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Beginning Wales Research

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More major record sets for Wales are available to search online than most countries.

What information do you want to search for?

Birth

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Choose one of the following date ranges that is closest to when you think your ancestor was born:

1536 to 1837

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Christening.jpg

Select one of the following options for instructions on how to find birth information.

  1. Church registers
  2. Census (for people who died after 6 June 1841)




1837 to present

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Select one of the following options to find birth information.

  1. Census
  2. Parish records




Marriage

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Choose one of the following date ranges that is closest to when you think your ancestors were married:

1536 to 1837


1837 to present

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Wedding Signing the Register.jpg

Select one of the following options for step by step instructions.

  1. Church & chapel post 1837 marriage registers
  2. Civil marriage records 1837 to the present





Death and Burial

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Choose one of the following date ranges that is closest to when you think your ancestor died:

1536 to 1837

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Wales Burial.jpg

If your ancestor died in Wales between 1536 and 1837, search these records to find information about the death and/or burial. This link will lead you to the best records to search, what to look for, and finding aids to use.
Church parish records


1837 to present

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Wales Burial.jpg

If your ancestor died in Wales between 1837 and the present, search these records to find information about the death. This link will lead you to the best record to search, what to look for, and finding aids to use.

Civil registration deaths





Research Tips Success with Welsh census, birth, marriage and death records depends on a few key points.

  • Many surnames in Wales are quite common. Extra reference points improve search options and success.
  • Find your ancestor in each available census.
  • Use indexes, but never trust the index. Always look at the original image or record to verify accuracy and see information not indexed.
  • Where a person lived can be a great help to group individuals into their correct families.
  • Dates in a person's life will point to various options for learning more about them. Even approximate dates for birth, marriage and death can help.
  • Find at least two documents from independent sources to verify what you learn.
  • Use maps - doing genealogy without a map is like painting with your eyes shut.