Difference between revisions of "England Court Records"

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Court records will probably mention some of your ancestors as defendants, plaintiffs, jurors, or witnesses. Court records can establish family relationships and places of residence. They often provide occupations, descriptions of individuals, and other family information. They seldom provide birth, marriage, or death information.  
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''[[England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png|go to]] [[England_Court_Records|Court Records]]''
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[[Image:250px-Royal courts of justice London.jpg|frame|right|180x200px|250px|<center>Royal Courts of Justice, London<center></center>]] Court records will probably mention some of your ancestors as defendants, plaintiffs, jurors, or witnesses. Court records can establish family relationships and places of residence. They often provide occupations, descriptions of individuals, and other family information. They seldom provide birth, marriage, or death information.  
  
 
Most researchers use court records after they have investigated other records. Court records tend to be difficult to use since few are indexed, the handwriting is hard to read, and they include unfamiliar legal terms. To interpret court records, you may need to consult a dictionary.  
 
Most researchers use court records after they have investigated other records. Court records tend to be difficult to use since few are indexed, the handwriting is hard to read, and they include unfamiliar legal terms. To interpret court records, you may need to consult a dictionary.  
  
There are many English courts. Those described here (except for the Chancery Court and the Court of the Exchequer) generally pertain to the poorer classes. If your ancestor was wealthy, search the records described in the "[[England Land and Property|Land and Property]]" section of this outline.  
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There are many English courts. Those described here (except for the Chancery Court and the Court of the Exchequer) generally pertain to the poorer classes. If your ancestor was wealthy, search the records described in the "[[England Land and Property|Land and Property]]" article.  
  
 
=== Quarter Session Courts  ===
 
=== Quarter Session Courts  ===
  
From the 16th century on, Quarter Session courts dealt with many issues, including crime, land, licensing, oaths of denization, militia, county rates, roads and bridges, taxes, religion, social welfare, lunatics, and so on. Many middle class and poor people are mentioned.  
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{{main|England Quarter Session Records}}From the 16th century on, and in some cases from the 13th century, [[England Quarter Session Records|Quarter Session]] courts dealt with many issues, including crime, land, licensing, oaths of denization, militia, county rates, roads and bridges, taxes, religion, social welfare, lunatics, and so on. Many middle class and poor people are mentioned.  
  
 
A more detailed discussion of these records is in:  
 
A more detailed discussion of these records is in:  
  
Emmison, F. G., and Irvine Gray. ''County Records''. Revised Edition. London, England: The Historical Association, 1973. (Family History Library book [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=210071&disp=County+records%20%20&columns=*,0,0 942 H2ha no. 62 1973].)  
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*Emmison, F. G., and Irvine Gray. ''County Records''. Revised Edition. London, England: The Historical Association, 1973. (Family History Library book {{FHL|210071|title-id|disp=942 H2ha no. 62 1973}}.)
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*Emmison, F. G and Irvine Gray. ''County records: Quarter Sessions, Petty Sessions, Clerk of the Peace and Lieutenancy.'' London: Historical Association, 1987. In series "Helps for the Student of History", no. 62. (Family History Library {{FHL|1026510|title-id|disp=942 H2ha no. 62 1987}})<br>
  
 
A list of available records is in:  
 
A list of available records is in:  
  
Gibson, J. S. W. ''Quarter Session Records for Family Historians: A Select List''. Third Edition. Birmingham, England: Federation of Family History Societies Publications, Ltd., 1992. (Family History Library book [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=560274&disp=Quarter+sessions+records+for+family+hist%20%20&columns=*,0,0 942 P23gjs 1992].)
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*Gibson, J. S. W. ''Quarter Session Records for Family Historians: A Select List''. 4th ed. Birmingham, England: Federation of Family History Societies Publications, Ltd., 1995. (Family History Library book {{FHL|560274|title-id|disp=942 P23gjs 1995}}).
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The original records are in the respective county or council archives. Copies of some quarter session records are in the Family History Library. Use the Place Search of the [https://familysearch.org/#form=catalog Family History Library Catalog] under:
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ENGLAND - [COUNTY NAME] - COURT RECORDS
  
The original records are in the respective county record offices. Copies of some Quarter Session records are in the Family History Library. They are listed in the&nbsp;Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under:  
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'''A wiki article describing an online collection is found at:'''
  
ENGLAND, [COUNTY] - COURT RECORDS
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[[England, Kent, Quarter Sessions and Court Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)|England, Kent, Quarter Sessions and Court Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)]]  
  
 
=== Manorial Courts  ===
 
=== Manorial Courts  ===
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Records of these courts give information about the day-to-day life on a manor (an estate held by a lord), including petty crimes, land transfers, manorial appointments, customs, rental fees, and so on. The court regulated the responsibilities and interrelationship of the manorial lord, his steward and bailiff (law officer), and the village people. Manorial court records began in 1066 and ended in the early 1900s.  
 
Records of these courts give information about the day-to-day life on a manor (an estate held by a lord), including petty crimes, land transfers, manorial appointments, customs, rental fees, and so on. The court regulated the responsibilities and interrelationship of the manorial lord, his steward and bailiff (law officer), and the village people. Manorial court records began in 1066 and ended in the early 1900s.  
  
To find the name of the manor, or if there was a manor for the locality where your ancestor lived, use a gazetteer such as ''The Imperial Gazetteer'' (see [[England Gazetteers|England Gazetteers]]).  
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To find the name of the manor, or if there was a manor for the locality where your ancestor lived, use a gazetteer such as ''The Imperial Gazetteer'' on [http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/index.jsp Vision of Britain] (see also the [[England Gazetteers|England Gazetteers]] article).  
  
 
Manorial court records in England can be found in many different repositories. For more information on the location of manor records in the following counties, consult the [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/mdr/searches/advancedsearch.asp Manorial Documents Register]:  
 
Manorial court records in England can be found in many different repositories. For more information on the location of manor records in the following counties, consult the [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/mdr/searches/advancedsearch.asp Manorial Documents Register]:  
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*Middlesex  
 
*Middlesex  
 
*Westmorland  
 
*Westmorland  
*Yorshire (all three Ridings)
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*Yorkshire (all three Ridings)
  
 
Information is also accessible through the GENUKI Web site at: [http://www.genuki.org.uk/ www.genuki.org.uk]  
 
Information is also accessible through the GENUKI Web site at: [http://www.genuki.org.uk/ www.genuki.org.uk]  
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If you do not have access to the Internet, or for counties other than those listed above&nbsp;you may write to the&nbsp;National Archives&nbsp;which maintains the register.  
 
If you do not have access to the Internet, or for counties other than those listed above&nbsp;you may write to the&nbsp;National Archives&nbsp;which maintains the register.  
  
