logoOther useful sources of information


The Ordnance Survey produced the first truly detailed mapping of the Island in 1867 - the 25" to 1mile Plans cover the populated portion of the Island. Douglas and Peel have plans drawn at 50" to the mile. These maps are generally available in the larger public libraries. The 25" plans have not seen significant updates since 1868. The 1:25000 Leisure Map (on two sheets and available from most bookshops on the Island) is derived from the 6" map revised around 1900 and is useful for locating many of the places. See also my Balla-where pages to help locate one of the many Balla's on the Island.

Taggart's Plans of Douglas date from 1834 and can be useful in identifying long gone streets.

Wood's atlas dating from 1867 is a little earlier than the O/S - however it is extremely useful in giving the boundaries and the owners of the land.

Two series of plans on a larger scale than Wood's atlas (and upon which Wood's atlas was based) are the Asylum Plans (of 1860) and the Tithe plans produced in the 1840's when tithes were commuted to a fixed sum. Unfortunately these plans, held in the General Registry, are not available for public inspection - they are still used by the land agents to determine title and years of such use have left them in a deplorable condition. It would appear that the Registry has now finally got round to the task of photocopying and preservation (though not before many of the Rushen maps have been 'misplaced'). As of February 1999 microfiche copies of the tithe and asylum plans have become available for public consulatation at the Land Registry (part of General Registries) and also at the Manx Museum.


See separate page for list and links to on-line copies

Voters Lists

Tynwald was first elected by popular suffrage in 1866, the vote being extended to women in 1881. The Voters' Lists are available at the Manx Museum


Local taxes (or 'rates') were collected from occupiers of property in the major towns from the late 19th C - lists of such ratepayers are available and can help indicate different addresses, and by address social standing and/or affluence. However please note that until recent times in the towns most houses were rented and it will be the owner's name not the occupiers that will be found.

Military Records

B.E.Sargeaunt has produced two books: A Military History of the Isle of Man gives a history of the various Manx Garrisons and regiments from the 17th C through to WW2; The Royal Manx Fencibles covers in detail the various Fencible corps (ie those that were supposed to stay within the British Isles) raised between 1793 and 1811. Both books give lists of offiicers. However more useful is a list of recruits to the Fencibles (Manx Museum MD240/10 + 11) which gives for each recruit his rank, age, height, colour of eyes, place of birth and date of enlistment. Over 1000 men are listed.

Vol 12 No.4 of Family History Society Journal had as special theme Manx Military records.

Naval Records

It is estimated that as many as 3,000 Manxmen served either as volunteers or as impressed seamen on British naval vessels betweem 1755 and 1815. Records of their service are in the Public Record Office, London.
An example of the sort of information available is given in the late Miss A McHardy's article Manx Seamen on H.M.S. Ships 1790-1793 FHS Journal vol 02.1 pp8-10. The same article also illustrates some of the additional information to be gleaned from wills.

School Records

The education act of 1872 required masters to keep records of pupils etc - many of these still survive but are still mostly held by the school.

King William's College

King William's College was one of the first public schools of the 19C, established 1833. Although most pupils were non-Manx many Manx boys did pass through its gates, a list of all old boys and a brief note as to their future career is available from the King William's College Register. A copy is held in the Manx Museum.


These can be a fruitful source though the earliest newspapers carried little Manx news - see special page on Newspapers.

Non printed material

Family Trees in Manx Museum and/or FHS Library

Both the Manx Museum and the FHS Library have numerous manuscript family trees presented by their compilers. The quality of these varies enormously, some are based on years of scholarship and contain much that may be use to others whose trees intersect; others, especially those based on uncritical reliance on the IGI may be less accurate.

Web pages

A growing number of family trees are now available via the web - see index to GEDCOM files.

Goodwin Collection

The Manx Museum contains a collection of scrapbooks compiled by the Goodwin brothers early in the 20C - much is 'hearsay' which is found nowhere else (these scrapbooks are also available on Mormon Microfilm).

An example of the material included can be seen in the article Old Peel by G.G. (presumed George Goodwin) in Mannin - see also Manx Annals published 1901/2.


The dating of family photographs can be very difficult if the original owner was inconsiderate enough not to note the subject and/or date! Some indication of date may be possible by the name and address of photographer on rear face.

The Manx Museum also have a large collection of portrait photographs (as well as many others of buildings etc.) from mid 19C.

 [Genealogy Index]


Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
© F.Coakley , 2001