Southdean and Abbotrule, Roxburghshire, Scotland Genealogy

From FamilySearch Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Southdean and Abbotrule

Southdean and Abbotrule (#806)

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


History[edit | edit source]

SOUTHDEAN, a parish, in the district of Jedburgh, county of Roxburgh, 10 miles (S. by W.) from Jedburgh; containing the village of Chesters. This place, which is also called Chesters, derives the name of Southdean, peculiarly appropriated to the upper part, from its having formed the south valley in the ancient forest of Jed, which was, with very trifling exceptions, wholly cut down during the last century. The church, built in 1690, and in excellent repair, is conveniently situated.[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 Southdean and Abbotrule. 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 Southdean and Abbotrule.

Below is information for any known surname indexes:


Years Surname Index               
1841 941.47/B3 X2m 1841
1851 941.47/B3 X2m1851
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: 1696-1854 - Southdean 1067952 item 1-2
1755-1776 - Abbotrule 1067952 item 1-2
Marriages: 1736-1854 - Southdean 1067952 item 1-2
1755-1776 - Abbotrule 1067952 item 1-2
Deaths: 1736-1844 - Southdean 1067952 item 1-2
No entries - Abbotrule
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: Southdean: No entries September 1700–January 1737. Records are very incomplete September 1741–January 1752. There is one page of irregular entries dated 1780–1799 recorded after March 1787 entries. There is a duplicate of portions 1737–1797 and 1800–1819. Mothers' names are not recorded until after 1800.
Abbotrule: Births are recorded in parallel columns of the same register with margins. The old parish of Abbotrule is now divided beween Southdean and Hobkirk.
Marriages: Southdean: Proclamations of marriage are recorded until 1762. There are no entries June 1740–June 1758 and October 1762–May 1785, after which date marriages are recorded. There are no entries July 1793–November 1801. There is one page of entries for 1853–1854 recorded before death entries for 1801.
Deaths: Southdean: Mortcloth Dues until October 1750 then no entries until March 1785, after which burials are recorded. There are no entries August 1787–February 1801.
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:

Extent of records unknown.

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]

Southdean and Abbotrule 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 catalog for 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. 467-489. Adapted. Date accessed: 27 March 2014.

Return to the Roxburghshire parish list.