Search for baptisms, marriages and burials

picture of little girl

From an India Office Records file relating to the repatriation of Austrians and Germans during WWI, Oct 1915-Nov 1915 (See the Untold Lives blog for more details).

Published date:

Baptisms, marriages and burials can be searched in Find My Past’s British in India Collection and by visiting our reading room. Alternatively, our reference team can conduct a search.  The India Office Records Ecclesiastical Returns (copy registers of births/baptisms, marriages and burials of European and Eurasian Christians in India, Burma and territories controlled from India) are not complete. We estimate that 20-30% of the returns are missing so it is possible that a search will not be successful. Certified copies, i.e. an official copy with the seal of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, can also be provided. The fees for Ecclesiastical Searches and Certificates are as follows:

  • £36 per search for enquirers of EU countries (includes VAT)
  • £30 per search for enquirers of non-EU countries
  • £18 per certified copy

Applications for Ecclesiastical Records Search (PDF file and print)

Enquirers who are unable to make a personal visit to the Asian & African Studies Reading Room may wish to employ a research agent to pursue enquiries on their behalf. A list can be supplied on request.

Family history training

Every month the British Library runs free introductory training courses on using the India Office Records for family history research. These are advertised via the Untold Lives and Asian and African Studies blogs, the Library’s website and the Reader Bulletin.


Asian and African Studies enquiries
The British Library
96 Euston Road
London NW1 2DB
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7873
Fax: +44 (0)20 7412 7641
Email: Ask the Asian and African Studies Reference Team

Collection guides

Asian government publications

Our collections are particularly strong for the Indian subcontinent

UK electoral registers

Printed electoral registers from 1832 to the present

Publications from intergovernmental organisations (IGOs)

We are a depository library for the United Nations and other organisations

India Office medical archive collections

A wealth of information relating to medicine and health in India

India Office Records and Private Papers: family history

Information about people who came into contact with the East India Company and the British administration in India

European Union official publications

The British Library is a recognised European Documentation Centre (EDC)

United States federal government publications

Publications from the 18th century to the present day

UK national government publications

Publications in print and electronic formats from the Middle Ages to the present day

India Office: Company paintings

Collections of drawings made for East India Company officials, chiefly by Indian artists.

India Office: prints, drawings and paintings

We have one of the world’s richest archives of prints and drawings from South Asia

India Office: popular paintings

A collection of 19th and 20th century Indian paintings from the India Office

Paintings, sculpture and furniture

We hold a rich collection of oil paintings, sculpture and historical furniture from the India Office collections

India Office photograph collections

Our India Office photograph collections contain some 250,000 images from c 1850 onwards.

South Asia manuscripts

More than 80,000 manuscripts in both Asian and European languages

South Asia printed books and periodicals

Over 500,000 printed books and 60,000 European and South Asian languages periodicals