To request editing rights on the Wiki, click here.

Kilmartin, Argyllshire, Scotland Genealogy

From FamilySearch Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Parish  #521

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


History[edit | edit source]

KILMARTIN, a parish, in the district and county of Argyll, 7½ miles (N. N. W.) from Lochgilphead. This place, which is supposed, like many others, to have derived its name from the founder of its ancient church, formed part of the possessions of the Campbell family. The church, erected in 1835, is a handsome structure in the early English style of architecture, with a square embattled tower, and contains 520 sittings.[1]

     This parish got its name as the the burial place of St. Martin.  Oban, and Lochgilphead are the nearest towns.  The Bard of Hope, Gertrude of Wyoming, V. is a well known person of this parish.  The major land owners were: Neil Malcolm, Esq. of Poltallach; Colin Bell Maclochlan, Esq of Craiginterave; Captain Donal Campbel, R.N. of Barbreck; and  The Rev. Dugald Campbell of  Auchanellan.  The land was primarily used for,  cattle, sheep, horses, oats, bear, potatoes, turnips, and hay.
The population in 1795 was 1537.  The population in 1841 was 1213.  The register of baptisms and marriages was kept imperfectly from 1747-1774. There is no record from then to 1819. From 1819 to 1844 it was regularly kept.  Most of the people in the parish are Prespbyteran.  There are 2 Baptist families, and 6 Separtist families.
This account was written in 1844.

source: New Statistical Account of Scotland (FHL book 941 B4sa, series 2 vol. 7)


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  Click on ‘Browse scanned pages’ then search the parish reports for Kilmartin. Also available at the Family History Library.

Census Records[edit | edit source]

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 Kilmartin as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:


Years FHL Film Number Surname Index            
1841 1042717 941.38/K5 X22g 1841
1851 1042352 941.39 X2a
1861 103796
1871 103953
1881 203558 6086508 (set of 4 Fiche)
1891 220168

The 1901 and 1911 census of Scotland is indexed on  To use it, you must register and pay a small access fee. All available censuses, 1841-1911, are indexed on this website. It may be easier for you to pay to use the website rather than access indexes through the library.


Church Records[edit | edit source]

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[edit | edit source]

Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1774-1854 1041071 items 1-2
Marriages: 1746-1854 1041071 items 1-2
Death: 1746-1752 1041071 items 1-2

Condition of Original Records—[edit | edit source]

Index: 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: The pages are blank, except for a few entries on an imperfect page, 1767–1778, January 1767–January 1773, after which a number of pages are imperfect and entries are partially destroyed. Except for two entries 1799 and 1806, the record is blank December 1793–January 1819.
Marriages: There are no entries April 1767–January 1774 and January 1793–March 1819.
Deaths: The records are of deaths and burials.
Source: Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British book 941 K23b.

Established Church—Kirk Session Records[edit | edit source]

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 1691–1706, 1724–1941
Note: Available at the Scottish National Archives, Edinburgh, record CH2/793.

Nonconformist Church Records[edit | edit source]

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 List.


There are no churches with known pre-1855 records.

Civil Registration Records[edit | edit source]

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[edit | edit source]

Kilmartin was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Argyll until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Dunoon.  Probate records for 1513- 1901 are indexed online at   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 Argyll and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Argyll
The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Argyll. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Argyll and the subjects of 'Probate Records' and 'Probate Records - Indexes.'
Read more about Scotland Probate Records.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 23 May 2014.

Return to the Argyllshire Parish List