England Compiled Sources
- 1 Introduction
- 2 What You Are Looking For
- 3 Five Steps of the Research Process
- 4 FamilySearch
- 5 Wiki Pages
- 6 Beginners
- 7 Websites
- 8 Family History Centers
- 9 Archives and Libraries
When you begin family history research for one of your ancestors, you should always begin by looking for compiled research. Compiled research sources contain millions of names of individuals for whom data has been transcribed, indexed, or collected. These sources were created by individuals, groups, societies, universities, archives, and commercial corporations. Determining what research has already been done by others, including your own family members, can:
• Save you valuable research time.
• Help you find information in original records more quickly.
• Help you avoid unnecessary duplication of work.
• Provide clues for further research.
What You Are Looking For
You are looking for compiled sources which may give information on your ancestors. The information you find varies from record to record. These records may include:
• Names of children, spouse, parents, siblings, and other family members.
• Birth or baptism, marriage, and death or burial information.
• Dates of other important events such as immigration or land purchases.
• Age at the time of dated events.
• Place or street of residence.
• Schools attended.
• Military service.
• Religious affiliations.
• Countries, counties, or places of origin.
• Other biographical data.
Five Steps of the Research Process
These 5 steps will help you use the Research Process
- Step 1:Identify What You Know
- Step 2.Decide What You Want to Learn
- Step 3.Select Records to Search
- Step 4.Obtain and Search the Records
- Step 5.Use the Information
- England Societies
- Help:Contributor Help
- Wales Archives and Libraries
- Scotland Archives and Libraries
The following are examples of websites that provide compiled sources that are searchable by surname:
- FamilySearch Record Search Or at the top of this page click the Search button.
- My Heritage.com/
- Ancestry.com (Fee required)
- GenSeeker Links to Websites Many websites do not provide names and dates but link to sites that do. Examples of these are:
- GENUKI (Genealogy in the United Kingdom and Ireland).
*British Isles GenWeb.
- Genealogy SiteFinder.
A Family History Center may have some compiled sources for local families. Family History Centers can also borrow microfilms and microfiche of compiled sources from the Family History
Library. The Library charges a small fee to loan microfilm or microfiche to a Family History
Center. If a compiled source is not available on microfilm, you may request a photocopy from the Family History Library for a small fee. You will need to fill out a Request for Photocopies form, which is available at Family History Centers. Complete the form with the library call number for the source. Send the form and the fee to the Family History Library. Note that many published sources are copyrighted and cannot be photocopied in their entirety. Family History Centers are located throughout the United States and other areas of the world. For the address of the Family History Center nearest you, see Family History Centers.
- Family History Library The Family History Library has one of the largest collections of compiled research sources in the world. There is no fee for using the library's collection in person. Sources for Previous Research in the British Isles lists and discusses major compiled sources available in the Family History Library. Some of these sources are available in other archives and libraries. See Family History Library Services and Resources for information about contacting or visiting the library.
Most compiled sources are available in archives and libraries throughout the world. Some major archives and libraries are:
• The British Library, London.
• The Family Records Centre, London.
• County record offices.
• Public Record Office, Kew, Surrey.
Australia and New Zealand
United States and Canada
• The Newberry Library, Chicago.
• The Library of Congress, Washington D.C.
• The New England Historic Genealogical Society Library, Boston.
• The National Archives of Canada, Ottawa.
• The National Archives, regional branches throughout the U.S. Addresses for archives and libraries can be found at The UK National Archives. Try to find out what compiled sources are available at archives and libraries before you visit. See individual library catalogs for information about their holdings.
Examples of sources that list the holdings of some archives and libraries are:
Family history and genealogical societies extract and index many records and have collections of research done by their members and others. Family history societies are in each county in England. Many provide marriage indexes and publish journals and periodicals that include compiled research that can help you find your ancestor. The Federation of Family History Societies provides coordination between these county societies and lists addresses for each. The Federation also provides publications concerning research and records that are available for purchase and may be found in some libraries. Examples of these are:
• Specialist Indexes for Family Historians.
• [County:] A Genealogical Bibliography.
England Genealogy Bibliography A to C (National Institute) England Genealogy Bibliography H to P (National Institute) • Marriage and Census Indexes for Family Historians. Other societies you may wish to contact are:
• One-name societies.
• Record societies.
• Society of Genealogists. For more information on searching compiled sources, see Has It Been Done Before?