A guide to researching your ancestors in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands, using resources at State Library Victoria.
The following resources will help you identify the names of parishes and their boundaries.
In 1559 the Act of Uniformity required everyone to conform to the Church of England - those who didn't were called Nonconformists. Although Catholics and Jews were Nonconformists, the term was mainly used to represent non Anglican Protestants, including Quakers, Baptists, Presbyterians, Methodists and Congregationalists. Many Nonconformist churches never kept records, to avoid persecution. For detailed information on the history of Nonconformists please go to the FamilySearch wiki pages for England and Wales.
In the 19th century, the General Register Office collected large numbers of Nonconformist registers. They are now housed in the National Archives UK but can be accessed via the BMD Registers website.
As of June 15 2020 the Library is open with reduced spaces and services.
Our Ask A Librarian reference service is still available to assist with your research inquiries.