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[[England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Worcestershire]]
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[[England|England]] [[Image:Gotoarrow.png]] [[Worcestershire]]  
 
 
For an explanation  of probate records in England, click [[England Probate Records|here.]]  
 
  
 
== Getting Started  ==
 
== Getting Started  ==
  
Probate is the legal court process by which the estate of a deceased person is distributed to his/her heirs. 
+
''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 Worcestershire. See [[England Probate Records]] for a general description of probate records in England.
 
 
In order to find a probate record for your ancestor, you must answer two questions:
 
 
 
#When did your ancestor die?
 
#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. 
+
=== 1858 to the Present  ===
  
*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. 
+
Beginning in 1858, the [[Principal Probate Registry|Principal Probate Registry]] had the authority for probating estates. Click on the link to learn more.  
*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. 
 
*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.
 
  
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>
+
=== Before 1858  ===
  
== Worcestershire Probate Courts  ==
+
Before 1858, Church of England ecclesiastical courts had authority for this process. To search for a pre-1858 probate record in Worcestershire, follow these steps:
  
=== Appeals Courts ===
+
==== Step 1. Search Indexes ====
  
Any probate that was disputed and could not be settled by the county courts could be sent to these higher appeals courts:  
+
Here are some online indexes to probate records that include individuals who lived in Worcestershire. Search these indexes first:  
  
*[[Court of Arches]]  
+
*Fry, Edward Alexander. ''Calendar of Wills and Administrations in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester '''1451-1600'''.'' London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1904. Free online version at [http://books.google.com/books?id=ny8EAAAAIAAJ Google Books]
*[[High Court of Delegates]]
+
*Fry, Edward Alexander. ''A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Registered in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume I, Part I: '''1451-1642'''.'' London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1899. Free online version at [http://books.google.com/books?id=7DUEAAAAIAAJ Google Books]  
 
+
*Fry, Edward Alexander. ''A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Preserved in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume II, Part I: '''1601-1614'''.'' London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1907. Free online version at [http://books.google.com/books?id=yjoEAAAAIAAJ Google Books]  
The [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]] also served as an appeals court.
+
*Fry, Edward Alexander. ''A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Preserved in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume II, Part II: '''1614-1625'''.'' London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1907. Free online version at [http://books.google.com/books?id=Mz8EAAAAIAAJ Google Books]
 +
*[http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/documentsonline/wills.asp?WT.hp=Wills Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury] '''1384-1858,''' which was the highest court in&nbsp;England
  
 
<br>
 
<br>
  
== Some Explanatory Notes on the Worcestershire Probate Courts  ==
+
Indexes at The Family History Library or through a Family History Center. [https://familysearch.org/search/catalog/show?uri=http%3A%2F%2Fcatalog-search-api%3A8080%2Fwww-catalogapi-webservice%2Fitem%2F255647 Episcopal Consistory Court of The Bishop Of Worcester 1661-1858]
  
== Courts Jurisdictions  ==
+
<br>Did you find a reference to a probate record?
  
Before 1858, every town and parish in Worcestershire fell under the probate jurisdiction of a primary court and several secondary courts.&nbsp; When looking for the will of an ancester, you should search the courts in the order given.&nbsp; Search indexes first.&nbsp; For indexes, click on the court name links above.  
+
*If ''yes'', go to '''Step 4''' below.  
 +
*If ''no'', go to '''Step 2''' below.
  
