England, Devon, Parish Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)
|Access the Records|
England, Devon, Parish Registers, 1538-1912 .
|This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.|
|Flag of England|
|Location of Devon, England|
|Record Type||Parish Registers|
|Find My Past|
Whenever possible, FamilySearch makes images available for all users. However, ultimate rights to view images on our website are granted by the record custodians. The England, Plymouth and West Devon, Parish Registers collection is available to the Family History Library, FamilySearch Centers, and to members of the supporting organization, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The images can be viewed at a FamilySearch Center near you.
What is in the Collection?
This collection contains baptisms, marriages, and burials from parishes in West Devon from 1538-1912. This collection was done in cooperation with FindMyPast, and a full version of the index can be found at their website.
Church records are the main source for identifying people prior to 1837 when civil registration began. It is also a main source after 1837 in conjunction with civil registration. The Church of England was formed in 1536 after King Henry VIII severed all ties to the church in Rome. Each local parish was responsible for registering all marriages, baptisms and burials starting in 1538. The governing of each parish created a group of records known as parish chest records. The Church of England has dominated the religious scene in England, therefore it is likely that you may find your ancestors in their records. As time passed other religions began to organize and keep their own records. Those that did not belong to the Church of England were referred to as Nonconformists. The main influence of nonconformism was in larger towns and cities.
Parish registers often record only the marriage date and the names of the bride and groom. The records may also include the marital status and the parish of residence of both parties, the groom’s occupation, signatures of witnesses, and the minister’s name, especially after 1754. Starting in 1813, marital status and occupations may be given. Names of witnesses are also given.
Baptism records may contain the following information:
- Date of baptism, sometimes with birth date
- Child's name
- Names of parents
- Occupation of father
Marriage records may contain the following information:
- Full name of bride and groom
- Maiden name of bride
- Parish of residence for both bride and groom
- Groom's occupation
- Minister's name
- Date and place of marriage
- Names of witnesses
Burial records may contain the following information:
- Name of deceased
- Date of burial
- Age in Years and Months
- Date of death
- Place of death
|Plymouth St Andrew||1822-1826 (4634281)|
| 1581-1618 (4634280)
1858-1877 certificates (4634221)
1927-1931 banns (4634220)
| 1581-1618 (4634280)|
How Do I Search the Collection?
To begin your search in these records it is helpful to know some of the following information:
- Names of parents
- Approximate year and place of birth
- Name of bride or groom
- Approximate year and place of marriage
- Name of deceased
- Approximate year and place of death
Remember that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name as your ancestor and that your ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.
To search by name:
To search the collection fill in the requested information in the boxes on the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the individuals in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to look at the information on several individuals comparing the information about them to your ancestors to make this determination.
For tips about searching on-line collections see the online video at FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.
Tips to Keep in Mind
- Use the birth year in the marriage and death records to search for baptism records.
- Surnames are often found under unexpected spellings.
- Events are filed by the date registered, not the date they occurred (for example, a birth on 20 March which was registered on 6 April will be in the April-May-June quarter).
- Indexes were prepared by hand and may contain copying errors (for example, "T" for "F") or omissions.
- A person may have been registered under a different name than he or she used later in life.
- Some marriages were indexed by the name of only one spouse.
- A woman’s surname in the marriage index may be her surname from a previous marriage.
- Persons with common names may be difficult to identify in the index.
- Some deaths were registered as "unknown."
- A child born before the parents’ marriage may be registered under the mother’s maiden name.
- Some children were registered as "male" or "female" if a name had not been selected before registration.
Known Issues with This Collection
For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.
How You Can Contribute
| We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records. |
Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.
Citing this Collection
Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.
- "England, Devon, Parish Registers, 1538-1912."Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2016. From "Church of England parish registers 1538-1911." Database and images. findmypast. http://www.findmypast.com : n.d. Citing images provided by FamilySearch International.
Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):
|The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for England, Devon, Parish Registers, 1538-1912.|
|The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for England, Devon, Parish Registers, 1538-1912.|