Maxton, Roxburghshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Maxton (#798)

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


History[edit | edit source]

MAXTON, a parish, in the district of Melrose, county of Roxburgh; containing the village of Rutherford, 7 miles (N. N. W.) from Jedburgh, and at an equal distance from Kelso and Melrose. This place appears to have derived its name from its proprietor, Maccus, who in the early part of the 12th century possessed the manor, which in ancient records is called Maccuston and Mackiston. The parish is pleasantly situated on the bank of the river Tweed, which forms its northern boundary. The church, romantically overhanging the Tweed, is part of a very ancient structure dedicated to St. Cuthbert; the time of its original foundation is unknown, but it was modernised and repaired in 1812, and gives accommodation to a congregation of 150 persons.[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  Click on ‘Browse scanned pages’ then search the parish reports for Maxton. 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 Scotland Census Records.

Click here for a list of the Family History Library microfilm numbers for the census records of Maxton. 

Below is information for any known surname indexes:


Years Surname Index          
1841 941.47/B3 X2m 1841
1851 941.47/B3 X2m 1851
1861 941.47/B3 X2m 1861
1881 6086664 ( 3 fiche)

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[edit | edit source]

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[edit | edit source]

Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1689-1854 1067948 item 5-6
Marriages: 1691-1848 1067948 item 5-6
Deaths: 1776-1803, 1837-1854 1067948 item 5-6
Condition of Original Registers—[edit | edit source]

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 until 1708. There are no entries September 1693–February 1696 and October 1698–October 1702. There are no entries November 1708–July 1722, except five 1713–1719. Mothers' names are not recorded until 1742.
Marriages: There are no entries September 1693–February 1696 and October 1698–October 1702. There are also no entries November 1708–July 1722, November 1738–July 1740, 1744 or May 1782–May 1783. There is one entry December 1799–July 1802 and one, November 1813–February 1816.
Deaths: There are no entries September 1693–February 1698 and October 1702. There are no entries November 1708–December 1784 and November 1803–1837 except a few entries of Mortcloth Dues 1776–1791.
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 1722–1730, 1778–1808, 1810–1947
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/260.

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 Lists.


No known nonconformist groups.

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]

Maxton was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Peebles until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Jedburgh.  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 catalogfor the 'Place-names' of Roxburgh and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Peebles.

The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Roxburgh.  Look in the library catalog
 for the 'Place-names' of Roxburgh 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. 225-244. Adapted. Date accessed: 27 March 2014.

Return to the Roxburghshire parish list.