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Court of the Peculiar of the Dean and Chapter of Durham within the Jurisdiction of Howden and Howdenshire

A general explanation of probate records in England, is given in the article England Probate Records.Click to read a definition of the word peculiar.


Probate is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. The term probate refers to a collection of documents, including wills, administrations (also called admons), inventories, and act books. The Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process until to 1858.

Step By StepEdit

1. Search indexes to help you more quickly find the will, writing down each detail given in the index.

2. Go to "Records" (below) to determine what probate records exist for this court.

3. Obtain the records to search. Use one of these methods to find indexes and records.

  • Contact or visit the Archive (see below) or hire a professional record searcher to view these records on your behalf.
  • Microfilm can no longer be ordered.


Online IndexesEdit

Indexes for 54 peculiar courts, 1383-1883, are available online on British Origins. This is a subscription site.

Printed and Published IndexesEdit


Archive LocationEdit

The records for this court are held in the Borthwick Institute of Historical Research.

Archive RecordsEdit

Add information.

Family History Library RecordsEdit

Film copies of the following records. Films can be view in the library or in a family history center.

The act books are in three volumes, and cover respectively 1622-1642, 1660-1735 and 1736-1857. To access the remainder of the original records listed below, it will first be necessary to consult the act books.


Howden is a Durham peculiar situated entirely within the geographic boundaries of Yorkshire.