Knowing where the archives for these counties were found can be really useful as when researching family history we sometimes need to visit an archive to find out some information that cannot be found online. So I thought I’d put together a list of the counties of the UK with the location of their main archives for the county. So I’ve looked at the counties of Wales and I’ve done parts 1 and 2 of England so on to more of England.
In the south of England Oxfordshire has a population of around 700,000 and the county town is Oxford. This is also where the county archive can be found. The website for the archive is: https://www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/residents/leisure-and-culture/history/oxfordshire-history-centre?utm_term=nil&utm_content=
Also in the south of the country Berkshire (pronounced Barkshire) has a population of around 900,000. The county town is Reading (pronounced Reding) and the archive is in the town. The web address for the archive is: https://www.berkshirerecordoffice.org.uk/
On the south coast of England the county town of Hampshire is Winchester (the old capital of England) and the county has a population of around 1.9 million. The archives for the county are housed in Winchester and can be found at: https://www.hants.gov.uk/librariesandarchives/archives
Located of the border with Wales Gloucestershire has a population of approximately 900,000. The county town is Gloucester and the archives are located in the city. The web address for the archives is: https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/archives/
A land locked county, Wiltshire has a population of around 700,000. The county town is Trowbridge and the archives are held in the town of Chippenham and can be found at: http://www.wshc.eu/our-services/archives.html
Situated on the south coast Dorset’s county town is Dorchester and the county has an approximate population of 770,000. If you want to visit the archives they are located in Dorchester and the website is: https://www.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk/libraries-history-culture/dorset-history-centre/dorset-history-centre.aspx
On the west coast of England the county of Somerset incorporates the defunct county of Avon. The county town is Taunton and the population of the county is around 950,000. If you want to go to the archive then you need to go to Taunton and the address for the archives is: http://www1.somerset.gov.uk/archives/ You may also need the archives in Bristol which can be found at: http://archives.bristol.gov.uk/
Down in the south west the coastal county of Devon has a population of around 1.2 million. The county town is Exeter and this is where the archives are found. To visit the archive website go to: https://swheritage.org.uk/devon-archives/
The most southerly and westerly of the English counties Cornwall has a population of approximately 560,000 and the county town is Truro. The archives live in Redruth and their address is: https://kresenkernow.org/
In all of these counties don’t forget the local family history societies as well as the local libraries. These are also excellent sources of information. Also within the counties each town or city may have their own archive or records office. So make sure you do your complete research into where you may find relevant documents for your genealogy. These places are vast repositories for so many different documents or collections. There more than just baptism, marriage and burial records. There are other parish records, town and village information and so much more. The websites will tell you what repositories each archive holds.
So hopefully this will help you in locating where the information you need may reside.
Part 1 can be found at: http://www.familyhistoryresearchengland.co.uk/blog/counties-of-england-part-1
Part 2 can be found at: http://www.familyhistoryresearchengland.co.uk/blog/counties-of-england-part-2
Wales can be found at: http://www.familyhistoryresearchengland.co.uk/blog/counties-of-wales
Hello and thank you for taking the time to read my Family History Ramblings on genealogy and history in general. I hope you find it informative and hopefully funny!