CORNWALL ONLINE PARISH CLERKS - helping bring the past alive


For Researchers

As well as all the resources which link from the individual parish pages and those in our searchable database, the following are available:

1. On this website

1a. FAQs 1b. Others
  Burial Grounds / Cemeteries (Local Authority)
Causes of death, medical terms in 18th & 19th centuries
Change of Calendar in 1752
Common Naming Patterns
Cornish Parishes, brief historical summary
Cornish Surnames, The Etymology of Cornish Surnames
Day of the Week Calculator, just one of many online examples
Epidemics affecting Cornwall
Old Occupations and Trades
Parish Codes, as used by the CRO
Regnal Years
Weather and effects on farming
  Emigration from Cornwall - many resources
Bodmin burials of institutionalised people from other parishes
Visit 24CashToday online for payday loans or other types of personal loans, like installment monthly loans.
Falmouth Union Workhouse Births 1866-1911, includes people from other parishes in the Union
The Malcolm McCarthy Collection of Documents (formerly hosted on this website) Many of the transcriptions link from the relevant parish pages.
Online Books about Cornwall (links)
Other County OPC schemes
Royal Cornwall Gazette, Obituaries & Summaries of Articles 1811, more to follow
Surname files - linking related people in several parishes
Transcribed documents, covering more than one parish
Wills of mariners, parishes unknown
1c. China Clay History Society / Wheal Martyn Maps & Photographs
  Many photographs are held by the Wheal Martyn China Clay Museum (and copies by the China Clay History Society), not only those related to that industry. John Evans has offered to search them for any of specific families and locations, and electronic copies would be supplied free of charge. Two examples are given below (click thumbnails to enlarge).
A large number of old O.S. Maps of many areas of Cornwall (various scales) are also available, an index is here. For the maps, please keep to the Crown Copyright as explained on the Ordnance Survey website.
St Austell - Recruits outside Church, 10 May 1915
St Blazey - West and Sons, St Blazey Foundry
  © Wheal Martyn & China Clay History Society
1d. Non-conformist literature
   OPC Terry Moyle has a complete set of books from the Shaw collection and is willing to answer email enquiries. Click here for a full list.

2. Useful Website Links, non-commercial

Bible Christian Magazine - being compiled by Rita Bone Kopp and Graham Warmington. A good reference resource if your ancestors were Bible Christians, or for background information.
BBC Photographs - photographs of Cornwall - a variety of unusual photographs, including modern mines (underground)
Cemeteries. An increasing number of gravestone photographs are available
China Clay - The website of Wheal Martyn, the China Clay Museum
Churches which are usually unlocked (worth checking locally before the time of a proposed visit)
Cornwall Cam - photographs of Cornwall, updated daily. A personal site maintained by Charles Winpenny; unique compositions, great atmosphere, interesting subjects that are not standard. After 3 days, most photographs are removed. CDs of former photos are available for purchase, but site is totally free of charge
Cornish Cemeteries - a personal website, created and maintained by Christine Uphill; has many transcriptions of various cemetery records and a 'Born Cornwall, Died Elsewhere' section.
Cornish Clergymen (C. of E.)
Cornish Mailing List - plus searchable archives of the discussion list for all things Cornish, including genealogy
Cornish-Gen Mailing List - more specialised, includes searchable archives of the discussion list for Cornish genealogy
Cornish Onine Census Project - an completed set of transcriptions of the 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881 and 1891 Censuses; transcribed, checked and verified by volunteers worldwide
GenUKI - Cornwall - information county-wide and by parish, maintained by Ian Argall; VERY helpful, an essential starting point for Cornish genealogy
Gleanings in Graveyards by Horatio Edward Norfolk. Unusual epitaphs from several Cornish cemeteries.
Historical Directories - maintained by the University of Leicester, a selection of 23 different Cornish directories covering 1830-1910. Directories have descriptions of towns and parishes, as well as lists of commercial ventures, institutions, and inhabitants - all of which may aid in locating ancestors. The directories are downloadable, or can be viewed online. Included is the Post Office directory of 1856
Methodist/Wesleyan etc. Ministers  
Muster Rolls and other data concerning soldiers is available in this searchable database.
The National Archives - if a surname, parish, or even county is entered, all results associated with those search parameters are returned. The summaries of the documents are free, copies of the originals are fee-based, some being available immediately, others can be ordered from the CRO
Old Cornwall Society - established 1927, a group of individuals trying to save historic cultural records, stories, and memorabilia. Website has puzzles, maps, and many interesting sections.
Online Cornwall Maps - a variety of maps, from ancient times to modern, which are sizeable.
Register of One Place Studies - studies of particular places, including some parishes and some smaller settlements.
Rootschat Forum - the section for Cornwall, includes look-up requests &c.
Stone and Quarry Men of The West Country - an extensive, personal website of references to men who worked with stone or as miners, this is an extremely worthwhile site.
Victoria County History Project - founded in 1899 and originally dedicated to Queen Victoria, the VCH is an encyclopaedic record of England's places and people from earliest times to the present day.
Vision of Britain - an extensive and easy-to-use website, from which much historical data about Cornwall is available. Topics include Population, Life and Death, Work and Poverty, Housing and Roots and Religion. Developed and maintained by the University of Portsmouth and others.
West Briton/Cornwall Advertiser - searchable 1800s newspaper transcriptions; updated weekly; includes BMDs, News, Coroners' Inquests, & Court Sessions
West Penwith Resources - covering the western parishes of Cornwall in depth, with maps, history, and much more - good for all Cornish researchers for background details.

3. Commercial / Fee-based sites relating to Cornish research:

Some of these sites provide basic information at no cost, but charges apply for details or copies. Many more such sites can be found by using a search engine such as Google or Yahoo.
Ambra Books - old, rare, and hard-to-find books, run by Ivor Cornish. Large stock, and will search for specific titles.

Archive CDs - books placed on CD; issued at low cost (the UK branch closed in 2007, but others still exist).

Belerion Books/CDs - books placed on CD; issued at low cost; has a variety of books for sale.

Cornwall Family History Society - Most information is available for a small fee, such as results from the searchable database here.

Cornwall Legacy - transcriptions of various items available on CDs.

Francis Frith Collection - viewable old photos, for free, available for purchase.

Old Maps - from the late 1800s, searchable by county and town. Use the link 'Start your Search' which is almost in the centre of the home page.


4. Other OPC Schemes

Since we started this scheme in January 2001, other counties have adopted the idea, either from scratch or in conjunction with an earlier, similar scheme. Use a search engine to find if the county you are interested in has a website.

If an organisation asks for donations, it's sensible to find out whether or not it's a registered charity or if its accounts are audited.

5. Non-conformist Literature

The Shaw Collection -  at the Royal Institution Library (Courtney Library) in Truro (Museum), look-ups available from Terry Moyle.
Methodism in
Bridgerule 1880-1953
St Mawgan in Pydar 1810-1980
Voguebeloth 1803-1966
Pipers Pool 1808-1976
Probus 1781-1961
Fraddon 1819-1977
Camelford and Wadebridge 1743-1963
Illogan 1743-1958
Seven Circuits mostly Cornish (Camelford/Wadebridge, Holsworthy, Camborne, Redruth and Truro + Rotherham and Holbeach)
Gwennap Pit
Foolish Dick (Dick Hampton) and his chapel at Porthtowan 1796-2000
Fraddon Book of Memories 1977
Probus Book of Memories
Roscarrock Hill Methodist Church, Port Isaac 1869-1969.