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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 DD/0071
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1664-1812
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 0.5 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Parish of St Paul | Hammersmith | Church of England


Administrative/Biographical history:

In the 16th century each parish church was ordered to keep parish registers to record all baptisms, marriages and burials within the parish. When Hammersmith obtained a chapel in 1631 the agreement then drawn up between the vicar of Fulham and the inhabitants of Hammersmith stipulated:
'And for all marriages, christening, churchings, and burials, which shall be celebrated and done in the said chapel, or within the precincts of Hammersmith; and all fees, duties, and profits whatsoever, shall be paid to the vicar of Fulham for the time being, and to the church and parish of Fulham as if they had been celebrated and done in the church and churchyard of Fulham respectively; . . And to the intent, the said duties and profits . . .may be truly and justly paid . . . the curate of Hammersmith, and that churchwarden of Fulham parish which shall be on Hammersmith side, shall weekly, on Saturday, from time to time, bring to the vicar of Fulham a true note of all such as have been the week before married, christened, churched, and buried, at Hammersmith, together with the fees, profits, and duties belonging to the said vicar; and the said marriages, christenings, churchings, and burials, shall be registered in the register book of the chuch and parish of Fulham as heretofore they have been.'


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of St Paul, Hammersmith including registers of baptisms, marriages and burials.

The records made at Hammersmith were not primarily registers. They can be divided into three groups. The first contains the earliest books, DD/0071/001-002, which were kept by the then curate of Hammersmith, the Reverend John Wade, as general diaries and account books; the main purpose of the registral entries was to record the fees received. The second group consists of books kept by the sextons of the church, an office held by members of the Bland family. These also are not primarily registers, and frequently contain details of tolling the bell, the allocation of grave spaces and dealings with undertakers. They also provide evidence of the way in which the overseers and churchwardens settled their accounts with the sexton. In the early 19th century the then sexton, James Bland, provided many of the older books with covers, and gave them numbers and titles. He, or his children, also seem to have used them on occasion as scribbling pads and may be responsible for the large number of missing pages. During the 1750s there emerged a third group of books which were drawn up and kept as proper registers, but despite the greater formality of the Hammersmith records, baptisms and burials were still entered in the Fulham register. For marriages, however, the situation was altered by Lord Hardwicke's Marriage Act of 1753 (26 Geo.II c. 33). The chapel of Hammersmith purchased the banns and marriage register prescribed by the Act and entries were not copied into the Fulham register.

For baptisms, marriages and burials for the years 1751 to 1812, only volumes DD/0071/011-014 need be consulted. Although the sextons' books continued as well as the more formal registers, they are incomplete. In 1812 George Rose's Act (52 Geo.III c.146) inaugurated new types of register: separate volumes were required for baptisms, marriages and burials, and each volume was composed of blank forms to be filled in. For this reason the older series of Hammersmith records end in December 1812; and from 1813 onwards no entries for Hammersmith were made in the Fulham registers.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

22 items.

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information may be subject to access restrictions.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Deposited in Hammersmith and Fulham Archives and Local Studies in 1962.

Transferred from Hammersmith and Fulham Archives and Local History Centre in 2015.

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also:
DD/0746 Registers of baptisms, marriage, burial and banns 1813-1972;
P80/PAU: Vestry minutes, records of the overseers of the poor 1796-1851.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Added July 2015.

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