England, London Electoral Registers (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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England, London Electoral Registers, 1847-1913 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
London,  England
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Flag of England
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Location of London, England
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Record Description
Record Type Electoral Registers
Collection years 1847-1913
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
London Metropolitan Archives


What is in the Collection?

This collection contains electoral registers captured at the London Metropolitan Archives. The records contain lists of names and addresses of registered voters. The register of persons entitled to vote at any election of a member to serve in parliament, or to serve on the county council of the county of London. The records cover the years 1847 to 1913.

In 1832, the Reform Act created electoral registers. These registers recorded individuals who qualified to vote in the national elections for representation in parliament. The qualifications changed over the years. There were also electoral registers that covered local elections. Boroughs of large cities had their own electoral registers and their own qualifications for being listed in the registers. In 1878, boroughs combined their registers for the national and local elections. Other places combined their registers by 1885. Registration was suspended and no electoral registers were created during the World Wars: 1916–1917 (1915–1917 for Scotland) and 1940–1944. In the early years, registers covered only about 7 percent of the population. By 1867, they covered about 11 percent. Until 1918, the registers list only men because women were not allowed to vote. Until 1971, the registers listed only those 21 years of age or older.

Registers have been published annually with few exceptions from 1832 to the present. Before 1884, the registers are arranged by polling district and then alphabetically by surname. After 1884, they were arranged by polling district and then by street. Most of the registers have been published.

Electoral registers were created to determine who could vote. If an individual’s name did not appear in the register, he or she could not vote. Since the government required the electoral registers, the reliability of the records would be high with respect to the place of residence and the name of the individual.

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for England, London Electoral Registers, 1847-1913.


Collection Content

Sample Images

Electoral registers may contain the following information:

  • Given name and surname of each voter
  • Place of abode (residence)
  • Nature of qualification (what qualified the individual to be included in the register)
  • Name of property or street
  • Sometimes handwritten notes may have been added, giving such information as who the person voted for, when the voter died, or the removal of the voter.

How Do I Search the Collection?

As you are searching it is helpful to know such information as your ancestor's given name and surname, some identifying information such as residence, age, and family relationships. 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 index:
Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors 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 compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

To search by image:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "City/Borough" category
⇒Select the appropriate "Record Type, Date Range and Volume" category, which takes you to the images

Search the collection by image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • 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.
  • Check for variant spellings of the names.
  • Titles may be clues to property ownership, occupations, rank, or status within the community.
  • Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur.
  • The electoral registers may help you determine the residence of an individual and how long that person lived there.
  • You may also be able to determine your ancestor’s social status and to locate other records in which that person might appear.

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.

Collection Citation:

"England, London Electoral Registers, 1847-1913." Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2016. London Metropolitan Archives, London.


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, London Electoral Registers, 1847-1913.


Image Citation:

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, London Electoral Registers, 1847-1913.