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ENGLISH & WELSH ROOTS - English & Welsh Databases and Indexes
Article posted: September 03, 1999
By: Fawne Stratford-Devai   Biography & Archived Articles

Those of us in North America with unlimited, reasonably priced access to the internet and many online and computerized indexes/databases look longingly across the Atlantic to England and Wales wondering where similar resources can be found. These important resources DO exist. Many smaller or specially focussed databases are online at various web pages. At the same time, larger more comprehensive databases of various vital events in parish registers for an entire county can be found in most local Family History Societies.


First, family historians must remember that telephone costs in the UK are very different from the unlimited free local calling we enjoy here in North America. In the UK everyone must pay for any and all telephone calls - by the minute and part minute - whether local or long distance. Therefore, the cost of going online over the telephone and charges levied by Internet Service providers are extremely prohibitive to both the average researcher and volunteer based non-profit group such as a local Family History Society. As a result we find many local societies offering look up services to their computerized indexes and databases to members for a reasonable fee per surname and its variants.

Likewise, the production of indexes and databases is not cheap, even with volunteers doing the extraction work. In order to recover some of the costs associated with creating these databases, family history societies charge for look ups in their various growing databases on a surname basis. Still others are beginning to look at producing their data on CD-ROMs in order to sell at a reasonable price in order to recover some of the costs of producing and maintaining their databases.


While you do not have to be a member of a particular Family History Society to access their fee based look up services in their many databases, there are many other advantages to joining a local Society for the county or area in which your family research is based.

Membership in a local society will provide you with their regular newsletter which is often filled will helpful information about the history and resources of the area. You can also submit your surname interests and queries for publication in the newsletter. Although not online and interactive with immediate gratification, the information in the newsletters is still "data" - information to further your research. As a member of Family History and Genealogical Societies in England I have found information and indexes about specific records in both microform and published form (for sale) and included in the group's regular newsletter. The price of publications in microfiche is extremely reasonable and in hard copy rather more expensive when postage costs are added to the price. However, both forms are far more reasonable than the cost of airfare and accommodations to England. In addition, indexes published in the newsletters have provided information that I was able to use to request a copy of the original record by writing to the Society or to a local County Records Office.

The modern computer age is still in its infancy. Researchers must remember that much work transcribing and indexing local records has been done by volunteers for many decades before computers were available. Many of these older transcriptions and indexes are still only available through local family history societies as printed publications on either paper or fiche. As a member of a Society you will receive regular updates about local publications as well as information about the latest computer databases available for look ups. All of this information is data in some form. All of this "data" is extremely valuable to your family history research and can only be accessed through these local societies.

More recently, local societies have been compiling large databases of events recorded in parish registers; census transcriptions/indexes, monumental inscriptions and; a host of other lesser known record indexes. Most often these indexes can only be searched by writing to the Society and paying a small fee for surname searches. For example, the Oxfordshire Family History Society has been working for a number of years to transcribe and index all parish register entries for the entire county as well as parishes that were at one time part of the county. Parishes in Oxfordshire have historically NOT allowed the LDS to microfilm their records. As a result, the only source of information to these records for someone researching from North America is the databases and transcriptions of the Society. Search services offered by the Oxfordshire Family History Society vary from a county wide search of the 1851 census for Oxfordshire for £1.00 per surname (including variants) to a search of the Oxfordshire Marriage Index 1538-1837 for a specific marriage or a listing of all entries for a specific surname (including variants). After an initial surname search of the marriage index, I was then able to purchase on microfiche the complete transcription of particular parish registers. The total cost for one particular search and subsequent microfiche purchase was less than $25.00 Canadian. Researchers would be well advised to visit the website for the Family History or Genealogy Society that covers your county or area of research. Join the society and make full use of their many reasonably priced services.


