Philippines, Civil Registration, Local (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Philippines Civil Registration (Local), 1888-1984 .
This article describes a collection of records at
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Record Description
Record Type: Civil Registration
Collection years: 1888-1984
Languages: Spanish
Title in the Languages: Filipinas, El Registro Civil, Local
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
National Statistics Office of the Philippines

What is in the Collection?

This collection of records from local civil registry offices throughout the country includes marriage and death records created at local civil registry offices throughout the Philippines for 1888-1984. Originals are housed at the Bureau of Records Management in Manila, Philippines.

Records are not available for all localities; the coverage varies by city/locality.

Additional records will be added to this collection as they become available.

Browse the collection in FamilySearch to determine current coverage. For local civil registration records for Metropolitan Manila, please see the collection Philippines, Manila Civil Registration (FamilySearch Historical Records).

For the most part, the records are handwritten in English. For any written in Spanish.

Record Types

Description Earliest Year Latest Year
Civil Registration - Marriages 1903 1980
Civil Registration - Deaths 1914 1980

Collection Contents

Sample Images

Marriage records usually contain the following information:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Groom's name and age
  • Groom's nationality, residence and marital status
  • Name of groom's father and his nationality
  • Maiden name of husband's mother and her nationality
  • Bride's name and age
  • Bride's nationality, residence and marital status
  • Name of bride's father and his nationality
  • Maiden name of bride's mother and her nationality
  • Names of the witnesses and their residence
  • Names of the persons who gave consent to the marriage
  • Name and title of person who solemnized marriage
  • Beginning in 1945, birthplace of bride and groom are given

Death records usually contain the following information:

  • City and province where death occurred
  • Name of medical institution if death occurred there
  • Name and gender of deceased (Sometimes the death record for a woman will be filed under her married name and not her maiden name.)
  • Age given in years, months, days and hours
  • Date of death
  • Cause of death
  • Birthplace and occupation of deceased
  • Name of surviving spouse, if married
  • In what country did deceased have citizenship
  • Parents' names, including mother's maiden name
  • Name of informant and their relationship to deceased
  • Name of attending physician
  • Burial information

How Do I Search the Collection?

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, 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.

Some record sets have indexes; these indexes were created at the end of the year. Copy errors could have been made in the index, so you want to find the actual record to verify the information is correct. Using the index is a helpful way to find the actual record.

See the sections below for tips and uses for searching and finding the record of your ancestor in this collection and using the information in the record.

If you are unable to find a record for your ancestor in this collection, see the corresponding section below.

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 browse the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select the appropriate "Province" category
⇒Select the appropriate "Municipality" category
⇒Select the appropriate "Record Type" category
⇒Select the appropriate "Year Range" category which will take you to the images

Look at the image and compare 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.

For Help Reading these Records

For help reading the Spanish-era records see the following guides:

What Do I Do Next?

  • Use the marriage date and place as the basis for compiling a new family group or for verifying existing information.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth of each partner to find a couple's birth records and parents' names.
  • Use the birth date or age along with the place of birth to find the family in census records Philippines Census.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church (see “Related Wiki Articles” section below) and land records Philippines Land and Property.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • The name of a marriage officiator is a clue to their religion or area of residence in the province. However, ministers may have reported marriages performed in other provinces.
  • Compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
  • Use the marital status to identify previous marriages (whether a divorce or death dissolved a previous marriage).
  • Witnesses often were relatives of the parents.

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.

For death records, the information in records is usually reliable, but depends upon the knowledge of the informant.

For marriage and death records, your ancestors may have used shortened names or nicknames, so pay attention to other relationships (parents, spouse, siblings, children, etc.) that can confirm whether you have the right person/record.

Continue to search the marriage records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the bride and groom who may have married in the same county or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family or even the second marriage of a parent. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.

Continue to search the indexes and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have lived in the same area or a nearby area.

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:

"Philippines, Civil Registration (Local), 1888-1984." Database with Images. FamilySearch. accessed 2016. Citing National Census and Statistics Office, Manila, Philippines.

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 Philippines, Civil Registration (Local), 1888-1984.

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 Philippines, Civil Registration (Local), 1888-1984.