Family records project update page

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Registry Office files

In the early 1990s members of the Channel Islands Family History Society started the process of transcribing the registers of baptisms, marriages and burials held by Jersey's 12 parish churches, from the earliest available - late 16th or early 17th century - to 1842.

Jerripedia project launched

The original records are now in secure storage at Jersey Archive and the copies of the transcriptions at the Archive and the library of La Société Jersiaise were, for many years, the only source of information for researchers. A joint project between the Archive and the Society for a subscription service to view the transcriptions on line was delayed until 2015, and records can only be seen on a subscription or pay-per-view basis.

In 2012 Jerripedia started to make these records available free of charge, and in an easily accessible format. In early 2013, as work continued to digitise the records, we added a fully searchable online database and in early 2015 the task of adding page images of the transcriptions to the baptism section of the database was completed.

We have also added the St Helier baptism records from 1842 to 1909, which first appeared in Jerripedia in 2010, to the database.

Central records

In June 2013 an approach was made for permission to scan and publish the post-1842 central records of births, marriages and deaths. The reaction of those responsible for the records was favourable but they decided to seek the advice of Jersey's Crown Officers before proceeding. Eighteen months later we were still awaiting a formal response to our request. The records are freely available for the public to inspect at the Société library, the Archive, the office of the Superintendent Registrar and Jersey's Public Library. We were able to obtain a set, and decided to add them to our pages and to the database.

There are something in the region of 400,000 records, and processing them was clearly going to take some considerable time for our small editorial team. All available birth records (with a cut-off point designed to ensure that people who are still alive were not included) were added during the first few weeks of 2015.

We currently do not have sufficient resources to complete the entry of individual marriage and death records while still developing other areas of the site, so we have decided to add page images of the indexes in the Public Registry for marriage and death records from 1842 onwards, and you can view the progress of this work in the appropriate sections below.

Content of records

You will discover that the post-1842 records are in a different format to the pre-1842 church records, and contain less information. Nevertheless, we believe that their online availability will still be of value to those researching their family history in Jersey. If you spot an ancestor and want more details, individual certificates can be obtained from the Registry Office in Jersey see How to get a Jersey certificate and what it contains.

Pre-1842 records

All available records, with the exception of some early St John records (see next section) have now been added to our database and included in updated A-Z indexes on the parish records pages.

Early St John records

Records up to 1713, which were among the first to be added to the site, have been available on the St John index page in their original format, since 2010. Now, they are being processed and added to the database in the same format as the other parishes, and when this work is complete, all the St John indexes will be updated.

Post-1842 records

Births

The addition of over 45,000 birth records during January 2015 means that we now have baptism and birth records for all 12 parishes from the earliest shown in the registers to between 1909 and 1924, depending on the parish.

Marriages

Work on adding marriage records, from indexes which show bride and groom separately, has been suspended pending the available of better records from an alternative source in the near future.

Deaths

ALERT: Missing records - A routine check of our database recently revealed that a batch of St Helier baptism records was missing, both from the database and our parish index. They have been present in the post-1842 index to St Helier baptisms, which was the first set of family records uploaded to the site in 2010. Somehow they were never copied over to the database, from which our A-Z indexes are produced. The records are for surnames from La Cloche to Le Cras.

We have now added these records to the database and updated the relevant St Helier parish index in Jerripedia. It remains to update the lists of baptisms linked to the 49 family pages which fall within this alphabetical range. This is a little more complicated and time-consuming, but we have included a warning that some listings may not yet have been updated from the database, which is always our most up-to-date source of family records.

We apologise to any family historians who have been frustrated in their search for an ancestor who proved to be missing from our database; the missing records represented just a fraction of one per cent of all our family records, but we are nevertheless very concerned that they slipped through the net. As well as adding the records to the database, we want to alert all our users to the discovery of these missing records.

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