Difference between revisions of "Northamptonshire Probate Records"

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''[[England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Northamptonshire]]''  
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''[[England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Northamptonshire]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] Northamptonshire Probate Records''  
  
For an explanation of probate records in England, click [[England Probate Records|here]].
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== Getting Started  ==
  
== Getting Started ==
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''Probate'' is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. Probate records include [[W genealogical glossary terms|wills]] and [[A genealogical glossary terms|administrations]]. This article is about probate records in Northamptonshire. For a general description of England probate records, click [[England Probate Records|here]].
 +
 
 +
=== 1858 to the Present ===
 +
 
 +
Beginning in 1858, the [[Principal Probate Registry|Principal Probate Registry]] had the authority for probating estates. Click on the link to learn more.
  
Probate is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his/her heirs. 
+
=== Before 1858  ===
  
In order to find a probate record for your ancestor, you must answer two questions:  
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Before 1858, Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process. To search for a pre-1858 probate record in Northamptonshire, follow these steps:  
  
#When did your ancestor die?
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==== Step 1. Search Indexes  ====
#Where did your ancestor live or own property?
 
  
A key date is 1858, when probate authority was taken from the ecclesiatical courts of the Church of England and given to the civil government. 
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Here are some online indexes to probate records that include individuals who lived in Northamptonshire. Search these indexes first:
  
*If your ancestor died before 1858, his/her probate would have been proven by an ecclesiatical court and it is important to know where he/she lived, as that will determine which courts had jurisdiction.   
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*[http://www.findmypast.co.uk/search/probate-and-wills Online Probate Index 1469-1857]  The Northamptonshire and Rutland Probate Index has been created from several of the earlier indexes of probate records held in the Northampton Record Office. The index contains 87,058 entries that cover the period 1469 to 1857.
*If you know where your ancestor lived before 1858, you should go to the '''Court Jurisdictions''' section below to determine what courts had jurisdiction over your ancestor's place of residence. 
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*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
*Beginning in 1858, probate authority was vested in the '''Principal Probate Registry''' system.  For more information, scroll to the '''Post-1857 Probate Records''' section at the bottom of the page.
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*Index and extracts of all wills and admons of the Peculiar Court of Gretton and Duddington from Film #200,101 can be found [[http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~maureenbryson/gretton_and_duddington_wills.htm here.]]
  
Once you have answered the two questions and determined the courts, look for indexes. Indexes will be found on the individual court pages (when you click on a court name) or in the '''Probate Indexes''' section below.<br><br>
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Filmed Indexes available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City:
  
== Northamptonshire Probate Courts  ==
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*Church of England. Archdeaconry of Northampton. Court Probate records, 1467-1877 {{FHL|350023|title-id|disp=}}
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*{{FHL|213406|title-id|disp=A Calendar of wills relating to the counties of Northampton and Rutland&amp;nbsp;: proved in the court of the Archdeacon of Northampton, 1510 to 1652.}} Also online at [http://www.thegenealogist.co.uk/bookview/directory_index.php The Genealogist.co.uk under wills probates and testaments]
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*Administrations in the Archdeaconry of Northampton&nbsp;: now preserved in the District Probate Registry at Birmingham&nbsp;Contents: [pt. 1]. 1667-1710 -- pt. 2. 1711-1800 {{FHL|203000|title-id|disp=}}
  
Most of Northamptonshire was under the pre-1858 probate jurisdiction of either the [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester (Episcopal Consistory)|Court of the Bishop of&nbsp;Peterborough (Episcopal Consistory)]] or the [[Court of the Bishop of Hereford (Episcopal Consistory)|Court of the Archdeaconry of Northampton]].&nbsp; The majority of probate searches will be in the records of these two courts and their superior courts.&nbsp; However, the following smaller courts also had some pre-1858 jurisdiction within the county. Click on a court name to learn about records and indexes.
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<br>Did you find a reference to a probate record?
  
