England, Cheshire Workhouse Records (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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This collection consists of poor law records from the county of Cheshire for the years 1848-1967.

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England, Cheshire, Workhouse Records, 1848-1967 .
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 Workhouse
Collection years 1848-1967
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Cheshire Archives and Local Studies

What is in This Collection?

The collection contains an index to various records associated with workhouses. The original records are held at the Cheshire Archives.

The workhouses started out housing the various types of poor separately. The records generated by the workhouses were kept according to the 1834 poor law act to help local authorities keep track of the poor and account for monies spent for their living expenses. In the later nineteenth century, the infirmaries attached to the workhouses were opened to the public, and therefore generated birth and death records for the wider community. The records for the Cheshire workhouses are from 1837 to the closure of each Poor Law Union; the Cheshire Poor Law Unions page contains information specific to each Union.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

Birth Registers may contain:

  • Date of birth
  • Address
  • Name
  • Gender
  • Father’s name
  • Mother’s name
  • Occupation

Death Registers may contain:

  • Date at death
  • Name
  • Age
  • From what parish admitted
  • Cause of death
  • Where buried
  • Gender

Admission Registers may contain:

  • Day of the month
  • Day of the week
  • Name
  • Class for diet
  • Number affixed to the pauper’s clothes
  • Parish to which charged
  • By whose order admitted
  • Date of the order of admission
  • If born in the house, name of parent
  • Why seeking relief
  • How discharged; and if by order, by whose order
  • Death notations

Creed Registers may contain:

  • Date of entry
  • Date of admission
  • Full name
  • Birth date
  • Religion
  • Name of informant
  • Number of clothing
  • Occupation
  • Admitting authority
  • Where from or residence
  • Why admitted
  • Date of discharge
  • Address of friends

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

As you search, compare your results with this information to find a match.

Search the Index

  1. Go to the Collection Page
  2. Fill in the search boxes with the information you have
  3. Click Search to return a list of possible matches

What Do I Do Next?

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

  • Copy down all the information from the index entry.
  • Cite the record. See below for help citing this collection.
  • Use the information you have found to find more. For instance, use the age listed in a death register to estimate a year of birth, if that you do not know it.
  • Use the information you have found to find the individual in other records. Particularly useful for research in nineteenth-century Cheshire are the England Census, Civil Registration, and Parish Registers.
  • Continue to search the index to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives.

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. Use other information, such as place of birth, age, occupation, or names of parents, to help with this decision. If listed, a personal title may be a clue to property ownership or occupation, either of which might be noted in other records.
  • Try variations of given names and surnames. An individual might appear under a different name in a record for a variety of reasons:
- An individual might have been listed under a middle name, nickname, or 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. Pay attention to how the name should have been pronounced and try spelling variations that could have that pronunciation.
- Some women returned to their maiden names after the death of their husbands.
  • Vary the search terms. For example, expand the date range or search by either the given name or surname to return broader list results.
  • Search the records of nearby locations. While most people never lived more than 20 miles from their place of birth, moves within this range were common. For this collection, bordering locations could include the English counties of Lancashire to the north, Derbyshire to the east, Staffordshire and Shropshire to the south, or the Welsh counties of Denbighshire and Flintshire to the west.

Known Issues With This Collection

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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, please read the attached Wiki article. If you encounter additional problems, feel free to report them at 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, Workhouse Records, 1848-1967." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Record Office, Chester.

Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

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