09 December 2013

Manorial Documents Register updated

What do you do as your English and Welsh research gets back before the census and civil registration?  Parish registers and other parish chest records come to the fore. Indexes like the IGI make these records relatively accessible. The same cannot be said for manorial records, but where parish records are lacking they may be your only chance of finding your missing link. In almost every instance it will involve reading old handwritten documents without benefit of a transcription.

An online finding aid is the Manorial Documents Register, which includes court rolls, surveys, maps, terriers, documents and all other documents relating to the boundaries, franchises, wastes, customs or courts of a manor.

Recently a Bedfordshire section was added to the Register including information on records for over 291 manors in Bedfordshire alone, wherever they are held.
Other counties in the Register are, in England: Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Cumberland, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Isle of Wight, Lancashire, Middlesex, Norfolk, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, Surrey, Warwickshire, Westmorland, the three Ridings of Yorkshire. Wales, where the manorial system was in place, is also included.

There's a TNA podcast, with a transcript available, from January 2009 at http://media.nationalarchives.gov.uk/index.php/the-manorial-documents-register/

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