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Family History

Family History Congress Canberra 2015

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What is Family History Search?

The NSW Registry of Births Deaths & Marriages has records of births, deaths and marriages in NSW from 1856. Early church records from 1788 to 1855 are also available. Our search engine allows unrestricted searching, with no identification required for:

  • Births over 100 years ago
  • Deaths over 30 years ago
  • Marriages over 50 years ago

After viewing search results, you may purchase a certificate and obtain all the information available. By applying online via Family History Search, you get a discounted fee of $31 (normally $44).

Basic Guidelines

Using Family History search takes 3 simple steps:
  1. Enter Search Details
  2. Sort Search Results
  3. Order Certificate(s)

1. Enter Search Details

Please select a Life Event from the drop down menu: Births/Deaths/Marriages.

If the Registration Number is known, Select: "Yes" from Search by number only drop down.

Enter the Registration Number and click the search button.

If Registration number is unknown, you must fill in at least one name field and Date of Event range fields to get results.

Name Field:  (Mandatory) Enter at least one name field.

Use advanced wildcard characters to find or replace text.

​Use this​To find
  • ​Example


Any string of characters.
  • R*n will match Ron, Ran, Roan etc.
  • 'Bro*' it will match any word starting with Bro e.g. Brooks, Bromley, Bros.


Replace a single character.
  • R?n will match Ron, Ran etc. It will not match Roan.
Represents a soundex.
  • @colin will match Clune, Colan, Cullan, Callahan.

Date of Event Range: (Mandatory).
Select Date of Event Range from drop down: Yes / No.

If you select Date of Event Range: "Yes",
enter date as per example below:

Date of Event From
Date of Event to

If you select Date of Event Range: "No",
enter exact Date of Event as per example below:

Date of Event

You can search Life Event up to...

Search up to
(over 100 years ago)
(over 30 years ago)
(over 50 years ago)

For example, if today's date is 25 February 2015, you can search for births up to 24 February 1915.

2. Sort Search Results

(Please Note: This step is optional)
Once the search results are generated, you can sort the results by clicking on a column title eg, Given Name(s), Father's Given Name, District etc. This will sort your results in either numerical or alphabetical order.

3. Order Certificate(s)

Search Results will be displayed with the following options:

  • Add to Order - from the Search Results make a selection and Add to Order to purchase.
  • Modify Criteria - This option will take you back to the search page with your previous search criteria.
  • Continue Searching - returns to Family History Search page without your previous search criteria

Order Details:

  • Select number of certificate(s) you wish to purchase.
  • Select delivery method via Email and/or Post, standard turnaround times apply.
  • Click on Update Order and then click on Purchase.

Applicant Details:
All fields in this section are mandatory, except Other Given Name(s).

Transaction Summary:
It will display certificate ordered details with the below option;

  • Back - will return to Applicant Details,
  • Discard - will return to the Order Details,
  • Submit Payment - will go to Payment details screen.

Payment Details:

  • Payment can only be made by credit card.

 ( Please note: All fields on the payment details screen are mandatory.)

  • A Successful Payment will display a confirmation message and a Tax Invoice will be automatically emailed to the address provided.

Ask a family history transcription agent

Family history transcription agents provide full and partial transcriptions, or verification of details. A good idea if you only need the facts, and not full certified copies of certificates. For more details and fees, see below.

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