Local and family history sites: national and Cheshire-specific sources

We think you will find the following links useful, but please note that Cheshire East Council accepts no responsibility for external sites or their contents.

S = Subscription service brought to you free of charge by Cheshire Libraries.

National sources

Archives and public records

Census returns

Family and local history

  • 1939 register from Find my Past S Available only in libraries.
  • American National Biography S Over 19,000 biographies of significant or notorious figures from American history, written by prominent scholars
  • Ancestry Library Edition S Available only in libraries. The largest online collection of family history records in the UK
  • BBC family history
  • BMD Registers Gives access to various unpublished registers from 1534-1865; usually providing the only record of a particular event
  • Britain from Above
  • British Newspaper Archive S Millions of pages from British and Irish newspapers, including 1000s from the Victorian period, WW1 and WW2. Articles include births, marriages, deaths and obituaries, as well as local court reports and criminal trials. Visit the library to register for free. Only available to use via a library computer, although saved searches can be accessed on any device
  • Burke's Peerage Historical guide to the UK titled and landed families
  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission
  • Cyndi's List Useful starting point for the genealogist
  • Directory of local history and allied societies UK-wide directory from Local History Online
  • Family Search.org  A service provided by the Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints, including the International Genealogical Index (IGI) and 1881 Census for England and Wales. It is possible to search for Cheshire-specific records by collection, for example, school, workhouse, probate and parish records.
  • Find my Past  S Available only in libraries. Over 1.6 billion family history records
  • Free BMD Transcriptions of the civil registration indexes of births, marriages and deaths for England and Wales from 1837-1983
  • Free UK Genealogy
  • Genuki UK & Ireland Genealogy sites
  • Historical directories A searchable database of UK trade directories from the University of Leicester's Special Collections Online
  • Isle of Man Genealogy 
  • NewsBank  S an online service offering archive articles from local and national newspapers
  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography S
  • Scotland's People Provides access to statutory birth, marriage and death registers as well as old parish registers. Also provides a free search of wills and testaments, as well as coats of arms
  • Society of Genealogists
  • Suffragette Collection S Available only in libraries. Collection of records from The National Archives compiled by Find my Past
  • UK BMD Online transcriptions of UK births, marriages, deaths and censuses. Information given about other online resources
  • UK Fairground Ancestors Covers travelling showmen, circus and other fairground travellers

Cheshire sources

Images and maps