Wednesday, 30 September 2015

A brief history of the Scottish Kirk

By way of a handy research guide, I have added a wee bonus to this blog for those carrying out Scottish based family history research - a history of the Church of Scotland, as presented with the first chapter in my book Discover Scottish Church Records. It explains the various schisms and the state of play concerning the Scottish churches by 1851, when the religious census was carried out in Scotland, alongside the regular decennial census. If you can't find your ancestor on ScotlandsPeople, this may help to explain why! Subsequent chapters of the book itself then tell you how to find the records that aren't online, as well as those that are, and an overview of all the wee tricks of the trade in understanding what it is that is presented before you when you do find them.

The link is available in the tabs at the top of this page, entitled Kirk History, or directly via


John Knox statue, Stirling


For details on my genealogy guide books, including my recently released Discover Irish Land Records and Down and Out in Scotland: Researching Ancestral Crisis, please visit My Pinterest account is at

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