Hampshire, Hants, or Southampton, maritime county (including the Isle of Wight), in South of England; bounded north by Berks, east by Surrey and Sussex, south by the English Channel, and west by Wilts and Dorset; greatest length (exclusive of the Isle of Wight), north to south, 46 miles; greatest breadth, east to west, 46 miles; 1,037,764 acres, population, 593,470. (The figures of acres and population include the Isle of Wight.) Hampshire is undulating, finely wooded, and fruitful. Its coast line is very inregular, the principal indentation being Southampton Water. From Surrey and Sussex, north-east to Wilts and Berks, two ranges of chalk hills, known as the North and South Downs, traverse the county. In the west is the New Forest, and in the south-east are the Forests of Bere and Waltham Chase. The Avon, Exe, Test, Itching, and Hamble are the chief rivers. The county is noted for its agriculture, the wheat of Hampshire being especially prized. Upon the Downs are reared large flocks of the variety of sheep known as "Hampshire Downs," or "short wools." Pig breeding, and the curing of bacon, have long been large and lucrative branches of the county's industry. The mineral resources are meagre; and, except in large coast towns, such as Portsmouth and Gosport, the manufactures also are unimportant. The shipping, however, is very extensive. Hampshire (with the Isle of Wight) comprises 38 hundreds, 12 liberties, 349 parishes, with parts of 3 others..."
(From a 19th Century Gazetteer)
Also see the entry for Hampshire in the The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868).
(See also pages for the Isle of Wight)
Archives and Libraries
- The Hampshire
Record Office is located at Winchester (Sussex Road, Winchester, HANTS SO23 8TH UK) and is part of the Hampshire County Council's Archives and Local Studies section. Included in their mandate are archives, and libraries. One of the projects supported by the Hampshire Record Office was the digitization of historic Hampshire photographs (10,000 images from the 1850s to the 1990s). The Hampshire Photographic Project is part of the online catalogue which also includes all wills proved in the courts of Winchester Diocese to 1858.
- The Portsmouth
Museums and Records Service is located in the same building as the Portsmouth City Museum. The 14th century records of the Portsmouth City Council are held there. There are also large collections of material deposited by local businesses, family groupings and other organizations. The public Search Room houses thousands of local maps and plans, photographs and picture postcards. NB. The Records Office Searchroom has recently moved to the second floor of Portsmouth Central Library, where it has merged with the Local Studies Library to form Portsmouth History Centre.
- Southampton Archives Holdings in the archives date from 1199 onwards. The reading room in the heart of Southampton's fine Civic Centre, to consult the materials in the collection. You will find us in the basement level of the South Block. An appointment isn't necessary, but you may wish to contact the archivist before your visit, to ensure the information or items you're looking for is held. The Reading Room is accessible to wheelchair users. Hand-magnifiers and lamp-magnifiers are also available. There is no charge for visiting the reading room, which is open Tuesday - Friday 9.30am - 4.30pm.
of Wight Record Office - their material spans 12th to 21st centuries and includes
parish, estate, family, businesses, schools and local government for
the island. The Record Office undertakes research for those who are not able to visit in person. The charge is GBP15.00 for a 1 hour search of documents held by the Office. There are also several private record agents working on the Isle of Wight, and a list of these is available on request; if a search is beyond the resources of the Office, they reserve the right to refer to this list. Visit this site which has a number of images including a 1627 map of the Island from Speed's Atlas.
- Dorset County Council
have records of the area around Bournemouth, formerly in Hampshire but
now in Dorset. The Dorset Record Office preserves and makes available to the
public the archives and records of the history of Dorset over the last ten centuries.
The archives preserved in the Dorset
Record Office survive from 965 to the present day and relate to every town
and parish in the area of Bournemouth. They record the ownership and
management of the land, the operation of businesses, the conduct of
local government, the administration of justice, the lives of families
and individuals, etc.
- The Staunton
Park Genealogy Centre, based near Havant.
- The University of
Southampton Library, Archive and Manuscript Collections: ("is
particularly strong in areas of nineteenth and twentieth century
political and military history, and archives of Anglo-Jewry").
