FFHS - supporting family historians for over 40 years

New Life For Tudor Wills

Much vital family history information is waiting to be discovered in wills. Details of family relationships, occupations and household possessions may be found in these important documents. Signatures from will-makers and witnesses provide evidence of literacy and examples of handwriting to compare with signatures in other sources.

At present, most pre-1858 wills are not available on the internet or digitised. So, you may need to consult the original documents. It is important that they can stand up to use. We now have an opportunity to see how one county record office tackles the conservation of its oldest probate treasures.

Northamptonshire Record Office holds a series of wills going back to 1510 and, in some cases, even earlier. Three albums of photographs on its Facebook page show how conservation experts have succeeded in repairing and making safe some of the oldest of these unique documents. Each picture has a commentary explaining what is going on.

You can find the albums on Facebook at:


Francis Howcutt
FFHS Archives Liaison

24 January 2014

© 2014 The Federation of Family History Societies. All rights reserved

Registered Charity No. 1038721    Company No. 2930189 (England)

Page updated by the webmaster on 25 January 2014

website designed by Pete Hunnisett