The Family History Library has some manorial court records. To find the records that are in the library, look in the&nbsp;Place Search of the [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/Library/FHLC/frameset_fhlc.asp Family History Library Catalog] under:  
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The Family History Library has some manorial court records. To find the records that are in the library, look in the&nbsp;Place Search of the [https://familysearch.org/#form=catalog Family History Library Catalog] under&nbsp;:  
  
 
ENGLAND - COURT RECORDS  
 
ENGLAND - COURT RECORDS  
  
[COUNTY] -&nbsp;ENGLAND&nbsp;- COURT RECORDS  
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[COUNTY NAME] - COURT RECORDS  
  
[PARISH] - [COUNTY] - COURT RECORDS  
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[PARISH NAME] - COURT RECORDS  
  
[MANOR] -&nbsp;[COUNTY] - COURT RECORDS  
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[MANOR NAME] - COURT RECORDS  
  
==== Bibliography  ====
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===== Bibliography  =====
  
 
More detail is given in:  
 
More detail is given in:  
  
Park, Peter B. ''My Ancestors Were Manorial Tenants: How Can I Find Out More About Them?'' London, England: Society of Genealogists, 1994. (Family History Library&nbsp;book [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=682381&disp=My+ancestors+were+manorial+tenants%20%20&columns=*,0,0 942 D27pp].)
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<br>
  
Ellis, Mary. ''Using Manorial Records.'' London, England: PRO Publications in association with The Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, 1994. (Family History Library book [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=823863&disp=Using+manorial+records%20%20&columns=*,0,0 942 J77e].)
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*[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=150 “Manor and Other Local Court Rolls, 13th Century-1922”]. London: The National Archives, 2004. Legal Records Information no. 9.
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*[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=385 “The Manorial Documents Register and Manorial Lordships”]. London: The National Archives, 2004. Legal Records Information no. 25.
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*[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=139 “Manorial Records in The National Archives”]. London: The National Archives, 2008. Legal Records Information no. 1.<br>
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*Park, Peter B. ''My Ancestors Were Manorial Tenants: How Can I Find Out More About Them?'' London, England: Society of Genealogists, 1994. (Family History Library&nbsp;book {{FHL|682381|title-id|disp=942 D27pp}}.)
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*Ellis, Mary. ''Using Manorial Records.'' London, England: PRO Publications in association with The Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts, 1994. (Family History Library book {{FHL|823863|title-id|disp=942 J77e}}.)
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*Cheyney, E.P, translator. [http://www.shsu.edu/~his_ncp/Manor.html "English Manorial Documents,"] ''Translations and Reprints from the original Sources of European History''. Vol. 3 no. 5, pp. 3-32. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1907. <br>
  
 
=== Assize Courts  ===
 
=== Assize Courts  ===
  
These circuit courts usually dealt with the more serious criminal cases from the 13th century to 1971. The records mention many middle class and poor people.&nbsp; For more information, read&nbsp;[[Assize Court Records|'''Assize Court Records''']].  
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{{main|Assize Court Records}}These circuit courts usually dealt with the more serious criminal cases from the 13th century to 1971. The records mention many middle class and poor people.  
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*www.ancestry.com ($) [http://search.ancestryinstitution.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1590 England &amp; Wales Criminal Registers, 1791-1892] (Quarter Sessions &amp; Assize Courts).&nbsp;  
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*[http://www.oldbaileyonline.org/ www.oldbaileyonline.org.uk]- Almost 200,000 criminal trials at London’s central criminal court.
  
 
=== Chancery Court  ===
 
=== Chancery Court  ===
  
What is a Chancery? A simple definition says "Chancery Proceedings record disputes over inheritance, land, debts, etc., from the fourteenth to the nineteenth centuries"(Gibbons). FitzHugh states, "Chancery as a court of law dates from about 1348. It was a court of equity based on Roman Law to deal with cases for which the Common Law made no provision, and later with cases remediable under Common Law but in which the plaintiff would have found himself under a legal disadvantage. It was absorbed into the Supreme Court of Judicature in 1873"(FitzHugh, 65)<br><br>Garrett explains, "Originally, all cases were oral. . . [the] plaintiff and the defendant appeared before the Judge, and indulged in an altercation on the spot. Later, however, the practice grew up of setting down the initial proceedings in writing"(Garrett, 1). Garrett continues by explaining the different types of documents and the general order in which they were made.<br><br>There are two divisions in the Court of Chancery, being the court of Common Law and the court of Equity. This paper discusses only the court of Equity. The primary documents are of two kinds: a) Proceedings; and b) Registers.<br><br>Proceedings consist of the following documents:<br><br>1) Bill of Complaint<br>2) Writ of Subpoena<br>3) Answer by the defendant, or Plea to reject the Bill<br>4) Replication, or Exception, by the plaintiff<br>5) Rejoinder by the defendant<br>6) Rebuttal by the plaintiff (sometimes)<br>7) Surebuttal by the defendant (sometimes)<br>8) Interrogatories<br>9) Depositions by witnesses<br>10) Bill of Revival<br><br>Registers consist of the following types of documents:<br><br>1) Orders and Decrees<br>2) Awards and Agreements<br><br>The Family History Library has no original records from the court of Chancery. The collection consists of calendars, abstracts, and indexes. To find Chancery Court records, look in the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under:
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{{main|England Chancery Court Records}}What is a Chancery? A simple definition says "Chancery Proceedings record disputes over inheritance, land, debts, etc., from the fourteenth to the nineteenth centuries" (Gibbons). FitzHugh states, "Chancery as a court of law dates from about 1348. It was a court of equity based on Roman Law to deal with cases for which the Common Law made no provision, and later with cases remediable under Common Law but in which the plaintiff would have found himself under a legal disadvantage. It was absorbed into the Supreme Court of Judicature in 1873" (FitzHugh, 65)  
  
ENGLAND - COURT RECORDS
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*www.ancestry.com ($) [http://search.ancestryinstitution.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=1590 England &amp; Wales Criminal Registers, 1791-1892]. Includes&nbsp;[http://search.ancestryinstitution.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=7919 indexes to Chancery records, 1386-1558].
  
Chancery Court records are held at The National Archives.
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=== Court of the Exchequer  ===
  
==== Chancery Calendars, Indexes and Abstracts  ====
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This court also dealt with matters of the wealthy. Beginning early in the 12th twelfth century, it became an administrative body for collecting the royal revenue and performing the accompanying judicial business. As time went by, the court gained jurisdiction over suits between two individuals. The National Archives houses the records from the Court of the Exchequer for people who lived in England and Wales. The Family History Library&nbsp;has a film copy of an index to 127,628 Exchequer depositions between 1559 and 1695 ({{FHL|651788|title-id|disp=FHL film 104399 Items 3-6}}).
  
Some of the Chancery court records have been indexed. See the article by Ron Hill in the “Helpful Guides” section below to see a list of indexes for different time periods. Also, two of The National Archives Research Guides “Chancery Proceedings: Equity Suits from 1558" and “Chancery Proceedings: Equity Suits before 1558” list the records and what records have been&nbsp;indexed.<br><br>The&nbsp;National Archives website has available the “[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/equity/ Equity Pleadings Database]”, which includes part of the C6 class of records and is searchable by name or place. Also, some of these records have been indexed in The National Archives [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/Default.asp?j=1 Catalogue]. Search the Catalogue on the National Archives website with an ancestor's surname in the "Word or Phrase" field and the letter C in the "Department or Series code" field. <br><br>Two men, Charles Allen Bernau and George Frederick Tudor Sherwood, have both complied calendars and indexes to chancery material. Family History Library has the&nbsp;Bernau Collection and Sherwood Collection. You may search the Family History Library Catalog by Place under&nbsp;England - Court Records - Indexes or England - Court Records or do a Keyword search for Bernau and Sherwood.  
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The National Archives in England published [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=226 “Taxation Records Before 1689”] in 2004 about tax records in the Exchequer court. (Domestic Records Information 10). It includes a link to a searchable database for the E179 records.  
  
