INFORMATION RELATED TO ALL OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE
The information on this page, and on individual Town & Parish pages is organised by the set of subject headings
which the LDS Family History Library catalogue uses for its British Isles information. Below are the available headings for Gloucestershire; Click the "Back" arrow on your browser's toolbar to
return to this page after reading, as there is no return link.]
Archives and Libraries
Briefly Archives (more commonly known as Record Offices) are repositories for original source material, such as Wills or Parish Registers; look for the Local Studies Section of
Libraries to consult the Census, and printed local source material, such as Trade Directories.
- Record Offices
Please see the pages for individual Towns & Parishes, under the Archives and
Libraries section for an overview of some of their holdings, parish by parish.
- The Gloucestershire Record Office (GRO) (Clarence Row, Alvin Street, GLOUCESTER, GL1 3DW, Tel:- 01452 425295) is the major repository
for original source material of interest to family historians.
- The Bristol Record Office holds original records for parishes in the south of Gloucestershire (roughly speaking, those in the former county of Avon).
See also the ARCHON (Archives On-Line) Information service for locations of
other Record Offices throughout the country; or more directly, UK Archival Repositories on the Internet, part of the www.archivesinfo.net
Specific contents of both Gloucestershire Record Office and Bristol Record Office Catalogues are searchable using the Access to Archives Database. This is a
valuable resource - whilst the original records are not available online, some of the catalogue entries a revelation in their own right - for example there are lists of Parish
Chest papers (Settlement, Removal, &c.) available at Bristol sufficiently informative to obviate the need to consult the original archives. (Yummy!)
In addition, please note:
- Cookies should be enabled for this site, otherwise it won't let you search!.
- The Gloucestershire Collection housed in Gloucester Public Library holds a
wide range of material of more general interest, including (for example) copies of The Gentleman's Magazine, the University admissions registers for Oxford and Cambridge (Alumni Cantabriensis and Alumni Oxoniensis),
the IGI for the whole of the UK, and all Census returns for Gloucestershire, 1841 to 1891.
If you wish to consult the Census at the Library, you are strongly advised to book a microfilm reader in advance (Tel:- 01452 426979). Be sure to ask to
book the reader-printer if you wish to obtain photocopies.
- Local Studies Centres exist also in Cheltenham, Cinderford, Cirencester,
Stow on the Wold, Stroud and Tewkesbury. See Gloucestershire Libraries A-Z for information about libraries elsewhere in the county.
- Information about research sources at Bristol Public Library is accessible via the FAMILIA site, which also lists Family History Resources in Public
Libraries for the whole UK.
See also FAMILIA's pages for Gloucester and South Gloucestershire.
- Ralph, Elizabeth and Hardwick, Nora M - Calendar of the Bristol Apprentice Book 1532 - 1565. Published by Bristol Record Society, 1980. Three Volumes:
Vol II, 1542-1552; Vol III, 1552-1565.
Probably out of print, but second hand copies can be found through online bookstores such as Ambra Books (see also below), and John Townsend - Antiquarian Books.
- Information about purchase of the Victoria County Histories is available at http://www.englandpast.net/.
- Various old books relating to Gloucestershire have been scanned, and are available on Rod Neep's Archive CD Books Project. NB: one of the CDs available is of
Bigland - Historical, Monumental and Genealogical Collections Relative to the County of Gloucester. Ralph Bigland - 1786
- Salter, Mike - The Old Parish Churches of the Forest of Dean. Folly Publications.
- Listing of articles in Gloucestershire FHS Journal, Nos. 32-70 (Mar 1987 - Sep 1996).
- The Bristol & Gloucestershire Archaeological Society's excellent Gloucestershire Record Series - specialist books, frequently derived from original source material
and relating to the history of Gloucestershire.
- Ivor Cornish, of Ambra Books, specialises in Buying and Selling Antiquarian and Secondhand Books, relating to Cornwall, Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire. Note also his Bristol Record Society and Bristol & Gloucestershire Archaeological Society Transactions.
- Index to Monumental Inscription transcriptions for Gloucestershire, maintained by Rod Neep.
