Portugal, Vila Real Catholic Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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Title in the Language of the Records
Registros Paroquiais da Igreja Católica, Diocese da Vila Real, Portugal.
This article covers the church records for Vila Real that were published in two separate collections; one collection under Portugal, Diocese of Vila Real Catholic Church Records for 1575-1975, housed at the Diocesan Archive and the collection Portugal, Vila Real, Catholic Church Records for 1533-1941, housed at the District Archive of Vila Real. These are records of baptisms, marriages, and burial/deaths from parishes in the Diocese of Vila Real, Portugal. The text of the records is in Portuguese. Earlier records are handwritten in narrative style and newer records are handwritten in formatted registers.
For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in the Portugal, Diocese of Vila Real, Catholic Church Records, 1575-1975 collection, select the Browse.
For a list of records by localities and dates currently published in the Portugal, Vila Real, Catholic Church Records, 1533-1941 collection, select the Browse.
Parish priests performed the ordinances for baptisms, marriages, deaths, and burials, and the other holy sacraments in the jurisdiction of their assigned parish or parishes. All the original parish records were kept in the parish archive under the custody of the priest. However, a duplicate of these registers was regularly sent to the diocesan archive where the records were centralized and kept at a higher state of preservation.
Catholic Church parish registers were created to record the church sacraments of baptism, marriage, death, burial, and other ordinances performed on parishioners by an authorized priest in his area of
Catholic Church parish records are a reliable source for doing genealogical research in Vila Real, Portugal, before 1911, when the civil registration was implemented. For records after 1911, it is suggested that you research both the civil registry and the church records to verify information.
Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the data and images published on FamilySearch.org Historical Records. It may include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.
- Catholic parishes in Vila Real. Portugal, Vila Real, Catholic Church records. Vila Real District Archive, Portugal.
Information about creating source citations for FamilySearch Historical Collections is listed in the wiki article Help:How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.
The key genealogical facts found in most marriage records are:
- Date and place of the event
- Names of the bride and groom
- Civil statuses (widowed, single, divorced) of bride and groom at time of the event
- Place of origin and/or residence of bride and groom
- Names of parents
- Names of witnesses
The key genealogical facts found in most death/burial records are:
- Place and date of death
- Name of the deceased
- Civil status of deceased person at time of death
- Civil status and name of spouse, if married at time of death
- Cause of death
- Sometimes names of living parents and children
- Sometime if the deceased left a testament (will)
- Place of burial (cemetery)
How to Use the Records
Some records have indexes at the end of the volume. Frequently, these indexes are arranged by the given name of the individual and sometimes use the Latin form of the name. Those volumes without indexes need to be searched chronologically for the individuals sought.
Begin your search by finding your ancestors in the index. Use the locator information in the index (such as page, entry, or certificate number) to locate your ancestors in the records. Compare the information in the record to what you already know about your ancestor to determine if this is the correct person. You may need to compare the information of more than one person to make this determination. Be aware that as with any index, transcription errors may occur.
When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information about other people listed in the record. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details that can lead you to other records about your ancestors.
- Use the baptism date and place to find the family in census records.
- Use the residence and names of the parents to locate civil and land records.
- The father’s occupation can lead you to other types of records such as employment records or military records.
- The parents’ places of origin can tell you former residences and can help to establish a migration pattern for the family.
- Marriage date and place may help you find their children.
- Burial place may also help to show their migration pattern.
It is often helpful to extract the information on all children with the same parents. If the surname is unusual, you may want to compile baptism entries for every person of the same surname and sort them into families based on the names of the parents. Continue to search the baptism records to identify siblings, parents, and other relatives in the same or other generations who were born, married, and died in the same place or nearby.
Keep in mind:
- The information in church records is usually reliable, but depends upon the reliability of the informant.
- Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800s.
- There is also some variation in the information given from record to record.
Known Issues with This Collection
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Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
Citation Example for a Record Found in This Collection
"Portugal, Diocese of Vila Real, Catholic Church Records, 1575-1975," images. FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org : accessed 21 June 2012) Vila Real > Alijo > Vile Verde > Santa Marinha > Obitos 1913-1973 > image 117 of 150; Louisa Rodriguez, date of death 16 October 1963, age 60, citing Catholic parishes in Vila Real. Portugal, Vila Real, Catholic Church records. Vila Real District Archive, Portugal.