Thursday, 28 March 2019

Which is the Best England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index?

Ancestry has just updated its index to England and Wales Marriages now claiming 63,960,279 entries from 1916 to 2005. For the prior period, from 1837 Ancestry has 32,698,349 entries making a total of 96,658,628 entries. Is it the most complete?

FreeBMD has 81,989,897 unique entries mostly complete to the early 1980s.

Findmypast has 90,138,320 marriage entries to 2005.

MyHeritage claims 95,986,906 records in England & Wales, Marriage Index, 1837-2005.

The Genealogist claims "Complete Birth, Marriage & Death records index for England and Wales as published by the GRO (1837-2005)" without giving a number of marriges indexed.

FamilySearch claims 95,810,897 records in England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005 sourced from Findmypast in 2014!

I most often use FreeBMD, except for the more recent year, as I prefer their search and presentation of results. The GRO does not have marriage indexes online. 

3 comments:

rockwriter10 said...

Do these include Scotland?

JDR said...

These are England and Wales only. For Scotland Scotlandspeople.gov.uk is pretty much the only source for civil registration, although FamilySearch has a marriage index 1855 - 1875.

Unknown said...

As in most indexes, "best" of these cannot solely be judged by number of records. Accuracy of transcription, ease of access (no password or payment required!), ease of search and information provided in the search result are to me, most important. I have used FreeBMD for many years and always start there. "Which list has the best coverage" might be a better descriptor.