- Ralph Bigland visited many of Gloucestershire's graveyards in the late 18th Century, and recorded the contents of the Memorials he found in a series of 4 volumes,
available in the Gloucestershire Record Office. These volumes represent a unique reference source, as many of the Monumental Inscriptions they record have now
disappeared, either because the gravestones have been removed, or because their inscriptions are no longer visible.
As well as the originals available in the Gloucestershire Record Office, reprints are also available, republished by the Gloucester Record Society, details as follows:-
Historical, Monumental and Genealogical Collections relative to the County of Gloucester, ed. B. Frith, 1989-95, published by the Gloucester
Record Society. (Volumes 1-4 : ISBN 0 900197 28 5, 0 900197 30 7, 0 900197 34 X and 0 900197 40 4), UK.
Volumes 1 and 2 are also available on CD from the Archive CD Books Project. As
this is just the first part of Bigland's work, check out the Place Index for parishes covered.
- Scanned images of original census enumerator's books for Gloucestershire in 1861 are being reproduced on CD by the Archive CD Books Project. For more
details, samples and prices, see:
- Gloucestershire Population Tables, 1801-1901 - census statistics on a parish-by-parish basis taken from Volume II of the Victoria History of
Gloucestershire (1907), and provided online by Ray Wilson.
- Maureen Surman has transcribed the census for Boats lying at Worcester Wharf, Birmingham, 1841-1891. Here is a list of Gloucestershire Strays. Maureen has
also included those names where place of birth is not known or listed. For families with one member born in Gloucestershire everyone is listed.
- Here are some (brief) Notes from the 1821 Census for Gloucestershire, suggesting reasons for local population changes, transcribed by Alan Longbottom.
- Gordon Beavington has transcribed an extensive range of Census records - www.mycensuses.com -
1851 CENSUS TRANSCRIPTIONS - GLOUCS, BRISTOL, SOMERSET, WILTSHIRE. For Gloucestershire alone, over 552,000 Records for 881 locations, more than 35 P.R.O. Census films and 30
micro fiche are transcribed. Some locations in Northern Gloucestershire have all 5 censuses, no areas are omitted although some locations may not have been readable.
The 1851 Census of BRISTOL (all Parishes and Counties) and Bedminster, 200,000 Records, is available only on CD - Gloucestershire censuses are available
By arrangement with Gordon back in August 1998, some of the files are also downloadable from this site. See the GENUKI Census Index, for a list of
Registration Districts available (a very small proportion of the whole).
- A separate transcription of 1851 Gloucestershire Census has been compiled by
Gloucestershire Family History Society members and is now available for purchase on CD from the Society. This CD includes parishes in the Diocese of Bristol (but not
Bristol itself), as well as those in the Diocese of Gloucester, and has been subjected to a rigorous series of checks - there is a 1851 Gloucestershire Census Sample on
the Society's web page, updated frequently, to give you an idea what you will be getting.
- The Britannia, "America's Gateway to the British Isles" Index of Parish Churches
features about 10 Gloucestershire Churches. A nice site, providing you can tolerate the constant invitations to take part in online gambling.
- John Wilkes has a series of stunning photographs of nearly 300 Gloucestershire Parish Churches. His page of Parish Church Locations has a useful Regional Map showing the different areas of Gloucestershire.
- Several Gloucestershire churches are featured on Phil Draper's Church Architecture
Website, devoted to news and information about churches in the UK, and worldwide, where the emphasis is on "less-well-known churches that do not appear on the tourist trails of the world".
- Gloucester Record Office provide a searchable Summary Catalogue, containing a
full catalogue of all Anglican Parish Records in their keeping, and brief details of other collections they hold.
- S&N Gloucestershire Data CDs and Discs - various CDs are for sale featuring
Gloucestershire material. Of particular interest are a series of CDs of Phillimore's Marriage volumes, of which the complete set of all 17 Volumes are available, with a
discount of 50% if ordering them all.
Please note that a small percentage of the marriages featured on these CDs is already available online, transcribed independently by Stuart Flight, Glen
Hicks and myself, predating the publication of these CDs - here is a Surname Index.
- Brenda Pickard has assembled a fine collection of parish register extracts, genealogies, etc., taken from Gloucestershire Notes & Queries [Ed. W. P. W.
