Discover your ancestor in registers from the Portsmouth Workhouse. Discover when your ancestor entered and left the workhouse, as well as your ancestor’s birth year and address.
Each result will provide you with an image and transcript. Transcripts will generally provide the following details:
Images may be able to offer you additional details such as religious denomination, informant’s name, and written notes. For example, from the image for William Allen, born in 1890, his admission and discharge dates are identical, but above the discharge date there is a written note explaining, ‘Refused to stay’.
The admission and discharge (Creed) registers held by the Portsmouth History Centre cover the years 1879 to 1953. However, there is a 100-year closure period for these records.
As its name suggests, Portsmouth is a port city. It’s located in Hampshire, largely on Portsea Island, making it the United Kingdom’s only island city. Portsea Island originally had two workhouses, one for the parish of Portsmouth (now Old Portsmouth) and one for the parish of Portsea. Portsmouth workhouse was built in 1725, and by 1777 could house up to 200 individuals. Portsea workhouse was in existence from at least 1764.
In 1836 the Portsea Island Poor Law Union was formed to administer both parishes, and the Portsea Island Union Workhouse opened in St Mary's Road in 1846. The new workhouse had an infirmary and a children's home was added c1863.
With an expanding population in Portsmouth, the Portsmouth Parish was formed in 1900. This parish was designated the administrative body for poor relief in both Portsmouth and Portsea. The site of the infirmary later became St Mary’s Hospital.
Begin your search broadly. Start by searching on just a first and last name. If needed, you can narrow your search by including a year or keyword.
Sometimes first names were abbreviated, such as Wm for William. Try searching on name variants and with the name variants option checked.