Birth & Death Indexes

I am sure you all probably know that when you first start your family history research your first port of call after having reviewed all the records your family already has is to look at Birth, Marriage and Death indexes.

Up until fairly recently the early indexes didn’t give many clues such as age at death that the later indexes did. These indexes can be viewed on Ancestry, Find My Past, Free BMD and other sites. However that has now all changed. The General Register Office have put their indexes online and have included the details that the later indexes do not.

Hooray !!

Now this makes it so much easier to fill in gaps going back to 1837 when the registration of births, deaths and marriages started to be recorded by the government.

So here is how you set about using these indexes.

Go to  https://www.gov.uk/order-copy-birth-death-marriage-certificate

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Click on the green “Start Now” button

 


 

 

Clickimage on the “Register/Log in” which is on the right hand side of the page near the top and if you haven’t already register fill in the form with the usual email address, user name etc. Don’t worry you won’t get bombarded with emails from them.

 

 

 

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Having got your registration completed enter your user name and password. Click “Submit”’.

 

 

 

 

 

Click on “imageSearch the GRO Index” on the top of the left hand column.

 

 

 

 

 

Chose Births oimagef Deaths – no marriages, but I am sure they must be working on adding them in very soon.

 

 

Fill in the form as far as you imageknow the details. You have to include Surname, Gender and Year, but the other details can be left blank. You can only search a 5 year time span so if you are undertaking a wide year range search then do remember to note down which years you have checked. Click “Search”.

 

 

 

 

imageThe results are displayed at the of the search page so don’t be fooled into thinking it hasn’t worked, simply tab down the page.

Births can be search from 1837 – 1916 and show the usual name, quarter and year of registration, registration district and volume and page number. Plus now you have the mother’s maiden name which is so helpful in putting families together.

Deaths can be search 1837 – 1957 and show the usual name, quarter and year of registration, registration district and volume and page number. Plus now you have the age at death. Remember that all the details for a death certificate are given by another person and will often depend on what they have been told or think they know. I am sure there are many instances where a guess has been made when stating age !

So do take a look at this site, it is now my go to site for GRO Indexes. If I am unsure of dates I use Ancestry, Find My Past or Free BMD first to narrow down the years. It is so helpful to be able to access mother’s maiden name and age at death. Also from the site you can order a certificate if you wish for £9.50. This is the cheapest way to buy certificates as there is no surcharge like other sites.

Happy Ancestor Hunting Smile

 

 

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