England, Cheshire, Land Tax Assessments (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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FamilySearch Record Search This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.
Access the records: England, Cheshire, Land Tax Assessments, 1778-1832 .

Record Description

This collection will include records from 1778 to 1832.

Most of the physical documents were handwritten, but there were also printed forms where assessors could fill in the blanks

The land tax assessments were used to keep track of who paid taxes from year to year. It also doubled as a voter registration from 1780 to 1832.

Land tax assessments began in 1692 and ended in 1963. Most of the surviving collection of land tax assessments range from 1780 to 1832. The tax was administered through the Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace. They were organized by county, hundred, and parish. From 1692 to 1831, Catholics were assessed a double portion. Coverage for this tax was aimed at the landowners and the tenants who rented from the landowners. That ranged from nobility to peasant.

If an ancestor is a landholder or a land renter, then he or she should be listed. The records are most reliable between 1780 and 1832 because they doubled as voting registration. Not all family members are listed, just the responsible person. After 1832, not all occupiers were listed.

Citation for This Collection

The following citation refers to the original source of the information published in FamilySearch.org Historical Records collections. Sources include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.

"England, Cheshire Land Tax Assessments, 1778-1832." Index. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2013. Citing Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace. Record Office, Chester.

Suggested citation format for a record in this collection.

Record Content

These tax assessment records may contain the following information:

  • Name of the place
  • The year for the tax assessment
  • Name of proprietors or landowners
  • Names of the occupiers or tenants
  • Sums assessed are arranged in pounds, shillings, and pennies.
  • In some cases, additional columns that keep track of additional taxes or sum redemptions in pounds, shillings, and pennies
  • Includes the name or names of the assessors
  • Includes the name or names of the collectors
  • Includes the names of those who approved the taxes

How to Use the Records

To begin your search in the tax assessments, it would be helpful if you knew the name of your ancestor and some identifying information such as the approximate year and place of residence.

Search the Collection

Fill in the requested information in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about the ancestors 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 look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.

For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line video at FamilySearch Search Tips.

Using the Information

When you have located your ancestor’s record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. Make a photocopy of the record, or extract the genealogical information needed. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details. Add this new information to your records of each family. The information may also lead you to other records about your ancestors. The following examples show ways you can use the information:

  • The source film number can identify the original entry.
  • The records will reveal where they lived and how much they paid in land tax from year to year.
  • If they rented the land, the landowner is also identified.

Tips to Keep in Mind

  • The Land Tax assessment sheets vary in the number of individual entries for a given location in each year. Some large landholders may be found listed repeatedly within the index for the same place and year. The index was compiled by FamilySearch Indexing volunteers who were instructed not to record landowners such as "the Rectors of Malpas" in the index, but some inconsistency within the index will result in errors.
  • For information about the historical land associated with Malpas, Cheshire and its dual rectories refer to the parish page, there are several other landowners which will appear, such as Navigation Boards, Trustees, the Bishop of Chester, Executors, Titled Nobility, and Businesses.
  • Some indexed images contain several hundred names on each page/image, so omission and duplication may result.
  • The index is limited in content; it does not record the names of the assessor and collector for each place. The full image view of each page therefore may disclose much more information than the index only.

Unable to Find Your Ancestor?

  • Check for variant spellings of the names.
  • Search the records of nearby localities.

Related Websites

Related Wiki Articles

Contributions to This Article

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.

Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections

When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.

A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.