Commonwealth Civil Registration Start Dates

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From 1st July 1837, the registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages in England and Wales became the responsibility of the state, (although this wasn't compulsory until 1874). However, it took a while for the rest of the UK and Commonwealth to follow suit.

So far, I have found dates for the begining of civil registration for the following:


          1838    Tasmania

          1841    Western Australia

          1842    South Australia

          1842     Victoria

          1856    New South Wales

          1856    Queensland

          1870   Northern Territory - Births only

          1872    Northern Territory - Deaths and Marriages

          1930     Australian Capital Territory


          1864     Nova Scotia - doesn't cover Births and Deaths between 1876 and 1908

          1869    Ontario

          1870    North West Terriorries

          1872    British Columbia

          1878    Saskatchewan

          1882    Manitoba

          1888    New Brunswick

          1891    Newfoundland

          1897    Alberta

          1898    Yukon

          1906    Prince Edward Island

          1926    Quebec


Guernsey, Alderney and Sark


          1840    Births, Deaths and non - Anglican Marriages


          1850    Births, Deaths and non - Anglican Marriages


          1915    Deaths

      Guernsey, Alderney and Sark

          1919    Marriages

      Guernsey, Alderney and Sark

          1925    All Births, Deaths and Marriages

 N.B. Until 1949 you may find a married woman's death recorded under her maiden name.

During World War Two many people left the Channel Islands for England, or were interned in Germany. Should you be unable to find a Birth, Death or Marriage during German occupation, copies of forms submitted for the issue of ID cards ( along with photographs ) are held in the Jersey and Guernsey archives respectively, and are a very good alternative as every Channel Islander had to carry one. Lists are also available of all those who were deported.    

Isle of Man

          1849    Births and Marriages - voluntary

          1878    Births and Deaths - compulsory

          1884    Marriages - compulsory


          1842    Births, Deaths and Marriages

New Zealand

          1848    All Births, Deaths and Marriages - voluntary

          1856    Births, Deaths and Marriages of Europeans - compulsory

          1911    Marriages of Maoris - compulsory

          1913    Births and Deaths of Maoris - compulsory


          1855    Births, Deaths and Marriages

South Africa

          1820    Cape of Good Hope - Marriages (incomplete)

          1895    Cape of Good Hope - All Births, Deaths and Marriages

          1868    Natal

          1901    Transvaal

          1902    Orange Free State

          1923    All Births, Deaths and Marriages for the whole of South Africa

N. B. Before 1923 records are held in provincial archives, after this date they are held centrally by the Department of Home Affairs.