*[[Court of the Peculiar Parish of Banbury|Court of the Peculiar Parish of Banbury]]
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*If ''yes'', go to '''Step 4''' below.
*[[Court of the Peculiar Parish of Gretton|Court of the Peculiar Parish of Gretton]]
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*If ''no'', go to '''Step 2''' below.
*[[Court of the Peculiar Parish of Nassington|Court of the Peculiar Parish of Nassington]]
 
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln (Cathedral)|Court of the Peculiar of the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln (Cathedral)]]
 
*[[Court of the Bishop of Lincoln (Episcopal Consistory)|Court of the Bishop of Lincoln (Episcopal Consistory)]]
 
*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury|Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
*[[Court of Arches|Court of Arches]]
 
*[[High Court of Delegates|High Court of Delegates]]
 
  
<br>
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==== Step 2. Identify when and where your ancestor died  ====
  
== Some explanatory notes on the courts in Northamptonshire  ==
+
Determine ''when'' your ancestor died.&nbsp;If you aren't sure, use an approximate date.&nbsp;
  
Since civil and ecclesiastical boundaries were not necessarily one and the same, it is important in pre-1858 probate searches to consider nearby courts including those situated across county boundaries. Also, ecclesiastical boundaries and rights were not always observed or may have been changed over the years.
+
Determine ''where'' your ancestor died. It is easier to find a probate record if you know whether the place where your ancestor lived or died is a [[P genealogical glossary terms|parish]]. To learn whether it is a parish, look it up in a gazetteer. Here is a link to the 1872 ''Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales'' online:
  
Many peculiar courts closed before 1858. When this occurred jurisdiction reverted to the local archdeaconry and/or diocesan courts.  
+
*[http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/descriptions/index.jsp Vision of Britain]
  
Before 1541 Northamptonshire was in the diocese of Lincoln, and from 1541 to 1858 (except for peculiars) was in the diocese of Peterborough. It appears that from 1541 to 1598 the court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archeacon of Northampton exercised concurrent Jurisdiction in the county.
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The gazetteer will either tell you:
  
The rolls of the Burgess Court of Higham Ferrers contain the texts of many wills which were registered in respect of property there (See ''Historical Manuscripts Commission Report xii,'' appendix part 9, page 530), but the wills were actually proved in the Archdeaconry of Northampton and are found in the records of that court.  
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*A place is a parish, or
 +
*What parish it is a part of, or
 +
*What place it is near.
  
The original records of the Court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archdeacon of Northampton are at the Northampton Record Office, Delapre Abbey, Northampton. Those for the Courts of the Peculiar Parishes of Gretton and&nbsp; Nassington are at the Lincolnshire Archive Office, The Castle, Lincoln.  
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If the latter, look that place up in the gazetteer and see if it is a parish.  
  
== Court Jurisdictions  ==
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Once you have identified the parish, go to '''Step 3'''.
  
Before 1858, every town and parish in&nbsp;Northamptonshire fell under the jurisdiction of a primary probate court and several secondary courts. When looking for the probate of the estate of an ancestor, you should search the primary court first then move on to the secondary courts in the order given. Search indexes first. Indexes are found by clicking on the court name above.
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==== Step 3. Identify court jurisdictions by parish  ====
  
To see a list of the&nbsp;Northamptonshire parishes and the pre-1858 courts that had probate jurisdiction over them, click on the letter the parish name begins with:
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Once you have identified the parish where your ancestor lived or died, learn which courts had jurisdiction over it then search indexes for those courts. Every town and parish in&nbsp;Northamptonshire fell under the probate jurisdiction of a primary court and several secondary courts. Click on a link below for the letter the parish begins with.
  
[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes A|A]] &nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes B|B]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes C|C]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes D through F|D-F]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes G through H|G-H]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes I through M|I-M]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes N through P|N-P]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes Q through S|Q-S]]&nbsp;&nbsp; [[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes T through Z|T-Z]]  
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{| style="width: 611px; height: 25px" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" border="1"
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|-
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes A|A]] &nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes B|B]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes C|C]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes D through F|D-F]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes G through H|G-H]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes I through M|I-M]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes N through P|N-P]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes Q through S|Q-S]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes T and U|T-U]]&nbsp;&nbsp;
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| &nbsp;[[Northamptonshire Probate Jurisdictions Parishes V through Z|V-Z]]
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|}
  
 
<br>
 
<br>
 +
==== Step 4. Obtain a copy of the probate record  ====
  
== Probate Indexes Online  ==
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Once you have found an index reference to a probate, obtain a copy of the record. Do so by one of these methods:
  
