Japan Village Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Japan, Village Records, 709-1949 .
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
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Record Description
Collection years: 709-1949
Languages: Japanese
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites

Title in the Language of the Record


What is in the Collection?

This collection will include records from 709 to 1949. The records are in Japanese. See the For Help Reading These Records section of this article for translation tools.

The collection includes village records from all over Japan. These records include land records, genealogies, religious censuses, and individual family records.

Japanese villages were responsible for several types of records that can be of significant genealogical value, especially when the religious inquisition census records (shumoncho) are unavailable.

These records include the following:

  • Land and property records
  • Tax records (who paid taxes, etc.)
  • Population and status records (a type of census)
  • Lists of people who were drafted into the military
  • Financial records
  • Conservation project records

To Browse This Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Japan, Village Records, 709-1949.

Collection Contents

Sample Images

Village records may contain the following information:

  • Full name of ancestor
  • Age
  • Date of transaction
  • Occupation
  • Residence
  • Birth date

How Do I Search the Collection?

To search the Village Records, it would be helpful if you knew the following information:

  • Approximate year of birth
  • Name of village

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page
⇒Select "Prefecture"
⇒Select "County or City"
⇒Select "Town or Village"
⇒Select "Record Type"
⇒Select "Title, Volume/Page, and Year" which will take 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.

When searching:
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 and 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.

For Help Reading These Records

These records are in Japanese. For help with reading the records, see the following resource:

What Do I Do Next?

  • Use the age to calculate a birth year.
  • Use dates to track any migration to different areas of Japan.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • Use other identifying information (such as occupation) to decide if it’s the entry you’re looking for.
  • Titles may be clues to property ownership, occupations, rank, or status within the community.
  • Check for variant spellings of the names.
  • For more Japanese records to search through, go to the Related FamilySearch Historical Records section of this article.
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Don't overlook FHL Place Japan items or FHL Keyword Japan items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see Japan Archives and Libraries.

Citing this Collection

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information; that is, cite your sources. This will help people find the record again and evaluate the reliability of the source. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records. Citations are available for the collection as a whole and each record or image individually.

Collection Citation:

"Japan, Village Records, 709-1949" Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing Ehime Prefecture Library, Ehime.

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 Japan, Village Records, 709-1949.

How Can I 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.