Genealogy Link List

A word of caution - You simply cannot do Scottish genealogy and family history from, FamilySearch, FindMyPast and all the other well know sites. The just don't have the necessary records, and what they do have is often "user-submitted" without sources or associated documents.

However, do not despair - Scotland has an unparalleled set of records, in terms of coverage and accessibility online and physically.

  • At ScotlandPeople you can get (if the records have survived, and the majority have):
    • Baptisms, Marriage banns and Burials (Church of Scotland) from the mid-1500s to 1854
    • Some Catholic records 1703-1908
    • Statutory (Civil) Births, Marriages and Deaths 1855-2017 (images downloadable up to (Births) 100 years ago, (Marriages) 75 years and (Deaths) 50 years
    • Wills and Testaments - over 611,000 from 1513 to 1925
    • Censuses, every 10 years from 1841-1911
    • Coats of Arms registered or granted 1672-1909
    • Valuation Rolls (essentially, Heads of Households) in 10-year intervals from 1885 to 1935
  •  Also, ScotlandPlaces has information, and in many cases maps and photographs, concerning places. The list is growing all the time, but at present, you can access:
    • Historical Tax Rolls
    • Ordnance Survey Name Books for each county in Scotland
    • Ordnance Survey maps from the mid-1800s plus maps and plans of counties, parishes, cities, towns, villages, farms, roads, canals, harbours, churches, school, public building, private houses, mines and quarries, some back as far as the late 1500s
    • Gazetteers and Atlases
    • Official Reports, such as the Land Ownership Commission Reports, 1872-1873 and The Hay Shennan County and Parish Boundaries, 1892
    • The National Monuments record including archaeological reports on historic and prehistoric sites
  • The National Library of Scotland ( has an incredible array of digitised records and indexes for Family History, including: Historical clubs and societies, free Maps and Directories, Emigration and passenger information, Local history, Surname histories and biographies, Newspapers, Gravestone inscriptions, State Papers, Scottish traditional culture

  • Locally
    Not every record is available online, and not all are held centrally in Edinburgh. There are many excellent archives, museums, local history and family history centres and other resources all over the country – just waiting for you to visit. Start at the website and the Scottish Association of Family History Societies

    Other links
    National Records of Scotland
    – Formerly the National Archives for Scotland, this holds historical records created by businesses, landed estates, families, churches and other bodies, with online catalogues.

    Court of the Lord Lyon – the statutory body for all things heraldic (Coats of Arms etc.). Actual records are at Scotland's People.

    Scottish Archive Network – SCAN has a single electronic catalogue to the holdings of more than 50 Scottish archives.

    Scottish Register of Tartans – official online database of tartan designs, established by law in 2008.

    AncestralScotland – Discover your Scottish roots and start planning your ancestral journey to Scotland.

    The National Archives – TNA, Kew, London, holds many records relating to Scottish family history, especially military records.

    PublicProfiler – Where your surname was clustered in 1881 and 1998.

    Kiltwear and Clan/Family accessories
    ScotClans - the largest Clan Resource Online, with a massive amount of Clan and Scottish Family information to help you discover your Scottish Heritage, including over 350 Clan & Family areas with maps, galleries, stories, news and a huge variety of links.
    Check out: