New Records Available To Search This Findmypast Friday, November 6, 2015

This week’s Findmypast Friday also marks the release of new additions to our collection of Yorkshire burials, marriage licences from the ancient Anglican Diocese of Ely in Cambridgeshire and a fascinating index of merchant ships from a time when Britain was the world’s most powerful trading nation.

The Lloyd's Register of Merchant Ships Index 1843 was created using the 1843 publication of Lloyd's Register of British and Foreign Shipping, provided by John Dagger. Lloyd's register was completed annually and this register covers 1 July 1843 to 30 June 1844. During this time, Britain was a powerful trading nation and a leader of industry in the world. The names found within this index refer to the master of the ship. The master was responsible for the vessel's daily operation including navigation, ensuring that the ship was fitted out correctly, repairs and overseeing all the cargo. The master also kept the daily logs for the ship and managed the ship's budget.

It is important to note that ships often changed names when they changed owners. For example, in 1849, Cunard sold the Britannia to the German Confederation Navy who renamed the ship the SMS Barbarossa. The ship was then fitted with guns and became the flagship of the German Navy.

Cambridgeshire, Ely Diocese Marriage Licences 1684-1811 contains more than 8,000 records that allow you to discover the date your ancestors were issued their marriage licence, spouse's name and the name of the bondsman for the licence. Many of the records also include the bride's maiden name, an excellent find for family historians, however, although it is important to note that the existence of a marriage licence does not necessarily mean that a marriage occurred.

A marriage licence could be requested instead of the traditional banns for various reasons, among them being a couple wanting to marry quickly or avoid the reading of the banns if, for example, the local community did not know them. In order to obtain a licence, the couple signed a marriage allegation. It stated that there was no legal or moral reason they could not be married. Additionally, a groom would pledge a bond, a monetary amount, to be forfeited in case he did not marry the intended bride. A bondsman, or a surety, would be named on the licence. Often the bondsman was a relative of the groom, but could also be a neighbour or friend. After 1823, marriage bonds were no longer required.

Each record includes a transcript created by Avril Symonds from the original records held in the Suffolk Record Office and the Cambridge University Library.

Over 62,000 new additions have been made to our collection of Yorkshire parish burials. These new additions span over 200 years, cover 18 different locations and can reveal your ancestors name, the age at death and burial place.

The full collection contains more than 1.8 million records covering over 400 years of the county's history. Before the introduction of civil registration in 1837 Church of England parishes recorded the bulk of births, marriages and deaths. The Church of England mandated the keeping of records in all its parishes from 1537 with the earliest records generally starting in 1538.

Remember to check our dedicated Findmypast Friday’s page every week to keep up to date with the latest new additions.

About Findmypast

Findmypast (previously DC Thomson Family History) is a British-owned world leader in online genealogy. It has an unrivalled record of online innovation in the field of family history and 18 million registered users across its family of online brands, which includes Mocavo, Genes Reunited, The British Newspaper Archive amongst others.

Its lead brand, also called Findmypast, is a searchable online archive of over two billion family history records, from parish records and censuses to migration records, military collections, historical newspapers and lots more. For members around the world, the site is a crucial resource for building family trees and doing detailed historical research.

In April 2003 Findmypast was the first to provide access to the complete birth, marriage, and death indexes for England & Wales, winning the Queen’s Award for Innovation. Since that time, the company has digitised records from across the globe, including major collections from Britain, Ireland, Australia, and the United States.