==== Chancery Proceedings and Depositions Indexes and Published Records ====
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=== Ecclesiastical Courts ===
  
Compiled from The National Archives Research Guides to Chancery Records and Ronald A. Hill's article “English Genealogical Research: Using Chancery Court Proceedings”. ''National Genealogical Society Quarterly''. Volume 91, No. 2, June 2007. pp. 111-138.&nbsp; Used with permission.  
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These courts helped regulate a variety of affairs. See the separate article [[Church Courts in England and Wales]].  
  
{| cellspacing="1" border="1"
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=== Other court records are:<br> ===
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'''''Date/Range&nbsp;'''''<b>&nbsp;</b>
 
  
|
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*Probate records, discussed in [[England Probate Records]].
'''''Class/Bdle'''''<b>&nbsp;</b>
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*Inquisition post mortem records, discussed in [[England Land and Property]].
  
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;'''''Description&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;'''''
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=== Inns of Court  ===
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
'''''&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Indexes or Printed'''''
 
  
|-
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The Inns of Court served as the place for educating those who were to become barristers, solicitors, lawyers, attorneys, proctors or Serjeants-at-law. With the exception of King’s Inn located in Dublin, Ireland (see [[Ireland Court Records|Ireland Court Records]]), all were located in London and have admission records dating well into the sixteenth century or earlier.  
| 1377-1558<br>
 
| C1/1 <br>
 
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
''Calendar of Proceedings in Chancery'', vol. 1, pp. i-cxlvii,&nbsp;Family History Library&nbsp;film [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titlefilmnotes&columns=*%2C0%2C0&titleno=284309&disp=Calendars+of+the+proceedings+in+chancery++ 874093<span id="fck_dom_range_temp_1240431997733_141" />], item 1.&nbsp; <br>E A Lewis, An Inventory of the Early Chancery.
 
  
|-
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===== '''The Middle Temple, London''' =====
| 1377-1422<br>
 
| C1/2<br>
 
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
''Calendar of Proceedings in Chancery'', vol. 2, pp. i-lxxvi, Family History Library film [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titlefilmnotes&columns=*%2C0%2C0&titleno=284309&disp=Calendars+of+the+proceedings+in+chancery++ 874093], item 2.
 
  
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'''&nbsp;'''“Although no exact date can be given, it is believed that the Middle Temple and the remaining three Inns of Court were established by the middle of the 14th Century. The Inn's name derives from the Knights Templar who were in the possession of the Temple site for some 150 years. The origins of the Inn can be traced from two roots: the occupation of the Knights Templar and the replacement of the priestly lawyers by a lay profession.”
| 1385-1467<br>
 
| C1/3-37<br>
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings
 
  
C1 documents were sorted in the 19th century into bundles according to the name of the chancellor to whom they were addressed.&nbsp; In many cases, the<br>chancellor was specifically named and suits can be dated to within a few years.&nbsp;In others, the address was such that more than one chancellor could be identified (e.g. 'the bishop of London, Lord Chancellor', when several bishops of London have been Chancellor in their time).&nbsp; To narrow this down further,<br>you will need to consult the tables given at the front of each of the published volumes mentioned in the Bibliography.<br>These are all on the open shelves at The National Archives.
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For a list of admissions to the Middle Temple, London, see:
  
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*Sturgess, H. A. C. ''Register of admissions to the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, from the fifteenth century to the year 1944''. 3 volumes. London: Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, 1949. Volume 1, 1501-1781; volume 2, 1782-1909; volume 3, 1910-1944. (FHL book number {{FHL|117950|title-id|disp=942.1/L1 C4st vol. 1-3}}; film numbers {{FHL|117950|title-id|disp=873850 vol.1-2}} and {{FHL|117950|title-id|disp=873851 vol. 3}}.)
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Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early <br>Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 12;<br>Harleian Society FHL British 942 B4h vols. 78 &amp; 79 <br>(Family History Library film 162077 items 3-4); Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.
 
  
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. <br>1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county.&nbsp; For a list of local record society publications, see E C &nbsp;Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983:&nbsp; continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]).&nbsp; Most are available in The National Archives library.
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Source: [http://www.middletemple.org.uk/ Middle Temple]  
  
|-
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===== '''Lincoln’s Inn, London&nbsp;'''  =====
|
 
1433-1485<br>
 
  
| C1/38-75<br>
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[[Image:Lincoln's Inn. London.jpg|thumb|right|298x190px]]The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn is said to take its name from Henry de Lacy, third Earl of Lincoln, who died in 1311. His own great house was adjacent and he is credited with being the Society's patron. Although the other three Inns of Court are of comparable antiquity, having evolved from uncertain origins in the fourteenth century, Lincoln's Inn can claim the oldest extant records, the Black Books, which record its principal activities from 1422 to this day.[[|]]<br>  
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 16; Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.<br>
 
  
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896).&nbsp; Many local record societies&nbsp;have published transcripts for their own county.&nbsp; For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983:&nbsp; continued on [http://www.humc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]).&nbsp; Most are available in The National Archives library.
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*''The Records of the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn; vol. 1 from 1420 to 1799, vol. II admissions from 1800 to 1893 and chapel registers''. London: Lincoln’s Inn, 1896-1902. (FHL film numbers {{FHL|118002|title-id|disp=845175 and 845176}}.)
  
|-
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===== '''Gray’s Inn, London&nbsp;'''  =====
| <br>1485-1500
 
| <br>C1/76-235
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 20; Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896).&nbsp; Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.humc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk)]. Most are available in The National Archives library.
 
  
|-
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It is clear that Gray’s Inn was in existence as early as 1388 since that is the first record of members graduating as Serjeants-at-law. “Between 1680 and 1687 there were three disastrous fires in Gray's Inn. That of 1684 was particularly grievous for it burnt the Library, which was then on the present site of No 1 Gray's Inn Square, and that is probably when [the] ancient records were lost.”
| <span id="fck_dom_range_temp_1208195092414_616">1500-1515</span>
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
  
C1/23<br>6-377<br>
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For a list of admissions to Gray’s Inn, see:
  
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
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*Foster, J. ''The Register of Admissions to Gray’s Inn 1521-1889 together with the marriages in Gray’s Inn Chapel 1695-1754''. London: Hansard Publishing Union, 1889. (FHL book number {{FHL|285696|title-id|disp=942.1/G1 K29f}}; also on film {{FHL|285696|title-id|disp=844906, item 1}}; another film copy {{FHL|285696|title-id|disp=1696584, item 3}}.)
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 29; Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>&nbsp;
 
  
|-
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Source: [http://www.graysinn.info/ Gray’s Inn]
| 1515-1518
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
  
