Essex ancestors given on-line boost

Communities / Fri 14th Feb 2014 at 02:21pm

A MAJOR Essex Ancestors update gives family historians around the world access to thousands of records for the first time.

Digital images of parish registers of baptisms, marriages and burials from the ancient parishes of Chingford, Leyton and Walthamstow, and newer parishes created in the area in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, are now available at www.essexancestors.co.uk.

Parish registers are an essential starting point for any family historian, and in some cases date back to 1538, during the reign of Henry VIII.

In all Essex Record Office (ERO) has added images of 473 new registers to the popular subscription digital service, producing over 67,000 images, completing coverage of the whole of historic Essex and pushing the total number of Essex parish register images to over 580,000.

The registers were loaned to ERO for digitisation by Waltham Forest Archives.

Searching the parish records is quick and easy; an introductory video on the ERO blog gives new users a helping hand at http://www.essexrecordofficeblog.co.uk/essex-ancestors-update.

Individual subscriptions to Essex Ancestors are available at www.essexancestors.co.uk, or researchers can take advantage of free onsite access available to Essex Record Office visitors in Chelmsford, and at the Archive Access Points in Saffron Walden and Harlow (opening hours vary so researchers should check before visiting).

Essex Ancestors will shortly be provided free of charge at Waltham Forest Archives.

County Councillor John Jowers, Cabinet member for Libraries, Communities and Planning, said: “Many generations of Jowers have lived in Essex, so I am pleased Essex Ancestors is now so comprehensive. It is essential for anyone researching their Essex family history.”

Researchers should note that marriages after 1957 are not included, and not every single register has survived or been deposited with ERO; searching before subscribing at www.essexancestors.co.uk reveals whether documents exist and have been digitised.

For further advice, telephone the ERO Searchroom on 01245 244644 or email [email protected].

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