ASGRA - Family History Sources
The primary sources for Scottish Family history are the statutory registers of births, deaths and marriages which commenced in Scotland in 1855; census returns (1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891 & 1901) and, prior to 1855, the parish registers of the Church of Scotland where baptisms, marriages (or proclamations of marriage) and some deaths were recorded. These records are held at New Register House (General Register Office) in Edinburgh.
Records of churches other than the Church of Scotland, i.e. Secession churches (such as the United Presbyterian and Free Church) and Independent Churches (such as Roman Catholic and Episcopal) are to found in the National Archives of Scotland in Edinburgh, in local archives or still in local custody. The National Archives of Scotland houses a wide variety of additional records, such as wills, property records, kirk session minutes of both Church of Scotland and Secession churches, government, court and private papers of landowners and many others.
Local Archives also hold records about their own areas.
The National Library of Scotland also has a large and expanding manuscripts department and includes records formerly in the Advocates' Library. In addition, local libraries provide some useful printed sources, such as newspapers and directories.
The results of ancestry research may lead to a wish to apply for a grant of Arms. Enquiries should be made to the Lyon Clerk, The Court of the Lord Lyon, HM New Register House, Edinburgh EH1 3YT