FamilySearch’s Top 10 Most Searched Record Collections: Collection 2—England Births and Christenings, 1538–1975

January 14, 2015  - by 

If you’re one of the millions of people whose ancestry originates in England, you need to go to, and check out their collection of England births and christenings, which span from 1538 to 1975. This collection is FamilySearch’s second most searched record collection.

These English birth and christening records contain a wealth of information, such as names, gender, birth date, and event place-names, names of other family members, christening dates, race, color, and more. Before you begin your search in this collection, try to have the name of your ancestor and whatever other identifying information you can provide, such as the date and place you think the event occurred.

A quick look in the FamilySearch wiki will take you to an article about how to use the England Births and Christenings collection. It also provides you with a link to take you directly to the collection, where you can begin your search.

Troy Miller, author of the Miller: The Never Ending Story blog, wrote a post about searching for his own family in this collections on He said: “When searching for birth, marriage, and death records I like using the free FamilySearch website collection: ‘England, Births and Christenings, 1538–1975.’” provides some helpful tips for searching and using English birth and christening records.

  • The records are very brief, so it is easy to confuse individuals in the index. Individuals may be listed multiple times with slight spelling variations of their name.
  • You may need to compare the information of more than one family or person to determine if any of the individuals in this collection are part of the family you are searching for.
  • Additional searches of the index may be necessary to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur.
  • Information submitted by private individuals is available in the User Submitted Genealogies section of


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  1. This is great information. I opened every link. Read it all. I would like to be able to show this to patrons I might help at our FSL. I know there are several approaches to discover this information, but I have not been able to access the England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975 you reference here without using your article. Can you show me the path you used. I go to Search and choose Records, but then what do I do to get this particular page. I tried clicking on the map for England. I don’t want to have memorize the URL. I would appreciate having the path beyond Search and Records. Many thanks

  2. im interested in having a DNA test preformed, but would like to select one that is decipher-able by FS and most applicable to my family search efforts. Does FS work with the 23 and Me test? or only their own? Do you have a recommendation? please explain.