The starting point for anyone researching in the United Kingdom should be the UK and Ireland Genealogy website . From the GenUKI site, you will find links to most local Family History and Genealogy Societies through one or more of the following pages:

At the same time, do not forget about local societies in your home province/territory/state/county which have special interest groups for conducting English, Welsh, Irish and Scottish family history. There are also specialty societies that focus solely on British Isles Research. For example:

  • British Isles FHS of Greater Ottawa:
    The British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa is working in cooperation with the National Archives of Canada, to index the names of Home Children found in the passenger lists in the custody of the National Archives. The beginnings of this database is now online at the National Archives of Canada website

  • British Isles FHS - USA:
    The British Isles Family History Society USA provides an online guide to "Using U.S. Records to Trace Your Immigrant Ancestry"

All of these societies offer services, indexes, databases and publications that should not be overlooked when researching your English and Welsh Roots.


One of the best tools for locating information and actual data is your own imagination. Sometimes it is necessary to think beyond the standard boundaries which we have been told to use for finding information in England and Wales. It is important to ask yourself WHO or what office your ancestors would have come into contact with during their life that would have created some kind of record about them to be generated. Now, where did that person they came into contact with, or the records of a particular institution and office end up? It can be very enlightening sometimes to move away from asking questions about your family and instead, ask questions about the records of a particular institution or office that your ancestor may have come into contact with.

There are also instances where the information is not in the local county where it was created, or even in the country. A classic example is the collection of English Deeds available from Harvard Law School in the U.S.A.: English Deeds at Harvard Law School
Indexes and other resources can sometimes be found in places far from England. For example, did you know that the Manuscript Division of the Harvard Law School Library has many medieval and early modern English deeds? The Deeds Collection of the Harvard Law School Library is a rich and diverse body of English legal documents comprising over one-thousand items ranging in date from as early as circa 1170 to as late as 1888. The documents which make up this collection are described in the broadest terms as "deeds". The Deeds Collection brings together a wide variety of different types of such documents: grants of land, leases, mortgages, sales, quitclaims, bonds, marriage contracts, letters of attorney, records of arbitration or judgment, manor court records, wills, letters patent of various sorts, and others. Only a small number of these documents are written on paper and almost all of them bear seals, or did at one time.

The materials in the Deeds Collection come from all over England, but certain counties are particularly well represented, such as Kent, Devon, Suffolk, Warwickshire, Essex, Yorkshire, and Norfolk. Kent itself accounts for almost a quarter of the entire collection. Within Kent, the towns of East Peckham and Chart Sutton are well documented. There is also is a considerable number of documents involving Roger Twysden, the sheriff of Kent (1542-1603). The single most significant concentration of documents, however, comes from the town of Washfield in the county of Devon. Their catalogue containing summaries of their collection (and Names mentioned in the documents) is available online from their main deed website at: For summaries of deeds by county visit the following link:

The Brigham Young University of Utah has provided online versions of many Primary Documents relating to the History of the United Kingdom. Visit their website at:


The Pubs, Inns and Taverns Index for England - 1800-1900 is not online nor is it freely available to one and all - YET - but work is well underway. The project is a not-for-profit endeavour to create a database of all pubs, inns and taverns, including hotels and coffee houses, and their keepers, for the 19th Century. It was estimated in 1900 that there were approximately English Pubs 60,000 such establishments in England, from which it is possible to estimate that the finished project will contain something of the order of 6,500,000 entries. At present the index has 262,012, or 4.03% of this potential total.

Exactly what records are used to compile this index are as varied as the imagination of researchers and contributors worldwide. Among the many sources of information used in compiling the database, submissions from personal family histories remain one of the most important, primarily because the details are the result of painstaking research. The availability of the 1881 UK Census on CD-ROM has provided another valuable resource.

The ubiquitous Kelly's Post Office Directories are another important, back- bone, resource together with those produced by William White, Pigot and Co., and others. In addition to these, Licensing Records at County Record Offices are being consulted as are such items as Land Tax, Hearth Tax and Window Tax records. From Norfolk and Suffolk the compilers have been provided with information on War Office payments to innkeepers for billeting soldiers locally.

I recently ask Stan Gooch, one of the partners and driving forces behind this project to tell readers of the Gazette what possessed him and his friend to undertake such a project. Stan recounts very nicely how it all started over a pint at the pub!