C1/378-457<br>
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===== '''The Inner Temple, London'''  =====
  
| Chancery Proceedings
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“The history of the Temple begins soon after the middle of the twelfth century, when a contingent of knights of the Military Order of the Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem moved from the Old Temple in Holborn (later Southampton House) to a larger site between Fleet Street and the banks of the River Thames. The new site originally included much of what is now Lincoln's Inn, and the knights were probably responsible for establishing New Street (later Chancery Lane), which led from Holborn down to their new quarters.<br>  
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 38; Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br>
 
  
|-
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*''Students admitted to the Inner Temple 1547-1660.'' London: Inner Temple, 1877. The registers for the later years are only available at the Inner Temple. The FHL does not have a copy of this book.<br>
| <br>1518-1529
 
|
 
<br>C1/45<br>8-600
 
  
|
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Source: [http://www.innertemplelibrary.org.uk/temple-history/inner-temple-history-introduction-part-1.htm Inner Temple History Library]
Chancery Proceedings
 
  
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
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===== '''Inns of Chancery'''  =====
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 38; Bernau Index; Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk/ www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1529-1532
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
C1/60
 
 
 
1-694<br>
 
 
 
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 48;&nbsp;Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1532-38
 
|
 
<br>
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
C1/69
 
 
 
4-771<br>
 
 
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings ''Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 48;&nbsp;Sherwood Slip Index.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>&nbsp;
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
1533-1538<br>
 
 
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
C1/77
 
 
 
2-934<br>
 
 
 
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/search.asp TNA Catalogue]; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings ''Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 50;&nbsp;
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
1538-1544
 
 
 
|
 
<br>C1/93
 
 
 
5-1094
 
 
 
| Chancery Proceedings<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 51;&nbsp;Sx bundles 935-98<span id="fck_dom_range_temp_1214257723294_648" />7 only.<br>W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1544-1551
 
|
 
<br>C1/10
 
 
 
95-1285
 
 
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings ''Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 54;&nbsp;
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
1551-1553<br>
 
 
 
|
 
<br>C1/12
 
 
 
86-1324
 
 
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings ''Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 54;
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
<br>
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
1553-1555
 
 
 
|
 
<br>
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
C1/13
 
 
 
25-1397
 
 
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 55;&nbsp;
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk/ www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1556-1558
 
|
 
<br>C1/13
 
 
 
98-1488
 
 
 
| <br>Chancery Proceedings
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; ''Lists and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings'' Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 55;&nbsp;
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk/ www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| [1386-1558]
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
C1/14
 
 
 
89-1519<br>
 
 
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings various dates, some early.<br>
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Online in TNA Catalogue; Lists ''and Indexes, Early Chancery Proceedings ''Family History Library British Q 942 B4pre no. 55.
 
 
 
W P Baildon ed., Select Cases in Chancery, A.D. 1364-1471 (Selden Society, 1896). &nbsp;Many local record societies have published transcripts for their own county. For a list of local record society publications, see E C Mullins, Texts and Calendars (London, 2 vols, 1978, 1983: continued on [http://www.hmc.gov.uk/ www.hmc.gov.uk]). Most are available in The National Archives library. <br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1558-1603
 
| C2/Eli z/A.a.1-H.h.6<br>
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings:&nbsp; Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series.&nbsp; Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives.&nbsp; *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.<br>
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included in the Bernau Index.&nbsp; ''Calendars of the Proceedings in Chancery in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.''&nbsp; Vol 1 Family History Library film 874093 item 1 or 1501916; prefaced by bundle 1.&nbsp; Early Chancery Proceedings mentioned above.<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1558-1603
 
| C2/Eli z/H.h. 7-R.r.12<br>
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings: Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series. Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives. *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.<br><br>
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included in the Berna Index.&nbsp; ''Calendars of the Proceedings in Chancery in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.''&nbsp; Vol 1 Family History Library film 874093 item 2 or 1501917; prefaced by bundle 2 Early Chancery Proceedings mentioned above.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1558-1603<br>
 
| C2/Eli z/S.s. 1-Z.z.1
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings: Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series. Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives. *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.
 
 
 
<br>&nbsp;
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included in the Bernau Index.&nbsp;&nbsp; ''Calendars of the Proceedings in Chancery in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.''&nbsp; Vol 1 Family History Library film 874094 or 1501918.<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1558-1603<br>
 
| C2/Eli z/Misc.&nbsp;&nbsp; Bundl<br>
 
|
 
<br>Chancery Proceedings: Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series. Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives. *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included in the Bernau Index.&nbsp; ''Calendars of the Proceedings in Chancery in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth.''&nbsp; Vol 1 Family History Library film 874094 or 1501918.<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1603-1625
 
| C2/James
 
|
 
<br>Chancery Proceedings: Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series. Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives. *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included in the Bernau Index.&nbsp; ''Lists and Indexes, Index of Chancery Proceedings (Series I)'' James I, <br>A-K only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 47 <br>&nbsp;&nbsp; (Family History Library film 924081 item 2)<br>
 
 
 
L-M only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 32 <br>&nbsp;&nbsp; (Family History Library film 916576 item 2 or 1501921 item 1)<br>N-R only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 33 <br>&nbsp;&nbsp; (Family History Library film 916576 item 3 or 1501921 2)<br>S-Z only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 34 <br>&nbsp;&nbsp; (Family History Library film 916576 item 4 and 916577 item 1 or 1501923 item 1)<br>Some in Sherwood Slip Index
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1625-1649
 
| C2/Chas<br>
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings: Series&nbsp;I or the Regnal Series. Several sequences of paper finding aids, including name and place indexes, at The National Archives. *Some published catalogues; see Bibliography.
 
 
 
<br>&nbsp;
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not all are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Some but not all are included int he Bernau Index.&nbsp; Partial index found in The Index Library, A Calendar of Chancery Proceedings, Bills &amp; Answers, Charles I.<br>A-D only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol 2 <br>(Family History Library film 962742 item 1)<br>E-L only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol 5 <br>(Family History Libraryfilm 962742 item 2)<br>M-R only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol 6<br>(Family History Library film 962742 item 3)<br>S-Z only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol. 14 <br>(Family History Library film 564344 item 1)<br>Some in the Sherwood Slip Index.
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1558-1579
 
| C 3/1-202
 
|
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
Chancery Proceedings:&nbsp; Series II.*<br>
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county.&nbsp; ''Lists and Indexes, Index of Chancery Proceedings (Series II), ''Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 7 (FHL film 1696603 item 10).&nbsp; Indexed in Bernau Index and Sherwood Slip Index.<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1579-1621<br>
 
| C 3/203-329
 
|
 
Chancery Proceedings:&nbsp; Series II.*<br>
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county. ''Lists and Indexes, Index of Chancery Proceedings (Series II''), Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no.&nbsp;24. Indexed in Bernau Index and Sherwood Slip Index.<br><br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1621-1660
 
| <br>C3/330-469
 
|
 
<br>Chancery Proceedings:&nbsp; Series II.*
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
<br>[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county. ''Lists and Indexes, Index of Chancery Proceedings (Series II), ''Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 30. Indexed in Bernau Index and Sherwood Slip Index.
 
