Discover Scottish Church Records, 2nd ed.

Discover Scottish Church Records, 2nd ed.

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Discover Scottish Church Records, 2nd ed.; by Chris Paton; 2016; 92 pp; 5.75x8.25; b&w photos, appendixes, further reading, index, saddle-stapled paperback; ISBN: 9781925323351; Item #: RUTP0281

In this greatly expanded second edition of Chris Paton's popular title, he explores the history and records of the various churches in Scotland prior to 1855, the year in which civil registration commenced within the country. He describes the theological changes imposed by the Reformation of 1560, the nature of the state's battles with the Kirk, and the Kirk's subsequent battles within itself. Most importantly, he also discusses the nature of the records generated by the various Scottish churches, how to interpret them, and above all else, how to find them.

Whether you are looking for tales of ministers carried into the air by Scotland's fairy folk, the fire and thunder of John Knox, a detailed explanation of the online offerings of the ScotlandsPeople website, or the treasures waiting in the National Records of Scotland, this is the definitive research guide to help anyone with Caledonian connections.


  • Introduction
  • Second edition
  • Acknowledgements
  • 1. The Godly Commonwealth
    • The Reformation
    • The Stuarts
    • Secessions and dissenters
    • The Disruption
    • Multi-faith Scotland
  • 2. Church of Scotland Research
    • The Vital Records (OPRs)
    • Baptisms
    • Marriage
    • Burials
    • Accessing the BMD records
  • 3. Church governance
    • Kirk Session records
    • Establishing what exists
    • Presbytery, Synod and General Assembly
    • Heritors
    • Estate papers
  • 4. Nonconformist Presbyterian Churches
    • Looking for clues
    • Finding nonconformist records
    • Locating the right church
    • Switching churches
    • Catalogues
  • 5. Other church denominations
    • The Scottish Episcopal Church
    • Roman Catholicism
    • Quakers
    • Methodists
    • Salvation Army
    • Congregationalists
    • Evangelical Union
    • Baptists
    • Catholic Apostolic Church (Irvingites)
    • Moravians
    • Bereans
    • Universalists
    • Unitarians
    • Swedenborgians
    • Mormons
    • Jews
    • Muslims
    • Sikhs
  • 6. Working for the Church
    • Church of Scotland ministers
    • Other ministers
    • Newspapers
    • School teachers
  • Appendix 1. Basic research strategy
  • Appendix 2. Further reading
  • Index