    The first pub I can remember stood in Clifton Road, near my home and I had to pass it twice a day, to and from school. It was called the Eagle and it seemed to me that it must be a very jolly place, since there was always the sound of music and laughter behind its doors. I was much older before I discovered that the Eagle had something of a reputation locally but by that time, I had discovered other pubs and the joys thereof for myself. Despite my youthful (and not so youthful) indiscretions, I have always enjoyed the atmosphere in a good pub (good: friendly, well-managed and with decent beer on draught - not any other definition!) and it was this that led me down the road to late nights over a hot keyboard.

    It was just before Christmas, 1998, when my colleague Rob Sones and I were investigating the skill of the English brewer. The conversation turned - I don't know why - to the idea of becoming involved in some sort of project to return some of the help we had both received from a wide range of people while we were researching our respective family histories.

    I suppose it was inevitable that our thoughts should turn to pubs and this in turn evolved into the Pubs, Inns and Taverns Index for England, 1801-1900. Of course, we had no idea what we were letting ourselves in for and it is a deeply profound truism that had we done so, we would never, ever have started. Having started, it was only the fact that there were two of us to share the burden - plus a certain determination that having started, we would finish - that kept us going. One of the first statistics we turned up was that there were estimated to be 60,000 pubs in England alone in 1900. That made us whistle and look to heaven but when we calculated what that would mean for the whole century, based upon the little experience we had then gained, we reckoned that the database, if ever completed, could hold as many as 6,500,000 entries.

    At the last count, with all the assistance and contributions we have received from all over the world, we have managed to accumulate some 262,000 entries, or almost 5% of the potential total. We still have a long way to go but we are gratified that so many people seem to think that it is a worthwhile project and have offered to do their bit to help it along.

I am very grateful to Stan Gooch for responding so promptly to my email and providing this information for the Gazette. If you have any questions related to this index or can provide details of such premises please contact either Stan Gooch or Rob Sones by email at: The website describing the project is now online at: drop by and sign their guest book.

If you have information on any Pub, Inn, Tavern, Hotel or Coffee House, anywhere in England and would like to submit it for inclusion in the Index, visit the submission form on the web site at: Your submission will be acknowledged, usually within 24 hours.

On a similar pub related note, if you want to learn about pubs in Kent, visit the website of Peter E. Blanche at:


The starting point for anyone researching in the United Kingdom should be the UK and Ireland Genealogy website in particular, after reviewing the tremendous resources for the British Isles as a whole, be sure to click over to main contents page and scroll down to discover the link to your county of interest. Within these individual county pages you will discover a vast array of resources including online indexes and data! A note of caution : please remember that no index is perfect. Indexes, whether in published form or online should be used to point you towards an original record. Always follow-up by requesting a copy of the original record.

Touring English and Welsh databases online will take you from one continent to another but the common uniting link will be UK information and data. Starting from the GenUKI site for your county of interest, follow related links from these and other county information pages. While surfing the net recently in search of online indexes and data I came across a plethora of information that will leave your head spinning. Below please find a very small sampling for a few counties of the many indexes, databases and other important resources available online:




  • Wirksworth, Derbyshire: A vast treasure trove of more than 200,000 indexed records online. This unique website contains indexed records of parish registers, memorial inscriptions, marriage witnesses, directories, census, places, tradesmen and interests. The website is definitely worth a visit by anyone with links to Derbyshire. These Derbyshire - Wirksworth Records can be found on the internet at:

  • Pigot's 1835 Commercial Directory of Derbyshire is a commercial directory. The index can be used online at: Pigot/about.html


  • A file listing nearly 7000 Devon inhabitants (77k) taken from a pre-1830 Pigot's Directory of Devon, obtained from Cornwall Online, is available for download in zipped form

  • A Devon Gazetteer: The online gazetteer has been produced from a 12,000-item index that has been constructed of all the places (chapels, churches, farms, hamlets, houses, inns, manors, schools, streets, villages, etc.) and principal organizations (banks, societies, institutions, etc.) named in White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Devonshire, (1850), and/or Peskett's Guide to the Parish and Non-Parochial Registers of Devon and Cornwall 1538-1837. The index is available at the following website:

  • Nigel Batty-Smith's growing transcription, in brows able form, of the genealogies given in Visitations of the County of Devon by J.L. Vivian, published in 1895 is available online at:


  • Woodchester and Selsley This website by Graham Thomas includes a comprehensive, although not exhaustive list of over five hundred family names that have been recorded in both Selsley and Woodchester. Data includes:

    • Woodchester Manor Owners (740-1922)
    • Church Wardens (1587-1607)
    • Men and Armour, Woodchester 1608
    • Mill owners
    • Monuments in the old Woodchester Church
    • Clothiers buried in Woodchester Church Yard
    • Selsley Voters 1867
    • 1881 Census extracts
    • Woodchester Council Members 1894
    • Immigrants to the Stroud Area
    • Emigrants to Australia
    • Family Surnames occurring in Selsley and Woodchester ~ and more ~

  • Gloucestershire Probate Records - An Index to Wills 1541 - 1545 can be found on the Gloucestershire GenUKI website at:


~ KENT ~




  • The Cosford Database This web site contains just some of the information from the main Cosford Database which includes details of over 50,000 people and over 11,500 families mainly from the Lavenham area of Suffolk England.

  • Suffolk Surname list site includes links to many downloadable zipped files of Suffolk data. For example:

    • Complete Rattlesden parish records 1559 to 1758 (from transcriptions) by David Huffey

    • Chillesford parish register index

    • Denham (St. Mary) parish register index 1539-1850 - Denham in Thetford registration district

    • Monk Soham parish register index, marriages 1712-1918

    • Lowestoft, St. Margaret's Parish Church, register index, burials 1745-1812

    • Lowestoft, St. Margaret's Parish Church, register index, baptisms 1841-1853

    • Sudbury, St. Peter's Church, register index, marriages

    • West Stow parish register index up to 1850 ~ and more ~

  • There are also many one name extractions listed from a variety of Suffolk parish records. Of course, don't miss the link to the surname list!



  • Principal Inhabitants of Cumberland and Westmorland 1829 + More Directories: The 1829 Directory and other directories are available from Roland Grigg's website at:


  • Wiltshire Parish Marriage Indexes: Anyone with Wiltshire research better check this out! It's brand new! Names of persons married in a parish are listed on a parish by parish basis. These names will only remain on-line for a limited period of time - one month, then they are gone! New listings appear as parishes are completed.

  • Abstracts of probate documents (with an index of the names of all persons mentioned) Hungerford and Wantage Wiltshire


  • 1851 Census Yorkshire Strays: A list of the 1851 Census Yorkshire "strays" (people born in Yorkshire, but not in Yorkshire at the time of the census) in the counties of Devon, Norfolk and Warwickshire

  • Northowram or Coley Register is a register of nonconformists produced by the Rev.s Oliver Heywood and T.Dickenson between 1644 and 1752. Read the register online including all vital records listed at:

  • A Topographical Dictionary of Yorkshire (1822) by Thomas Langdale. This directory contains the names of all the Towns, Villages, Hamlets, Gentlemen's Seats, &c. in the County of York, alphabetically arranged under the headings of the North, East, and West Ridings. Also in what Parish, Township, Wapentake, Division and Liberty they are situated. This site is essential reading when doing any research in the Ridings of Yorkshire.

  • Index to the "Civilian War Dead Roll Of Honour" for Northumberland, Durham and Yorkshire. Compiled by Brian Pears. This is an index to the Roll of Honour of civilians killed by enemy action in the UK during World War II - listing of nearly 4000 entries relating to Northumberland, Durham and Yorkshire. Visit the website at:

  • List of Officers who have held commissions in the North York Militia and 4th Battalion (Alexandra, Princess of Wales' Own) Yorkshire Regiment, from 1758 to 1907. From Anji Mungham

  • North Riding Parishes: This important website for North Riding research Lists more than 220 Parishes with Trade Directories for the year 1823 and 1890.



  • Boats lying at Worcester Wharf, Birmingham mentioned in the 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891 censuses have been transcribed by Maureen Surman

  • Commissary Court of London Will Abstracts Volume 26 (1629-1634) The will abstracts indexed by surname and locality on this site are from volume 26 of the registered wills for the Commissary Court of London - found on LDS film # 0094108. The volume commences at the end of the year 1629 and continues into 1634.

