The Parish Chest

When you have exhausted the resources of civil registration, census, parish registers and wills it is worthwhile looking deeper into available parish sources to flesh out the bones of your ancestors lives.  The parish chest, the historical resting place for parochial documents, normally kept in either the church itself or the vestry room, contains the administrative papers of the parish.  These include vestry minute books, overseer’s records, churchwarden’s accounts and a variety of other records relating to the running of the parish and its inhabitants.

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