Tag Archives: poll book

Sussex Poll Books on Google Books

1 Feb

It has been a while since I spent any time on Google Books and I was pleasantly surprised to find out how much it had grown over the last few years and how useful it could be to my research.

I was surprised to find that Google Book now included amongst the collection a selection of eighteenth and nineteenth century poll books for the county of Sussex.

Poll books are basically lists of people entitled vote in various different elections. They differ from later electoral rolls (or registers) in that they also tell you who the person actually voted for, something unimaginable these days.

Eligibility to vote was mainly down to property ownership (but varied from time and place) so many of the lists are quite short, but even I have found some my farming relations among the list of voter’s names.

So far I have found the following poll books for Sussex:

There may be more of course because they don’t all have "poll book" in the title, and I haven’t had time to see what the coverage of other counties is like.

I am definitely going to have to spend some more time on Google Books and see what other Sussex resources and general background material I can find.

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