Phillimore, M.A., B.C.L. 1890-93]. These are now accessible via Stuart Flight's Home Page along with his own research material, and transcriptions.
- The Society of Genealogists web site has a list of their holdings of Parish register copies for Gloucestershire.
- Ted Wildy's UK Marriage witness index entries for Gloucestershire [ ftp ].
Brett Langston has provided details of Gloucestershire Registration districts 1837-1930.
Certificates of birth, death and marriage can be obtained from the Superintendent Registrars at the following District Register Offices:
- The Prison Service Museum near Rugby houses HM Prison Service's historical collection of exhibits, illustrating the history of imprisonment from medieval times to
the present day. Housed in a converted stable block, the museum contains reconstructions of Victorian prison architecture, and exhibits include the last set of
Gibbet Irons used in England. Smaller items include bone carvings and paintings made by prisoners in their cells, and a nineteenth century sampler embroidered by a female prisoner from her own hair
Admission to the museum is by appointment only, please contact:-
HM Prison Service Museum,
Tel: 01788 834168
[Information compiled from "The Penal Lexicon Home Page", formerly at www.penlex.org.uk/pages/index.html.]
- Located at the north-east corner of the prison to the rear of the Central Police Station in Longsmith Street, Gloucester Prison Museum and Shop are open from
Easter Tuesday to end of September. Monday-Saturday from 10.00 am to 4.00 pm, with limited opening at Bank Holidays.
"The first ever museum to be part of a fully operational and working prison, the 'Old Gate Lodge' has been converted into a
museum depicting the history of Gloucester Castle as a prison and its progress through to modern day operation."
There is a small shop operated by the museum staff selling souvenirs produced specifically for Gloucester Prison Museum.
HM Prison and Remand Centre,
Tel: 01452 529551 Fax: 01452 310302
[Information compiled from "The Penal Lexicon Home Page", formerly at www.penlex.org.uk/pages/index.html.]
Description and Travel
Emigration and Immigration
Encyclopedias and Dictionaries
- An account of Gloucestershire, from A Topographical Dictionary of England, Samuel Lewis, 1831, provided by Alan Stanier.
- The Gloucestershire Look-Up Exchange, hosted by Isabel Easter - a list of
volunteers who hold reference material relating to Gloucestershire and who are willing to undertake small searches.
- Nigel Batty-Smith's site of United Kingdom Genealogy has a section devoted to Gloucestershire, which includes the Heralds' Visitation of Gloucestershire, 1623,
published by The Harleian Society, 1885, available for viewing online (follow the link to Books).
- Graham Thomas is assembling a South Cotswolds Genealogical Master Index to
include material and links for selected parishes in the South Cotswold area.
- Allan Taylor is assembling a collection of Researchers' and Local History pages for selected parishes in the north of the county via his Genealogy of the Cotswolds and
- The Gloucestershire Surname-Interests list, complete with location index, is hosted by David Steel.
- Several Mailing Lists may be of interest to those researching in Gloucestershire:
- GLOUCESTER - a mailing list for anyone with a genealogical or historical interest in the county of Gloucestershire, England.
- WESSEX-PLUS - a mailing list for anyone who has an interest in genealogy or general and local history related to and incorporating the counties of
Berkshire, Bristol, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Isle of Wight, Hampshire, Oxfordshire, Somerset, and Wiltshire.
- BRISTOL_and_SOMERSET - a mailing list for anyone with a genealogical or historical interest in the city of Bristol and/or the County of Somerset.
- ENG-GLO-HAWKESBURY - a mailing list for anyone with a genealogical interest in the parish of Hawkesbury, Gloucestershire, including general historical issues relating to Hawkesbury.
- ENG-GLO-TORMARTON - a mailing list for anyone with a genealogical interest in the Village of Tormarton, Gloucestershire.
- ENG-GLOS-FOREST-DEAN - a mailing list for anyone with a genealogical interest in the Forest of Dean which is a large selection of towns and villages in the county of Gloucester.
Subscription details for the above lists have been provided by John Fuller, as part of a much larger collection of "Genealogy Resources on the Internet" - pages maintained jointly by John, with Chris Gaunt.
