England and Wales Marriage Registration Index - FamilySearch Historical Records

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England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
England and Wales
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Record Description
Record Type Marriage Registration Index
Collection years 1837-2005
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
General Register Office

What is in This Collection?[edit | edit source]

The collection consists of an index to marriages registered in England and Wales beginning 1 July 1837 through 2005. The index is arranged in volumes by years with the entries listed alphabetically. These indexes can be used to order a copy of the actual certificate. Index courtesy of Findmypast.com.

Image Visibility[edit | edit source]

Whenever possible FamilySearch makes images and indexes available for all users. However, rights to view these data are limited by contract and subject to change. Because of this there may be limitations on where and how images and indexes are available or who can see them. Please be aware some collections consist only of partial information indexed from the records and do not contain any images. For additional information about image restrictions see Restrictions for Viewing Images in FamilySearch Historical Record Collections.

What Can These Records Tell Me?[edit | edit source]

The following information may be found in these records: Marriage

  • Surname and given name
  • Record type
  • Spouse’s surname (post-1911 marriage indexes)
  • Year, quarter, volume and page number
  • District
  • Line and event number
  • May also list other names

Collection Content[edit | edit source]

Sample of an indexed record:

John Smith England and Wales Marriage Registration Index
Name John Smith
Event Type Marriage
Registration Quarter Apr-May-Jun
Registration Year 1850
Registration District Manchester
County Lancashire
Event Place Manchester, Lancashire, England
Volume 20
Page 631
Line Number 4
John Smith probably married one of the following people Sarah Beacall

How Do I Search This Collection?[edit | edit source]

Before searching this collection, it is helpful to know:

  • The names of the bride and/or groom
  • Approximate date of marriage

If you do not know what registration district you need, find your location in: UK BMD Registration Districts In England and Wales.

Search the Index[edit | edit source]

Search by name on the Collection Details Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes in the Search Collection section with the information you know
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?[edit | edit source]

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?[edit | edit source]

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • If possible, look at an image of the original record. The original may contain information that was not recorded in the index
  • Use the information in the index to obtain a copy of the marriage certificate from the appropriate registration district
  • Use the names of the couple to look for the new family in census records
  • Based on the date of marriage, estimate a birth year and search for birth or christening records

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking for, What Now?[edit | edit source]

  • Events are filed by the date registered, not the date they occurred (for example, a marriage on 20 March which was registered on 6 April will be in the April-May-June quarter)
  • Indexes were prepared by hand and may contain copying errors (for example, "T" for "F") or omissions
  • Persons with common names may be difficult to identify in the index
  • Look for variant spellings of the names. Surnames are often found under unexpected spellings
  • You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names
  • A person may have been registered under a different name than he or she used later in life

Research Helps[edit | edit source]

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in England.

The following articles will help you in your research for your family in Wales.

Citing This Collection[edit | edit source]

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation:
The citation for this collection can be found on the Collection Details Page in the section Citing this Collection.
Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation can be viewed by clicking the drop-down arrow next to Document Information.