South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archive Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archives Records 1792-1992 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Cape Province, South Africa
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Flag of South Africa
ZA Locator Map South Africa Cape Province.png
Location of Cape Province, South Africa
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Record Description
Record Type: Archives Records
Collection years: 1792-1992
Languages: Afrikaans, Dutch, Flemish, English
Title in the Language: Suid-Afrika, Kaap Provinsie, Wes-Kaapse Argiewe Akten
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Western Cape Archives


What is in the Collection?

This collection includes various records from 1792 to 1992.

This collection has various records from the Western Cape Archives in Cape Town, South Africa. It includes the following: Birth, Marriage and Death Registrations, Probate Estate Files, Slave Records and Immigration Records. This collection is being published as images become available.

These records are written in Afrikaans, Dutch, Flemish, and English. See the section For Help Reading these Records for translation helps.

General Information about Cape Province

The Union of South Africa was established in 1910 by combining four British colonies into four original provinces of the Union: Cape Province, Transvaal Province, Natal Province and Orange Free State Province. In 1994 all of these provinces were dissolved and the current nine new provinces were established. The Cape Province was broken up into three smaller provinces: the Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Northern Cape. Parts of it were also absorbed into the North West.

To Browse this Collection

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archives Records 1792-1992.

Collection Content

Sample Images

Click on images for a larger view.

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

Marriage records may contain the following information:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Name and age of groom
  • Occupation of groom
  • Name and age of bride
  • Birthplace of each
  • Marital status of each
  • Residences of both bride and groom
  • Names of witnesses

Slave records may contain the following information:

  • Colony where transaction took place
  • Date of sale
  • Name of vendor
  • Name of purchaser
  • Amount paid
  • Number of slaves purchased
  • Sometimes, names and ages of slaves

Census records may contain the following information:

  • Names of family members
  • Number of males in household
  • Number of females in household

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search in these records, it would be helpful if you knew any of the following information:

  • Name of parents
  • Approximate year and place of birth
  • Name of ancestor
  • Name of ancestor's spouse
  • Approximate year and place of marriage
  • Approximate year and place of residence

Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
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.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "Town"
⇒Select the appropriate “Record Type, Date Range and Volume" which takes you to the images

Look at the images one by one 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.

For Help Reading these Records

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

What Do I Do Next?

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Use the age in the citizen to find an approximate birth year to begin your search in church or civil records.
  • Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives who may have moved, been recruited or lived nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify. Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual. This compiled list can help you identify possible relations that can be further verified by researching vital records indexes in the country.
  • When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. Save a copy of the image or transcribe the information. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details such as a title, an occupation, or land ownership. Add this new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your ancestors.
  • Church Records often were kept years before government records were required and are a good source for finding ancestors before 1900.

I Can't Find Who I'm Looking for, What Now?

  • Switch to a different record collection. Depending on the time period, either Civil Registration records or Church Records may be more useful.
  • While searching, it is helpful to know such information as the 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 an ancestor and that the ancestor may have used nicknames or different names at different times.
  • Keep in mind that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • Standard spelling of names typically did not exist during the periods our ancestors lived in. Try variations of your ancestor’s name while searching the index or browsing through images. Pay special attention to how the name should have been pronounced and try variations on the pronunciation.
  • Remember that sometimes individuals went by nicknames or alternated between using first and middle names. Try searching for these names as well.
  • Search the indexes and records of local genealogical societies.
  • Earlier records may not contain as much information as the records created after the late 1800.
  • There is also some variation in the information given from one record to another.
  • Be aware that there may have been some transcription errors.

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
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 article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. 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

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:

"South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archives Records, 1792-1992." Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Western Cape Archives, Cape Town.

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 South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archives Records, 1792-1992.


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 South Africa, Cape Province, Western Cape Archives Records, 1792-1992.


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.