp; It is not always necessary to know where or when an ancestor died when using nrocat.&nbsp; Since spelling of names in early records was not consistent, entering only the surname of your ancestor will generate the most posibilities of identifying your ancestor.&nbsp;Searches using spelling&nbsp;variations of the surname&nbsp;will also be helpful in&nbsp;finding possible entries for your ancestor.&nbsp; If you cannot identify an entry for your ancestor in this on-line index, you will want to try to determine at least an approximate death date and place.
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Determine ''where'' your ancestor died. It is easier to find a probate record if you know whether the place where your ancestor lived or died is a [[P genealogical glossary terms|parish]]. To learn whether it is a parish, look it up in a gazetteer. Here is a link to the 1872 ''Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales'' online:
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*[http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/descriptions/index.jsp Vision of Britain]
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The gazetteer will either tell you:
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*A place is a parish, or
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*What parish it is a part of, or
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*What place it is near.
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If the latter, look that place up in the gazetteer and see if it is a parish.
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Once you have identified the parish, go to '''Step 3'''.
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==== Step 3. Identify court jurisdictions by parish  ====
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Once you have identified the parish where your ancestor lived or died, learn which courts had jurisdiction over it then search indexes for those courts. Every town and parish in&nbsp;Norfolk fell under the probate jurisdiction of a primary court and several secondary courts. Click on a link below for the letter the parish begins with.  
  
 
To see a list of Norfolk places and the pre-1858 courts that had probate jurisdiction over them, click on a letter link:  
 
To see a list of Norfolk places and the pre-1858 courts that had probate jurisdiction over them, click on a letter link:  
  
{| cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" width="272" border="1"
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{| width="272" border="1" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1"
 
|-
 
|-
 
| &nbsp;[[Norfolk Probate Jurisdictions, Parishes beginning with A|A]]  
 
| &nbsp;[[Norfolk Probate Jurisdictions, Parishes beginning with A|A]]  
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<br>
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<br>
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==== Step 4. Obtain a copy of the probate record  ====
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Once you have found an index reference to a probate, obtain a copy of the record. Do so by one of these methods:
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*Visit or contact the record office that has the original records in its collection.
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*Visit the [https://www.familysearch.org/#form=catalog Family History Library] or a [[Introduction to LDS Family History Centers|family history center]] and obtain a copy of the record on microfilm. For more information, click on a court name below. <br>
  
 
== Norfolk Probate Courts  ==
 
== Norfolk Probate Courts  ==
  
These courts had some pre-1858 jurisdiction over the county of Norfolk.&nbsp; Click on a court name for more information.&nbsp; See also the Indexes section below.&nbsp;Click on a court name to learn more about the records available and how to find the probate of your ancestor in the court's records. <br>
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These courts had some pre-1858 jurisdiction over the county of Norfolk.&nbsp; Click on a court name for more information about the records available and how to find the probate of your ancestor in the court's records. <br>  
  
 
*[[Court of the Archdeaconry of Norfolk]]  
 
*[[Court of the Archdeaconry of Norfolk]]  
*[[Court of Norwich (Episcopal Consistory)]]&nbsp;  
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*[[Court of Norwich (Episcopal Consistory)|Court of the Bishop of Norwich (Episcopal Consistory)]]&nbsp;  
 
*[[Court of the Archdeaconry of Norwich]]  
 
*[[Court of the Archdeaconry of Norwich]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Dean & Chapter of Norwich]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Dean & Chapter of Norwich]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of Castle Rising]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of Castle Rising]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of Great Cressingham]]  
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of Great Cressingham]]  
*[[Court of the City of Norwich]]
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*[[Court of the City of Norwich]]  
 
