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Religion plays a huge part in many people’s lives. It is as true of the past as it is today.

The object of this article is certainly not to discuss the merits of one religion over another but to consider its legacy.

Genealogists would be starved of all sorts of records both genealogical and historical without the records they kept. The lives of our ancestors were almost entirely governed by religion – from birth until death.

Religious bodies kept records of births, marriages and deaths without which our understanding of the past would be void. They are a blessing to genealogists.

Nightmare is too strong a word but time navigating the plethora of religious variants and deviants is akin to the sort of aimless wandering familiar in my dreams; so it is not without its difficulties.

This is the start of a project to look at the type of records kept, if they were kept at all, by non-conformist churches.

The first article will be about the Peculiars.

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