British Royal Households : Employee and Tradesmen Records online : 1660-1924

August 7, 2018

Did your ancestors work for British royalty as an employee or perhaps a tradesman?


Thanks to the Royal Archives at Windsor, many records of the royal households have been digitised and the images are available online at FindMyPast.


 Above:  Windsor Castle round tower home of the Royal Archives


According to the Royal Archives, this digital collection includes staff records dating from 1660 right through to 1924 (although FindMyPast claims the records start in 1526).  Regardless of which date is correct, it is a wonderful collection of material containing information about ordinary people. It represents an extensive, though incomplete, list of Royal Household employees.


Unfortunately, while they are free to search, the records do require a FindMyPast subscription to view, so keep a eye out for their next free access period.


The records come from:


Royal Household establishment lists;

Royal Household index sheets;  and

Royal Household payment and employment lists.


They include different types of documents which could result in finding multiple entries for an ancestor.  The information in the records varies but usually contains a combination of the following information:


 Above : Balmoral Castle in Scotland, one of the Queen's residences. Did any of your ancestors work there?





Dates of employment

Salary or wages

Pension or other payments made to the employee

Career history

Date of death


WW1 service

Reason for leaving employment.


According to its website, The Royal Archives:


“. . . preserves the personal and official correspondence of monarchs from George III (1760-1820) onwards, as well as administrative records of the departments of the Royal Household.” 


It is worth noting that while all private royal correspondence is held by the Royal Archives, all official royal correspondence is held by the UK National Archives in Kew.

How did you go?  Did you find an ancestor in royal employment?  I didn’t myself, but would love to hear about your finds in the Comments Section below.


In the meantime, don’t miss one of my forthcoming Blog posts where I will discuss more royal records relevant to family historians.  Those records will be online and free. 



Therese Lynch

Your Family Genealogist


Picture : courtesy of Pixabay

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