View Full Version : Vacc. used in family bible entries

26-10-2009, 4:14 PM
The abbreviation Vacc. has been used for a few entries in our family bible eg. "Annie McLelland born at Cleckheaton Yorkshire November 5th 1875. Reg.d Cleckheaton. Vacc. by Dr. Sykes Cleckheaton 1875 Christened Birstall Church Oct. 7th 1877".
Does it mean vaccination? if so, what for? or does it mean something else?


Peter Goodey
26-10-2009, 5:01 PM
It would indeed be 'vaccinated'. Vaccination was administered by the Poor Law Guardians. Have a look in a county directory.

Kelly's 1881 Directory of the West Riding lists B.C Sykes M.D, Cleckheaton as one of the Medical Officers of the North Bierley Union.

The Vaccination Register, if it has survived, can be useful and is a much overlooked resource.

26-10-2009, 6:25 PM
Indeed, the vaccine was in use much earlier than this. A distant cousin sent me the most wonderful scan of a journal of one of our joint ancestors written in the late 18th century. As each child is born in the 1770s and 1780s, he actually makes an entry to say that they have been vaccinated, and it would appear that the vaccine (in those days at least) actually gave the child a mild form of the disease. He would write long entries about watching over his tiny children after they had received the vaccine. In the case of one of his daughters, the vaccine did not take the first time and had to be repeated.

Thankfully, his children came through it all, but I have to say it was an eye-opener for me, to think that they were actually using the vaccine in those days. I would never have known that if I hadn't seen it written with my own eyes in a primary source.