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Chatham, Kent

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Guide to Chatham, Kent ancestry, family history, and genealogy: parish register transcripts, census records, birth records, marriage records, and death records.

Chatham, Kent
Chatham St Mary Kent.jpg
Chatham St Mary Kent
Type Ancient Parish
Civil Jurisdictions
Hundred Chatham and Gillingham; Chatham Town; Rochester City
County Kent
Poor Law Union Medway
Registration District Medway
Records begin
Parish registers: 1568
Bishop's Transcripts: 1718
Ecclesiastical Jurisdictions
Rural Deanery Rochester
Diocese Rochester
Province Canterbury
Legal Jurisdictions
Probate Court Courts of the Bishop (Episcopal Consistory) and Archdeaconry of Rochester
Location of Archive
Kent Record Office

Parish History[edit | edit source]

CHARTHAM (St. Mary), a parish, in the union of Bridge, hundred of Felborough, lathe of Shepway, E division of Kent, 3 miles SW by W from Canterbury; containing, with the chapelry of Horton, 974 inhabitants. There is a place of worship for Wesleyans. CHATHAM (St. Mary), a borough, market-town, and parish, and the head of the Medway union, partly within the jurisdiction, and adjoining the city, of Rochester, but chiefly in the hundred of Chatham and Gillingham, N division of the lathe of Aylesford, W division of Kent, 8 miles N by E from Maidstone, and 30 E by S from London St. John's church, of the Doric order, with a tower, and containing 1624 sittings, of which 1090 are free, was completed in 1821. There are places of worship for Baptists, Independents, Primitive and Wesleyan Methodists, and Unitarians; also a Jewish synagogue.[1]


Chatham St Mary Dock Road Chatham is an Ancient Parish; the church was declared redundant in 1974 when the parish church of St Mary Island church took over serving the parish.

The church dated from a rebuild of 1884-1887 but stands on the site of a former Saxon church and contains two Grade II listed tombs designated by English Heritage.

The church functioned for some time as the Medway Heritage Centre.

Luton Christchurch was formed from the Luton, Kent parish.

Resources[edit | edit source]

Civil Registration[edit | edit source]

Medway Registration District Chatham Registration District and registrations from July 1837 to the present day are held at

Medway district
The Register Office
Northgate
Rochester
ME1 1LS
Telephone 01634 338902
Fax 01634 338913
register.office@medway.gov.uk
Birth, marriages and deaths were kept by the government, from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is FreeBMD.

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Chatham St Mary the Virgin parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

BIVRI = British Isles Vital Records Index (Ancestry) - (£)[2]
FMP = findmypast - (£)[3]
FREG = FreeREG - free[4]
FS PRs = England, Kent, Parish Registers (FamilySearch) - free[5]
IGI = International Genealogical Index (FamilySearch) - free[6]
MED = Medway Ancestors - free[7]
NBI = National Burial Index (findmypast) - (£)[8]
Chatham St Mary the Virgin Online Parish Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
BIVRI 1735-1869 (gaps)
1735-1837

FMP
1568-1837

FREG 1813-1815

1568-1897
FS PRs 1659-1904 1659-1876; 1780-1806 (banns) 1659-1866
IGI 1822-1827, 1855-1875 1781-1821, 1828-1834, 1851-1876
MED 1568-1974 1568-1974 1568-1974
NBI

1567-1812

Kent Online Parish Clerks (OPC)

Chatham All Saints parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham All Saints Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
FREG 1913-1963
1914-1940

MED 1899-1942 1914-1954

Chatham Holy Trinity/Workhouse Chapel registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham Holy Trinity/Workhouse Chapel Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
FREG 1899-1942


Chatham St John the Divine parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham St John the Divine Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
FREG 1853-1941
1853-1941

FS PRs 1853-1894 1853-1882
MED 1853-1969 1853-1954

Chatham St Paul parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham St Paul Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
FREG 1855-1893
1855-1867

FS PRs 1869-1876 1855-1904; 1855-1872 (banns)
IGI 1855-1875 1855-1876
MED 1855-1975 1855-1954

Chatham St Philip (Wayland) and St James (Walderslade) parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham St Philip (Wayland) and St James (Walderslade) Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
MED 1950-1962 1951-1956

Chatham St Stephen parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham St Stephen Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
MED 1935-1980 1942-1954

Chatham St William parish registers of christenings, marriages and burials are available online for the following years:

Chatham St William Parish Online Records

Baptisms
Marriages
Burials

Indexes Images Indexes Images Indexes Images
MED 1960-1973

Census records[edit | edit source]

Census returns for Chatham 1841-1891

FamilySearch Records includes collections of census indexes which can be searched online for free. In addition FamilySearch Centres offer free access to images of the England and Wales Census through FHC Portal Computers here have access to the Family History Centre Portal page which gives free access to premium family history software and websites that generally charge for subscriptions.

Images of the census for 1841-1891 can be viewed in census collections at Ancestry (fee payable) or Find My Past (fee payable).

The 1851 census of England and Wales attempted to identify religious places of worship in addition to the household survey census returns.

Poor Law Unions[edit | edit source]

Medway Poor Law Union,Kent

Probate records[edit | edit source]

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Kent Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Local Family History Centre[edit | edit source]

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Maps are a visual look at the locations in England. Gazetteers contain brief summaries about a place.

Websites[edit | edit source]

Chatham on GENUKI

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of England (1848), pp. 554-558. Date accessed: 15 April 2013.
  2. 'British Isles Vital Records Index - 2nd Ed. Breakdown of Records', Genoot, accessed 7 November 2013.
  3. 'Coverage of Kent parish marriage records', Find My Past, accessed 6 November 2013.
  4. 'Kent Coverage', FreeREG, accessed 6 November 2013.
  5. 'England, Kent, Parish Registers, 1538-1911,' FamilySearch, accessed 12 November 2013.
  6. Hugh Wallis, 'IGI Batch Numbers for Kent, England,' IGI Batch Numbers, accessed 15 November 2013.
  7. 'Medway Ancestors Imagebase: list of parishes, in alphabetical order', Cityark, accessed 8 November 2013.
  8. 'Parish Records - National Burial Index Records 1538 - 2005 Coverage', Find My Past, accessed 3 November 2013.

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