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England, Devon Bishop's Transcripts - FamilySearch Historical Records

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at
Access the records: England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887 .

Record Description[edit | edit source]

These collections will include records from 1558-1887. They are indexes and images to selected baptisms, marriages and burials. Devon, also historically known as Devonshire, is a county of England reaching from the Bristol Channel in the north to the English Channel in the south. It is located in south-west England.

Bishop’s transcripts are copies of parish registers that were sent to the bishops every month. They are extremely valuable when parish records have been damaged or destroyed. The copies were made and sent to the diocese office every year until the middle of the 1800’s. Because transcripts are copies, they may contain errors.

Record Content[edit | edit source]

Baptismal Records usually include:

  • Date and place of baptism
  • Name and sex of child
  • Date and place of birth
  • Parents' names

Marriage Registers usually include:

  • Date and place of marriage
  • Bride and groom’s names
  • Groom's age, marital status, occupation and residence
  • Names of groom's parents, including maiden name of mother
  • Bride's age, marital status, occupation and residence
  • Names of bride's parents, including maiden name of mother
  • Birthplaces of bride and groom
  • Date of the marriage
  • Witnesses' names, age and occupation

Death / Burial Records usually include:

  • Date and place of death and burial
  • Name and age of deceased
  • Cause of death
  • Father of deceased and his occupation
  • Date and birthplace of deceased
  • Marital status of deceased
  • If married, name of spouse

How to Use the Record[edit | edit source]

To begin searching these records it is helpful to know your ancestor's first and last name.

Keep in mind that there may be more than one person in the records with the same name and your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life. Further information such as birth date, parent's names, or possible residence may help differentiate between individuals with similar names.

Search the Collection[edit | edit source]

To search by index:

Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the people in the list to what you already know about your ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person. You may need to compare the information about more than one person to find your ancestor.

Using the Information[edit | edit source]

  • Try searching for the parents' marriage record in the same locality as your ancestor's birth place.
  • Be sure to record the bride's maiden name found on the marriage record.
  • Use the ages of the bride and groom to estimate their birth years.
  • Use death dates to search for other records such as obituaries, grave markers, sexton's records, or civil death records.

Tips to Keep in Mind[edit | edit source]

  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
  • Titles may be clues to property ownership, occupations, rank, or status within the community.
  • Continue to search the index and records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives.
  • Be aware that, as with any index, transcription errors may occur. Do not rule out individuals in the search with different spellings of the same name

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?[edit | edit source]

Consider searching the records of nearby localities (Cornwall to the west, Somerset to the northeast, and Dorset to the east).

Also, as bishop’s transcripts are copies of parish records, try searching for your ancestor in [#Related FamilySearch Historical Records Articles|other collections] of Devon church records.

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Don't overlook FHL Place England, Devon items or FHL Keyword England, Devon items in the FamilySearch Library Catalog. For other libraries (local and national) or to gain access to items of interest, see England Archives and Libraries.

Related Websites[edit | edit source]

Related Wiki Articles[edit | edit source]

Related FamilySearch Historical Records Articles[edit | edit source]

Contributions to this Article[edit | edit source]

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.

Citations for This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation:

“ England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1591-1836.” Database. FamilySearch. : accessed 2015. Citing Wiltshire Record Office, Trowbridge, England.

“ England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887.” Database with images. FamilySearch. : accessed 2015. Citing Devon Record Office, , England.

Record Citations (or citation for the index entry):

When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1591-1836.

When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887.

Image Citations This template has been deprecated and is no longer used.

When looking at an image, the citation is found on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for England, Devon, Bishop's Transcripts, 1558-1887.