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PARISH RECORDS

Original Bishop's transcript of baptisms performed at Longhope in 1599. Gloucestershire Archives document V1/149
The Parish records are invaluable to the family historian as they contain lists of all the births, marriages and burials performed in a parish since 1538. While the Longhope records do not go back this far, as many have been lost, damaged by water or become illegible, it is still possible to go back as far as 1583 (not 1538), but information until about 1700 is patchy. We started a project in Autumn 2004 to transcribe all the parish records for Longhope, a process that is still ongoing today but is nearly complete. At the end of each year a transcript of the registers would be sent for safe keeping by the bishop of Gloucester. These are known as the Bishop's transcripts and are the only source available for Longhope pre-1702. Transcripts of some years appear to have been written on what we would consider by today's standards as scraps of paper. The earliest of these transcripts that can be handled safely dates to 1599. Three other years have survived from 1583 to 1585 but are in a poor state.

All photographs on this page have been reproduced from photographs of original documents and with kind permission of the Gloucestershire Records Office, who own the copyright to such documents, on 5th. February 2014. The first of such documents is shown on the left and features the Bishop's transcript of the baptisms performed at Longhope in 1599 (this is actually the second page of baptisms as the first is not a good example). The text is in latin and contains many abbreviations but for the most part we are only interested in the names which are usually fairly easy to read each entry follows a similar pattern. The first line reads Ite. Alicia fil. Thome Shaw bapt. fuit 20 die Augusti 1599. which translated means Alice daughter of Thomas Shaw baptised 20th. August 1599. It is important to note that up until the mid-1700s the year began on 25th. March as dictated by what was known as the Julian calendar. Today we use the Gregorian calendar which begins on 1st. January. Hence, under the old calendar it is possible for a child to be born in April and buried in January of the same year. It doesn't happen often but can be confusing.

Baptism register
Baptism register book beginning 1847. Gloucestershire Archives document P206 IN 1/30
It wasn't until sometime in the 1600s when someone decided it would be a good idea to record both parents' names in the baptism register. Until this time, only the father's name was recorded.

Please use the search page if you would like to know anything from these records. Should the information you require be outside of the records transcribed so far, one of our volunteers is prepared to visit the Gloucester Records Office to do searches on your behalf to look up information in the records that we do not hold.

In 1813 a more formal system for recording baptisms, marriages and burials was introduced. Instead of the vicar recording the entries sometimes ad hoc in the register, special books (pictured right) were printed and distributed so that each entry was clearly separated from the others by means of labelled columns and gridlines.

If you are having trouble finding ancestors from Longhope please contact us.

You may also want to visit the History section of this website as it contains lists of people living in the village and military surveys that may be of some use.

Summary of Missing Records

1538-1582
No records appear to have survived from this period.
1586-1598
No records appear to have survived from this period.
1626-1668
No records exist for this period because of the English Civil War.
1698
This year is missing.
1738-1739
Records do not appear to exist for this period.
1740-1741
Records exist but are incredibly hard to read.

Surnames in the Early 1600s

Due to the large section of records that are missing because of the Civil War, it may not be possible to trace your family tree all the way back to 1583 without consulting other documents. There is however a period from 1599-1625 where records have survived. A list of surnames in the village from this period is given below.

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