Advanced searches

Advanced Search (click tab above) enables you to construct a complex search using a variety of data fields. It is also useful if your original search produces an unmanageably large hitlist.

Located at - choose a location from the drop down list or leave blank to search all the collections

anytext - click on refine search for more precise searching options. Use speech marks to search for an exact phrase (see examples below).

Title - this will search for a word or phrase in the Title field in the catalogue. Again click on refine search for more precise searching options

Date - limits your search to an individual year or date range (e.g. 1550-1560).

Doc Ref No - is useful if you know the precise document reference number for an archive document

Museum Object Number - Use for museum objects, art works and photographs held by the museum service

Level - This is most useful when looking for a Collection and then narrowing by collection type below. You can also search for individual Items which will exclude other catalogue levels.

DocType - This is useful when looking for documents of a particular type (e.g. title deeds or photographs in archive collections). Select from the drop-down box. Combine with a place-name or other word in the anytext or Title fields.

Collection Type - This is used only when searching for entire Collections rather than for individual documents. Select from the drop down list.

Author - for books and pamphlets only

Examples of advanced searches

Looking for parish registers, nonconformist registers or electoral registers

It is quicker to use our downloadable guide to sources.

Visit the Guides to Sources page to download guides.

Searching for an exact phrase

In Any Text put your phrase in speech marks, for example "Trent and Mersey Canal".

Looking for photographs of Yoxall

Click on Refine Search under Any Text and put 'Yoxall photograph*' in the 'with all the words' box.

Looking for views of Madeley from the William Salt Library Staffordshire Views collection

In 'Located at' select William Salt Library. In Title put 'Madeley' and in DocRefNo (Archives) put 'SV'.

Looking for maps of the Trent and Mersey Canal

Click on Refine Search under Any Text and put 'map plan' in the 'with at least one of the words' box. Put 'Trent and Mersey' in the Title box.

Looking for a tithe map and award for Alrewas

Click on Refine Search under Any Text and put 'tithe Alrewas' in the 'with all the words box' and 'map award' in the 'with at least one of the words' box.

Looking for the family and estate papers of the Leveson-Gower family, Dukes of Sutherland.

Put 'Sutherland' in the Title box. In the Level box select 'Collection' from the drop down list and in Collection Type select 'families and estates'

Looking for faculties for Abbots Bromley parish church

In Title put 'Abbots Bromley' and in the DocType drop-down menu select 'Faculties',

If you do not find what you are looking for one of our Guides to Sources may help.

Visit the Guides to Sources page to download guides.

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