In studying the history of the Anglican Church in England I often find statements such as "In <date> the chapelry of St. So-and-So became a parish". In my experience, the <date> is just a year, never anything more precise, and there is no citation of any contemporary source document by an Anglican authority. If one wants to know whether a certain church was a parish church or a chapelry to another church at a certain time, what sort of document would one consult so as to have an authoritative and reliable scholarly source to cite? I'm sure that the rules changed over time, so I should say that the period I'm most interested in would be the early part of the 19th century. Let me offer my guess. The Wikipedia pages on Civil Parish, and on Ecclesiastical Parishes lead me to believe that the creation of a vestry was of critical importance. So maybe what happened is that, as the population in a chapelry grew, eventually its residents might want more independence in handling their own affairs, and be willing to shoulder the financial burden accordingly. So they would apply to the vestry of the mother church and ask if they could become their own parish. If the mother church's vestry agreed, then it would apply to the bishop of the diocese, and if the bishop also agreed, then it would be so. What had been a chapelry would now have its own vestry, responsible for its own funding and governance, able to appoint its own ministers independently of the mother church, be directly responsible to the bishop, and would thus have official status as a parish. If this is true, then the documents I should look for would be those in which the creation of the new vestry was announced. Can anyone versed in the Church's history in this respect enlighten me?