The BMD Birth and Marriage Indices

 

Important Note: Birth details have largely been taken from the death index, however following a review of the Cenotaph database and consequent on my findings there, I have worked my way through the Birth index, to plug the remaining gaps. As of writing this I have entered all births found covering the period 1 January 1890 to 29 October 1917. Remember what I said about a birth having to be over 100 years old. Over this next few years we will see more and more names appear. I will go back every twelve months or so and do an update so that the spreadsheet entries remain fresh.

Verifying date of birth

In some instances a search of the birth index may produce no result. This could be for a number of reasons including: the person may have been born overseas, the birth may not have been registered, (quite common I found with a number of the Maori names), or the information regarding birth shown on either the Cenotaph record or in the death index is not correct, or not correct in so far as that it does not match the entry in the registry.

Kaye, George Frederick, 1914-2004. New Zealand armoured car and Italian refugees, Italy, during World War 2. New Zealand. Department of Internal Affairs. War History Branch :Photographs relating to World War 1914-1918, World War 1939-1945, occupation of Japan, Korean War, and Malayan Emergency. Ref: DA-06007-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23106776 “Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.”

Kaye, George Frederick, 1914-2004. New Zealand armoured car and Italian refugees, Italy, during World War 2. New Zealand. Department of Internal Affairs. War History Branch :Photographs relating to World War 1914-1918, World War 1939-1945, occupation of Japan, Korean War, and Malayan Emergency. Ref: DA-06007-F. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23106776
“Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.”

Let’s work through a couple of examples.

Using William Robert Garton as our first we see quite a lot more information available when doing a search of the BMD Birth Index. Again it’s the same procedure entering his date of birth in the ‘search from’ and ‘search to’ date fields and then clicking the ‘Submit Search’ button. Now we have even more information showing up, namely his father’s and mother’s given names. We also see the birth registration number and again can place an order for a copy of the certificate if we wish.

Let’s do another one which has just year of birth: Richard John Howie shows as having died in 1966 at the age of 61. This means he was born around 1905. Doing a search from 1/1/1904 to 31/12/1905 shows he was in fact born either in 1904 or 1905 and the registration number is 1904/4854. Again, using the same refining technique we used with the death search, we find he was born on 12th August 1904.

It goes without saying of course that you will not be able to pull up details of personnel born overseas.

Brigadier W H Cunningham, CBE DSO VD, Officer Commanding the forces in Fiji, taking the salute during the Anzac Day parade in Suva - Photograph taken by an unknown photographer. New Zealand. Department of Internal Affairs. War History Branch :Photographs relating to World War 1914-1918, World War 1939-1945, occupation of Japan, Korean War, and Malayan Emergency. Ref: PA1-q-294-057-518. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23075355 “Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.”

Brigadier W H Cunningham, CBE DSO VD, Officer Commanding the forces in Fiji, taking the salute during the Anzac Day parade in Suva – Photograph taken by an unknown photographer. New Zealand. Department of Internal Affairs. War History Branch :Photographs relating to World War 1914-1918, World War 1939-1945, occupation of Japan, Korean War, and Malayan Emergency. Ref: PA1-q-294-057-518. Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand. http://natlib.govt.nz/records/23075355
“Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, Wellington, New Zealand, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.”

Verifying date of marriage

Not content with what you have already you may wish to try and verify marriage details, the moreso if you are in the process of compiling a family tree.

Note: you will be unable to access any marriage details which are not at least 80 years prior to the date of your search. So, as at today, I cannot access any details post 29 October 1937. For the moment that will preclude a search on many who are on the database. Again though, more and more searches will be freed up as time passes.

Let’s look at one Arthur Chillas Henderson to see if we can find his marriage details:

To start with I am entering in the information I have and entering a date range 1/1/1921 to 29/1/1934. This throws up a registration number: 1926/1761 and his wife’s maiden name. Drilling down reveals they were married on 31 March 1926. A certificate of marriage can now be ordered if you so wish.

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