  • Index to "Paupers in Workhouses 1861" (10% sample): RETURNS "from each WORKHOUSE in England and Wales, of the Name of every ADULT PAUPER in each WORKHOUSE who has been an Inmate of the Workhouse during a continuous Period of Five Years; stating the Amount of Time that each of such Inmates shall have been in the Workhouse, and the Reason assigned why such Persons are unable to maintain themselves........" Don't miss this website at:

  • List of Executions - England 1606 Onward: with a link to the Newgate Prison London site which contains a list of inmates, victims, and others associated with the prison.

  • London Jews Database - by Jeffrey Maynard. Database of names addresses and other information concerning people of the Jewish faith who lived in London in the first half of the nineteenth century.

  • Strays by County - Census Indexes. Thee files list those found in Counties other than their County of birth. Eventually all English, Scottish and Welsh Counties will be included. Initially, the very populous counties of Middlesex, Essex, Kent, Surrey and Lancashire were included. Additional counties are being added on a regular basis.

  • St. Catherine's Marriage Indexes [Partial]. This growing website includes links to Selective Transcriptions for South-East England; A Complete Transcription for the March Quarter of 1849; Transcription for the Year 1856 (ongoing) and entries missing from the published indexes: 1856, 1858 & 1861

  • The Trafalgar Roll: This website lists the names of 1640 officers and men who served in the various ships of the Fleet at the Battle of Trafalgar. The rank of each man and the name of the ship is included. This site also contains a list of British ships at Trafalgar.

    Don't miss the ever growing site of The Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts The Commission has a most useful Website which has searchable databases containing information on where collections of archives can be found. The search can be by people, places or Companies. It also has on-line a Manorial Documents Register for England. At present it only covers Yorkshire. The webpage for the Manorial Documents Register can be found at:

    The foregoing list is not meant to provide an exhaustive list of links to UK databases and indexes online. Instead, a variety of counties have been used to illustrate the mix of online data and indexes that can be found with a little diligence and careful surfing.

    Also remember the many online gateways to other English and Welsh websites such as:


English and Welsh databases and indexes which have been made available on CD-Rom are growing daily and can be purchased from a variety of sources. Listed below are a few examples:

  • Pigot's 1834 Directory for County Durham and Northumberland: Over 23,000 names, occupations and addresses for tradesmen, shopkeepers, professionals, gentry and clergy from all the main towns and villages in Durham and Northumberland.

  • Pigot's 1830 Directory for Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Over 13,000 names, occupations and addresses for tradesmen, shopkeepers, professionals, gentry and clergy from all the main towns and villages in these counties.

  • Family History: English Origins of New England Families This Family Archive CD from Broderbund contains images of the pages from the Genealogical Publishing Company's books entitled English Origins of New England Families, which trace family histories back to their English roots, some as far back as the 11th century.

  • Complete Book of Emigrants, 1607-1776 With approximately 140,000 names, this CD contains the most comprehensive list ever published of the men, women, and children who emigrated from England to America between 1607 and 1776.

  • The Mayflower Descendants- With Other New England Town Records, by Search and Research Publishing Corporation. The Mayflower Legacy CD contains 43 volumes (over 513 megabytes) of original pilgrim records literally transcribed and edited by George Ernst Bowman (1862-1941)

  • Mayflower Vital Records, Deeds and Wills, 1600s-1900s Referencing the names of almost 82,000 individuals, this CD contains some of the best information pertaining to the most celebrated immigrants to the United States.

  • Genealogical Records: The Complete Mayflower Descendant and Other Sources, 1600s-1800s Family Archive CD: This Family Archive contains images of the pages from the following four texts: The Mayflower Descendant, Volumes 1-46 (including a comprehensive index set for Volumes 1-34); Mayflower Passengers, 1620; Middleborough, Massachusetts Vital Records, Volumes 1-2; and Pilgrim Notes and Queries, Volumes 1-5. This Family Archive is the only electronic publication of the entire forty-six volumes of The Mayflower Descendant authorized by the Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants. Combined, these four works reference the names of approximately 200,000 individuals.

