Auchindoir and Kearn, Aberdeenshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #172

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

History[edit | edit source]

AUCHINDOIR and KEARN, a parish, in the district of Alford, county of Aberdeen, 36 miles (W. N. W.) from Aberdeen. The name of Auchindoir, which is of Gaelic origin, and signifies "the field of pursuit," is supposed to have been applied, in the present case, from the circumstance of Luthlac, son of Macbeth, having been pursued through the valley of Auchindoir to that of Bogie, where he was overtaken and slain by Malcolm; and the term Kearn is said to be a corruption of Cairn, there being a remarkable cairn or tumulus in that district, of the history of which nothing, however, is known. The two parishes were united in 1811, previously to which Kearn was joined to Forbes. The church, which was built in 1811, accommodates 450 persons, but is much too small for the population. At Lumsden, is a place of worship belonging to the United Associate Synod; a place of worship has been erected in connexion with the Free Church.[1]

Kearn, which was formerly united with the parish of Forbes, was annexed to Aunchindoir in 1811.

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 edina.($)  Click on ‘Browse scanned pages’ then search the parish reports for your parish of interest. 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.

Click here[low quality link] to go to the FamilySearch Catalog entry for the census records of Auchindoir and Kearn.

The Family History Library has an 1881 census surname index for the county of Aberdeen.

The 1901 and 1911 census of Scotland is indexed on scotlandspeople.($)   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 the census or index through the Family History 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. (See also Tullynessle & Forbes parish.)

Established Church—Old Parochial Registers[edit | edit source]

Record Type Years Covered Family History Library Film Number
Births: 1694-1854 0991230
Marriages: 1705-1839 0991230
Deaths: 1739- 1747 0991230

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 of these records may be indexed and searchable on
Births: There are only three entries for May 1697–February 1700. The record is blank for October 1718–September 1719, from which date until October 1747 the record is mixed up with other matters. The record is defective for 1781–1783 and is blank for September 1799–March 1800.
Marriages: The record is blank for May 1731–June 1732, February 1769–December 1783, and October 1786–June 1788. Early pages of births and marriages are very much injured by damp.
Deaths: The record is for Mortcloth Dues.
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 he 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 1695–1718, with gaps, 1731–1736, 1747–1846
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/19.

Monumental Inscriptions[edit | edit source]

The Kirkyard of Auchindoir in Aberdeen has been indexed by the North-East Scotland Family History Society.

Family History Library 

Online listing is available through the: Aberdeen and North-East Scotland Family History Society

A booklet of this is also available at The Family History Library, Salt Lake City

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.

Auchindoir Free Church[edit | edit source]

This congregation was formed immediately following the Disruption in 1843. Over the years the congregation suffered depopulation for several economic reasons. In 1886 the Free and United Presbyterian churches united.
Membership: 1848, 145; 1900, 139.
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.

Various Minutes 1843–1929
Other post-1855 records
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/1494.

Leith Lumsden United Presbyterian Church[edit | edit source]

In 1830, the United Associate Presbytery of Aberdeen extended their missionary operations up Strathbogie. Ministers occasionally visited the parishes of Kildrummy and Auchindoir. Several persons soon applied to the Presbytery to have regular supply of sermon. They met in a hall in Kildrummy and a house in Leith Lumsden, Auchindoir parish, until they built a place of worship in Leith Lumsden in 1835. The congregation united with the Auchindoir Free Church in 1886.
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.

Records—                        Family History Library Film Number

Baptisms 1854–1867          0559523 item 5
Communion Roll 1854-1885 0559523 item 5

Auchindoir Episcopalian Church[edit | edit source]

This church was founded sometime after 1843 and before the dedication of its building in 1859. No further History is available.
The extent of records is unknown. For more information, write to the minister at:
Auchindoir Episcopal Church
5 Hopetown Ave.
Aberdeen AB2 9QU

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]

Auchindoir 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 scotlandspeople.($) You must register on the website but use of the index to probate records, called 'Wills & Testaments,' is free. You may then purchase a copy of the document or, if the document is before 1823, it will be on microfilm at the Family History Library. To find the microfilm numbers, search in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Aberdeen and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Aberdeen. also has many probate records for Scotland and Scottish people indexed from 1861-1941 ($)

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.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 12 June 2014.

Return to Aberdeenshire parish list.