Your research roadmap

Your research roadmap

An at-a-glance guide to the tutorials and features in the pages that follow

Get Started, Get Started

Get Started

Get Started

parish Record

Parish Records

Parish records are the longest-running organised type of record available, covering baptisms, marriages and burials.
Learn about life in the 17th and 18th centuries



People from all walks of life have left wills, and from 1858 probate records provide a national register.
Read about how wealth and poverty affected people’s lives


Migration Records

People have always migrated between countries, although useful records generally date from the 18th century, and ships’ passenger lists from the 19th.
Explore the history of emigration and immigration
Follow your Australian ancestors
Did your family move to America?

Civil Registration

Civil Registration

Civil registration began in 1837 in England and Wales, 1845 in Ireland and 1855 in Scotland.
Explore the social history of birth, marriage and death
• Learn about Scottish records here
• Learn about Irish records  here



Most surnames have their origins in medieval times, but some only came into being as late as the 19th century.
• The latest DNA tests can help you learn about ancient origins, and relate to surnames – see  here

Illustrated london news


Newspaper reports began in the 17th century and have been a source of information about events in people’s lives ever since.
• Were your ancestors famous? Learn about why they may have been  here


Military Records

Some army and navy records date back to the 1660s.
• What was early military life in Britain like? Find out here
• Explore World War One ancestors’ experiences on  here

Occupational Records

Occupational Records

Trade directories and apprenticeship records can teach you about your ancestors’ working lives.
• Explore the changing face of working life  here


Records of Crime

Did your forebears turn to crime to pay the bills? They may have left a paper trail if they were caught.
• Learn more about crime and punishment in past centuries  here



Censuses from 1841 to 1911 are online and provide fascinating information about your ancestors’ relationships, origins and occupations.
• Explore the great age of Victorian Britain  here

poll Book

Phone Books & Electoral Rolls

These are key ways for tracking down distant cousins who may be alive today.
• Explore life through the dramatic changes of the 20th century  here

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