* Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

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Mark1834
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Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by Mark1834 »

Something I’ve not come across before - I was looking for somebody in the Marriage Register for Langley St Mary in Kent, and it appears the parish maintained duplicate records in both the old style and new style Marriage Registers through much of the nineteenth century.

This continued to at least the late 1880s. Handwriting and signatures match, so they are both contemporaneous records, not a later transcript.

Any idea why this might be?
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ColeValleyGirl
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by ColeValleyGirl »

Where are you viewing the register?
Was there a subsidiary chapel?
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by Mark1834 »

FMP, only one or two marriages each year.
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by ColeValleyGirl »

Were all marriages in the main church or was there a subsidiary chapel?
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by TimTreeby »

Having looked at the Registers, and when they start/finish etc.
Suspect is nothing more than the incumbent Vicar deciding to use up the old Register, as well as the new one.

As when the double recording stops seems to be when the Vicar changes.
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by Mark1834 »

Agree a slightly eccentric incumbent is probably the most likely explanation, but it’s certainly unusual.
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by AdrianBruce »

I think that I've seen at least one Cheshire parish keep the old and new format marriage registers going - but only for a few years, IIRC. As it wasn't one of my main parishes, I just put it down as a quirk - I didn't do things like check the signatures.

Although I do wonder if I'm getting mixed up in memory, as another thing that I've seen (I think) is the post 1754 format marriage registers being used for BTs in the years after 1837. That must have simply been using up stationery.

What I am certain about is a different but parallel thing in baptism and burial registers. Rose's Act brought preprinted baptism and burial registers into use in 1813. Those parishes previously producing extended format registers (Dade etc) generally dropped them in favour of the Rose's format - which carried less information. But St. Helen at Northwich continued its extended format registers, as well as the Rose's registers, for some 50 years or more. So some sort of attachment to previous practice happened elsewhere.
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by RS3100 »

I have seen a number of these, but admittedly not for such a long period of time. They seem to have mostly involved the changeover from the old to new style registers, although I have seen some where a new incumbent has painstakingly copied out an old register into the new register, in one case explained by a note stating that he considered the handwriting in the original register to be barely readable.

If you are looking at the original archive, or have the reference for the original archive, it might be worth looking at both registers in their entirety, for any notes at the front or back of the registers that might offer an explanation. Or, as I have found most recently at Essex Archives, some of the catalogue entries offer either explanations or indications of where registers have been either completely or partially duplicated. One I looked at recently had been butchered by the then incumbent, and the pages inserted or copied into other registers, in an attempt to "tidy up" the records - which may in his opinion have helped at the time, but has made my research much harder than it might otherwise have been.
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Re: Duplicate old and new Marriage Registers

Post by AntonyM »

Quite normal for churches and chapels to maintain their own registers, in addition to the civil one. Sometimes they are in an identical format, sometimes quite different (esp. RC ones)
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