  • Ship Passenger Lists, Miscellaneous Atlantic, Great Lake and Gulf Ports - DigArcCoTM Cd-Roms contain actual images of hand-written ship passenger lists from miscellaneous Atlantic, Great Lake and Gulf ports between 1820 and 1873.

  • Passenger and Immigration Lists Index, 1600s-1800s. Originally compiled by P. William Filby, the work includes information taken from naturalization records, passenger lists, and claims for headlights. Over 2,750,000 individuals who arrived in USA and Canada. For each individual listed, you will find the following information: name, location of entry port, and where to find the original source record.

  • Hull 1897 Trade Directory: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Contains: History of Hull, Official establishments, Conveyance directory, Street directory, Court directory, Trades and professions, Advertisement. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Bain's 1822 Trade Directory for Sheffield: Facsimile of directory on CD which includes History of Sheffield, Alphabetical surname list, List of Streets 1700 & 1821, Post Office & carriers, Trades & Professions Directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Bain's 1822 West Riding of Yorkshire Trade Directory: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Kelly's 1897 Resident Directory for the East Riding of Yorkshire: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Kelly's 1872 Post Office & Trade Directory East Riding of Yorkshire: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • North & East Riding of Yorkshire 1872 Trade Directory: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • North & East Riding of Yorkshire 1897 Trade & Professions Directory: Facsimile copy on CD of the original trade directory. Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Musters of the North Lincolnshire Militia 1781-82 by Stuart Tamblin and Liz Hore: A transcription of the militia list of North Lincolnshire 1781-82. Gives surname, forename, rank, company leader and a few notes. [computer diskette] Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Musters of the South Lincolnshire Militia 1781-82 by Stuart Tamblin and Liz Hore: A transcription of the militia list of South Lincolnshire 1781-82. Gives surname, forename, rank, company leader and a few notes. [computer diskette] Available from the Society of Genealogists Bookshop at:

  • Montgomeryshire Wales - 1851 Census: Powys FHS has recently announced that the 1851 Census transcription of Montgomeryshire, a huge undertaking made possible by a small number of volunteers from among their membership, is now complete. It is available on CD-ROM and on microfiche. For more information, visit their website (which is also the home of their Journal online): The Powys FHS covers the Counties of: Brecknockshire (Breconshire), Montgomeryshire & Radnorshire.

Whether you are searching for data online, through local societies or on CD-ROM and other electronic products, please remember there is absolutely NO substitute for verifying the information in the original records. All indexes, databases and other publications should be used as guides and pointers to original records which you must access at some point to ensure the accuracy of your research.

Always remember, your research is the legacy you leave to others - verify all information you find!


Faculty Office Marriage Licence Index Project - This is a major project to create an index to the surnames and Christian names of the couples entered in the manuscript calendars of the marriage licences issued by the office of the Master of Faculties of the Archbishop of Canterbury for the period 1714 to 1850. The project is being run by the Society of Genealogists and is being co-ordinated by Colin Allen and David Squire. If you want to learn more about the project - visit their website at:

Vicar-General Marriage Licence Index Project: The Vicar-General Marriage Licence Index is a genealogical finding aid comprising a surname index which lists over 356,000 people who were issued with marriage licences by the Vicar-General of the Archbishop of Canterbury between 1694 and 1850. There are 52,800 different surnames occurring in the index and part of the web site for the project is devoted to listing them and showing their frequency. The index has been published both in microfiche and book format by the Society of Genealogists in London, England . To learn more about the project, how to purchase the index and the frequency of surname entries, visit the website at: Note: The original Vicar-General marriage allegations were microfilmed by the LDS church in 1964 and are available through local Family History Centers of the LDS. If you have used the index to locate a potential connection and want to view the original record, the website also includes a listing of the LDS microfilm numbers at:

The Great Britain Historical Database Online created by Humphrey Southall, David Gilbert and Ian Gregory at Queen Mary and Westfield College, Department of Geography. Learn more about this database at:

Victoria Research Web: The Victorian Research Web is dedicated to the scholarly study of the nineteenth century in Britain, and to aiding researchers, teachers, and students in their investigations of any and all aspects of this fascinating period. Visit the Victoria Research Web and discover many resources for Victorian research.

