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Record Collections

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Strays & More Collection Service

Available to members only. Not a member? Join now.

About the Strays & More Collection

A "Stray" is anyone who has left a record of a marriage, death, employment or any other event in a state, county or country other than where he or she was born. A person shown as born in Dunedin may have been married in Nelson. The record will be in Nelson, but you may have been searching in Dunedin.

Strays can be found in most genealogical records –

  • New Zealand Birth Registrations
    From 1875 provision was made for the birthplaces of both parents to be included.
  • New Zealand Marriage Registrations
    From 1881 the birthplaces of both the bride and groom were included.
  • New Zealand Death Registrations
    From 1875 the birthplace of the deceased may be found on a death entry.
  • Publications
    Local history and school publications, as well as biographies and cyclopedias will often contain clues as to a person’s origins.
  • Newspapers
    Strays can be found in birth, death and marriage notices, as well as obituaries.
  • Cemetery Transcriptions
    Some tombstone inscriptions mention a place of origin.
  • School Registers
    These are sometimes referred to as New Zealand’s unofficial census as they may show the family moving from one place to another.
  • Ships’ Passenger Lists
    Sometimes entries in these lists may show a passenger’s place of origin.
  • Census for England and Wales
    From 1851 onwards the birthplace was added to the information on the census sheet.

The Strays & More collection is made up of information members have contributed to the collection when they have come across strays in their own research. It also includes a diverse range of other sources.

Data from the collection is entered in a database which can be searched by name.

What information can I obtain about strays?

If your search of a particular name is successful, you will receive a report setting out the event, its location, details and source.

The Strays & More collection is an index; if your search is successful remember to check the source documents.

View the names that are in the index
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z.

How do I look for a stray?

Please limit your requests to six entries at a time and print the name exactly as it appears in the index.

Want more information about strays?

For general enquiries contact the Collection Officer.

How do I contribute my strays?

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