FamilySearch Wiki ~ London Church Records

If you have traced your lineage back to any large city, you know how difficult it can be to find records about your ancestors.  There were simply too many people living close confines to find records about all of them.  Add in the variety of churches, governmental and civil records kept to record primary events combined with dates ranging from 1700 to 1850, and the research problem becomes ‘interesting’ at best.

Who recorded information about their lives?  What church did they attend?  Were they long-term residents or just visiting the city for short term work opportunities?

Some of the records have been digitized and indexed.  Many have not and may not be because their value to their owners lies in the scarcity of the viewership opportunities.  “If you want to see our records, you’ll have to pay to do so, one-by-one and on our terms.”

Add in the transient movements of families of military postings and finding the primary source records we all desire to prove our lineage in a city like London is almost maddening at times.  

Is there any easy way to find just the church records by parishes in London? 

What were the names of the parishes?  I need them to start looking for records. 

Enter the FamilySearch wiki.  The wiki articles titled “London Church Records” tells me there were 109 parishes in London historically. 


It lists them by name. 


Each name is a link to a wiki article specifically about that parish.


The parish pages include the names and types of records found there, complete with descriptions of the records and links to their repositories. 

The London article goes on to give us the history of records in London.  It explains why some records may not exist any longer.  It even tells us the names of “Clandestine” places to marry in London from 1654 to 1753.


We are given the names and links to large indexes about London church records.


We then arrive at the ‘magic’ words we hoped for but did not dare think possible…

The Family History Library in Salt Lake City has over 90 percent  of the City of London’s original parish records on microfilm.  All are available by order in branch family history libraries worldwide.  Will they be digitized an placed online with the massive image files being posted by FamilySearch right now?  It all depends on the licensing agreements, but if they are available for posting, we’ll see them online for free on FamilySearch within the next 4 years.


The London article continues with considerably more information.  Be sure to read the associated Research Guides.


Good luck in your quest.  The wiki helped me find my ancestors.  Give it a try.  I’ll bet it will help you in your quest too.

Copyright (c) Lee Drew 2012-09-26 08:00:00
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About lineagekeeper

Family history research is a favored avenue of relaxation. It is a Sherlock-like activity that can continue almost anywhere at any time. By leveraging a lifetime involvement in technology, my research efforts have resulted in terabytes of ancestral data, earning me the moniker of Lineagekeeper. And yes - We are all related to Royalty.