Common Acronyms & Jargon used in UK Genealogy: Mark Howells has provided some helpful definitions and explanations of Common Acronyms & Jargon in UK Genealogy at:

Glossary of Abbreviations & Acronyms This website by John Hitchcock is an alphabetical listing of a plethora of abbreviations and acronyms family historians may encounter in their research.

Family History Resources held in public libraries in England, Wales, Channel Islands, Ireland, etc. A most interesting site to learn about a variety of resources.

The Latest News on The English Pubs Index

    Hi Listers,

    We'd like to start this month's news by returning to a subject which keeps cropping up: Access to the Database. We are frequently asked how to access the database for enquiries into individuals or premises so we hope to provide a clear and definitive answer.

    The database will not be available on line for the following reasons:

    1. Size: The finished database will be of the order of 2.25 gigabytes. To put this into context, this is the equivalent of a 5 CD-ROM set (including a search engine), or expressed another way, it will have 5 times as many entries as the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

    2. Cost: Despite various suggestions, the only I.Ps willing to host a database of this size charge commercial rates. The cheapest we have found is o250 per month, plus o250 set-up fee. We simply do not have this level of financial resources. We continue to answer all e-mail enquiries, usually within 24 hours, and are happy to respond to mail when an s.a.e. is provided. The only charge we make is for print-outs of reports which are either too long to e-mail or when a printed copy is actually requested. For further details of enquiries, reports, etc., please e-mail us direct.

    For those researchers whose ancestors were involved with brewing, the Brewery History Society is a natural first step, followed by a visit to the National Pubs and Breweries History Website.

    In recent issues of the News we have included a short, potted history of some of the more popular inn signs. We have been surprised and gratified by the correspondence this has generated and we hope to be able to continue this feature. Further to our item about the Marquis of Granby, it seems that during a cavalry charge at the battle of Wartburg in 1760, his wig blew off giving rise to the expression "going for it bald [or bare]-headed," (to tackle a problem without regard for anything else.) His benevolence in setting up his disabled non-commissioned officers, despite perpetuating his name, led to his financial ruin and he died leaving debts of £37,000 (an astronomical sum in those days.)

    The Honest Lawyer seems to have been inspired by the works of Charles Dickens who had a very low opinion of the legal profession. The name appears in several places around the country but not, curiously enough, anywhere near the Inns of Court, the Temple or Gray's Inn, centres of the Law in London


    A Project for You? Another subject that has generated some discussion in recent months is that of a similar Index for Scotland, Wales or Ireland. We regret that we are unable to take on the extra work involved in adding any of these areas but we would be happy to offer assistance to anyone who wished to start such an Index.

    Top Ten Counties

      1. Kent            30260
      2. Yorkshire      24490
      3. Surrey         10358
      4. Suffolk         10098
      5. Lancashire    10010
      6. Derbyshire     8834
      7. Essex           7526
      8. Lincolnshire   7222
      9. Staffordshire  6814
      10.Devon          6670

    While undertaking a little maintenance on the database we discovered that there are no entries for Dorchester, Dorset, which we find incredible. If you have any information on Pubs, Inns or Taverns in this very pleasant county town - or anywhere else in England - please send them in, either by e- mail or from our web-site.

    Many thanks in anticipation and good luck with you

    Stan Gooch member, East of London FHS

    Rob Sones member, Berkshire

    The Pubs, Inns and Taverns Index for England 1801-1900 A non profit-making project to index all the licensed premises in England for the 19th Century.

    If you have any details of such premises, please contribute them to:

About Fawne Stratford-Devai
Fawne Stratford-Devai's work on Land Records and early Ontario records is well known in the genealogy community. A published author of several Canadian and UK research books, she has also contributed articles to the Ontario Genealogical Society's newsletter "Families" as well as writing for the online family history newsletter the "Global Gazette". Biography

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Norway Bay United & Anglican Cemetery
(Pontiac County, Quebec)

The Merivale Cemeteries
(Protestant - Ottawa area)