View Full Version : Bastardy orders - dates?

Barbara Dodds
05-02-08, 09:18
Could someone remind me please if I'm likely to find any bastardy orders for a chid born in 1871.

For some reason I seem to think that the system had stopped by then.


05-02-08, 10:19
I don't think you would, Barbara, but I don't know the exact date when they stopped.

Barbara Dodds
05-02-08, 10:33
Thanks Kate. That agrees with my thinking at least. I'll just have to come up with another idea (trying to help someone else out)

Olde Crone Holden
05-02-08, 13:09
I think I did a bit for this for the WIKI?

Basically, Bastardy Orders went from being the responsibility of the Parish (Church) authorities, to that of the State, when the Union Poor Law Act was passed in about 1835(?).

After 1835 they were dealt with in the County Court and later the Magistrates Court and there doesn't seem to be any central depository for them. I suspect many were simply destroyed once the child reached working age. If a child did not need poor relief then it was up to the mother to take out a Maintenance Order and lots didn't bother.

I have found literally hundreds of Bastardy Orders before 1835, but haven't managed to find a single one AFTER that date.


Barbara Dodds
05-02-08, 13:24
Thanks OC. The last one I've got is dated 1848.

Yes you did do a bit for the WIKI, and I had looked at it:)

I'll see if I can come up with some other ideas.

Rosie Knees
05-02-08, 14:18
Hi Barbara, you could look for the baptism on the parish register at the RO and see if the vicar was 'kind' enough to write 'bastard child of jo bloggs' under the child's name.

Barbara Dodds
05-02-08, 14:25
Now there's a thought Rose, and yes it could be worth a try. Thanks

Who else but a dedicated family historian would want the family scandals recording:D

Rosie Knees
05-02-08, 15:43
Glad to help. I tell people this all the time and the ONE person I want to look at on the register for this reason, my G GF James Smith, is way down in Berkshire :-(