Crossing the Pond

By Susan Wenner Premium

England’s Society of Genealogists is about to make researching your British ancestry a whole lot easier. From Charles Dickens’ 1836 marriage license (shown at left) to family group sheets dating back to the 14th century, the society’s valuable collections of parish registers, censuses and more will soon be available to search online on a pay-per-view basis. <>, which already has a similar arrangement with the General Register Office of Scotland, is working with Society members to decipher and digitize millions of records, including:

• Apprentices of Great Britain series, 1710-1774

• Bank of England wills, 1717-1845

• Vicar General Marriage Licence Allegations Index, 1694-1850

• Boyd’s Inhabitants of London, 1300s-1800s

• Teachers Registration Council, 1902-1948

• Boyd’s London Burials, 1538-1853

For about $10, you can retrieve 150 records from the database and have photocopies mailed for $16. Five indexes, including the marriage licenses and wills, are to be up by November. Boyd’s Marriage Index will be accessible by early 2001, the company estimates. Most of the society’s records are not available anywhere else, including the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Family History Centers. Watch for such ventures in the future; the company says it is talking with other owners of “valuable genealogical data” about creating more pay-per-view data sites.

From the December 2000 issue of Family Tree Magazine