Family history collection

All of our libraries hold books on family history, while a great deal of our collection is housed in Lord Louis Library in Newport. The collection is available during normal library opening hours. 

A lot of family history resources can now be found online, including access to the births, deaths and marriages indexes. 

The library service has a subscription to the family history website Find My Past, which allows library users to access the site and its subscription-only resources when using one of the library's computers (you cannot access this service for free on your home computer).

The library service also offers one-hour sessions on how to search for your family history at Ryde Library. They can be contacted on 01983 823825.

Local family records

You can search for your family history through our local collections held at our record office. These are:

  • local records such as baptism and burial registers
  • all other local archives, maps and an illustrations collection
  • local electoral registers and poll books from the 1920s to the present (the most recent ones are only available at staff’s discretion, because of a change in electoral law)
  • some pre-1872 poll books that recorded votes cast at parliamentary elections.

Other related collections

Related collections you can find at our record office are:
  • Local census returns are available on microfilm (making advance bookings is advisable; call  01983 823820)
  • Trade and street directories covering the Isle of Wight, some including Hampshire 
  • Periodicals, such as Family Tree Jan 1995 to May 2003, and the Isle of Wight Family History Society Magazine
  • a selection of local newspapers produced in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (some of these are available on microfilm)

Visit our record and archive pages for more information.

Local cemetery and registrar records

Visit Isle of Wight Family History Society for:

  • cemetery records, such as name indexes for some towns
  • Isle of Wight Registrar’s records from 1837 onwards.

Related links