 
 
&nbsp;
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1558-1649
 
| C3/470-485<br>
 
|
 
<br>Chancery Proceedings:&nbsp; Series II.* Unsorted bundles.
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
| [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county. Family History Library film 1501919 item 3.<br>
 
|-
 
| <br>
 
| <br>C4
 
|
 
<br>Miscellaneous proceedings that have likely been detached for C1-C3; Not very accessible.
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Partially [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online]; nothing available at Family History Library; An unpublished descriptive list of part of the series available at the TNA.
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1570-1714
 
| <br>C8
 
|
 
<br>Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Mitford division**
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; TNA manuscript calendar<br>Plaintiff A-C Family History Library film 824651 <br>Plaintiff C-H Family History Library film 824652 <br>Plaintiff H-N Family History Library film 824653 <br>Plaintiff O-S&nbsp; Family History Library film 824654 <br>Plaintiff T-Z&nbsp; Family History Library film 824655 <br>Another Filming as follows: <br>Plaintiff A-F Family History Library film 1501932 <br>Plaintiff G-R&nbsp;Family History Library film 1501933 <br>Plaintiff S-Z&nbsp; Family History Library film 1501934 <br>Peter Coldham, Index to disputed estates in chancery, Family History Library fiche ______ has _____?
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1613-1714
 
| <br>C 5
 
| <br>Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Bridges
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county.&nbsp; ''Lists and Indexes, Index of Chancery Proceedings'', Bridges Division 1613-1714.<br>
 
 
 
A-C only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 39<br>D-H only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 42<br>I-Q only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 44<br>R-Z only Family History Library Q 942 B4pre no. 45<br>
 
 
 
Included in Bernau Index and Sherwood Slip Index
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1620-1714
 
|
 
<br>C 7<br>
 
 
 
| <br>Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Hamilton**
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
Not [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].<br>
 
 
 
TNA manuscript calendars<br>Plaintiff A-C Family History Library film 824644<br>Plaintiff D-G Family History Library film 824645<br>Plaintiff H-K Family History Library film 824646<br>Plaintiff L-O Family History Library film 824647<br>Plaintiff P-S Family History Library film 824648<br>Plaintiff S-V Family History Library film 8 24649<br>Plaintiff W-Z Family History Library film 824650<br>Another filming available: <br>Plaintiff A-E Family History Library film 1501928<br>Plaintiff F-K Family History Library film 1501929<br>Plaintiff L-S Family History Library film 1501930<br>Plaintiff S-Z Family History Library film 1501931<br>
 
 
 
Peter Coldham, Index to disputed estates in chancery, Family History Library&nbsp;???????
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1625-1714
 
|
 
<br>C 6<br>
 
 
 
| <br>Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Collins**
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
<br>See the Equity Pleadings Database on the national archives website.
 
 
 
TNA manuscript calendars<br>Plaintiff A-F Family History Library film 824637<br>Plaintiff G-N Family History Library film 824638<br>Plaintiff M-V Family History Library film 824639<br>Plaintiff W-Z Family History Libraryfilm 824640 item 3<br>Plaintiff A-K Family History Library film 824640 item 2<br>Plaintiff L-Z Family History Library film 824641<br>Another filming available:<br>Plaintiff A-F, bundles 1-268 Family History Library film 1501925 item 2<br>Plaintiff G-R, bundles 1-268 Family History Library film 1501926<br>Plaintiff S-Z, bundles 1-268 Family History Library film 1501927 item 1<br>Plaintiff A-Z, bundles 1-269-355 Family History Library film 1501927 item 2<br>Index to Personal estates for bundles 1-268 only Family History Library film 824640 item 2 or 1501925 item 1
 
 
 
Single Bills calendar to bundles 356-610 only Family History Library film 824643 or 1501924 item 3
 
 
 
<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| <br>1640-1714
 
| <br>C 10
 
|
 
<br>Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Whittington.&nbsp; Miscellaneous pleadings are listed at the end of the Whittington volume**
 
 
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff, 1st defendant and county for about half the series.<br>
 
 
 
TNA manuscript calendars:<br>Plaintiff A-C Family History Library film 824657<br>Plaintiff D-K Family History Library film 824658<br>Plaintiff L-P Family History Library film 824659<br>Plaintiff Q-S Family History Library film 824660<br>Plaintiff T-Z Family History Library film 824661<br>Another filming available<br>Plaintiff A-C Family History Library film 1501935<br>Plaintiff D-M Family History Library film 1501936<br>Plaintiff N-Z Family History Library film 1501937<br>Peter Coldham, Index to disputed estates in Chancery, Family History Library?????
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1649-1714
 
| C9
 
| Six Clerks Series:&nbsp; Reynardson<br>
 
| style="vertical-align: top" | <br>
 
|
 
<br>[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant.&nbsp; ''The Index Library, Index of Chancery Proceedings (Reynardson's Division, 1649-1714)''<br>A-K only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol 29 (FHL film 990401)<br>L-Z only Family History Library 942 B4b Vol 32 (FHL film 526491&nbsp; item 3)
 
 
 
Manuscript calendar for bundles 1-41 (out of 491 bundles) Family History Library film 824656 or 1501935 Sherwood Slip Index contains defendants surnames.
 
 
 
<br>
 
 
 
|}
 
 
 
*Miscellaneous set of answers and subsidiary documents are in C 4, which is searchable.<!--{120845840254678} --><!--{120845840254679} --><!--{120845840254680} --><!--{120845840254681} -->
 
*For C 6, C 7, C 8 and C 10, there are indexes to disputed wills (by the name of the testator, not of the plaintiff) available at The National Archives.&nbsp; P W Coldham compiled these idexes.
 
 
 
{| cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" width="735" border="1"
 
|-
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
|-
 
| 1715-1758&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| C&nbsp;11&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| Various Six Clerks,&nbsp;Series I.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and one defendant.&nbsp; The Bernau Notebooks give more information (for all parties) surname, forename, occupation and date:&nbsp; available at the FHL see Bernau notebooks listing below.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1758-1800
 
| C 12
 
| Various Six Clerks, Series II
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and one defendant.
 
 
 
Bernau Chancery Proceedings at FHL: <br>Volume 1 A-Bez Family History Library film 87884<br>Volume 2 Bib-Cim Family History Library film 87884<br>Volume 3 Cla-Dys Family History Library film 87885<br>Volume 4 Eab-Gre Family History Library film 87885<br>Volume 5 Gri-Jax Family History Library film 87886<br>Volume 6 Kac-Nye Family History Library film 87886<br>Volume 7 Oad-Sid Family History Library film 87887<br>Volume 8 Sie-Zou Family History Library film 87887<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1800-1842
 
| C 13
 
| Various Six Clerks, Series III
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and one defendant:&nbsp; work is taking place on this series to make it searchable by full name of all defendants.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1842-1852
 
| C 14
 
| Modern Series:&nbsp; Pleadings
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant.&nbsp; To check that a suit is the right one, order up the relevant volume from C 32.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1844-1864
 
| C 18
 
|
 
Miscellaneous Pleadings.&nbsp; Contains a very few 17th and 18th century pleadings.
 
