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Durham Cathedral, Durham Genealogy

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Durham Cathedral

Guide to Durham Cathedral, Durham family history and genealogy: parish registers, transcripts, census records, birth records, marriage records, and death records.

Durham Cathedral, Durham
Durham Cathedral, County Durham.jpg
Durham Cathedral, County Durham
Type Cathedral
Civil Jurisdictions
Hundred Durham City
County Durham
Poor Law Union Not Applicable
Registration District Durham
Records begin
Parish registers: 1609
Bishop's Transcripts: 1813
Ecclesiastical Jurisdictions
Rural Deanery Not Applicable
Diocese Durham
Province York
Location of Archive
Durham Record Office

Parish History[edit | edit source]

The Cathedral was built as a place of worship, specifically to house the shrine of the North's best-loved saint, Cuthbert, in whose honour pilgrims came to Durham from all over England. It was also the home of a Benedictine monastic community.[1]

DURHAM, a city, is the capital of the county of Durham, and the head of a union, 67 miles (E. S. E.) from Carlisle, 87 (N. E.) from Lancaster, 67 (N. W. by W.) from York. The city is surmounted by the cathedral and the remains of the ancient castle, together with other ecclesiastical residences. The college was established at the same time as the university. The city comprises several parishes: St. Giles (1584), St. Nicholas' (1540), St. Oswald's (1538), St. Margaret's (1557), as well as The (Durham) Cathedral (1609). The parish of Durham St Oswald's also includes the village and chapelry of Shincliffe (1826) and part of the chapelry of Croxdale (1696) [see also Merrington Parish]. The chapelry of Belmont was built later on in the year 1858 which also stood within the boundary of Durham ancient parish. There are places of worship for the Society of Friends, Independents, Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists, and Roman Catholics. [2]

Additional information:

St. Mary Le Bow (1571), St. Mary-the-less (1560),

Several extra parochial areas surround the cathedral which had in its own right Parish Records.

Resources[edit | edit source]

Civil Registration[edit | edit source]

Birth, marriages and deaths were kept by the government, from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is FreeBMD.

Church records[edit | edit source]

Durham Cathedral's registers of christenings, marriages and burials, along with those of its ecclesiastical parishes of Durham St Giles, Durham St Mary-the-Less and other to which it is attached, have been mostly transcribed and are displayed online at the following web sites and ranges of years:

FMP = findmypast (£)
FREG = FreeReg
FS =
TGEN = TheGenealogist - (£)[3]

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1609-1874 1610-1836 None
TGEN 1609-1896 1609-1896 1609-1896
  ST CUTHBERT Chapelry DURHAM (1814) Indexes

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1814-1912 None None

None None None

None None None

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1584-1812;1844-1893 1584-1814 None

None None None

None None None

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1558-1812;1851-1854 1558-1812;1851-1854 None

None None None

None None None
  ST MARY le BOW PARISH DURHAM (1572) Indexes

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1572-1813 1573-1814 None

None None None

None None None

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1813-1841                           None None                                
FMP None

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1540-1812 1540-1812 None

None None None

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1538-1761 1538-1751 None

None None None
BELMONT Chapelry (1858) Indexes

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1858-1894 1858-1898 None

None None None
SHINCLIFFE Chapelry (DURHAM) (1826) Indexes

Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1826-1904 1826-1902 1826-1903

None None None
FMP None

For a full list of all those chapels surrounding and comprising the whole ancient parish of Durham and its surrounding parishes and chapelries to which it was attached, be certain to see "Church Records" on the Durham Cathedral, Durham PARISH page.

To find the names of the neighbouring parishes, use England Jurisdictions 1851. In this site, search for the name of the parish, click on the location "pin", click Options and click List contiguous parishes.

The Parish Registers for the period 1609-1836 are deposited at Durham County Record Office, County Hall, Durham, DH1 5UL.

Durham University Library Archives and Special Collections DDR/EA/PBT/ 2/80  1813-1848 Parish Register transcripts are available to search free online at Record Search.

The dates of the post-1760 transcripts have been noted in detail and sometimes only cover years. For most parishes in the collection there are gaps in the sequence of transcripts. It is advisable to consult the original parish registers for these years and events.

Non Conformist Churches[edit | edit source]

Roman Catholic

Census records[edit | edit source]

Census records from 1841 to 1911 are available online. For access, see England Census Records and Indexes Online. Census records from 1841 to 1891 are also available on film through a Family History Center or at the Family History Library.

Probate records[edit | edit source]

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Durham Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Maps are a visual look at the locations in England. Gazetteers contain brief summaries about a place.

Websites[edit | edit source]

Durham Cathedral on GENUKI

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of England, (1848), pp. 110-121. Adapted. Date accessed: 12 December 2013.
  2. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of England, (1848), pp. 110-121. Adapted. Date accessed: 15 July 2013.
  3. 'Parish Records - Coverage', The Genealogist, accessed 27 September 2013.