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Isle of Man Civil Registration

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Civil Registration

Civil registration is the government record of births, marriages, and deaths. These records are an excellent source of names, dates, relationships, and places of births, marriages, and deaths. Since they are indexed and cover most of the population, these records are important resources for genealogical research.

Quick Links[edit | edit source]

Civil registration indexes for the Isle of Man can be found:

Historical Background[edit | edit source]

In 1878, the Isle of Man government passed legislation mandating the registering of all births and deaths on the island. In 1884, the legislation was expanded to include marriages. Some registers date to even before 1878. In 1849, an act was passed that allowed for dissenters from the Church of England to register their births and marriages with the government. Prior to this, baptisms and marriages recorded in a dissenter church (i.e. not recorded in a Church of England parish register) were not accepted as proof of parentage or marriage in the eyes of the law. However, beginning in 1849 dissenters could register and legitimize their births and marriages with the state. The Registrar General's office, newly formed, also accepted voluntary registration of births and marriages and the retrospective registration of church records found in dissenter churches (some records dating to the early 1800s).[1] Therefore, while most registers began in 1878, some registers can date to 1849 and even before that. More information about civil registration can be found at Manx Note Book.[2]

Before 1878, church records are the primary source for finding baptism, marriage, and burial information on the Isle of Man.

Understanding the Records[edit | edit source]

Births[edit | edit source]

A birth certificate usually gives:

  • birth date and birthplace
  • child’s name and sex
  • father's name and occupation
  • mother's full name including her maiden name
  • informant’s name, relationship to the baby, and residence
  • when registered and the name of the registrar

Marriages[edit | edit source]

A marriage certificate usually gives:

  • marriage data and place
  • names of the bride and groom, their ages, their marital "condition" (single or widowed), their professions, and their residences at the time of the marriage
  • names and occupations of their fathers (and often whether they were deceased)
  • signatures or marks of the bride, groom, and witnesses
  • also notes whether the bride and groom were married in a church (with the denomination given) and, if so, whether they were married by banns or by license.

The law required all marriages to be recorded in a civil register immediately after the ceremony. Marriages were often performed at the bride’s parish.

Deaths[edit | edit source]

A death certificate usually gives:

  • death date and place
  • full name of the decedent, their sex and age, their occupation (or for a child, usually the name of a parent)
  • cause of death
  • name, residence and relationship of the informant to the decedent
  • date registered and the name of the registrar.

On certificates for adults, the names of parents are never given. In considering whether to order a death certificate, remember that the information on the certificate may be limited or inaccurate because it is based on the informant’s knowledge. It can be helpful for those looking for clues about persons born or married before 1878.

Accessing the Records[edit | edit source]

Although the actual certificates cost money to order, there are multiple indexes available online that will help narrow down and locate the correct certificate to order. Minimal information is included in these indexes.

Births[edit | edit source]

Collection Database or Website Year Range Index or Images
Birth Index ManxBMD.com 1849-2013 Index
Index to Births: 1576-1960 The Isle of Man
Family History Society
1576-1960 Index
Isle of Man Births and Baptisms, 1607-1910 FamilySearch 1607-1910 Index
Register of births, deaths, and marriages of the Isle of Man, 1821-1964 FamilySearch 1821-1964 Images
Isle of Man, Select Births and Baptisms, 1821-1911 ($) Ancestry 1821-1911 Index
Isle Of Man, Births and Baptisms 1600-2010 ($) FindMyPast 1600-2010 Index
Isle of Man, Births and Baptisms, 1821-1911 ($) MyHeritage 1821-1911 Index

Marriages[edit | edit source]

Collection Database or Website Year Range Index or Images
Marriage Index ManxBMD.com 1849-2013 Index
Index to Marriages: 1576-1960 The Isle of Man
Family History Society
1576-1960 Index
Isle of Man Marriages, 1606–1911 FamilySearch 1606-1911 Index
Register of births, deaths, and marriages of the Isle of Man, 1821-1964 FamilySearch 1821-1964 Images
Isle of Man, Select Marriages, 1849-1911 ($) Ancestry 1849-1911 Index
Isle Of Man, Marriages 1598-1979 ($) FindMyPast 1598-1979 Index
Isle of Man, Marriages, 1849-1911 ($) MyHeritage 1849-1911 Index

Deaths[edit | edit source]

Collection Database or Website Year Range Index or Images
Death Index ManxBMD.com 1877-2015 Index
Isle of Man Deaths and Burials, 1844-1918 FamilySearch 1844-1918 Index
Register of births, deaths, and marriages of the Isle of Man, 1821-1964 FamilySearch 1821-1964 Images
Isle of Man, Select Deaths and Burials, 1844-1911 ($) Ancestry 1844-1911 Index
Isle Of Man, Deaths and Burials 1598-2011 ($) FindMyPast 1598-2011 Index
Isle of Man Deaths and Burials, 1844-1911 ($) MyHeritage 1844-1911 Index

Ordering Records[edit | edit source]

Online[edit | edit source]

Certified copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates can be ordered from the official government website. Records date to 1606. To apply for certified copies, go to Online services. The certificate can be ordered using either the exact date or the volume and page number and other identifying information, such as name and town. If the specific certificate is not known, then a search between a specific number of years can be ordered from the website. However, it costs more money to ask them to search for the certificate than simply ordering the exact certificate. To know which certificate to order, search online indexes on other websites, such as on ManxBMD.com.

Go to the Order Certificates webpage to learn more about the cost of ordering certificates.

By Mail or in Person[edit | edit source]

Certified copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates can be ordered in person or by mail.
The address to the Civil Registry is: Registries Building
Deemsters Walk
Bucks Road
Douglas
Isle of Man
IM1 3AR
Tel: +44 1624 687039
Email: civil@registry.gov.im
Website: www.gov.im

Go to the Order Certificates webpage to learn more about the cost of ordering certificates.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Index to Births: 1576-1960," The Isle of Man Family History Society, http://www.iomfhs.im/resources/births/index_births.html, accessed 23 July 2018.
  2. Coakley, Frances, "Civil Records," Manx Note Book, http://www.isle-of-man.com/manxnotebook/famhist/genealgy/civil.htm, accessed 23 July 2018.