Here is a list of Worcestershire parishes beginning with the letter A and the pre-1858 courts that had probate jurisdiction over them.&nbsp; For other parishes, click on a letter link:&nbsp; [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with B|B]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with C|C]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with D through G|D-G]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with H through J|H-J]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with K through N|K-N]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with O through R|O-R]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with S|S]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with T through V|T-V]], [[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with W through Z|W-Z]].
+
==== Step 2. Identify when and where your ancestor died  ====
  
<br>1. In the first column, find the place where your ancestor lived.<br>2. In the second column, click on the court name to learn where to find the records and indexes.<br>3. If the record isn't found in the primary court, search the records for the secondary courts in the order listed.<br>4. The last court to search is the [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]].  
+
Determine ''when'' your ancestor died. If you aren't sure, use an approximate date.&nbsp;
  
If no will is found, your ancestor may not have left one.<br><br>
+
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:
  
{| cellspacing="0" cellpadding="5" width="95%" align="center" border="1"
+
*[http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk/descriptions/index.jsp Vision of Britain]
|-
 
! style="background: rgb(255,222,173); moz-background-clip: -moz-initial; moz-background-origin: -moz-initial; moz-background-inline-policy: -moz-initial" width="15%" | PARISH
 
! style="background: rgb(255,222,173); moz-background-clip: -moz-initial; moz-background-origin: -moz-initial; moz-background-inline-policy: -moz-initial" width="40%" | PRIMARY COURT
 
! style="background: rgb(255,222,173); moz-background-clip: -moz-initial; moz-background-origin: -moz-initial; moz-background-inline-policy: -moz-initial" width="40%" | SECONDARY COURTS - IN SEARCH ORDER
 
|-
 
| Abberley
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Hereford]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Abberton
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Abbots Morton
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Acton Beauchamp
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Alderminster
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Alfrick
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Alvechurch
 
| [[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Alvechurch or Allchurch]]
 
| 2 - [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
|-
 
| Areley Kings
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Astley
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|-
 
| Aston Magna
 
| [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester]] (Episcopal Consistory)
 
| 2 - [[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
 
|}
 
  
<br>
+
The gazetteer will either tell you:
  
== Probate Indexes<br> ==
+
*A place is a parish, or
 +
*What parish it is a part of, or
 +
*What place it is near.
  
Episcopal Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester Calendar of wills administrations, 1661-1858 Family History Library Books 942.47 P2e [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=255647&disp=Episcopal+Consistory+Court+of+the+Bishop%20%20&columns=*,0,0 Contents&nbsp;: v. 1. 1661-1699 -- v. 2. 1700-1749 -- v. 3. 1750-1799 -- v. 4. 1800-1858.]&nbsp;
+
If the latter, look that place up in the gazetteer and see if it is a parish.  
  
Worcestershire wills index, 1858-1928<br>"The index is arranged in alphabetical order of surname followed by the forename. Then the date of probate is cited, thus leading one to the register concerned, together with the relevant page number. It will be noted that there is some slight variation in style of the date of probate quoted. This is because this index was compiled from the existing indexes in each register and the amount of detail in each varied slightly, particularly in the first few volumes." -- from foreword.<br>[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=1172760&disp=Worcestershire+wills+index%2C+1858%2D192%20%20&columns=*,0,0 CD-ROM no. 1671] at The Family History Library&lt;br
+
Once you have identified the parish, go to '''Step 3'''.  
  
Calendar of wills and administrations in the Consistory court of the Bishop of Worcester, 1451-1652&nbsp;: also marriage licenses and sequestrations now deposited in the Probate registry at Worcester online at [http://books.google.com/books?id=7DUEAAAAIAAJ&printsec=frontcover&dq=related:LCCN01004246&source=gbs_similarbooks_s&cad=1]<br>[http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=234430&disp=Calendar+of+wills+and+administrations+in%20%20&columns=*,0,0 The Index library (British Record Society)&nbsp;: v. 31, 39] <br>Family History Library Call Numbers<br>942 B4b v. 31 1968 942 B4b v. 39 1968<br>Contents: v. 31. 1451-1600 -- v. 39. 1601-1652.<br>
+
==== Step 3. Identify court jurisdictions by parish  ====
  
Also available 942.47 S2c [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=250567&disp=A+calendar+of+wills+and+administrations+%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
+
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 Worcestershire 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 to determine the courts having probate jurisdiction over that parish:
  
