France genealogy research is fairly easy to conduct online, with plenty of digitized records and genealogical databases available for viewing, browsing and searching on the Internet. French departments across the country have digitized and made available a variety of records on their websites, including such records as French birth, marriage and death records ( actes etat civil ), French census records ( recensements de population ) and French parish registers ( registres paroissiaux ). The records and years available vary by department, but most now have at least a few records of genealogical interest online.
If you don't read French, then a basic French genealogy word list, such as this one available from FamilySearch, can help you to recognize the key terms and make sense of many of these genealogical documents.
Over 2 million user-contributed civil and parish records are available online through the French site GeneaNet.org, plus subscription-based access to additional records, including civil and parish registers, digitized books and additional French genealogy sources.
Translating as "actes in bulk," this site by JeanLouis Garret includes more than 4 million actes drawn from civil and parish records across France. The majority are from the departments of Pas de Calais, Somme and Nord, but many other departments are represented as well. Access is free but registration is required to view details of the actes.
Civil registers (etat civil) and registres paroissiaux (parish registers) are searchable by name. Plus, decennial tables (10-year indexes), censuses (1836-1975), searchable estate records, military records, Napoleonic cadastre and old newspapers, photographs and postcards.
The online digitized archives of Aisne include civil and parish register of births, deaths and marriages, plus Casastral maps and the tables decennales (from 1792).
Consult vital records, parish registers, census records, indexes and postcards online - état-civil, registres paroissiaux, tables décennales (> 1792) et annuelles (registres paroissiaux), cadastre napoléonien, rencensements de 1836 à 1906 and cartes postales.
Digital resources include searchable civil records of births, deaths and marriages, census records and plans cadastraux, plus the database of the Genealogical Association of Hautes-Alpes.
The archives of Alpes-Maritimes, which includes the city of Nice, offers online access to the actes d'etat civil and old newspapers (la presse ancienne). Under Outils de Recherche et Archives Numérisées, you can access indexes to some of these records, including immigration (1880-1935), Nice baptisms (1814-1860) and Nice marriages (1814-1860), plus census and some notarial records.
The acts of birth, marriage and death for over 100 years (etat civil) in Cannes (located in Alpes-Maritimes) are available for research online through the Cannes municipal archives.
The tables décennales (10 year indexes) of births, marriages and deaths are available for online for 1793-1902. They also have the vital records (actes des naissances, mariages et décès), parish registers (registres paroissiaux) and plans cadastraux available for online consultation.
The decennial tables (10-year-indexes) of civil registers (1802-1892) as well as the ancient cadastral maps are currently available online. The civil registers (actes d'etat civil) are also being digitized and will soon be added to the online records.