- The Gloucestershire GenWeb pages, parts of the England GenWeb Project. These are in turn part of the British Isles GenWeb Project, and overall part of the World GenWeb hierarchy.
- Information on the location of Quaker Records in Gloucestershire provided by the Quaker FHS.
- English Heritage Viewfinder - site with historic photographs, searchable by county.
Has some unusual ones of the Industrial Age which won't be found amongst the more usual postcard collections!.
- The Francis Frith Collection - a collection of over 700,000 photographs of the UK,
Europe and the Middle East taken by the Victorian photographer Francis Frith.
- River Severn Tales - an account of life on the River Severn, featuring a History page,
which lists notable dates in the history of the River, illustrating how the Severn's presence has shaped events in the county. Almost all of the parishes bordering on the Severn are mentioned.
- Chris Phillips has compiled an index to place names mentioned in the titles of topographical articles in the published volumes of the Victoria County History. The index is available his Medieval English Genealogy web site, in the Victoria County
History: Gloucestershire section.
- An Encyclopaedia of British History: 1700-1950 - useful for seeing local events
against a national perspective. Scroll down the introductory page on this site to see topics - Monarchy, Child Labour, The Railways, &c.
- Local History Groups and Societies in Gloucestershire - lists information for several
towns and villages in the county which have Local History Societies.
- The Domesday Book site - "to enable visitors to find out the history of the
Domesday Book and to give an insight into life at the time of its compilation". Note this site does not provide the original text, but does include a list settlements existing
in 1086. Major ones were Deerhurst, Dymock, Stow on the Wold and Tetbury, with Chepstow (now Wales).
Land and Property
- The Harvard Law School Library's Catalogue of Medieval and Early Modern Deeds contains detailed summaries of some Deeds relating to Gloucestershire, but unfortunately, these have been taken offline.
However, short summaries (not the original detailed summaries) of the deeds are available via the Harvard University Library Catalogue. http://hollisweb.harvard.edu/
IMPORTANT: Please read the following notes before selecting this link. Better still, open a new browser window for the above URL, keeping this window open so you
can follow these instructions as you go:
- The web interface is quite difficult to use. Read the instructions.
- Select HU - "Union Catalog of the Harvard Libraries"
- On the Search Screen, cut and past this text
FIND KSH GLOUCESTERSHIRE DEEDS
into the Command: box, then press Submit.
- Use Display Long.
[KSH defines the kind of search and equates to "Keyword subject heading"]
This should return fourteen entries.
- Robin Alston has created The Country House Database, a very useful reference
source, "listing country houses in the British Isles from the late medieval period to ca. 1850, together with an index to all the families so far traced as having occupied
them." Includes a section on Gloucestershire.
Law and Legislation
- Names from Criminal Registers (PRO Class HO 27) 1805-1816 are available for purchase on floppy disk or microfiche through Family History Indexes (the link to the Criminal Registers is part way down the page).
- The Age of Nelson - a website providing general information about the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars 1793-1815, and specifically searchable
databases of those present at Trafalgar (and more) and of all Commissioned Naval Officers 1787-1822.
- The Glorious Glosters, history of the Gloucestershire Regiments from 1694. Has
copious lists of Casualties of notable campaigns - Crimean War, Indian Mutiny, Korea, et al.
- Names from Musters of the Gloucestershire (North & South) Militia 1781-82 are available for purchase on floppy disk or microfiche through Family History Indexes
(the link to Militia Musters is part way down the page).
- An index to the Evesham Journal and Four Shires Advertiser Roll of Service, 1914-1915, compiled by Malcolm Farmer, mentions a number of men from parishes
now, or formerly in north-east Gloucestershire .
- Terry Williams has transcribed lists of names from the book:-
The history of the Royal Gloucestershire Hussars Yeomanry 1898-1922
- Information about The Gloucestershire Regiment is available on Liz Jack's Hidden Heritage website.
- Men & Armour for Gloucestershire in 1608 / [compiled by] John Smith; a Muster Roll of fit and able bodied men.