- Local Studies & Reference Libraries
- The Cemeteries of Hampshire - Their History and Records by David Jacobs (1997) is a book published by the Hampshire Genealogical Society.
- Eastleigh Cemeteries surname search
is provided by the Borough Council.
- Friends of Southampton Old Cemetery This cemetery (opened in 1846) is owned and managed by Southampton City Council. Please visit the webpage for more details.
- Hampshire - Census Records and indexes - links and information
Hampshire Churches is a website prepared by John Vigar which will eventually have a photo of all Anglican places of worship in Hampshire. It will also include details of the 1851 Census of Religious Worship.
Isle of Wight Churches which includes a map which is clickable taking you to many of the island's churches (includes photographs, current and historical information).
Plans Online (Hampshire section), records of The Incorporated
Church Building Society held at Lambeth Palace Archives. There are almost 500 records
of applications for funding of building and restoration from 1818 to 1982. Detail available
varies from a summary of the grant application to a plan of the church before and after the
work, and sometimes an illustration of the church.
You may also find it worthwhile searching for churches in the GENUKI church database:
- Online Parish Clerk Project
The Hampshire Online Parish Clerk project is being co-ordinated by Tony and Linda Knight who are hosting the data on their Knightroots web site (choose Hampshire OPC in the left hand navigation panel on their website). Tony and Linda will maintain the individual parish pages and utilize their own transcriptions plus the many donated transcriptions for the many parishes of Hampshire. Volunteers to help with this enormous project (there are nearly 400 parishes and chapelries in this County) are always welcomed. The online parish clerk is a volunteer who would gather information for a specific parish and provide transcriptions, advice and lookups based on this information. If you would like to take on a particular parish or donate transcriptions for individual parishes please contact Tony and Linda Knight. They would also welcome contributions from anyone who is unable to commit to responsibility for a parish but would still like to contribute. Any contributions that are made will be credited to the submitter.
- Hampshire - Church Records and indexes - links and information
- Brett Langston has provided details of the Registration
Hampshire for the period 1837 to 1930.
- Hampshire County Council Registration Service gives details of all Register Offices for the county, with contacts and opening times.
Description and Travel
Treasures Online - "Those natural or man made features of the
county which are of public interest by reason of their aesthetic,
archaeological, historic, scenic, scientific, sociological or
traditional interest, and whose deterioration or destruction would
represent a serious loss to our heritage".
- Local pages
by area on Hampshire County Council Hantsweb
William Cobbett's Rural Rides 1830 - Extracts about Hampshire,
provided by Jean and Martin Norgate on
Old Hampshire mapped which has other descriptions.
Forest History has descriptions and
links for this area. It includes a section on Commoners'
- Solent Sky Museum - History of Aviation in Southampton, Hampshire and Solent
area. The museum also has an archive, full of information including
original drawings, maps, books and photographs.
- A transcription of the section for Hampshire from
the National Gazetteer (1868) produced by Colin Hinson.
You may also find it worthwhile searching in the
- Online Parish Clerk Project
The Hampshire Online Parish Clerk project is being co-ordinated by Tony and Linda Knight who are hosting the data on their website: OPC Hampshire. Tony and Linda will maintain the individual parish pages and utilize their own transcriptions plus the many donated transcriptions for the many parishes of Hampshire. Volunteers to help with this enormous project (there are nearly 400 parishes and chapelries in this County) are always welcomed. The online parish clerk is a volunteer who would gather information for a specific parish and provide transcriptions, advice and lookups based on this information. If you would like to take on a particular parish or donate transcriptions for individual parishes please contact Tony and Linda Knight. They would also welcome contributions from anyone who is unable to commit to responsibility for a parish but would still like to contribute. Any contributions that are made will be credited to the submitter.
Guild of One Name Studies links to surnames that are covered by members of the Guild of One Name Studies. For information on Hampshire names please contact Hampshire Representative of the Guild of One Name Studies
- The Hampshire
Genealogy Society has a wealth of information available to members and non-members.
