The Family History Centre, Central Library Manchester, holds extensive but not comprehensive card transcripts of baptism, burial and marriage registers from local churches. Original church register material is transcribed by volunteers who copy the details from the original registers. This is a joint venture by Christchurch City Libraries with the New Zealand Society of Genealogists. Transcripts may be used for family history research and may not be copied or republished in any systematic way without the permission of the churches who own the original registers.
- Cover the period from the 1840s to the 1920s and sometimes beyond.
- Included are Christchurch, Banks Peninsula, Canterbury inland from the city and north to Cheviot and Amuri.
- Anglican churches are particularly well-represented but the transcripts include Presbyterian, Methodist and some Catholic records. It is unlikely that further Catholic records will be included.
- Baptism, marriage and burial registers are transcribed onto cards which are eventually interfiled into one alphabetical index.
- Before the cards are filed, typed and bound, copies of individual registers are produced. Individual entries can be photocopied from the bound volumes.
In the Family History Centre’s Microfiche and Microfilm centre you will find a list of transcribed registers and a key to the symbols used.
Details on the card index
Each card has a code in the top right hand corner which relates to the church register which has been transcribed. There are guides entitled Explanation to the church register codes sitting with the card index drawers to help you find the name of the church or you can download the Church Register codes [192 KB PDF].
Though it will generally be obvious from the contents of the card whether a burial, baptism or marriage is involved, a number follows the three letter code which indicates:
1 = Burial
2 = Baptism
3 = Marriage
- Photocopies may be made from the typescripts rather than the cards.
- The name of the officiating minister appears at the bottom, or up the side of the entry in the cards, or at the end of an entry in a bound volume.
- If information was added by the officiating minister or a later minister, this is included.
- Details of divorce are mentioned where noted in the register.
- If a baptism refers to the death of a child, this is mentioned.
- If information was included and then crossed out, it is mentioned if it seems to be of interest.
Access to the baptism, marriage and burial records of the Anglican Church in Aotearoa New Zealand Polynesia -Te Hahi Mihinare ki Aotearoa ki Nui Tireni ki Nga Moutere o Te Moana Nui a Kiwa is decided by General Synod (Te Hinota Whanui).
Dates that records are available, are: baptisms (births over 100 years ago), marriages (over 80 years ago) and burials (deaths over 50 years ago).
The Anglican records held by Christchurch City Libraries are a copy of the material in the original registers, therefore copyright remains with the Episcopal Unit, in this case the Anglican Diocese of Christchurch.
Holdings of original registers
Aotearoa New Zealand Centre does hold some original registers and these will all be noted on our catalogue.
Please contact the following organisations for further information about original registers:
- Anglican Archives
- Methodist Archives
Roman Catholic Archives
Baptism index / Catholic Diocese of Christchurch
This Database contains baptism details for individuals baptised in the Catholic Diocese of Christchurch before 31 December 1904. This CD is an index only and should be used as a finding tool aid.
- Baptism index / Catholic Diocese of Christchurch
- Presbyterian Archives