04 November 2013

Matrimonial Monday: Georgia Marriage Records

     From my experience with Georgia (state) genealogy research, the most readily available marriage records are the Marriage Books kept by the county clerk of the Superior Court.  These books record marriage licenses and go back to 1805 when they were required by law.  They are, for the most part, fully available on microfilm at the Georgia Archive and online at GeorgiaArchives.com and FamilySearch.org through the early 1900s.

     Unlike marriage records in some other states, Georgia's marriage records aren't exactly fonts of information.  The license contains only the bride and grooms' names, the date of the marriage, the county it was performed in, and who it was performed by.  There are no ages, parents or specific locations given.

     If you dig a little deeper, often visiting a local courthouse, you might find Marriage Bonds as well.  These are often "loose" records and are likely to have been microfilmed, however they don't provide information on the actual marriage and are thus not as likely to be found online.

     Marriage Bonds represent a groom's intent to marry and his promise to pay a penalty if he backs out or it's discovered that he is not eligible to marry.  The best thing about the marriage bond is that it is co-signed by another person, often a relative of the bride.  Their name might help uncover the bride's family.  These bonds are not proof that a marriage occurred however, so you should rely on the Marriage Books for real evidence.

Images: Top: Marriage License of George Craft and Effie Powell, recorded in "Elbert County Marriage Book, 1882 - 1893."  Bottom: Marriage Bond of Moses Craft and Nancy Hudson, stored in Elbert County, "Marriages box M1 1802-1808."


Expressjodi said...

Fertility Rituals

Marriage is one of the biggest fertility rituals Known in Indian culture. When two people get married. they are said to enter grihasta ashram where they are expected to bear children. satify their sexual urge, earn money and follow religious practices. Hindu marriages profess the idea of coming together of the energies and paving way to a new creation.

Offering of Grains

Throughout India, one thing that remains common to all communities is offring of grains in wedding ceremony. Mostly rice, puffed rice or whole grains, these grains are fed to the sacred fire in different ceremonies.

Importance of Shiva's Bael leaves

Holy Bael leaves are proffered in several ceremonies before the wedding and after it. In many communities in india, before the wedding day arrives, Bael leaves are placed in earthen pots which are topped with different kinds of cereals. After the wedding, the sprouted seedlings are then released in a flowing river or a pool. This ritual is performed to invoke blessings of Lord Shiva upon the married couple and pray for their progeny.

Vishnu's pious Lotus

As per mythology, at the time of creation of the universe, while lord Vishnu was pondering over the creation of mankind, a pious lotus rose out of his navel. On that lotus was seated Lord Brahma who paved way to the creation and illumination of the universe. Thus, lotus remains symbolic of procreation, birth and fertility. It is Therefore, offered during wedding puja to the gods to confer potency upon the couple. Also, At the time of a Hindu wedding, the bride and the groom are given the stature of Goddess Lakshmi and Lord Vishnu because they represent the eternal companionship and exemplify how a relationship between husband and wife should be.

Nose ring

Usually seen as a piece of accessory, almost all brides sport nose ring on their wedding day. In some communities, girls are told to get their nose pierced before they tie the knot.

Sacred coconut rituals

Across India, since time immemorial coconut has enjoyed its association with human fertility in a sacrosanct manner. In Gujarat, there is a ritual of bride presenting a coconut in a customary way to the groom at the time of the marriage. Here coconut is symbolic of the progency of the couple that the bridegifts the groom. Of all the fruits, coconut is most closely related to human skull because of the three marking on its base that resemble human facial features.

The mantras of virility

During saat pheras in a Hindu marriage, there are several mantras that are chanted for progency of the couple. While the first phera is for a long lasting companionship, in the second Phera, "Kutumburn rakshayishyammi sa aravindharam", the bride promises the groom that she will fill his with love and will bear children of him.

The History

There was a time when potency was considered as the be all and all of all activities. The earliest ritual of fertility among Hindus can be dated back to the Harappan civilization where it has been discovered that people worshipped clay figurines of a mother goddess who represented fertility. Several phallic symbols representing gods in sitting position wearing bull's horns (Bull being a universal symbol of male potency) have also been found at the sites of indus Valley Civilization. As the world evolved and ancient civilizations paved way to the modern societies, marriage started being considered as a mandatory ceremony before women could conceive. Also, the idea of marriage was propelled by the thought of having the family legacy move ahead; so that families could get heirs.

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If you dig a little deeper, often visiting a local courthouse, you might find Marriage Bonds as well. These are often "loose" records and are likely to have been microfilmed, however they don't provide information on the actual marriage and are thus not as likely to be found online. https://www.rebelmouse.com/neverlosehim

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