Before looking for a will, you should search an index.  
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*Visit or contact the record office that has the original records in its collection.
 +
*Visit the [https://www.familysearch.org/#form=catalog Family History Library] or a [[Introduction to LDS Family History Centers|family history center]] and obtain a copy of the record on microfilm. For more information, click on a court name below. <br>
  
[http://www.familyhistoryonline.net/database/NorthantsFHSprobate.shtml http://www.familyhistoryonline.net/database/NorthantsFHSprobate.shtml]
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== Northamptonshire Probate Courts  ==
  
See coverage on website, but&nbsp;pre-1858 probate records.
+
The names of the courts with jurisdiction over Northamptonshire are:
  
The Northamptonshire and Rutland Probate Index has been created by Kay Collins, a volunteer at the Northampton Record Office, partially assisted by several others, from several of the earlier indices of probate records held in the Northampton Record Office. This composite index was commenced in 1997 and the records in this database include all work done up to 2005. The project is now largely complete (errors and omissions excepted) and this database may be updated at a future date with corrections and/or omissions.<br>[http://www.northants-familytree.net/northants%20wills%201853-1857.html http://www.northants-familytree.net/northants%20wills%201853-1857.html]  
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*[[Court of the Archdeaconry of Northampton]]
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*[[Court of the Bishop of Peterborough]] (Episcopal Consistory)
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*[[Court of the Peculiar Parish of Banbury]]
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*[[Court of the Peculiar of Gretton]]
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*[[Court of the Peculiar of Nassington]]
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*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Dean and Chapter of Lincoln]]
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*[[Court of the Bishop of Lincoln (Episcopal Consistory)]]
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*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
  
A list of all wills proved in the Archdeaconry Court of Northampton for the years 1853-1857.
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<br>
  
== Probate Indexes ==
+
=== Some Explanatory Notes on the courts in Northamptonshire ===
  
Church of England. Archdeaconry of Northampton. Court Probate records, 1467-1877 [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=350023&disp=Probate+records%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
+
Since civil and ecclesiastical boundaries were not necessarily one and the same, it is important in pre-1858 probate searches to consider nearby courts including those situated across county boundaries. Also, ecclesiastical boundaries and rights were not always observed or may have been changed over the years.  
  
A Calendar of wills relating to the counties of Northampton and Rutland&nbsp;: proved in the court of the Archdeacon of Northampton, 1510 to 1652 [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=231776&disp=A+Calendar+of+wills+relating+to+the+coun%20%20&columns=*,0,0 http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&amp;titleno=231776&amp;disp=A+Calendar+of+wills+relating+to+the+coun%20%20&amp;columns=*,0,0]
+
Many peculiar courts closed before 1858. When this occurred jurisdiction reverted to the local archdeaconry and/or diocesan courts.  
  
Administrations in the Archdeaconry of Northampton&nbsp;: now preserved in the District Probate Registry at Birmingham&nbsp;Contents: [pt. 1]. 1667-1710 -- pt. 2. 1711-1800 [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=203000&disp=Administrations+in+the+Archdeaconry+of+N%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
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Before 1541 Northamptonshire was in the diocese of Lincoln, and from 1541 to 1858 (except for peculiars) was in the diocese of Peterborough. It appears that from 1541 to 1598 the court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archeacon of Northampton exercised concurrent Jurisdiction in the county.
  
== Post-1857 Probate Records  ==
+
The rolls of the Burgess Court of Higham Ferrers contain the texts of many wills which were registered in respect of property there (See ''Historical Manuscripts Commission Report xii,'' appendix part 9, page 530), but the wills were actually proved in the Archdeaconry of Northampton and are found in the records of that court.
  
Beginning in 1858, the government took over the&nbsp;settlement of estates and all&nbsp;wills are now probated through the Principal Probate Registry system.&nbsp; The system consists of 11 district registry offices and&nbsp;18 sub-district registries, located throughout England and Wales, and&nbsp;the principal registry&nbsp;office located in London.&nbsp; The records are available through the office of Her Majesty's Courts Service.&nbsp; To learn more, go to the [http://www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/infoabout/civil/probate/index.htm HMCS website].
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The original records of the Court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archdeacon of Northampton are at the Northampton Record Office, Delapre Abbey, Northampton. Those for the Courts of the Peculiar Parishes of Gretton and&nbsp; Nassington are at the Lincolnshire Archive Office, The Castle, Lincoln.  
 
