Tracing Your Ancestor’s Parish Records, a Guide for Family and Local Historians

B2203

Tracing family history has become a very popular activity. The Internet and television programs have spurred fresh interest, but one of the rich sources of information is to be found in Parish Records. This book provides a fascinating tour of the nature and accessibility of these local records, providing a wealth of information, showing how and why the records were kept and what information they can provide. This book is an obvious first choice for anyone starting to research the origins of their family, but it also provides images and text that is interesting also as a clear insight into local affairs and the taxation due to the Church in tithes, dating back to the period when the Church was effectively a State within a State, owing its loyalty to the Pope. An excellent read.

The author has produced one of the most interesting books on the subject and the inclusion of many images through the body of the book has painted a picture that contains many absorbing facts and surprises. Highly recommended.

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NAME: Tracing Your Ancestor’s Parish Records, a Guide for Family and Local Historians
DATE: 040815
FILE: R2203
AUTHOR: Stuart A. Raymond
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword
BINDING: soft back
PAGES: 186
PRICE: £12.99
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: ancestry, records, local records, parish records, research, genealogy, family history, local history, church history, taxation, births, deaths, marriages
ISBN: 1-78303-044-5
IMAGE: B2203.jpg
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/np383xj
LINKS:
DESCRIPTION: Tracing family history has become a very popular activity. The Internet and television programs have spurred fresh interest, but one of the rich sources of information is to be found in Parish Records. This book provides a fascinating tour of the nature and accessibility of these local records, providing a wealth of information, showing how and why the records were kept and what information they can provide. This book is an obvious first choice for anyone starting to research the origins of their family, but it also provides images and text that is interesting also as a clear insight into local affairs and the taxation due to the Church in tithes, dating back to the period when the Church was effectively a State within a State, owing its loyalty to the Pope. An excellent read.

The Church of England may be the Official Religion of England, but it has spent the last fifty years trying to marginalize itself. That has led to rapidly falling numbers of people regularly attending services and placed the Church is some financial difficulty, leading to some Church buildings, such as cathedrals, charging very high prices for entrance. One consequence of this downward spiral is that a large part of the population now have only the vaguest idea what the Church does, what it offers, and the important archives it continues to be responsible for.

When the Christian Church was established in England during the Saxon period, it rapidly became a parallel State and friction between Kings and Archbishops developed almost to civil war. The Church maintained its own legal system and was granted the right to raise taxes in the form of tithes. It also provided many services that were to become in time the responsibility of new secular local authorities, but tithes continued to be due and the Church began in the 20th Century to convert these into one-off payments to boost the falling contribution from parish communities. Redeeming the tithes meant a landowner could remove the regular requirement to pay tithes each year, although it also meant the Church was selling off what had been an important revenue stream, storing up financial problems for the future. That strain of funds, together with churches that failed to attract more than a handful of worshipers, has led to the sale of churches. That has meant the movement of records to new locations as buildings were lost.

Historically, each Parish has maintained its own set of local records in order to manage tax collection and to account for resources and funds expended to maintain the Parish and its local services. Some records have been damaged or destroyed, but the Parish Records have still provided a very detailed set of information about communities. When coupled with the information provided by grave stones, and inscriptions inside churches, this offers one of the richest and most intriguing sources of information about the history of families.

The author has produced one of the most interesting books on the subject and the inclusion of many images through the body of the book has painted a picture that contains many absorbing facts and surprises. Highly recommended.

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