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Association Oath Rolls (Oath of Allegiance)

Nature of Source

Records from a pledge of loyalty (Solemn Association) to the king and support of the succession signed by all holders of public office such as MPs, freeman, military and civil officers of the crown, gentry. The clergy also signed the pledge but were recorded in separate rolls. The need for a pledge of loyalty arose following an assassination attempt by Catholic Jacobites on William III in 1695. This followed the seizure of the throne by the Protestant William III from the Roman Catholic James II in 1688 (Glorious Revolution).

The records are arranged county by county and then sometimes by the hundred or borough.

Those that signed were likely to have been wealthy, landowning people, although in some cases the entire population of male householders signed the oath. Oaths were taken at the Chancery or King's Bench courts or at the Quarter Sessions. Defaulters were sometimes listed and some rolls exists from overseas. No material survives for Scotland or Ireland but rolls exist for some overseas territories and colonies in series C 213.

Also see
Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy
Protestation Oath Returns
Sacrament Certificates (Oath of Allegiance)

Where Found

The National Archives (C 213, Association Oath Rolls; C 214, Rolls of Oaths of Allegiance and Test Oaths; C 213/403-458, Clergy rolls)
County Record Offices (ARCHON Directory: Find the details of a UK archive from a searchable list of over 2,500 archives The catalogue can be found on the Discovery home page)
London Metropolitan Archives (City of London Rolls held in the City Of London Sessions records including lists of papists. Other lists of oath takers and papists are also available at the archives covering various London districts)

Period Covered

1696 - 1697

Genealogical Value

Names, addresses

Further References

Gibson, Jeremy. The Hearth Tax, Other Later Stuart Tax Lists and the Association Oath Rolls: Federation of Family History Societies, 1996 Buy Now on Amazon
Gibson, Jeremy (ed). Politics and Loyalty in Post-Revolution Oxfordshire : The '1690' County Parliamentary Poll (transcript); The Association Oath Rolls, 1695-6 (analysis):Oxfordshire Family History Society in association with The Family History Partnership, 2011  
Webb, Cliff. Association Oath Rolls for Surrey 1695: West Surrey Family History Society, 1999  


TNA Research Guide: Oaths of loyalty to the Crown and Church of England

Websites

www.historyworkingpapers.org/?page_id=373 (History Working Papers Project: The 1723 oath rolls in England: an electronic finding list, complied by Edward Vallance, University of Roehampton. The site lists surviving returns county-by-county as well as background information on the various oaths of allegiance)
www.foda.org.uk/oaths/intro/introduction1.htm (Friends of Devon Archives: Devon and Exeter Oath Rolls, 1723. The site includes extensive background information including the Historical Context and a Glossary of Terms)
www.newadvent.org/cathen/11177a.htm (Catholic Encyclopedia: English Post-Reformation Oaths)
www.lukehistory.com/resources/oaths.html (Texts of the Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy)
http://edwardvallance.wordpress.com/2008/02/14/finding-georgian-ancestors (Finding Georgian Ancestors and Tracing Ancestors Using Oaths of Allegiance)

Online Databases

Online Catalogues (Listing of online catalogues for the partial whereabouts of records including Access to Archives [A2A])
www.findmypast.co.uk
(Surrey and City Of London Livery Company Association Oath Rolls, 1695/96. Discover your ancestor among the thousands of tradesmen who signed an oath of loyalty to King William of Orange after a series of assassination plots. The mainly protestant signatories of the Oath rolls swore their fidelity and vowed to revenge the King should the need arise)
www.findmypast.co.uk (Surrey and City Of London Livery Company Association Oath Rolls, 1695/96. Discover your ancestor among the thousands of tradesmen who signed an oath of loyalty to King William of Orange after a series of assassination plots. The mainly protestant signatories of the Oath rolls swore their fidelity and vowed to revenge the King should the need arise. These records have been compiled by genealogist Cliff Webb)
www.genhound.co.uk (Genhound: Hertfordshire 1696 Association Oath Rolls)
www.sog.org.uk/search-records (SoG Data Online: Association Oath Roll for Monmouth 1696. Members of the Society of Genealogists are able to view these records for free via their existing membership)