Philippines, Manila Civil Registration (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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Philippines, Manila, Civil Registration, 1899-1984 .
This article describes a collection of records at
Manila, Philippines
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Location of Manila, Philippines
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Record Description
Record Type: Civil Registration
Collection years: 1899-1984
Languages: Spanish
Title in the Languages: Filipinas, Manila Registro Civil
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Manila Civil Registry

What is in the Collection?

This collection includes birth, marriage, and death records for the city of Manila, Philippines. See the coverage table below for date ranges of each record group. The index currently covers birth certificates from 1900-1980.

Some folders of images are not arranged chronologically and/or sequentially.

For the most part the records are in English. A few of the earlier marriage records and sections of later records are written in Spanish. See the "For Help Reading these Records" section for Spanish translation helps.

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for Philippines, Manila, Civil Registration, 1899-1984.

Coverage Table

Description Earliest Year Latest Year
Civil Registration - Births 1898 1980
Civil Registration - Marriages 1900 1991
Civil Registration - Deaths 1890 1984

Collection Content

Sample Images

What Can This Collection Tell Me?

The following lists indicate potential information given in each type of record. It must be remembered that every record may not provide all the listed information, as record-keeping practices varied over time.

Birth Records usually contain:

  • Name and gender of child
  • Child's date and place of birth
  • Child's race
  • Name and birthplace of father
  • Father's occupation
  • Maiden name of mother and her birthplace
  • Name of physician or midwife and their residence

Marriage Records usually contain:

  • Date and place of the marriage
  • Name and age of groom
  • Groom's marital status, nativity and residence
  • Names of groom's parents
  • Name and age of bride
  • Bride's marital status, nativity and residence
  • Names of bride's parents
  • Names of the witnesses and their residence
  • Names of the persons who gave consent
  • Name of the person who solemnized the marriage
  • Beginning in 1945, the birthplace of bride and groom
  • Date of the marriage license
  • Date of the certificate (marriage contract)

Death Records usually contain:

  • Name, age and gender of deceased (keep in mind that death records for women may be filed under their married name)
  • Marital status, nativity and race of deceased
  • Name of spouse
  • Day, month and year when death occurred
  • Place of death
  • Duration of illness
  • Cause of death
  • Name of physician and his residence
  • On death certificates after 1958, names of father and mother appear
  • On death certificates after 1958, birth date and birthplace of deceased
  • Sometimes, burial information or transit permit given

How Do I Search the Collection?

Before beginning a search in these records, it is best to know the full name of the individual in question, as well as an approximate time range for the desired record. When entered into the search engine on the Collection Page, this information provides the quickest, most reliable path to finding the correct person. Of course, other information can be substituted as necessary.

Search by Name by Visiting the Collection Page

Fill in the requested information in the initial search page to return a list of possible matches. Compare the individuals on the list with what is already known to find the correct family or person. This step may require examining multiple individuals before a match is located.

View Images in This Collection by Visiting the Browse Page

If granted the rights to view the digitized records in this collection (see below), the images may be accessed by following this series of links:
⇒ Select Browse through images on the initial collection page
⇒ Select the appropriate Record Type
⇒ Select the appropriate Year
⇒ Select the appropriate Month and Certificate Numbers to go to the images

Compare the information found on the images with what is already known determine if a particular record relates to the correct person. This process may require examining multiple records before the correct person is located.

For Help Reading These Records

These records are in Spanish and English. For help reading the records, see the following wiki articles:

What Do I Do Next?

I Found the Person I Was Looking for, What Now?

  • 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 and the place of birth to find the family in census records. See the Philippines Census for more information.
  • Use the residence and names of the parents to locate church and land records. See the Philippines Land and Property for assistance.
  • Use the parents' birth places to find former residences and to establish a migration pattern for the family.
  • 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. For this step, it helps to compile the marriage entries for every person who has the same surname as the bride or groom; this is especially helpful if the surname is unusual.
  • Witnesses often were relatives of the parents.

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking for, What Now?

  • 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.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • 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.
  • If possible, look at the actual image of the record to verify the information in the online record description.

General Information About These Records

Divorce is not legal in the Philippines, but some records of annulment and legal separation are kept in the National Census and Statistics Office and in the local Domestic Relations Court of First Instance.

Only the marriage contract is forwarded to the National Census and Statistics Office. The other records remain in the office of the local civil registrar, although the couple may be given a copy of their marriage certificate. The contract is the vital record and is of most value to the researcher. The other records, though they have much of the same information, may provide other valuable clues to the discerning genealogist.

Known Issues with This Collection

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See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

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 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.

Citing this Collection

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information (often called citing 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:

"Philippines, Manila Civil Registration, 1899-1984." Database with images. FamilySearch. : accessed 2017. Citing Civil Registrar's 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, Manila Civil Registration, 1899-1984.

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, Manila Civil Registration, 1899-1984.

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.