Family History Library
+
{| cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" width="472" border="1"
 +
|-
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with A|A]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with B|B]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with C|C]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with D through G|D-G]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with H through J|H-J]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with K through N|K-N]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with O through R|O-R]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with S|S]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with T through V|T-V]]&nbsp;
 +
| &nbsp;[[Worcestershire Probate Jurisdictions for Parishes Beginning with W through Z|W-Z]]
 +
|}
  
A calendar of wills and administrations preserved in the consistory court of the bishop of Worcester, l45l-(l652) [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=250567&disp=A+calendar+of+wills+and+administrations+%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
+
<br>
  
&nbsp;
+
==== Step 4. Obtain a copy of the probate record  ====
  
Episcopal Consistory Court of Hereford covers these parishes in Worcestershire: Abberley, Bayton, Bewdley, Bockleton, Burford, Clifton Upton Teme, Dowles, Eastham, Edvin Loach, Great Kyre, Hanley Child, Hanley William, Knighton on Teme,&nbsp;Lindridge, Mamble, Orelton, Pensax,&nbsp;Ribbesford, Rochford,&nbsp;Rock, Lower Sapey, Shelsey Walsh, Stanford on Teme, Stockton on Teme,&nbsp;Tenbury&nbsp; [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=293346&disp=Original+wills%2C+administrations+and+in%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
+
Once you have found an index reference to a probate, obtain a copy of the record. Do so by one of these methods:  
  
<br>PECULIAR COURTS
+
*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>
  
Many Counties have peculiar court records.&nbsp; These records can cover just one parish or many parishes.&nbsp; They cover pre-1858 probate records.&nbsp; The following is an index to these Worcestershire Peculiar Probate Court records.&nbsp; <br>Index to Wills Proved in Peculiars 1712-1788 [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=topicdetails&subject=989948&subject_disp=England%2C+Worcester%2C+Fladbury+%2D+Probate+records+%2D+Indexes&columns=*,0,0]
+
== Worcestershire Probate Courts ==
 
 
Contents: Fladbury, 1721-1775 -- Ripple, 1721-1729 -- Hanbury, 1720-1769 -- Bredon, 1717-1772 -- Tredington with Shipston (upon Stour), 1717-1788 -- Hartlebury, 1720-1784 -- Allchurch [i.e., Alvechurch], 1718-1773 -- Stratford, 1718-1773 -- Hampton, 1712-1760.
 
 
 
Some of the Peculiar Courts have indexed and undexed portions of the records.&nbsp; The following follows this:
 
 
 
Wills and administrations, 1441-1788 of the Court of the Dean and Chapter of Worcester which covers Berrow, Kempsey, Norton near Kempsey, St Michael In Bedwardine and College Precincts, Stoulton, and Tibberton. [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titlefilmnotes&columns=*%2C0%2C0&titleno=369980&disp=Wills+and+administrations++]
 
 
 
Not all the peculiar court records are indexed and need to be located differently. The following links can help in finding these unindexed peculiar probate records<br>Wills for the Peculiar Court of Bredon, 1668-1791 which covers the parishes of Bredon, Norton (Bredons Norton) and Cutsdean. [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=39891&disp=Wills+for+the+Peculiar+Court+of+Bredon%2%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
 
 
 
Wills and administrations for the Peculiar Court of Fladbury, 1662-1795 This covers the parish of Fladbury and its chapelries of Stock and Bradley, Throckmorton and Wyre Piddle. [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=39176&disp=Wills+and+administrations+for+the+Peculi%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
 
 
 
Wills for the Peculiar Court of Ripple, 1663-1771 which covers the parishes of Holdfast, Queenhill and Ripple [http://www.familysearch.org/eng/library/fhlcatalog/supermainframeset.asp?display=titledetails&titleno=39632&disp=Wills+for+the+Peculiar+Court+of+Ripple%2%20%20&columns=*,0,0]
 
