Emigration – The UK National Archives


This guide to finding out about emigrants from Britain includes:

English: The Last of England by Ford Madox Bro...

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  • information about emigration to North America, Australia and New Zealand
  • information about child emigration, including the emigration of pauper children
  • a section on finding aids to help you search the records

You may wish to start your research by consulting the research signposts on emigrants, passengers or transportees.  The guide gives an overview of emigration records held at The National Archives, but is not a comprehen

There are many references in documents in The National Archives to people emigrating to other countries, but no single index of names.  Records of emigration are in many different records series, and finding information about individual people can be challenging. You will need to refer to the series description in the Catalogue to find out how the records are arranged – for example, by date or country.

Many finding aids are available – some of these are listed in section 9. These are available in the reading rooms at The National Archives and in many university and larger reference libraries. Many of the publications listed in the further reading section describe the relevant record series at The National Archives.

The main record series containing information about emigrants and policy on emigration are those of the Colonial Office (CO), the Home Office (HO), the Board of Trade (BT) and the Treasury (T).

Many libraries and record offices in destination countries have copies of original material. These include the Library of Congress  in Washington, USA, Library and Archives Canada in Ottawa, the National Library of Australia, and the State Library of New South Wales, Australia.

The Society of Genealogists also holds extensive printed material which can be consulted for a small fee, and the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter-day Saints maintains considerable collections of lists compiled from both British and North American sources.


About mallerstang

Member of the Guild of One Name Studies researching the name CUMPSTON and its variants. You can see my website at www.cumpston.org.uk I have a new study of the name LAXEN with its own blog at https://laxenresearch.wordpress.com/ and a further research blog which is not registered as a one name study of KNAGGS of Flamborough https://knaggsresearch.wordpress.com/
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4 Responses to Emigration – The UK National Archives

  1. Pingback: Historical Street Archive at the National Archives | cumpstonresearch

  2. Pingback: UK Museum of Migration | cumpstonresearch

  3. Pingback: Colonial administration files | cumpstonresearch

  4. Pingback: Another podcast from the UK National Archives | cumpstonresearch

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