Court of the Peculiar of the Dean of Chichester
Step By Step
1. First search each index (see below) to help you more quickly find the will, writing down each detail cited in the indexed entry.
2. Proceed to "Records" (below) to determine what probate records exist for this court.
3. Contact or visit the Hampshire Record Office or, hire a professional record searcher to view these records on your behalf. Officials may send upon request a list of record searchers.
4. You can visit The Family History Library, or, one of its 4,500 satellite family history centers worldwide and search indexes to probate records; then with the information obtained from the index[es] you can search more quickly the original wills and admons also on microfilm via any centers near you.
The probate collection includes a Calendars and indexes to wills, administrations and inventories. A calendar is an index arranged first alphabetically by the beginning letter of a testator's surname and second by date.
This is a website for which you may request a search to be made.
Printed and Published Indexes
The Index Library volumes 49 and 64 are indexes to this courts' probates from 1479-1684
Calendars from 1511-1857 at The Society of Genealogists, London
Microfilmed Indexes at the Family History Library
The indexes as listed in the above are also available in the collection of The Family History Library and they are on microfilm and may be circulated to each of its satellite Family History Centers worldwide.
Here are a series of "Indexes" at The Family History Library:
- Index to Probate Accounts 1572-1711
- Index to West Sussex probate records, 1483-1858
- Index to the Court Diary of the Dean of Chichester Peculiar 1626-1667
- Calendar of Wills and Administrations (years not given)
- Calendar of bonds for the grant of letters of administration 1675-1689, 1770-1780
The original records are deposited at:
West Sussex PO19 1RQ
Tel 44-(0)1243 777100
Add information about the manuscript, printed and digital records in this location.
The records include:
- Original Wills 1561-1857
- Registered Wills 1554-1857
- Administration Bonds 1584-1857
- Probate and Administration Act Books and Diaries 1578-1857
- Caveats 1748-1784
- Inventories, Accounts, etc 1594-1739
Family History Library Records
- Original Wills 1704-1857
- Probate diaries 1577-1862;
- Registered & Original Wills 1553-1857; also see 1520-1858
- Caveats 1748-1784
- Bonds Box 1590-1744; 1579-1689
- Probate Records 1684-1780
- Calendar of Bonds for Letters of Administration 1675-1689; 1770-1780
- Calendar Administrations (no years given)
This peculiar court held concurrent jurisdiction over the following West Sussex parishes:
- Chichester St Andrew
- Chichester St Bartholomew
- Chichester St Martin
- Chichester St Olave
- Chichester St Peter the Great
- Chichester St Peter the Less
- Chichester St Pancras
- New Fishbourne
Any probate that was disputed and could not be settled by the county courts could be sent to these higher appeals courts:
The Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury also served as an appeals court.
Estate Duty Records
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 you locate a will. For more information, go to Estate Duty Records.