 
 
<br>
 
 
 
Index of Probate from January-March 1660 for the Bishop of Worcester Original Wills
 
 
 
{|
 
! Name !! Place !! Date
 
|-
 
| John Allen || Wixelsford || 6 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Averill || Broadway  || 20 Mar
 
|-
 
| Thomas Baker || Juichfieh?  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Roger Barnard || Stratford Upon Avon  || 16 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Beaver || Combrook, Warwickshire || 8 Mar
 
|-
 
| Ferdinand Bentley || Wick by Pershore  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Bonnar || Alderminster  || 13 Feb
 
|-
 
| Francis Buck || Oddingley  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| John Butler || Swale || 6 Feb
 
|-
 
| William Butler || Cateshill, Bromsgrove  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Robert Caldecote || Hunington  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Clarke || City of Worcester  || 21 Feb
 
|-
 
| William Climer || Shenston in Stone  || 23 Feb
 
|-
 
| Robert Coldecott or Colicoal || Hunington  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Mathew Collet || Alderminster or Aldermarston || 7 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Cooke || St Peter, Worcester  || 8 Feb
 
|-
 
| John Cookes || Stoke Prior  || 25 Feb
 
|-
 
| Symon Corbett || Defford || 6 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Crowe || Chadwich, Bromsgrove  || 16 Feb
 
|-
 
| Richard Dannce || Wick by Pershore  || 20 Feb
 
|-
 
| Mary Dawks or Dawlks || Himbleton  || 23 Feb
 
|-
 
| Henry Day || Pinvin  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Margaret Desmastres || Pershore  || 20 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Edgcock || Kinerton, Warwickshire  || 16 Mar
 
|-
 
| Frances Elcoxe || St Martins, Worcester  || 22 Mar
 
|-
 
| Elizabeth George || Eckington || 8 Mar
 
|-
 
| Thomas George the Elder || Naunton in Severn Stoke || 2 Mar
 
|-
 
| Gyles Gilbert || Longdon  || 18 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Griffin || Clifton in Severn Stoke  || 16 Mar
 
|-
 
| Thomas Gyles || Powick || 7 Feb
 
|-
 
| George Hall || Broadway || 7 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Hall || Tarbecke  || 10 Mar
 
|-
 
| Ellinor Hay || Eckington  || 13 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Hay || Alchurch  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| William Hopkins || Stratford Upon Avon, Warwickshire  || 16 Mar
 
|-
 
| Anne Horsham || Wicke in Pershore  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Richard Hurlston || Ilmington, Warwickshire  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Katherine Inones or Jnones || ? Mathon  || 28 Feb 1660
 
|-
 
| Anne Jennings || Moseley  || 21 Mar
 
|-
 
| Robert Knight || Charlecott, Warwickshire  || 20 Mar 1660
 
|-
 
| Cicilia Lee || Alveston || 6 Feb
 
|-
 
| Edmond Ligon ||  || 12 Mar
 
|-
 
| Richard Marshall || Inkberrow  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Anthony Morrice || Icomb  || 14 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Moseley || Northwich, Blockley  || 14 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Moseley || Puddington or Huddington?  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Munsloe || Tibberton || 9 Feb
 
|-
 
| Edward Nicholls || Hunnington || 8 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Oldmole or Oldnall || Chaddestly Corbett || 7 Feb
 
|-
 
| Thomas Ordway || Bengworth  || 12 Mar
 
|-
 
| John Pearsall || Whitley Barne, Halesowen, Salop || 1 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Phillips || Church Lench  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| Maria or Mary Phipps || Aldermarston or Alderminster  || 10 Feb
 
|-
 
| Alice Pratt || Wick near Pershore || 6 Feb
 
|-
 
| William Quinton || Hunnington, Warwickshire  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| John Rainolds or Reynolds || Kidderminster  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| John Richardson || Shottery in Stratford on Avon Warwickshire  || 20 Mar
 
