Thursday, September 12, 2013

English Wills

In England, wills fall into two main categories - pre-1858 and post-1858.  Pre-1858 wills were probated in one of two principal courts for England and Wales - the Prerogative Court of Canterbury in the south, searchable at www.discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk and the Prerogative Court of York in the north, searchable at www.britishorigins.com.  Below these were other levels of ecclesiastical courts, including what were known as peculiars.
Post-1858 wills were proved at the Principal Probate Registry, established 12 January 1858, and can be searched on Ancestry.  Copies of wills can be ordered at a cost.

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