The Widecombe Archive - Search and Display

***Please select a Collection to get started***

Welcome to the Widecombe History Group Archive Catalogue Search and Display facility, provided with the aim of making the archive available to a wider public. The entries here will expand as we continue to make progress on the digitising and cataloguing of our archive. Please send in any comments via the Contact Us link.

Six collections are currently available: the first collection is the catalogue of the Parish Chest and certain other items (called the Main Parish Archive); the second collection is the catalogue of Indentures: apprenticeship records, examinations, removal orders (originally what we called the Parish Documents); the third collection consists of the Headstones from Widecombe Church; the fourth collection is the Tithe Apportionment Register; the fifth collection is the History Group Archive; and the sixth collection is the combination of the first through fifth collections. Please note that the digitising and cataloguing is an on-going process and there may be occasional gaps and errors, although everything that is online has been carefully checked.

Choose the Collection to Search:

Alternatively, return to the collection pages: Main Parish Archive , Parish Apprenticeships , Widecombe Church Headstones , Tithe Apportionments , History Group Archive

Basic Search: Show/Hide Tips
  • You can enter text to search for in one or both of the following boxes, or you can leave them blank
  • If you enter text in both boxes then BOTH values must be present in the catalogue entry for the entry to be included
  • We now recommend you use the Name Search (below) if you are searching for names, but you can still use the Basic Search if, for example, you want to search for a single surname and a place.
  • Note that names are often recorded on documents as they sounded to the recorder and can therefore vary considerably. Spellings might also vary over time. 'Leaman' might sometimes be recorded as 'Leman' for example. Although, in general, searches must be exact matches, we have tried to address this problem by introducing synonyms, which is a set of different spellings for the same surname or place name. There are two ways in which synonyms can be used. Firstly, in the basic search, if you use a word that is present in a synonym list then the search will return all archive items where ANY word in the list is present (e.g. both Leaman and Leman would be picked up). Secondly, in the Advanced Search, you can do a specific synonym search.Please see Help for more information on synonyms.
  • The search is NOT case-sensitive and does not insist the term is a whole word, so you can search for part of a word if you want.
  • Click on the 'Search' button to search. Click on the 'Clear Form' button to clear the search boxes
  • For more searching options, please see the Name Search and Advanced Search below
Name Search: Show/Hide Tips
  • In contrast to the Basic Search this search is specifically for names.
  • You should enter the surname you are searching for in the first box. If there are alternate spellings (synonyms) recorded for this surname then these will automatically be searched for as well. Please see Help for more information on synonyms.
  • If you know the first or other name of the person you are searching for, then enter this in the second box. You can leave this box blank but then there is really no difference between this and the Basic Search.
  • If you do enter names in both boxes then BOTH values must be present in the catalogue entry for the entry to be included and they must be associated, i.e. the other name must occur in context with the supplied surname (again this is in contrast to the Basic Search).
  • Because names can appear in free text (as in transcripts of documents), we allow for the first or other name to precede OR follow the family name. This does mean that occasionally the answer could be wrong. For instance, where there is a lit of names (such as ..Townsend John Leaman George..), then this would be caught by a search for John Leaman as well as one for George Leaman.
  • The search is NOT case-sensitive
  • Click on the 'Search' button to search. Click on the 'Clear Form' button to clear the search boxes
  • For more searching options, please see Basic Search above and Advanced Search below

Advanced Search: Show/Hide Advanced Search Options
Text Search: Enter text to search for in one or both of the following boxes. Choose 'Whole Word' alongside an item of text to require the text to be present as a complete word. Select 'Both' from the selection list to require both items of text to be present in the result, or 'Either' to require only one of them to be present, or 'Neither' to require neither to be present, or '1st Not 2nd' to require the first to be present and the second not to be present.
Select 'Treat as Name Search' to require the two words to be associated, i.e. close together in the text being searched
Whole Word?:         Whole Word?:
Treat as Name Search?:        
Synonym Search: Choose a set of surnames or place names to search for from the following list. All the names in the set will be included in the search and matching whole word results returned.

Date Search: Enter a single date to search for or two dates to define a range. Choosing 'Any' for day and/or month will include all days in the month or months in the year.

Note: Text, Synonym and Date searches can be combined.

You can look at details for an individual entry by clicking on the 'More Details' button next to the entry.

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