What can be found in the registry office documents?
For most people, the registry office is the place of registration of certain events. However, we should not forget that in addition to directly registering current acts of civil status, the registry office also stores books with records of acts for previous decades.
Ukrainian legislation in the field of archives provides that the records are stored in the local registry offices for 75 years. After the expiration of this period, the documents are transferred to the regional archives. The exception is the Kiev region, since act books on the settlements of the region are stored in the State Archive of the Kiev Region (GAKO), and documents on the city of Kiev itself (until 1940 inclusive as of the beginning of 2022) – in the State Archive of the City of Kiev (SAC) . Thus, based on the legislation, now the archives should store act books until 1945 inclusive. Unfortunately, the process of transferring documents often takes longer than planned. As of 2021, act books until 1942-1943 were transferred to the archives. inclusive. The situation may vary depending on each individual archive.
The main types of act records and the data contained in them:
- About the birth of – Full name of the child, full name of his parents, age and nationality of the parents, their place of work, position, address of residence, etc. This document is one of the key documents for confirming the nationality of the ancestor.
- About marriage – The name of the bride and groom, their age, position and place of work, address of residence, sometimes the period that they lived in this locality is indicated. It can also be documented what this marriage is in terms of for each of the spouses. In most cases, the marriage record – this is the only source from which we can find out the woman’s maiden name.
- About divorce – Full name of the former spouses, grounds for divorce (on the initiative of the husband or wife / at the mutual desire of the couple / by court decision), the number of children, the place of residence of the children after the dissolution of the marriage (with the father or mother), the surname of the husband and wife after the divorce (the woman returns her maiden name or remains in the name of her ex-husband).
- About changing the last name / first name / patronymic – previous and new full name, data change date.
- About death – Name of the deceased, cause, date, place of death.
It is worth remembering that the form of act records has changed several times and, for example, in the birth certificate for 1923, we will almost never find data on the nationality of the child’s parents, since this column did not appear in the documents at that time. The registry office books have been an extremely valuable source for research into the history of the family.