 
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant and defendant. Gives forename as well.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1853-1860
 
| C 15
 
| Modern Series:&nbsp; Pleadings
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant.&nbsp; To check that a suit is the right one, order up the relevant volume from C 32.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1861-1875
 
| C 16
 
| Modern Series:&nbsp; Pleadings
 
|
 
Not [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; To check that a suit is the right one, order up the relevant volume from C 32.
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1876 Onwards
 
| J 54
 
|
 
Chancery Division: Pleadings, Common Law Orders etc.,
 
 
 
|
 
Not [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable online].&nbsp; Index for 1876-1880 only in IND 1/2218 to IND 1/2226
 
 
 
|}
 
 
 
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==== '''&nbsp; Town Depositions'''<!--{12082074786487} --><!--{12082074786488} --><!--{12082074786489} --><!--{120820747864810} --><!--{120820747864811} --><!--{120820747864812} --> ====
 
 
 
{| cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" width="735" border="1"
 
|-
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;Date<br>&nbsp;&nbsp; Range <br>
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Class/&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Bdle <br>
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Description&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp; Indexes or Printed&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br>
 
|-
 
| 1534-1853
 
| C 24
 
| Town depositions
 
|
 
C 24/2450 to C 24/2508 are [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 searchable on line].
 
 
 
Deponents indexed in Bernau Index.
 
 
 
Mostly listed by term:&nbsp; use IND 1/16759 and IND 1/9115 to IND 1/9121.
 
 
 
Partial Calendar 1534-1558 FHL film 916577 item 2.
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
1854-1880
 
 
 
March
 
 
 
| C 15, C 16, J 54
 
| Town depositions are filed with the pleadings.
 
| See pleadings above.
 
|-
 
| 1880 April
 
| See Country depositions
 
|
 
|
 
|}
 
 
 
<!--{120820747864813} --><!--{120820747864814} --><!--{120820747864815} --><!--{120820747864816} -->
 
 
 
==== '''&nbsp; Country Depositions'''<!--{120820747864817} --><!--{120820747864818} --><!--{120820747864819} --><!--{120820747864820} --><!--{120820747864821} --><!--{120820747864822} -->  ====
 
 
 
{| cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" width="735" border="1"
 
|-
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp;Date<br>&nbsp;&nbsp; Range <br>
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Class/&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; Bdle <br>
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Description&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;
 
| &nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; &nbsp; Indexes or Printed&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <br>
 
|-
 
| 1558-1649
 
| C 21
 
| Country depositions
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant.<br>Deponents indexed in Bernau Index and Sherwood Slip Index<br>Original manuscript calendars<br>Plaintiff A-J FHL film 916583 item 2<br>Plaintiff K-S FHL film 916582 item 5<br>Plaintiff S-Z FHL film 916583 item 1<br>Another filming available:<br>Plaintiff A-J FHL film 1501923 item 2<br>Plaintiff K-Z FHL film 1501923 item 3<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
|
 
1649-1714
 
 
 
| C 22
 
| Country&nbsp;depositions
 
|
 
[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/default.asp?j=1 Searchable online] for 1st plaintiff and 1st defendant.
 
 
 
Depoinents indexed in Bernau Index for C 22/1, and for all cases where the plaintiff's name began with A:&nbsp; about 8% of total
 
 
 
Manuscript Calendars, alphabetical by plaintiff surname<br>Collins Division bundles 1-219 FHL film 916557 item 3<br>Hamilton Division bundles 220-307 FHL film 916577 item 3<br>Hamilton Division bundles 308-311 FHL film 916578 item 1<br>Bridges Division bundles 312-581 FHL film 916578 item 1<br>Mitford Division bundles 582-738&nbsp; FHL film 916578 item 2<br>Whittington Division bundles 739-824 FHL film 916578 item 3<br>Whittington Division bundles 824-953 FHL film 916579 item 1<br>Reynardson Division bundles 954-1052 film 916579 item 2<br>
 
 
 
<br>
 
 
 
|-
 
| 1715-1880 March
 
|
 
C 11,<br>C 12,<br>C 13,<br>C 14<br><br>
 
 
 
| Country depositions are filed with the pleadings
 
| See pleadings above
 
|-
 
| 1880 <br>April <br>1925 <br>
 
| J 17
 
| Town and Country depositions
 
| Use IND 1/16748 to IND 1/16752
 
|}
 
 
 
=== Court of the Exchequer  ===
 
 
 
This court also dealt with matters of the wealthy. Beginning early in the 12th twelfth century, it became an administrative body for collecting the royal revenue and performing the accompanying judicial business. As time went by, the court gained jurisdiction over suits between two individuals. The Public Record Office keeps the records from the Court of the Exchequer. The Family History Library&nbsp;has an index to 127,628 "Exchequer Depositions" between 1559 and 1695 on: [http://www.familysearch.org/Eng/Library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=651788&disp=Exchequer+deponents&columns=*,0,0 '''FHL BRITISH Film 104399 Items 3-6'''].
 
 
 
The National Archives in England has a [http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/catalogue/RdLeaflet.asp?sLeafletID=226 Research Guide to some of the tax records] from the Exchequer court, which includes links to a searchable database to locate some tax records.
 
 
 
=== Ecclesiastical Courts  ===
 
 
 
These courts helped regulate religious affairs. The records are in the respective county record office or diocesan archive in England.
 
 
 
Other court records are:
 
  
 +
There were a number of Inns of Chancery associated with the principle inns named above. Students admitted to these Inns might become solicitors or proctors, however, many may also be found in the records of the Inns of Court where they were trained to become barristers. By the year 1900, the last of these Inns, i.e. Clement’s Inn, had closed. Admission registers are available for some of the Inns.
  
 +
Associated with Lincoln’s Inn were Thavy’s Inn and Furnivall’s Inn; Inner Temple were Clifford’s Inn, Clement’s Inn, and Lyon’s Inn; Middle Temple were New Inn and Strand Inn; and Gray’s Inn were Staple Inn and Barnard’s Inn.
  
*Probate records, discussed in the "[[England Probate Records|Probate Records]]" section of this outline.  
+
Source: Holdsworth, Sir William, ''A History of English Law'', 3 volumes. (London: Methuen &amp; Co., Ltd., Sweet and Maxwell). Vol. 2, p. 498.(FHL book number {{FHL|386098|title-id|disp=942 P3h}}. BYU&nbsp;Howard W. Hunter Law Library book'''KD 532 .H6 1936-''' 17 volumes.)
*Inquisition post mortem records, discussed in the "[[England Land and Property|Land and Property]]" section of this outline.
 