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*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
In addition, the [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]] had jurisdiction over the whole of England and specifically in the following cases.
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*Wealthy individuals
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*People who owned property in more than one county
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*Military and naval personnel
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*People who lived or owned property outside England
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=== Appeals Courts  ===
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Any probate that was disputed and could not be settled by the county courts could be sent to these higher appeals courts:
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*[[Court of Arches]]
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*[[High Court of Delegates]]
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The [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]] also served as an appeals court.
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== Probate Indexes Online  ==
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Before looking for a will, you should search an index.
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All the indexes of pre-1858 probate records are included in the Norfolk Record Office's online catalogue,&nbsp;[http://nrocat.norfolk.gov.uk/DServe/DServe.exe?dsqServer=128.60.0.31&dsqApp=Archive&dsqCmd=Index.tcl NROCAT]. Some pre-1858 wills were proved by the Prerogative Court of Canterbury and these can be searched via The National Archives documents online web page. [http://nrocat.norfolk.gov.uk/DServe/public/searches/nroprobate.htm]
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An index to probate records for 1800-1857 is found at:
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*[http://www.norfolksources.norfolk.gov.uk/ http://www.norfolksources.norfolk.gov.uk/]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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== Probate Indexes  ==
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Church of England. Archdeaconry of Norfolk. Wills and administrations, 1459-1857[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titlefilmnotes&columns=*%2C0%2C0&titleno=291384&disp=Wills+and+administrations++]
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Index of wills proved in the Norfolk Archdeaconry Court&nbsp;Contents: v. 3.1453-1542 -- v. 5.1542-1560 -- v. 10.1560- 1603/4[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=121415&disp=Index+of+wills+proved+in+the+Norfolk+Arc%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
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England, Norfolk - Probate records - Indexes [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=topicdetails&subject=437912&subject_disp=England%2C+Norfolk+%2D+Probate+records+%2D+Indexes&columns=*,0,0]
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Wills and administrations, 1469-1857&nbsp;Church of England. Archdeaconry of Norwich.[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titlefilmnotes&columns=*%2C0%2C0&titleno=504379&disp=Wills+and+administrations++] Court <br>
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Index to Norfolk (England) wills, 1838-1858[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=198646&disp=Index+to+Norfolk+%28England%29+wills%2C+%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
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Norfolk peculiar jurisdictions&nbsp;Contents: Index to probate records, 1416-1857[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=226098&disp=Norfolk+peculiar+jurisdictions%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
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== Some Explanatory Notes on the Norfolk Probate Courts  ==
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== Estate Duty Records<br> ==
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Starting in 1796, a tax or death duty was payable on estates over a certain value. Estate duty abstracts may add considerable information not found elsewhere. Estate duty indexes may help locate a will. For more information, go to [[Estate Duty Records]].<br>
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<br><br>
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== Probates&nbsp;After 1857  ==
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Beginning in 1858, the government took over the&nbsp;settlement of estates and all&nbsp;wills are now probated through the Principal Probate Registry system. For more information, go to [[Principal Probate Registry]].<br>
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{{featured article}}
  
<br>
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[[Category:Norfolk]]
 
[[Category:Norfolk]]

Revision as of 18:09, 30 May 2012

England Gotoarrow.png Norfolk Gotoarrow.png Norfolk Probate Records
All Saints, Bircham Newton, Norfolk .jpg

Contents

Getting Started

Probate is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. Probate records include wills and administrations. This article is about probate records in Norfolk. For a general description of England probate records, click here.

1858 to the Present

Beginning in 1858, the Principal Probate Registry had the authority for probating estates. Click on the link to learn more.

Before 1858

Before 1858, Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process. To search for a pre-1858 probate record in Norfolk, follow these steps:

Step 1. Search Indexes

Here are some online indexes to probate records that include individuals who lived in Norfolk. Search these indexes first:

Probate Indexes available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City:

Did you find a reference to a probate record?

  • If yes, go to Step 4 below.
  • If no, go to Step 2 below.

Step 2. Identify when and where your ancestor died

Determine when your ancestor died. If you aren't sure, use an approximate date.  The on-line will index at NROCAT is very helpful in finding wills in Norfolk for pre-1858 wills.  It is not always necessary to know where or when an ancestor died when using nrocat.  Since spelling of names in early records was not consistent, entering only the surname of your ancestor will generate the most posibilities of identifying your ancestor. Searches using spelling variations of the surname will also be helpful in finding possible entries for your ancestor.  If you cannot identify an entry for your ancestor in this on-line index, you will want to try to determine at least an approximate death date and place.

Determine where your ancestor died. It is easier to find a probate record if you know whether the place where your ancestor lived or died is a parish. To learn whether it is a parish, look it up in a gazetteer. Here is a link to the 1872 Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales online:

The gazetteer will either tell you:

  • A place is a parish, or
  • What parish it is a part of, or
  • What place it is near.

If the latter, look that place up in the gazetteer and see if it is a parish.

Once you have identified the parish, go to Step 3.

Step 3. Identify court jurisdictions by parish

Once you have identified the parish where your ancestor lived or died, learn which courts had jurisdiction over it then search indexes for those courts. Every town and parish in Norfolk fell under the probate jurisdiction of a primary court and several secondary courts. Click on a link below for the letter the parish begins with.

To see a list of Norfolk places and the pre-1858 courts that had probate jurisdiction over them, click on a letter link:

 A  B  C-F  G-H  I-N  O-S  T-Z


Step 4. Obtain a copy of the probate record

Once you have found an index reference to a probate, obtain a copy of the record. Do so by one of these methods:

  • Visit or contact the record office that has the original records in its collection.
  • Visit the Family History Library or a family history center and obtain a copy of the record on microfilm. For more information, click on a court name below.

Norfolk Probate Courts

These courts had some pre-1858 jurisdiction over the county of Norfolk.  Click on a court name for more information about the records available and how to find the probate of your ancestor in the court's records.