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:
FFHS Archives Liaison
24 January 2014