Lawhitton, Cornwall Genealogy

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Cornwall Parishes

Guide to Lawhitton, Cornwall ancestry, family history, and genealogy: parish registers, transcripts, census records, birth records, marriage records, and death records.

Lawhitton, Cornwall
Lawhitton Church Cornwall.jpg
Lawhitton Church Cornwall.
Type Ancient Parish
Civil Jurisdictions
Hundred East
County Cornwall
Poor Law Union Launceston
Registration District Launceston
Records begin
Parish registers: 1640
Bishop's Transcripts: 1608
Ecclesiastical Jurisdictions
Rural Deanery East
Diocese Exeter
Province Canterbury
Legal Jurisdictions
Probate Court A Peculiar of the Court of the Bishop of Exeter (Episcopal Consistory)
Location of Archive
Cornwall Record Office

Parish History

LAWHITTON (St. Michael), a parish, in the union and parliamentary borough of Launceston, N. division of the hundred of East, E. division of Cornwall, 2¼ miles (S. E. by E.) from Launceston.[1]

Lawhitton  (Cornish: Nansgwydhenn) St Michael is an Ancient Parish in the county of Cornwall.

The parish church of St Michael is in Lawhitton village at OS Grid Ref SX355825; it is of various periods of English Gothic architecture. The plan is unusual and the tower stands in the position of a south transept. The tower is 13th century in date and there is a north aisle. The font is Norman, of the Altarnun type. Features of interest include the Jacobean pulpit, 1665, and two monuments, to R. Bennet (d. 1683) and in Coade stone to Richard Coffin (d. 1796)

In the 880s, Saxon priests controlled church estates like Polltun, Caellwic, Landwithan (Pawton, in St Breock) and Lawhitton. Eventually they passed these over to Wessex kings. These estates were granted to the Bishop of Sherborne to whose diocese Cornwall had been added. Landwithan included the parishes of Lawhitton, South Petherwin (with Dunheved, modern Launceston), Trewen and Lezant. In 1050 they passed to the Bishop of Exeter and remained a peculiar deanery of the Bishop until 1850. Consequently two-thirds of the parish of Lawhitton still belongs to the Church Commissioners. Until 1261 the benefice of Lawhitton consisted of a vicarage and a sinecure rectory; they were then combined as a rectory. From then until 1924 there were 60 rectors, of whom probably only 19 were resident.

The modern parish is part of Lezant with Lawhitton and South Petherwin with Trewen, United Benefice in the Diocese of Truro.


Civil Registration

Births, marriages and deaths were kept by the government from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is Free BMD.

Church records

Lawhitton parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

FS PRs = England, Cornwall Parish Registers, 1538-2010 (FamilySearch) - free
FS Mar = England, Devon and Cornwall Marriages, 1660-1912 (FamilySearch) - free
FS = FamilySearch - free
OPC = Cornwall Online Parish Clerk - free
FREG = FreeREG - free
FMP = Cornwall Baptisms, Marriages, Burials (FindMyPast) - ($)
TGEN = Cornwall Parish Records (TheGenealogist) - ($)[2]
BOYD = England, Boyd's Marriage Indexes, 1538-1850 (FindMyPast) - free
IGI = International Genealogical Index (FamilySearch) - free[3]
FS Catalog PRs = FamilySearch Catalog Parish registers - free
FS Catalog BTs = FamilySearch Catalog Bishop's transcripts - free
Lawhitton Online Parish Records
Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
FS PRs 1538-2010
FS Mar


FS 1538-1975
OPC 1538-1911
FREG 1538-1900s
FMP 1538-1916
TGEN 1540-1800s




FS Catalog PRs

FS Catalog BTs

To find the names of the neighboring parishes, use England Jurisdictions 1851 Map. In this site, search for the name of the parish, click on the location "pin", click Options and click List contiguous parishes.

Records are also available at the Cornwall Record Office.

Cornwall Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource is the Cornwall Online Parish Clerks page for the parish.

Census records

Census records from 1841 to 1911 are available online. For access, see England Census Records and Indexes Online. Census records from 1841 to 1891 are also available on film through a Family History Center or at the Family History Library.

Cornwall Online Census Project

Poor Law Unions

Launceston Poor Law Union

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Cornwall Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

There are many maps and gazetteers showing English places. Valuable web sites are:


Lawhitton in GENUKI


  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 37-40. Date accessed: 20 March 2013.
  2. Searching Parish Records online (Cornwall) - The Following Parishes are Available at TheGenealogist,, accessed 23 April 2019.