 
A&nbsp;country-wide surname index to the records is available, so it is much easier to look for post-1857 wills.&nbsp; The [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=208102&disp=Calendar+of+the+grants+of+probate+and+le%20%20&columns=*,0,0 indexes] for 1858-1957 and the records for 1858-1925 are available on microfilm at the Family History Library. <br>
 
  
[[Category:Northamptonshire|Probate Records]] [[Category:Probate_records_in_England]]
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[[Category:Northamptonshire]]

Revision as of 20:39, 27 February 2013

England Gotoarrow.png Northamptonshire Gotoarrow.png Northamptonshire Probate Records

Getting Started

Probate is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his or her heirs. Probate records include wills and administrations. This article is about probate records in Northamptonshire. For a general description of England probate records, click here.

1858 to the Present

Beginning in 1858, the Principal Probate Registry had the authority for probating estates. Click on the link to learn more.

Before 1858

Before 1858, Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process. To search for a pre-1858 probate record in Northamptonshire, follow these steps:

Step 1. Search Indexes

Here are some online indexes to probate records that include individuals who lived in Northamptonshire. Search these indexes first:

  • Online Probate Index 1469-1857  The Northamptonshire and Rutland Probate Index has been created from several of the earlier indexes of probate records held in the Northampton Record Office. The index contains 87,058 entries that cover the period 1469 to 1857.
  • Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury
  • Index and extracts of all wills and admons of the Peculiar Court of Gretton and Duddington from Film #200,101 can be found [here.]

Filmed Indexes available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City:


Did you find a reference to a probate record?

  • If yes, go to Step 4 below.
  • If no, go to Step 2 below.

Step 2. Identify when and where your ancestor died

Determine when your ancestor died. If you aren't sure, use an approximate date. 

Determine where your ancestor died. It is easier to find a probate record if you know whether the place where your ancestor lived or died is a parish. To learn whether it is a parish, look it up in a gazetteer. Here is a link to the 1872 Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales online:

The gazetteer will either tell you:

  • A place is a parish, or
  • What parish it is a part of, or
  • What place it is near.

If the latter, look that place up in the gazetteer and see if it is a parish.

Once you have identified the parish, go to Step 3.

Step 3. Identify court jurisdictions by parish

Once you have identified the parish where your ancestor lived or died, learn which courts had jurisdiction over it then search indexes for those courts. Every town and parish in Northamptonshire fell under the probate jurisdiction of a primary court and several secondary courts. Click on a link below for the letter the parish begins with.

 A    B    C    D-F    G-H    I-M    N-P    Q-S    T-U    V-Z


Step 4. Obtain a copy of the probate record

Once you have found an index reference to a probate, obtain a copy of the record. Do so by one of these methods:

  • Visit or contact the record office that has the original records in its collection.
  • Visit the Family History Library or a family history center and obtain a copy of the record on microfilm. For more information, click on a court name below.

Northamptonshire Probate Courts

The names of the courts with jurisdiction over Northamptonshire are:


Some Explanatory Notes on the courts in Northamptonshire

Since civil and ecclesiastical boundaries were not necessarily one and the same, it is important in pre-1858 probate searches to consider nearby courts including those situated across county boundaries. Also, ecclesiastical boundaries and rights were not always observed or may have been changed over the years.

Many peculiar courts closed before 1858. When this occurred jurisdiction reverted to the local archdeaconry and/or diocesan courts.

Before 1541 Northamptonshire was in the diocese of Lincoln, and from 1541 to 1858 (except for peculiars) was in the diocese of Peterborough. It appears that from 1541 to 1598 the court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archeacon of Northampton exercised concurrent Jurisdiction in the county.

The rolls of the Burgess Court of Higham Ferrers contain the texts of many wills which were registered in respect of property there (See Historical Manuscripts Commission Report xii, appendix part 9, page 530), but the wills were actually proved in the Archdeaconry of Northampton and are found in the records of that court.

The original records of the Court of the Bishop of Peterborough and the Court of the Archdeacon of Northampton are at the Northampton Record Office, Delapre Abbey, Northampton. Those for the Courts of the Peculiar Parishes of Gretton and  Nassington are at the Lincolnshire Archive Office, The Castle, Lincoln.