- The Hampshire England DNA Project has been established at FT DNA Hampshire England for anyone who has tested with this company and would like to join. For new people there is a discount for the first 12 markers of the yDNA if interested. A separate database will also be maintained which can be accessed from the FT DNA site or there will be a hyperlink from this site. You can send your results directly to the site administrator E Kipp if you wish to have them included in the project. The early history of Hampshire (formerly Southampton) stretches back thousands of years and the ability to look at the genetic genealogy of this County should be a most interesting study.
- John Fuller has provided full details of the many Genealogy
Mailing Lists which cover this county. This is but a small part of
the data available on the "Genealogy
Resources on the Internet" pages maintained by John and Chris Gaunt.
- Researchers may be interested in the Hampshire GenWeb and the
Isle of Wight GenWeb
- Hampshire Family History and Local History - a directory of Internet sites for Hampshire and Isle of Wight genealogy, compiled by Alan McGowan.
Old Hampshire Mapped
is a site with a variety of maps online. There is an associated
Both are also available
on CD from the site compilers,
Jean and Martin Norgate. There is an article about the design and
production of the set of map reproductions in
"Old Hampshire Mapped" by Jean and Martin Norgate, The Cartographic
Journal, Vol 41 No 1 June 2004 p47-53.
- Genmaps have put online a variety of
old Hampshire maps.
Information on Hampshire map of 1627 by John Speed
- North Hampshire Tithe Map
"has, as it's aim, to transcribe and digitise all the Tithe
Apportionments and Tithe Maps
for that area of North Hampshire covered by the present Borough of
Basingstoke & Deane.
Additionally all the data from the Tithe Apportionments is being
compiled into a searchable
database. This is a private research project being carried out by Gerry Dutton.
Free Historical Maps for the county of Hampshire and the Isle of
Wight, with gazetteer.
- Alan Godfrey Maps publish facsimiles of detailed Ordnance Survey maps, mainly from 1890s to 1930s
Red Funnel - Solent Queen gives a description of Paddle Steamers in the Solent.
- As a coastal county facing a continental shore, Hampshire has a
very long military history closely involved with the
Royal Navy, units of the the British Army and, since the beginning of
military aviation, the Royal Flying Corps and
the Royal Naval Air Service, which on 1 April 1918 amalgamated into the
Royal Air Force.
Airfields website has a list and history of airfields.
- British Military
based at Marchwood.
Locations for Victoria Cross Holders
Royal Hampshire Regiment from regimemts.org.
- The Hampshire
Regiment in 1914-1918
Yeomanry (Carabiniers) from regimemts.org.
licences issued by the Archbishop of Canterbury 1535 - 1775 for
from Lambeth Palace Library.
of Wight Photographers - A database of Photographers working in the
Isle of Wight
1860-1940, provided by Gordon Childs.
- Isle of Wight Brick Making History - Lots of information about the history of the craft includes some Island Brickmakers.
- Hampshire Constabulary
have a website with history of the force, including famous cases, books
They have a museum at Netley Training School, and a newsletter online.
They publish a book
"Policing Hampshire and the Isle of Wight: A Photographic
ISBN 186077 1963 - More than 200 photographs help tell the
history of the force in
Burners of the New Forest From The Lonely Men of the Forest by
J.S.P. Agg Large.
This is an extract from a magazine article, provided online in a Purkis
which has information on the Rufus Stone and surroundings.
- Coastguards of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight information was on these pages, it is now included in a national database provided for us by Stan Waight and collaborators.
- Nick Hidden's abstracts of probate
documents relating to people residing in the neighbourhood of the towns
of Hungerford and Wantage in Berkshire for the period 1500-1858
include some relating to parts of Hampshire.
- Wiltshire and Swindon Archives Catalogue of wills,
which covers Berkshire, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire and Wiltshire,
is a comprehensive database of over 300,000 probate
records. There are digital images of about 25% of the records
include some relating to parts of Hampshire.
of Wight FHS
- Bitterne Local History Society
- Hampshire Industrial
Archaeology Society say "Our activities have included surveys and
making records of mills, breweries, brick works, farm buildings,
transport related items and artifacts. Restoration and preservation has
been undertaken by the group as well as in association with other
organizations such as the Hampshire Mills Group, The Twyford Waterworks
Trust and the Tram 57 Project. We meet once a month."