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Choose which of the type of register you are searching from these four, then select a church (from Church of Scotland, Roman Catholic Church and other churches).
Once you have carried out a search for one church, you can select another church in the filter on the results page and repeat the search for that church.
As well as the Church of Scotland, other Presbyterian churches in Scotland kept registers of baptisms, marriages and burials from 1716 onwards.
These other church registers are in the course of being added to the Scotlands People site.
In addition, rapid urbanisation during the 19th century contributed to the diminishing influence of the Church and a decrease in registration in these areas.
It was estimated at the time that as few as 30% of events actually occurring were being recorded for some urban parishes. However in a small number of districts the local registrar was not in place at the very beginning and therefore there are a small number of events that are recorded in Old Parish Registers but are not featured in our statutory records.
As a result, the information may be sparse, unreliable and difficult to read.
The oldest register dates from 1553 (baptisms and banns from Errol, Perthshire), but although there was a requirement from 1552 that parishes record baptisms and marriages, many did not commence until much later, and some more remote areas only have registers from the early 19th century.
Expect inconsistent record keeping, so please make use the search options to vary your search and pick up inconsistent name spelling and cases where the clerk has left a surname or forename blank.
If you are certain an event was recorded in a particular parish but none of the search options work, try leaving the forename or surname field blank and selecting the parish/congregation and the year.
Since there was no requirement to record these, a great many parishes simply did not bother and of those that did, many have not survived.
Often the only record that a death has taken place will be implied in the payment of a fee to the parish for the hire of the mortcloth or pall which was draped over the coffin or the body itself for the funeral.
The churches concerned were Presbyterian churches that were originally outside the Church of Scotland (or left the Church of Scotland) but joined (or re-joined) the Church of Scotland at various points.