England, Northampton, Church Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)
This collection includes church records from the county of Northampton for the years 1537-1900
- 1 Why Should I Look at This Collection?
- 2 What is in the Collection?
- 3 How Do I Search This Collection?
- 4 What Do I Do Next?
- 5 Citing this Collection
- 6 How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
Why Should I Look at This Collection?
Parish registers have been kept at the local level across England since the mid-1500s. Due to this long and relatively stable tradition, these records are central to English genealogical research as they are often one of the only sources for finding families and individuals in England before the start of civil registration in 1837.
To learn more about the content and importance of parish registers, please see the England Parish Registers page.
What is in the Collection?
This collection contains an index to and images of mixed christening (baptism), marriage, and burial records. The records were filmed at the Northamptonshire Record Office in Wootton Hall Park, Northampton, England.
Whenever possible, FamilySearch makes images of digitized records available for all users. However, the rights to view images on this website are ultimately granted by the record custodians. Due to their restrictions, the images in this collection are not available for general viewing, but may be accessed at the Family History Library or at a local family history center.
For additional information about image restrictions, please see the Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections page.
How Do I Search This Collection?
You can find records either by searching the index or viewing the record images. Before using either search method, it is best to know the following information:
- Name of the person
- Date range for the record
As you search, compare your results with this information to find a match.
Search the Index
- Go to the coverage table.
- Enter the requested information into the search box.
- Click Search to return a list of possible matches.
View the Images
- Go to the collection browse page.
- Click on the correct Record Type link.
- Click on the correct Year Range link
- Click on the correct Volume Number link to go to the image viwer.
- Use the onscreen controls to move between images as you look for a match.
What Do I Do Next?
I Found the Person I Was Looking for, What Now?
- Make sure to fully transcribe and cite the record entry for future reference. See below for assistance in citing this collection. Save or print a copy of the image if possible.
- Use the information which has been discovered to find more. For instance, use the estimated age given in a marriage or burial record to calculate an approximate year of birth, if that is yet undetermined.
- If in the appropriate period, use the information which has been discovered to find the individual in civil records. Particularly useful for research in nineteenth-century England are the England Census and the England Civil Registration records.
- Continue to search the index to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives. Note that family members often appear on an individual's vital records, such as in the role of witnesses to a marriage.
I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking for, What Now?
- When looking for a person with a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which individual is correct. Use other information, such as place of birth, age, occupation, or names of parents, to determine which candidate is the correct person. If listed, a personal title may be a clue to property ownership or occupation, either of which might be noted in other records.
- Check for variants of given names, surnames, and place names; transcription errors could occur in any handwritten record. Also remember that it was not uncommon for an individual be listed under a nickname or an abbreviation of their name, especially in church records. See Abbreviations Found in Genealogy Records for examples of common abbreviations. Note that some women reverted to their maiden name when their husband died, and therefore could be buried under their maiden name.
- Vary the search terms. For example, search by either the given name or surname to return broader list of possible candidates which can then be examined for matches. Alternatively, try expanding the date range; this is especially useful in searching baptismal records, as it was not unusual for a child to be baptized weeks or even months after birth.
- Search the records of nearby parishes. While it was uncommon for an individual in this period to move more than about 20 miles from their place of birth, smaller relocations were not uncommon. For this particular collection, this step may require finding records in the bordering English counties of Leicestershire, Rutland, and Lincolnshire to the north; Cambridgeshire, Huntingdonshire, and Bedfordshire to the east; Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire to the south; or Warwickshire to the west. Note that marriages usually took place in the parish where the bride resided.
- Look at the actual image of the record to verify the information found in the online description, if possible.
- The individual in question may not have records in the Church of England at all, but rather might have belonged to a nonconformist denomination. See England Nonconformist Church Records for more information.
For additional help searching online collections see FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.
Citing this Collection
Citing sources correctly makes it easier to refer back to information that has already been discovered; proper citations are therefore indispensable to keeping track of genealogical research. Following established formulae in formatting citations also allows others to verify completed research by helping them find and examine records for themselves.
To be of use, citations must include information such as the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records, if available. The following examples demonstrate how to present this information for both this particular collection as well as individual images within the collection:
- " Northampton, Church Records, 1537-1900." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Northamptonshire Record Office, Wootton Hall Park.
How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?
| 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.