Durham Family History


  • Durham Record Office
    Find out what records they hold and how to view them. DRO is the official archive for County Durham and Darlington.
  • Teesdale Mercury Archive
    The Teesdale Mercury Archive has been developed by converting approximately 45,000-microfilmed pages of the Teesdale Mercury into searchable images. These images digitally preserve every page of the newspaper from its first issue in July 1854 until December 2005. The page images may be simply browsed or the page text of the complete archive can be searched for words or phrases.

BMDs & Parish Records

  • Durham Records Online
    Durham Records Online allows you to search for you Durham ancestors in parish records and christenings, confirmations, marriages, burials. There are currently over 3 million records available.
  • Tees Valley Indexes
    Tees Valley Indexes refer to the registers of births deaths and marriages held at Middlesbrough, Hartlepool, Stockton-on-Tees and Redcar & Cleveland Register Offices. The four local authorities were the successors of Cleveland County Council, which was dissolved in 1996. This site will to enable you to interrogate the index, so that you may request a certificate of a birth, death or marriage from any of these Register Offices.
  • Stockton Roots
    Search and view birth, death, marriage and burial details for Stockton-on-Tees. Stockton Roots has searchable records, tips and links to other record offices and websites, will be a useful resource for family historians.
  • Durham Obituaries 1856-1916
    An index to obituaries of prominent Durham City inhabitants, and other important individuals in the county.
  • Durham Parish Records
    Research your ancestors’ baptisms, marriages and burials from 1538 onwards.


  • Durham Crematorium Book of Remembrance
    View the records by selecting a day and month. The years are listed together.
  • Sunderland Burial Records
    The Sunderland cemetery index has thousands of burial and cemetery records for you to view. Viewing records is free. However, if you’d like a picture of a headstone, there’s a small charge for it.

Census Records

  • Census 1841-1921
    Search the census records for Durham from 1841-1921, plus the 1939 Register all at once.
  • FreeCen
    Has a good, but not complete, selection of free records to search and view.

Electoral Registers

Historical Directories

These directories contain the lists of streets, people and businesses in the following places.

Local History


  • North East Railways WWI Records
    The North East Railways in World War One project has seen a team of volunteers search through the archive at Head of Steam – Darlington Railway Museum and record over 9,000 railway men who enlisted in the First World War.
  • Soldiers of the North East
    The records in this database are the accumulation of more than ten years work by historian Stephen Nicholson. Focusing on his home town of Darlington, Stephen has recorded the details of more than 1,200 soldiers who died in the war and who have some connection with the town.
    The Northern Echo is continuing Stephen’s work as part of its bid to digitise the newspapers from 1914 to 1918. The Northern Echo is currently going through the back copies of the Echo, and its sister paper, the Evening Despatch, which published thousands of stories and photographs about local men going to war. The Northern Echo is scanning those stories and photos and placing them on a second database to run alongside the Nicholson database.
  • Durham Home Guard 1939-1945
    These are records of over 80,000 individuals who served in the Home Guard in the county of Durham between 1939 and 1945. The records consist of the enrolment forms that were completed when men joined the Durham Home Guard.
  • War history of the 18th (S.) Battalion Durham Light Infantry
    Printed in 1920, this book includes the history of wars, a roll of officers and non-commissioned officers.

School Records


  • Northumberland & Durham Family History Society
    The Northumberland & Durham Family History Society has a research centre in Newcastle where you can search for your family history. There are different branches throughout the region where monthly meetings are held. Anyone can join the society and get help and advice.

Wills & Probate