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Family History

Family History

This section of our website contains information about the family history records in Durham County Record Office.

These include Church of England parish registers dating back to the 16th century and nonconformist church registers

There are links to all the main sources used by family historians, such as willscensus and birth, marriage and death records, in the left hand navigator.

Information leaflets

You can download helpful information leaflets from our series to assist you with identifying the material available in the Record Office, but they will not replace a visit.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) 

You can also see our Frequently asked questions for more information relating to family history.

Records on microfilm

Please note that all the most popular family history sources held in the Record Office have been microfilmed to prevent damage to the original records. We do not produce original documents when there is a microfilm copy available. Some of the parish registers we hold are over 400 years old and it is important to preserve them for future generations.

Which records are on microfilm so I know whether to book a microfilm reader?

  • Church of England parish registers
  • Nonconformist church registers
  • Cemetery and crematorium registers
  • Census returns
  • Electoral registers
  • Hearth tax returns
  • Newspapers
  • Some Quarter Sessions records
  • Some Durham Light Infantry records

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