OFHS launches parish registers
A significant tranche of historic Oxfordshire parish registers has been uploaded to ancestry.co.uk.
Comprising over 4.1 million records, the four collections provide details of baptisms, banns, marriages and burials dating back to the reign of Henry VIII.
The material has been released in partnership with Oxfordshire Family History Society (OFHS), which officially launched the datasets at its 40th anniversary fair in Woodstock on Saturday 1 October.
In order to make the records available, OFHS volunteers spent two years working alongside Oxfordshire History Centre and individual parishes across the county to arrange for their register collections to be scanned.
Once this had been completed, the society then signed a deal with Ancestry, which acquired the digital files and created a series of searchable indexes.
OFHS publicity coordinator, Wendy Archer, said the original registers would no longer be subjected to “wear and tear”.
“One of our objectives is to promote the preservation of records relating to Oxfordshire, and we felt that the initiative would support this,” she said.
“Another objective is to make these documents accessible in the interests of genealogy. By licensing our scans to Ancestry, we are fulfilling that aim too.”
OFHS members at its 40th anniversary fair