Contents- Bangor, Long-Whittenham Berks, Wooton Basset Wilts 1767 British Library ADD 33,409
BackgroundThe problems for Roman Catholics started with Henry VIII falling out with the Pope over Henryâs desire to divorce his first wife, Catherine. Henry declared himself Head of the Church in England. Successive monarchs and their Governments were concerned about a take-over of England by Catholic powers in Europe. Between 1559 and the Emancipation Act of 1829 many Acts of Parliament were passed in order to prevent Roman Catholics practising their Faith and to force them into conforming to the newly established Anglican Church and its rites. They were barred from many occupations and activities. Those who refused to conform were called recusants. People who followed the Pope in Rome were papists. All those who refused to take the required Oaths to prove their loyalty to the British monarch were described as non-jurors. Not all of these were Roman Catholics. Jacobitism was a political movement working towards restoring the Catholic Stuart King James II of England and VII of Scotland, and his heirs, to the throne, leading to various uprisings and support from Catholic monarchs in Europe. Followers of James were called Jacobites and many of them were also Roman Catholic.Roman Catholics who came into any of these categories were sought out by the local Anglican Church wardens and constables in order to be punished usually by fines or by double land taxes. To facilitate this, local officials were ordered to make lists of papists/recusants/Jacobites in their area and send such lists to the higher authorities. Such lists may be found in the archives of the Anglican Diocese or local Record Offices. A complete set for 1767 is in the House of Lords Archive. They are not kept in any Catholic Archives, though copies of transcriptions may be.
The ListsThe lists available in this package have been transcribed by Sylvia Dibbs as part of a long term project undertaken by Brother Rory Higgins of the De La Salle Brothers to build a database of pre-1837 Roman Catholics, mainly in England. The lists have names of adult men and often women. Sometimes children are named or just the number of children in a family. Some lists include occupations. Addresses did not exist then, but locations, necessary for land taxes, areas are often given. As marriages and usually burials had to take place in Anglican Churches this can be a useful pointer to a parish register.The originals of these lists are in London, England at:
Reference numbers are given on each transcription. The transcriber has made every effort to avoid mistakes, but cannot guarantee there are none. It is recommended that the original documents are checked if possible. Many documents are in very poor condition or poorly written and therefore very difficult to read. Anyone researching their Catholic ancestors should find out a little of the history of this era. Remember everyone in England was Roman Catholic before the Reformation of Henry VIII.
Copyright, transcriptions and notes: Sylvia J. Dibbs 2014
Supplied by: Catholic Family History Society
Product Ref: CAT-DD-002