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

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England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Devon,  England
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Location of Devon, England
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Record Description
Record Type Bishop's Transcripts
Collection years 1558-1887
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Devon County Council

What is in This Collection?

This collection contains an index to and images of baptismal, marriage, and burial records in the county of Devon for the years 1558-1887. Bishop’s transcripts contain more or less the same information as parish registers, so they are an invaluable resource when a parish register has been damaged, destroyed, or otherwise lost.

To learn more about the content and importance of bishop's transcripts, see the England Bishop's Transcripts page.

Image Visibility

Whenever possible, FamilySearch makes images available for all users. However, ultimate rights to view images on our website are granted by the record custodians. Images in this collection are available for viewing if you are a registered FamilySearch user. You can register for a free FamilySearch account here.

For additional information about image restrictions, please see the Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections page.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

Baptism records may contain the following:

  • Name
  • Date of baptism
  • Place of baptism
  • Gender
  • Names of the parents

Marriage records may contain the following:

  • Names of the bride and groom
  • Date of marriage
  • Place of marriage
  • Genders
  • Marital status

Burial records may contain the following:

  • Name of the deceased
  • Date of burial
  • Place of burial
  • Age
  • Estimated year of birth

Collection Content

Digital Folder Number List

This collection was published as a DGS browse collection. A table listing each DGS number and its contents can be found at England, Devon Bishop's Transcripts, Coverage Table (FamilySearch Historical Records).

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • 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

View the Images

To view images in this collection:

  1. Look at the England, Devon Bishop's Transcripts, Coverage Table article to determine the folder/film number for the images you want to see
  2. Go to the Browse Page
  3. Select the Film number to view the images

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
  • 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
  • Consult the England Record Finder to find other records

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, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887.” Database and images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 9 December 2017. Citing Devon Record Office, Exeter.

Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.
Image Citation:
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.

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How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

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Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.