England, Cheshire, Bishop's Transcripts (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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England, Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Cheshire,  England
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Location of Cheshire, England
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Record Description
Record Type Bishop's Transcripts
Collection years 1538-1900
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
Cheshire Archives and Local Studies


What is in This Collection?

The collection contains an index to baptismal, marriage, and burial records in the county of Cheshire for the years 1598-1900. The original records are held at the Cheshire Archives.

Before 1847, Cheshire was overseen by the the Diocese of Chester, which also covered certain parishes in Lancashire. Records from some Lancashire parishes may therefore be present in the collection; it could be helpful to use the Historical Jurisdictions Map to locate pre-1851 parish boundaries.

Bishop’s transcripts contain more or less the same information as parish registers, so they can serve as a replacement when a parish register has been damaged, destroyed, or otherwise lost. Bishop's transcripts are often of value even when parish registers exist, as priests often recorded either additional or different information in their transcripts than they did in the original registers.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

The following information may be found in these records:

Birth records

  • Name of the child
  • Date and place of birth
  • Gender
  • Names of parents

Baptism records

  • Name of the child
  • Date and place of baptism
  • Names of parents

Marriage records

  • Name of the bride and groom
  • Date and place of marriage
  • Marital status
  • Age
  • Estimated birth years
  • Names of parents

Death records

  • Name of the deceased
  • Date and place of death
  • Gender
  • Age
  • Estimated birth year

Burial records

  • Name of the deceased
  • Date and place of burial
  • Age
  • Estimated birth year

Collection Content

For additional details about these records and help using them see England Bishop's Transcripts (FamilySearch Historical Records)

Sample Records

John Smith England, Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts
Name John Smith
Event Type Christening
Event Date 30 Dec 1810
Event Place Ringway, Cheshire, England
Gender Male
Father's Name Samuel Smith
Mother's Name Jane
Name John Smith
Event Type Marriage
Event Date 30 Oct 1864
Event Place St Marys-on-the-Hill, Chester, Cheshire, England
Gender Male
Age 23
Father's Name John Smith
Spouse's Name Elizabeth Molineux
Spouse's Father's Name Richard Molineux
Name John Smith
Event Type Burial
Event Date 02 Jun 1818
Event Place Holy Trinity, Chester, Cheshire, England
Gender Male
Age 44

Coverage Table

There is a coverage table which makes a detailed account of the types and locations of records contained within this collection.

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching, it is best to know the following information:

  • Name of the person
  • Date range for the record

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Save or print a copy of the image or record, if possible. The original may contain information that was not recorded in the index
  • Use the information which you have found to estimate ages in other life events. For example, use a christening date to approximate a marriage date, or a burial record to calculate an estimated year of birth
  • Once you have found a christening or a burial church record, you may want to search for birth and death in civil records (1837 and later)
  • Use the information you have found to find the person and families in census records
  • Continue to search the index to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives. Note that family members often appear on an individual's records, such as in the role of witnesses to a marriage

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?

  • When looking for an individual with a common name, look at all the search results before deciding which is the correct person
  • If your ancestor does not have a common name, collect entries for every person who has the same surname
  • Be careful using the listed age on a marriage record to estimate a birth year. Rather than listing actual ages, clerks often wrote in 21 as the age of both the bride and groom to show that they each were of legal age
  • Search the records of nearby locations.
    • Lancashire to the north
    • Derbyshire to the east
    • Staffordshire or Shropshire to the south
    • Welsh counties of Denbighshire and Flintshire to the west
  • Check for other names. An individual might have been listed under a middle name, a nickname, or an abbreviation of their given name
  • Spelling was not standardized for much of the period of this collection, so names were often spelled as scribes heard them. Try searching based on how the name may have been pronounced
  • Vary the search terms. For example, expand the date range or search by either the given name or surname to return a broader list of results
  • The individual might not have records in the Church of England at all, but rather might have belonged to a nonconformist denomination
  • When you search baptismal records, remember that it was not unusual for a child to be baptized weeks or even months after birth
  • Note that marriages often took place in the parish where the bride resided

Record Finder

Known Issues with This Collection

Important.png Problems with this collection?
See a list of known issues, workarounds, tips, restrictions, future fixes, news and other helpful information.

For a full list of all known issues associated with this collection see the attached article. If you encounter additional problems, please email them to support@familysearch.org. Please include the full path to the link and a description of the problem in your e-mail. Your assistance will help ensure that future reworks will be considered.

Citing This Collection

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation
"England, Cheshire Bishop's Transcripts, 1598-1900." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Citing Church of England Record Office, Chester, England.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

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