|-
 
| Julie Shawe || Stratford on Avon, Warwickshire  || 16 Feb
 
|-
 
| Stephen Sitch || Shefferie, Warwickshire  || 13 Mar
 
|-
 
| Mary Smith || Eckington (Eskington)  || 11 Mar
 
|-
 
| Thomas Smith || Vifford || 9 Mar
 
|-
 
| Margery Symonds || Elmley Castle  || 14 Mar
 
|-
 
| William Taverner || Pinvin or Pembry  || 27 Feb
 
|-
 
| Mary Tonerton or Towerton || Holt || 6 Mar
 
|-
 
| Richard Walker || Ridmington || 8 Mar
 
|-
 
| Michael Warne || Alvechurch or Alchurch  || 28 Feb
 
|-
 
| William Washborne || Tibberton  || 23 Feb
 
|-
 
| Henry Whatley || Tanworth, Warwickshire || 9 Mar
 
|-
 
| Thomas Whopper || Tibberton  || 23 Feb
 
|}
 
  
== Estate Duty Records<br> ==
+
Most of Worcestershire was under the pre-1858 probate jurisdiction of either the [[Court of the Bishop of Worcester (Episcopal Consistory)]] or the [[Court of the Bishop of Hereford (Episcopal Consistory)]].&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.
  
Starting in 1796, a tax or death duty was payable on estates over a certain value. Estate duty abstracts may add considerable information not found elsewhere. Between 1813-1858 estate duty indexes may help locate a will. For more information, go to [[Estate Duty Records]].<br>
+
*[[Court of the Dean and Chapter of Worcester]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of Evesham]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Alvechurch or Allchurch]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Bredon with Norton and Cutsdean]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Fladbury]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Hanbury]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Hartlebury]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Ripple with Queenhill and Holdfast]]
 +
*[[Court of the Peculiar of the Rector of Tredington with Shipston upon Stour]]
 +
*[[Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury]]
  
 
<br>
 
<br>
  
== Post-1857 Probate Records  ==
+
[[Category:Worcestershire|Probate]]
 
 
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].
 
 
 
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>
 
 
 
{{Place|Worcestershire}}
 
 
 
[[Category:Worcestershire|Probate Records]]
 

Revision as of 15:10, 7 May 2013

England Gotoarrow.png Worcestershire

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 Worcestershire. See England Probate Records for a general description of probate records in England.

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 Worcestershire, follow these steps:

Step 1. Search Indexes

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

  • Fry, Edward Alexander. Calendar of Wills and Administrations in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester 1451-1600. London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1904. Free online version at Google Books
  • Fry, Edward Alexander. A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Registered in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume I, Part I: 1451-1642. London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1899. Free online version at Google Books
  • Fry, Edward Alexander. A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Preserved in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume II, Part I: 1601-1614. London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1907. Free online version at Google Books
  • Fry, Edward Alexander. A Calendar of Wills and Administrations Preserved in the Consistory Court of the Bishop of Worcester, Volume II, Part II: 1614-1625. London: The British Record Society, Limited, 1907. Free online version at Google Books
  • Prerogative Court of the Archbishop of Canterbury 1384-1858, which was the highest court in England


Indexes at The Family History Library or through a Family History Center. Episcopal Consistory Court of The Bishop Of Worcester 1661-1858


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 Worcestershire 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 to determine the courts having probate jurisdiction over that parish:

 A   B   C   D-G   H-J   K-N   O-R   S   T-V   W-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.

Worcestershire Probate Courts

Most of Worcestershire was under the pre-1858 probate jurisdiction of either the Court of the Bishop of Worcester (Episcopal Consistory) or the Court of the Bishop of Hereford (Episcopal Consistory).  The majority of probate searches will be in the records of these two courts and their superior courts.  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.