  
=== Inns of Court ===
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=== Resources ===
  
The Inns of Court served as the place for educating those who were to become barristers, solicitors, lawyers, attorneys, proctors or Serjeants-at-law. With the exception of King’s Inn located in Dublin, Ireland (see Ireland Court Records), all were located in London and have admission records dating well into the sixteenth century or earlier.
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| link = https://www.familysearch.org/learningcenter/lesson/in-the-high-court-of-justice/284
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| name = In the High Court of Justice
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==== '''The Middle Temple, London'''  ====
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*[http://www.capitalpunishmentuk.org/1800.html 1800-1827 Public Executions]
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*[[Church Courts in England and Wales]]
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*[[Records of the Old Bailey in London, England]]
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*[[Lawyers in England and Wales]]
  
'''&nbsp;'''“Although no exact date can be given, it is believed that the Middle Temple and the remaining three Inns of Court were established by the middle of the 14th Century. The Inn's name derives from the Knights Templar who were in the possession of the Temple site for some 150 years. The origins of the Inn can be traced from two roots: the occupation of the Knights Templar and the replacement of the priestly lawyers by a lay profession.”
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<br> {{Place|England}}
 
 
For a list of admissions to the Middle Temple, London, see: Sturgess, H. A. C. ''Register of admissions to the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, from the fifteenth century to the year 1944''. 3 volumes. London: Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, 1949. Volume 1, 1501-1781; volume 2, 1782-1909; volume 3, 1910-1944. (FHL call no. British 942.1/L1 C4st vol. 1-3 and on FHL microfilms Vols. 1-2 on 873,850, items 1-2 and Vol. 3 on 873,851, item 1).
 
 
 
Source: Middle Temple History, http://www.middletemple.org.uk/the_inn/History
 
 
 
==== '''Lincoln’s Inn, London&nbsp;'''  ====
 
 
 
The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn is said to take its name from Henry de Lacy, third Earl of Lincoln, who died in 1311. His own great house was adjacent and he is credited with being the Society's patron. Although the other three Inns of Court are of comparable antiquity, having evolved from uncertain origins in the fourteenth century, Lincoln's Inn can claim the oldest extant records, the Black Books, which record its principal activities from 1422 to this day.
 
 
 
For a list of admissions to Lincoln’s Inn, see: ''The Records of the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn; vol. 1 from 1420 to 1799, vol. II admissions from 1800 to 1893 and chapel registers''. London: Lincoln’s Inn, 1896-1902. FHL microfilm (only) volumes 1 (1422-1586) and 2 (1586-1660) 845,175 and volumes 3 (1660-1775) and 4 (1776-1845 with calls to the bar) 845,176.
 
 
 
==== '''Gray’s Inn, London&nbsp;'''  ====
 
 
 
It is clear that Gray’s Inn was in existence as early as 1388 since that is the first record of members graduating as Serjeants-at-law. “Between 1680 and 1687 there were three disastrous fires in Gray's Inn. That of 1684 was particularly grievous for it burnt the Library, which was then on the present site of No 1 Gray's Inn Square, and that is probably when [the] ancient records were lost.”
 
 
 
For a list of admissions to Gray’s Inn, see: Foster, J. ''The Register of Admissions to Gray’s Inn 1521-1889 together with the marriages in Gray’s Inn Chapel 1695-1754''. London: Hansard Publishing Union, 1889. FHL British 942.1/G1 K29f and FHL microfilm 844,906, item 1; second microfilm copy 1,696,584, item 3.
 
 
 
Source: Gray’s Inn, http://www.graysinn.info/index
 
 
 
==== '''The Inner Temple, London'''  ====
 
 
 
'''&nbsp;'''“The history of the Temple begins soon after the middle of the twelfth century, when a contingent of knights of the Military Order of the Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem moved from the Old Temple in Holborn (later Southampton House) to a larger site between Fleet Street and the banks of the River Thames. The new site originally included much of what is now Lincoln's Inn, and the knights were probably responsible for establishing New Street (later Chancery Lane), which led from Holborn down to their new quarters.” <br>For a list of admissions, see: ''Students admitted to the Inner Temple 1547-1660.'' London: Inner Temple, 1877. The registers for the later years are only available at the Inner Temple. The FHL does not have copies of the published register for 1547-1660.
 
 
 
Source: Inner Temple Library, http://www.innertemplelibrary.org.uk/temple-history/inner-temple-history-introduction-part-1.htm
 
 
 
==== '''Inns of Chancery'''  ====
 
 
 
There were a number of Inns of Chancery associated with the principle inns named above. Students admitted to these Inns might become solicitors or proctors, however, many may also be found in the records of the Inns of Court where they were trained to become barristers. By the year 1900, the last of these Inns, i.e. Clement’s Inn, had closed. Admission registers are available for some of the Inns.
 
  
Associated with Lincoln’s Inn were Thavy’s Inn and Furnivall’s Inn; Inner Temple were Clifford’s Inn, Clement’s Inn, and Lyon’s Inn; Middle Temple were New Inn and Strand Inn; and Gray’s Inn were Staple Inn and Barnard’s Inn.&nbsp;<br>Source: Holdsworth, Sir William, ''A History of English Law'', 3 volumes. (London: Methuen &amp; Co., Ltd., Sweet and Maxwell) 2: 498.
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{{featured article}}
  
=== [[Category:England]] ===
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[[Category:England|Court Records]] [[Category:Court_records_of_England|Court_records_of_England]]

Revision as of 20:57, 12 November 2012

England go to Court Records

Royal Courts of Justice, London
Court records will probably mention some of your ancestors as defendants, plaintiffs, jurors, or witnesses. Court records can establish family relationships and places of residence. They often provide occupations, descriptions of individuals, and other family information. They seldom provide birth, marriage, or death information.

Most researchers use court records after they have investigated other records. Court records tend to be difficult to use since few are indexed, the handwriting is hard to read, and they include unfamiliar legal terms. To interpret court records, you may need to consult a dictionary.

There are many English courts. Those described here (except for the Chancery Court and the Court of the Exchequer) generally pertain to the poorer classes. If your ancestor was wealthy, search the records described in the "Land and Property" article.

Quarter Session Courts

Main article: England Quarter Session Records

From the 16th century on, and in some cases from the 13th century, Quarter Session courts dealt with many issues, including crime, land, licensing, oaths of denization, militia, county rates, roads and bridges, taxes, religion, social welfare, lunatics, and so on. Many middle class and poor people are mentioned.

A more detailed discussion of these records is in:

  • Emmison, F. G., and Irvine Gray. County Records. Revised Edition. London, England: The Historical Association, 1973. (Family History Library book 942 H2ha no. 62 1973.)
  • Emmison, F. G and Irvine Gray. County records: Quarter Sessions, Petty Sessions, Clerk of the Peace and Lieutenancy. London: Historical Association, 1987. In series "Helps for the Student of History", no. 62. (Family History Library 942 H2ha no. 62 1987)

A list of available records is in:

  • Gibson, J. S. W. Quarter Session Records for Family Historians: A Select List. 4th ed. Birmingham, England: Federation of Family History Societies Publications, Ltd., 1995. (Family History Library book 942 P23gjs 1995).

