Maybole, Ayrshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #605

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


The name may signify the heath ground upon the marsh or meadow.  Maybole is the nearest town.  There is a fossil bed towards the Southern boundary.  The major land owners were the Marquis of Ailsa; T. F. Kennedy of Dunure; Sir James Fergusson of Kilkerran; and Elias Cathcart of Auchendrane.  The land was primarily used for oats, barley, weaving, beans, potatoes, turnips, hay, sheep, cattle, wheat.

The population in 1837 was 6362. The registers began in 1712 and were kept fairly regularly from then to the present. (1837)

Belonging to the Established Church          5033
United Secession                                          548
Roman Catholic                                            355
Church of England                                        214
Methodists                                                    104
Relief                                                              54
Reformed Presbytery                                     44
Antiburger                                                      10

This account was written in 1837

source:New Statistical Account of Scotland ( Family History Library book 941 B4sa, series 2 vol.5

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 Maybole. 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 Scotland Census Records.

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

Years Family History Library Film Number Surname Index            
1841 1042737 CD-ROM no. 2524
1851 1042408
1861 103657
1871 103964
1881 203605 6086514 ( 10 fiche)
1891 220223

The 1841 census is available at .  This site also has numerous links to other family history, and Maybole information.  The 1901 census of Scotland is indexed on  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 indexes through the library.

Church Records

The Established Church of Scotland was Presbyterian. Read more about Scotland Church Records.

Here are the pre-1855 records that exist for this parish.

Established Church—Old Parochial Registers

Years Covered Family History Library Film Number
Births: 1717-1854 1041396
Marriages: 1810-1820 1041396
1820-1854 1041397
Deaths: 1820-1854 1041397

Condition of Original Registers

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 be indexed in theInternational Genealogical Index.  
Births:There are two entries partially destroyed at March 1750 and two slightly imperfect pages at 1765. Frequently entries are out of order of time after 1800. Scroll of record May 1806–April 1812.
Marriages:Proclamations only, no record seems to have been kept prior to 1810.
Deaths: There are no entries 1824–1832 inclusive.
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 1777–1875
Proclamations 1820
Accounts 1832–1843
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/261, 813.

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.

Maybole United Presbyterian Church

This congregation originated with members of the Established Church who were dissatisfied with the ministrations of the then incumbent of the parish, and had acquired
a relish for evangelical doctrine, which they occasionally heard from ministers of the secession, and particularly from the Reverend Mr. Leitch of Largs, who generally preached at Maybole on his way to and from Ireland, of which he was a native. They applied for and obtained supply of sermon from the Associate Burgher, Presbytery of Kilmarnock in 1797. They built a place of worship in 1813.
Source: Annals and Statistics of the United Presbyterian Church, by Rev. William MacKelvie, D.D., pub. 1873. Film #477618. More details may be given in the source, including a list of ministers.

The extent of pre–1855 records is unknown.

Maybole Free Church

Andrew Thomson, minister of the parish, and a large number of his congregation, "came out" in 1843. A wooden church was at once erected. The permanent church, with manse, was built in 1844. A hall was added in 1883, and a new manse was erected in 1885. This church at first supplied the adjoining parishes of Kirkmichael, Dalrymple, and Kirkoswald. The membership fluctuated with the prosperity and depression of trade in the town, and it suffered through emigration from the rural district.
Membership: 1848, 570; 1900, 424.
Source: Annals of the Free Church of Scotland, 1843–1900, ed. Rev. William Ewing, D.D., 2 vols. pub. 1914. Film #918572. More details may be given in the source, including a list of ministers.

Family History Library Microfilm Number
Baptismal Register 1846–1853 1068236 item 2 X
Marriage Register 1846–1853 1068236 item 2 X
Note: The X means the records have been extracted.
Minutes 1843–1949
Note: It is also available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/869.

Maybole Episcopal Church

In 1843, the minister at Ayr would go once a month to perform Divine service for the members at Maybole. It was hoped that a means of public worship could be regularly provided there. It may have been for a while.

Baptisms 1847–1849
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH12/6.

Maybole Catholic Church

In 1834 there were 64 Catholic families living at Maybole. It served from Ayr 1845–1851 and from Girvan 1851–1887. A church was dedicated in 1878.

No early records. See those under the other places given above.

Maybole, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter- Day Saints

                                        Family History Library Film Number
Record of Members 1848   0104154 item 14

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

Maybole was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Glasgow until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Ayr. 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 Ayr and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Glasgow.
The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Ayr. Look in the library catalog
 for the 'Place-names' of Ayr and the subjects of 'Probate Records' and 'Probate Records - Indexes.'

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.

Return to the Ayrshire Parish List