"The names and Surnames of all the able and sufficient men in body fitt for his Ma'ties service in the warrs within the City of Gloucester and the Inshire of the
same, wherein are contayned the City of Glouc' and the Hundreds of Dudstone and Barton Regis, with their ages, personable Statures and Armours viewed by
the Right honorable Henry Lord Berkley Lord Lieutenant of the said City and the County thereof by direction from his Ma'tie in the month of September, 1608."
The list provides occupations, and a measure of age, and physique of the parties concerned by means of a key, for example:- John Bendall Brodeweaver - 1m.
being decipherable using the following table:-
The figure (1) sheweth the age of that man to bee about Twenty.
The figure (2) sheweth the age of that man to bee about Forty.
The figure (3) sheweth the age of that man to bee betwene Fyfty and threescore.
The L're (p.) sheweth the man to bee of of the tallest stature fitt to make a pykeman.
The L're (m.) sheweth the man to bee of a middle stature fitt to make a musketyer.
The L'res (ca.) sheweth the man to bee of a lower stature fitt to serve with a Calyver.
The L'res (py.) sheweth the man to bee of the meanest stature either fit for a pyoner, or of little other use.
The L'res (tr.) sheweth that at the takinge of this viewe, hee was
then a trayned soldyer.
The L'res (sub.) sheweth that the said man was then a subsidy man.;
This is just to whet your appetite to give you a flavour of the kind of detail which is available.
The original manuscript of Men and Armour is now on deposit at Gloucestershire Record Office. The printed version - Reference: Author(s): Smith, John, b.1567
[compiled by] John Smith - was republished in 1980 by Alan Sutton: ISBN/ISSN: 0904387496 as a limited edition of 400 numbered copies
- Smith, A. H. (Albert Hugh; 1903-1967), The place-names of Gloucestershire. One of the English Place-Name Society Series; v.38-41. Cambridge: University Press (1964-1965). In 4 Volumes:
- The river- and road-names. The east Cotswolds;
- The north and west Cotswolds;
- The lower Severn Valley. The Forest of Dean;
- Introduction, bibliography, analyses, index, maps.
- St. Clair Baddeley, Welbore (1856-1945), Place-names of Gloucestershire : a handbook. Gloucestershire : J. Bellows, 1913.
- Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section: Indexes to parish returns towards the rebuilding of St Paul's Cathedral, ca.1678, with their Library Reference numbers.
The returns themselves, which need to be consulted by personal visit, promise to be useful, as a record of those individuals who contributed, and in a number of instances
those who did not. A number of the returns indicate status of the contributors, e.g. widow, or servant.
- Graham Thomas has provided some most useful information on Gloucestershire Names and their Occurrence - providing a very comprehensive analysis of
Gloucestershire surnames over the ages. Please note there are two pages, with the second page concentrating on Early Surnames in Gloucestershire.
- The Gloucestershire Surname-Interests List, complete with location index, is hosted by David Steel.
- You can search online at The Newspaper Library at Colindale to find details of the
newspapers which have been published and which are held at by the Newspaper Library. Search results give the catalogue reference numbers and dates held at
Colindale for the title concerned. A note section tells you, for example, if it is held on microfilm only. If the publication continued under another title, it tells you and gives
similar details for that title as well.
- The Gloucestershire Echo & Gloucester Citizen.
- The Bristol Evening Post
Has a News Search Archive, although one rather imagines their idea of an archive is last week!
Links to Newspapers' sites are provided not only for the Newspaper content, but also because they may contain links to other items or sites of local interest.
- For other English Newspapers see OnlineNewspapers.com - England.
- The Heralds' Visitation of Gloucestershire, 1623, published by The Harleian Society, 1885, is available for viewing online in the Gloucestershire section of Nigel
Batty-Smith's site of United Kingdom Genealogy (follow the link to Books).
- Apprentices from the County of Gloucester bound at Carpenters' Hall, London 1654-1694, a list published originally in Gloucestershire Notes & Queries (N&Q,
vol X, No. 91, 1914), transcribed by Rosemary Lockie.
- The Hereford & Gloucester Canal Trust describes the beginnings, history and the restorating of this little-known Canal - "Building began at Over in 1793 at the
height of 'canal mania'. The priority was to reach Ledbury so that revenue could be earned but the greatest obstacle was the 1┬╝ mile Oxenhall Tunnel."