The original records are in the respective county or council archives. Copies of some quarter session records are in the Family History Library. Use the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under:

ENGLAND - [COUNTY NAME] - COURT RECORDS

A wiki article describing an online collection is found at:

England, Kent, Quarter Sessions and Court Files (FamilySearch Historical Records)

Manorial Courts

Records of these courts give information about the day-to-day life on a manor (an estate held by a lord), including petty crimes, land transfers, manorial appointments, customs, rental fees, and so on. The court regulated the responsibilities and interrelationship of the manorial lord, his steward and bailiff (law officer), and the village people. Manorial court records began in 1066 and ended in the early 1900s.

To find the name of the manor, or if there was a manor for the locality where your ancestor lived, use a gazetteer such as The Imperial Gazetteer on Vision of Britain (see also the England Gazetteers article).

Manorial court records in England can be found in many different repositories. For more information on the location of manor records in the following counties, consult the Manorial Documents Register:

  • Cumberland
  • Hampshire (and the Isle of Wight)
  • Lancashire (north of Furness)
  • Norfolk
  • Surrey
  • Middlesex
  • Westmorland
  • Yorkshire (all three Ridings)

Information is also accessible through the GENUKI Web site at: www.genuki.org.uk

If you do not have access to the Internet, or for counties other than those listed above you may write to the National Archives which maintains the register.

The Family History Library has some manorial court records. To find the records that are in the library, look in the Place Search of the Family History Library Catalog under :

ENGLAND - COURT RECORDS

[COUNTY NAME] - COURT RECORDS

[PARISH NAME] - COURT RECORDS

[MANOR NAME] - COURT RECORDS

Bibliography

More detail is given in:


Assize Courts

Main article: Assize Court Records

These circuit courts usually dealt with the more serious criminal cases from the 13th century to 1971. The records mention many middle class and poor people.

Chancery Court

Main article: England Chancery Court Records

What is a Chancery? A simple definition says "Chancery Proceedings record disputes over inheritance, land, debts, etc., from the fourteenth to the nineteenth centuries" (Gibbons). FitzHugh states, "Chancery as a court of law dates from about 1348. It was a court of equity based on Roman Law to deal with cases for which the Common Law made no provision, and later with cases remediable under Common Law but in which the plaintiff would have found himself under a legal disadvantage. It was absorbed into the Supreme Court of Judicature in 1873" (FitzHugh, 65)

Court of the Exchequer

This court also dealt with matters of the wealthy. Beginning early in the 12th twelfth century, it became an administrative body for collecting the royal revenue and performing the accompanying judicial business. As time went by, the court gained jurisdiction over suits between two individuals. The National Archives houses the records from the Court of the Exchequer for people who lived in England and Wales. The Family History Library has a film copy of an index to 127,628 Exchequer depositions between 1559 and 1695 (FHL film 104399 Items 3-6).

The National Archives in England published “Taxation Records Before 1689” in 2004 about tax records in the Exchequer court. (Domestic Records Information 10). It includes a link to a searchable database for the E179 records.

Ecclesiastical Courts

These courts helped regulate a variety of affairs. See the separate article Church Courts in England and Wales.

Other court records are:

Inns of Court

The Inns of Court served as the place for educating those who were to become barristers, solicitors, lawyers, attorneys, proctors or Serjeants-at-law. With the exception of King’s Inn located in Dublin, Ireland (see Ireland Court Records), all were located in London and have admission records dating well into the sixteenth century or earlier.

The Middle Temple, London

 “Although no exact date can be given, it is believed that the Middle Temple and the remaining three Inns of Court were established by the middle of the 14th Century. The Inn's name derives from the Knights Templar who were in the possession of the Temple site for some 150 years. The origins of the Inn can be traced from two roots: the occupation of the Knights Templar and the replacement of the priestly lawyers by a lay profession.”

For a list of admissions to the Middle Temple, London, see:

  • Sturgess, H. A. C. Register of admissions to the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, from the fifteenth century to the year 1944. 3 volumes. London: Honourable Society of the Middle Temple, 1949. Volume 1, 1501-1781; volume 2, 1782-1909; volume 3, 1910-1944. (FHL book number 942.1/L1 C4st vol. 1-3; film numbers 873850 vol.1-2 and 873851 vol. 3.)

Source: Middle Temple

Lincoln’s Inn, London 
Lincoln's Inn. London.jpg
The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn is said to take its name from Henry de Lacy, third Earl of Lincoln, who died in 1311. His own great house was adjacent and he is credited with being the Society's patron. Although the other three Inns of Court are of comparable antiquity, having evolved from uncertain origins in the fourteenth century, Lincoln's Inn can claim the oldest extant records, the Black Books, which record its principal activities from 1422 to this day.[[|]]
  • The Records of the Honourable Society of Lincoln’s Inn; vol. 1 from 1420 to 1799, vol. II admissions from 1800 to 1893 and chapel registers. London: Lincoln’s Inn, 1896-1902. (FHL film numbers 845175 and 845176.)
Gray’s Inn, London 

It is clear that Gray’s Inn was in existence as early as 1388 since that is the first record of members graduating as Serjeants-at-law. “Between 1680 and 1687 there were three disastrous fires in Gray's Inn. That of 1684 was particularly grievous for it burnt the Library, which was then on the present site of No 1 Gray's Inn Square, and that is probably when [the] ancient records were lost.”

For a list of admissions to Gray’s Inn, see:

  • Foster, J. The Register of Admissions to Gray’s Inn 1521-1889 together with the marriages in Gray’s Inn Chapel 1695-1754. London: Hansard Publishing Union, 1889. (FHL book number 942.1/G1 K29f; also on film 844906, item 1; another film copy 1696584, item 3.)

Source: Gray’s Inn

The Inner Temple, London

“The history of the Temple begins soon after the middle of the twelfth century, when a contingent of knights of the Military Order of the Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem moved from the Old Temple in Holborn (later Southampton House) to a larger site between Fleet Street and the banks of the River Thames. The new site originally included much of what is now Lincoln's Inn, and the knights were probably responsible for establishing New Street (later Chancery Lane), which led from Holborn down to their new quarters.”

  • Students admitted to the Inner Temple 1547-1660. London: Inner Temple, 1877. The registers for the later years are only available at the Inner Temple. The FHL does not have a copy of this book.

Source: Inner Temple History Library

Inns of Chancery

There were a number of Inns of Chancery associated with the principle inns named above. Students admitted to these Inns might become solicitors or proctors, however, many may also be found in the records of the Inns of Court where they were trained to become barristers. By the year 1900, the last of these Inns, i.e. Clement’s Inn, had closed. Admission registers are available for some of the Inns.

Associated with Lincoln’s Inn were Thavy’s Inn and Furnivall’s Inn; Inner Temple were Clifford’s Inn, Clement’s Inn, and Lyon’s Inn; Middle Temple were New Inn and Strand Inn; and Gray’s Inn were Staple Inn and Barnard’s Inn.

Source: Holdsworth, Sir William, A History of English Law, 3 volumes. (London: Methuen & Co., Ltd., Sweet and Maxwell). Vol. 2, p. 498.(FHL book number 942 P3h. BYU Howard W. Hunter Law Library bookKD 532 .H6 1936- 17 volumes.)

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