Midmar, Aberdeenshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #222

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

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MIDMAR, a parish, in the district of Kincardine O'Neil, county of Aberdeen, 15 miles (W.) from Aberdeen. Midmar, a term supposed to be compounded of the Saxon word mid, and the Gaelic word marr, denoting "a black forest," is the name of one of the three great divisions of the extensive region originally styled Marr, which lies between the rivers Dee and Don. The church, which accommodates 600 persons, is a very plain structure, built in 1787. There is a place of worship for United Associate Seceders, and another for a congregation of Original Burghers who have recently joined the Free Church.[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
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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 Midmar, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

Family History Library Film Number
Surname Indexes
6086502 (12 fiche)

The 1901 census of Scotland is indexed on www.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
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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]

Condition of Original Registers—[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 record prior to 1783, is a copy, which is continued to 1799. The original record, however, from 1783, is extant.
Marriages: Records are blank October 1726–December 1729, December 1777–December 1783, and May 1788–December 1799. There are only four entries December 1808–September 1816. Record up to December 1777, is a copy.
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 1768–1801, 1837–1870
Accounts 1797–1856
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/268.

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.

Midmar Associate Burgher Presbyterian Congregation[edit | edit source]

This congregation originated in an itineracy in the north by ministers of the Associate Burgher Synod in 1798. Several members of the congregation of Tough removed to the neighborhood about the same time and they, along with persons belonging to the Established Church, favorable to the cause, petitioned the Associate Presbytery of Perth for supply of sermon, which was granted the following year. They erected a place of worship for themselves on a sub–leased site in 1802. When the lease ran out, the proprietor would not renew it nor allow them to use their place of worship, so they were compelled to erect another at a great inconvenience to themselves and injury to their interests as a congregation. This they did in 1842. The chapel was located on the turnpike road between Skene and Alford. This congregation became United Presbyterian in 1847 and after 1900 was known as the Cluny East United Free Church of Scotland.
Source: Annals and Statistics of the United Presbyterian Church, by Rev. William MacKelvie, D.D., pub. 1873. Film #477618. More details are given in the source.

Session minutes 1798–1850, with accounts for the period and a list of members for 1803
Other post-1855 Records
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/370.  National Archives of Scotland Catalog  CH3/370 Midmar Associate congregation (United Presbyterian and Cluny East United Free, united in 1910 with Cluny West United Free church) 1798-1910.

Midmar Bankhead Original Associate Congregation[edit | edit source]

This congregation was Original Secession. It may have been a part of the above congregation and broke away at some point (possibly 1805). They joined the Church of Scotland in 1839. In 1843, the minister and 92 members “came out” carrying church and manse with them. At the first vacancy a fruitless attempt was made to unite this charge with Lumphanan. At the next vacancy it was reduced to a preaching station; but four years later sanction was restored.
Membership: 1848, 110; 1900, 133.
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.

Family History Library Film Number
Session Minutes 1831–1856, with gaps 1886230 item 4
Communion Roll 1821–1842 1886230item 4

CH3/235 Midmar (Bankhead) Associate Congregation (later Free and United Free Church) National Archives of Scotland Catalog

Civil Registration Records
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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
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Midmar was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Aberdeen until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Aberdeen. 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 Aberdeen and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Aberdeen.

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

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.
Return to Aberdeenshire parish list.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 19 June 2014.