England, Kent, Wills and Probate - FamilySearch Historical Records
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England, Kent, Wills and Probate, 1440-1881
|This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.|
|Flag of England|
|Flag of Kent|
|Location of Kent, England|
|Location of England|
|Record Type||Wills and Probates|
|Kent History and Library Centre|
- 1 What is in This Collection?
- 2 What Can These Records Tell Me?
- 3 How Do I Search This Collection?
- 4 What Do I Do Next?
- 5 Known Issues
- 6 Citing This Collection
What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]
This collection includes wills and probate records from the county of Kent, covering the period 1440-1881. Availability of the records varies by year and locality.
Probate records document the transfer of possessions after a person dies. Wills, in particular, were written to ensure that the property and personal estate of a deceased person would be distributed according to his or her wishes. If the deceased did not specify an executor, the court would usually assign the next of kin the duty of distributing the goods.
Image Visibility[edit | edit source]
Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images.
For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.
To Browse This Collection[edit | edit source]
|You can browse through images in this collection using the waypoints on the Collection Browse Page for England, Kent, Wills and Probate, 1440-1881.|
What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]
Wills and Probate Records may contain:
- Full name of deceased
- Residence of deceased
- Names of beneficiaries (usually surviving spouse and children)
- Name of executor or administrator
- Names of witnesses
- Date and place of will or probate
- Relatives present at the time of death
- Itemization of household goods and property
- Listing of any debt or funeral expenses to be paid
- Property names
How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]
Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:
- Name of the deceased
- Approximate date of death
Search the Index[edit | edit source]
|This collection does not have a searchable index. Only images are available. See View the Images to access them.|
View the Images[edit | edit source]
View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page.
- Select County, Court
- Select Record Type
- Select Year, Surname Range, Volume to view the images.
|More images are available in the FamilySearch Catalog at England, Kent, Wills and Probate, 1440-1881. Some catalog records link to multiple references. In this case, click on a reference to find a camera icon to see images.|
How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]
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?[edit | edit source]
I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Add any new information to your records
- Using probate dates, estimate a death year and look for a death record
- If a death date is found, along with an age, estimate a birth year and search for birth records
- Use the names of relatives mentioned in the will and probate documents to look for families in censuses
- If the name of a spouse in found, search for a marriage record
- Continue to search for people with the same surname to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives
I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]
- Check for variants of given names, surnames, and place names. Remember that it was not uncommon for an individual be listed under a nickname or an abbreviation of their name in a church record
- Vary the search terms. For example, search by either the given name or surname to return broader list of matches
- Search in neighboring towns and counties
- Essex to the north
- London and Surrey to the west
- East Sussex to the south
Research Helps[edit | edit source]
The following articles will help you in your research for your family in Kent.
Known Issues[edit | edit source]
Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]
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.
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen.