Confirmations at Pontop Hall & Lanchester St. Cuthbert 1822, 1831, 1837, and 1804-05 communicants

While we were recently dealing with the records at these two Catholic churches, we found in the register several lists of people who had been confirmed on specific dates. These seemed like they might be somewhat useful, serving as a record of someone’s presence at a certain time, so we created a new record type for Confirmations and put these, along with the existing Vestry Minutes, into a new category called Other Parish Records on the Search form’s drop-down menu for Record Type. If you select Other Parish Records, as the record type, the search will consult the vestry minutes, confirmations, and anything else we decide to put in this category.

When you’re confirmed, you get to choose a confirmation name to add to your first and middle names — or you can just use the names given to you at baptism. Your new name must be a Christian name such as one of the canonized saints or a hero from the Bible. Unfortunately the confirmations don’t give the age of the person being confirmed. Most of them were probably teenagers and some were probably adults. It is unlikely that any were below the age or 7 or 8. Here is one sample from each date:

  • 20 Aug 1822 Dominic Mawston – confirmation name Thomas, confirmed at the chapel at Broomside by Rev. Thomas Smith
  • 9 Oct 1831 Anna Hallerburton – confirmation name Anna Maria, confirmed at the chapel at Broomside by Rev. Thomas Penswick
  • 5 Nov 1837 Robertus Liddle – confirmation name Petrus, confirmed at the chapel at Broomside by Rev. Joannes Briggs

We also found a list of the people who had taken Communion at Pontop Hall in 1804-1805, which we decided to make freely available by adding it to our library of local history articles.