Features some stunning photographs.
- A List of Coal Mines in Gloucestershire, 1880 - Mines in The Forest of Dean, giving
the name of the Colliery, where situated and who owned it; list are provided by Kevin Davis as part of his Family History Archive.
- For further information about Coal Mining generally visit the Coal Mining History Rescource Centre.
- The Society of Brushmakers' Descendants assists those with Brushmaking
Ancestors, or with an interest in discovering more about the brushmaker's trade.
- Some notes on Stroudwater Canal are available on Stuart Flight's Stroud Area page.
- The National Waterways Museum at Gloucester, sited in Llanthony Warehouse on Gloucester Docks. Relates the story of 200 years of Britain's Canals. Nice animated
.gif features a Canal Boat in front of the Museum.
- Geoff Sandle's Gloucestershire Pubs site. Geoff is attempting to locate all old pubs
and breweries in Gloucestershire from 1850. Archive material includes petty sessional divisional records dating from 1891 and 1903 and old county directories. (Kelly's etc.)
Poorhouses, Poor Law, etc.
- The Workhouse a site "dedicated to the workhouse - its buildings, its inmates, its
staff and administrators, and even its poets..." created by Peter Higginbotham - promises to be a rich source of reference.
- The Rossbret Web site provides extensive information about Workhouses and Poor Law Institutions, but also includes Asylums, Almshouses, Gaols (Prisons),
Dispensaries, Hospitals (Infirmaries), Reformatories (Industrial Schools), and Orphanages, in many cases listing individual premises.
- Rosemary Lockie has begun a collection of pages listing abstracts of Central and South Gloucestershire Probate Records At present this collection includes abstracts
from Rosemary's research only, but you are invited to submit similar information from your own Wills collection, whilst at the same time, of course to use whatever
information is there already for assistance in locating your own forebears. Many thanks in advance to all the kind people who are going to donate their ancestors' Wills to this project!
- Leslie Mahler is the one responsible for setting this particular ball rolling. He began work in 1998, transcribing indexes to, and abstracts from early Gloucestershire Wills
in an effort to trace his own Gloucestershire ancestors prior to the earliest parish registers. The periods he's covered so far are 1541-1545, and ALL Gloucestershire
Wills dated 1619. Abstracts from specific locations are also available - check out his Early Gloucestershire Probate Records for further details.
- Another researcher, Allan Taylor is collecting details of Wills for parishes featured on his Genealogy of the Cotswolds and Surrounds site. If you have ANY Wills for
this area, he would be delighted to include them on his web site also.
- Confused as to which of the above collections to go for? Me too! See Gloucestershire Probate Records Online for an overview, and links to collections elsewhere.
- In May 1999, a Genealogical Database became available in the Searchroom of the Gloucester Record Office containing details of all Wills proved in Gloucester
between 1541 and 1858. This database is now available online - further details are available on the Gloucester Record Office official web page. NB: variant spellings in
surname are grouped together in any search results, making this a very powerful research tool.
Religion and Religious Life
- The UK Schools Interests site includes a School Photographs Collection, and a UK Schools History Group
(includes Brief History of Education through the Ages) which may be of interest to genealogists.
- If you are interested in finding out whether your dearest school friends are also researching their family trees, check out Friends United, a site devoted to reuniting
old school and college friends.
Social Life and Customs
- Victorian Social History: An Overview - Public Health, Education, Conditions of Life and Labour.
- Costume History - from Ancient Babylon through to 1990s - a very comprehensive
site on Fashion and Dress through the ages. Has images to illustrate what my great*6 aunt Mary OUTRAM might have been wearing on top of her "second best stays",
one of the items she left in her will of 1769 to a young female relative!
- About the Cotswolds Olympics - some information on the Cotswold games, which
were instituted in 1610 at Dover's Hill, a place between Chipping Campden and Weston Subedge, and so-named in honour of the founder of the games. Transcribed by Allan Taylor from the book "The History and Antiquities of Chipping
Campden" by Percy C Rushen (1911).