Abernyte, Perthshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Scotland Gotoarrow.png Perthshire Gotoarrow.png Abernyte

Parish #327

This is a guide to the history and major genealogical records of Scotland as they pertain to the parish of Abernyte. To learn more about how to use these records to search for your ancestors, go to the Scotland: Research Strategies.


ABERNYTE, a parish, in the county of Perth, 10 miles (W.) from Dundee. The name of this place is of Gaelic origin, referring to the situation of the principal village, near the confluence of two rivulets, one of which is supposed to have obtained the appellation of Nyte. The church, built in 1736, and recently repaired, is situated at the lowest extremity of the parish. A tabernacle was built for missionaries, and is now occupied by a congregation of Burghers.[1]

The New Statistical Account of Scotland (pub. 1834-45) offers uniquely rich and detailed parish reports for the whole of Scotland, covering a vast range of topics including history, agriculture, education, trades, religion and social customs. The reports, written by the parish ministers, are available online at http://edina.ac.uk/stat-acc-scot/. Click on ‘Browse scanned pages’ then search the parish reports for your parish of interest. Also available at the Family History Library.

Census Records

A census is a count and description of the population, taken by the government, arranged by locality and by household. Read more about census records.

Here is a list of the Family History Library microfilm numbers for the census records of Abernyte, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

FHL Film Number
Surname Indexes
6086646 (6 fiche)

The 1901 census of Scotland is indexed onwww.scotlandspeople.gov.uk. To use it, you must register and pay a small access fee. All available censuses, 1841-1901, are indexed on this website. It may be easier for you to pay to use the website rather than access the separate indexes through the library.

Church Records

The Established Church of Scotland was Presbyterian. Read more about church records.
Here are the pre-1855 records that exist for this parish.

Established Church—Old Parochial Registers

Record Type Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1667-1854 0993512
Marriages: 1664-1854 0993512
Deaths: 1667-1854 0993512


Condition of Original Registers—

Indexed: For an index to these records, see Scotland’s People website, a pay-for-view website. The Scottish Church Records Index is also still available at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.  Some records may also be indexed in other FamilySearch collections for Scotland.
Births: Births are intermixed with marriages and deaths up to 1780 and are intermixed with marriages through out the record. There are no entries for April 1669–December 1672 and August 1674–August 1678. There is a duplicate or copy of the portion for 1704–1720. With a few exceptions, mothers' names are not recorded in the entries until 1816. February 1764–February 1768 is recorded twice.
Marriages: Marriages are intermixed with births and deaths up to 1780 and are intermixed with births through out. There are no entries for April 1669–December 1672 and August 1674–August 1678. There is a duplicate or copy of the portion for 1704–1720. February 1764–February 1768 is recorded twice.
Deaths: Deaths are intermixed with births and marriages up to 1780. There are no entries for April 1669–December 1672 and August 1674–August 1768. January 1764–June 1780 is recorded twice. Prior to February 1719, deaths are recorded. Burials are recorded 1719–1721. Mortcloth Dues are recorded 1722–1760 inclusive, after which burials are resumed.
Source: Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British Book 941 K23b.

Established Church—Kirk Session Records

The Kirk session was the court of the parish. The session was made up of the minister and the land owners and business men of the parish, chosen to serve on the session. The Kirk session dealt with moral issues, minor criminal cases, matters of the poor and education, matters of discipline, and the general concerns of the parish. Kirk session records may also mention births, marriages, and deaths.

Here is a list of the surviving Kirk session records for this parish:

Minutes 1759–1766, 1809–1815, 1820–1950
Accounts 1831–1835
Cash Book 1759–1814
Note: Available at the Dundee City Archive and Record Centre, Dundee, Scotland. Also on microfilm at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh; record CH2/748.

Nonconformist Church Records

A nonconformist church is any church that is not the Established church. Read more about nonconformity in Scotland in the article on the Scotland Church Records Union Lists.

Abernyte Free Church

In June 1843 evening services were provided for the adherents of the Free Church here. The charge was sanctioned in 1845. Owing to difficulties in obtaining a site, a settlement was delayed until 1850; and only in 1854 was ground secured and the church erected.
Membership: 1855, 118; 1900, 126.
Source: Annals of the Free Church of Scotland, 1843–1900, ed. Rev. William Ewing, D.D. 2 vols, pub. 1914. Film #918572. More details are given in the source.
Minutes 1846–1932
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/688.

Civil Registration Records

Government or civil registration of births, marriages, and deaths (also called statutory records) began on January 1, 1855 in Scotland. Each parish has a registrar's office and large cities have several. The records are created by the registrars and copies are sent to the General Register Office in Edinburgh. Annual indexes are then created for the records for the whole country.
See the article on Scotland Civil Registration for more information and to access the records.

Probate Records

Abernyte was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Dunkeld until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Dunblane. Probate records for 1513- 1901 are indexed online at www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk. You must register on the website but use of the index to probate records, called 'Wills & Testaments,' is free. You may then purchase a copy of the document or, if the document is before 1823, it will be on microfilm at the Family History Library. To find the microfilm numbers, search in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Perthshire and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Dunkeld.

The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Perthshire. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Perthshire and the subjects of 'Probate Records' and 'Probate Records - Indexes.'

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.


  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 23-45. Adapted. Date accessed: 02 May 2014.

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