Dyke, Moray, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #133

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

History[edit | edit source]

DYKE and MOY, a parish, in the county of Elgin, 3 miles (W. by S.) from Forres; containing the villages of Kintessack and Whitemyre. These two ancient parishes, of which the Gaelic names are descriptive of the former as a channel for waters, and of the latter as a level and fertile plain, were united in 1618. The church, conveniently situated in the village, is a neat structure erected in 1781, in good repair, and containing 900 sittings. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship.[1]

The name of the parish of Dyke is supposed to be the Gaelic word Dig, signifying a water drain or ditch; that of Moy, the Gaelic word Maigh, signifying a plain.

The parish is situated on the south coast of the Moray Frith, and on the west side of the river Findhorn.

There is no market-town in this parish. The nearest is Forres, distant about four miles from the centre of the parish. There are several small villages; Dyke, Kintessack, Broom of Moy, and Whitemire.

Among the eminent individuals connected with this parish, may be mentioned James Stewart, known as “the good Regent,” who was Earl of Moray in the reign of his sister, the unfortunate Mary Queen of Scots. Alexander Brodie of Brodie, who lived during the usurpation of Oliver Cromwell, was a man of great piety, learning, and ability. He was twice chosen a Lord of Session, but from his retired and domestic habits, accepted the office with reluctance, and soon resigned. He was one of the commissioners sent to treat with Charles II at The Hague and at Breds. The late James Brodie of Brodie was a man of considerable talent and scientific acquirements. He especially distinguished himself as a botanist, and added a considerable number of plants of the British Flora.

The landowners of this parish are The Earl of Moray; William Brodie Esq. of Brodie; Norman M’Leod, Esq. of Dalvey; James M. Grant, Esq. of Glenmorriston and Moy; Robert Grant, Esq. of Kincorth; John P. Grant, Esq. of Rothiemurchus and Binsness.
Norman Macleod, Esq. of Dalvey, is the only proprietor who constantly resides in the parish. The Earl of Moray has resided for the last two years. Robert Grant, Esq. of Kincorth, resides for several months in the parish every season. There are three families of independent fortune in the parish, besides the landed proprietors.

According to the census of 1831, the population of the parish was 1457, and in 1841, the population count was 1365. The decrease in partly owing to emigration, and partly to the enlargement of farms.

The raw produce that is farmed in the parish consists of wheat, barley, oats, hay, turnips, potatoes, and pasture. There is a salmon fishing of considerable value upon the Findhorn. The sea-shore yields an inexhaustible supply of excellent cockles, which not only afford a wholesome addition to the meals of the common people, but five employment and subsistence to a number of women, who sell them through the country and the neighboring towns.

The Established Church is the only place of public worship in the parish. It is conveniently situated. It was built in 1781, and is in good repair. It is seated for betwixt 800 and 900. No seat rents are exacted. The number of communicants belonging to the parish, and from the neighborhood, is about 250. There are 43 Dissenting, and 3 Episcopalian families in the parish.
The earliest date of the parochial registers is 1640. They consist of eleven volumes of different sizes. Before the date of the registers which are now filling up, there are several blanks. Since 1783, they have been regularly kept.

This account was written March 1842.

Source: The New Statistical Account of Scotland for Dyke, FHL book 941 B4sa, 2nd series vol 13.

 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 you are interested in. Also available at the Family History Library.

The following articles have been written by Bruce B Bishop FSA. Scotland, who has done extensive research into each Parish in Moray.  These are all to be found in The Lands and People of Moray, which are held at the Family History Library, Salt Lake City. 941.23 H2b

The Parishes of Dyke, Moy and Culbin before their Union in 1618.  A history of the area includin a short list of some of the inhabitants giving name, date, residence, relationship or occupation.  Illustrated with a hand drawn mapof the parishes of  Dyke, Moy and Culbin. There are early maps around 1853 by Pont, and another map by Gordon from Baeu's Atlas 1654. Article covers years 1010-1624. The Lands and People of Moray, pt 30, 2008 pages 1-5. FHL Ref. 942.23 H2b

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1618 to 1674. A brief history of the Parish following unification including a list of some of the inhabitants with name, date, residence, relationship or reason for being mention. Illustrated with a copy of the earliest surviving page of the Kirk Session Minutes 1663 in which Mr. John Stewart is called as Schoolmaster, copy of which is held at National Archives Scotland.  Poor List 1665. The Lands and People of Moray, pt. 30, 2008, pages 6-23. Family History Library Ref. 941.23 H2b

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1675-1699. A brief history of the parish, interesting to note that the new Laird of Brodie wrote about the food shortages of 1682, and that "many folk were going to Carolina, Pennyslvania and New Gersey (spelling) I did not relish it." A list of some of the inhabitants of the Parish.  Illustrated with facsimile pages of Poor List 1675, Installation of James Murray as school master and Session Clerk, 22 June 1693, Kirk Session Minutes 25 June 1693, Poor List 1694 and a hand drawn map of Dyke and Moy about 1700. The Lands and People of Moray, pt 30. 2008, pages 24-38. FHL Ref. 941.23 H2b.

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1700-1724. A brief history of the parish between 1700-1724, including a large list of some of the inhabitants. Illustrated with  facsimile of Poor List 1704, Installation of James Chalmers as Minister of Dyke, 14 Sept. 1709. Article covers years  1700-1757. The Lands and People of Moray, pt 30, 2008, pages 39-57. FHL Ref. 941.23 H2b

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1725-1749. A brief history of Dyke and Moy from 1725-1749. including a list of some of the inhabitants, illustrated with facsimile pages of Legalization of Irregular Marriage between James Garden and Isobel Fordice, December 1730, Poor List 1730 and 1745. Article covers years 1725-1788. The Lands and People of Moray, pt. 30, 2008, pages 58-74. FHL Ref. 941.23 H2b

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1750 to 1774. A brief history of the parish including part of the Seafield Muniments which contain a list of the 'Kain Fowl" rents of the parish during the years 1761 to 1764, which gives the name and place of person, and the rents. for different fowls.  It also gives a list of some of the inhabitants of Dyke and Moy from 1750-1774.illustrated with a copy page of the Poor List 1750. The Lands and People of Moray, pt 31, 2008, pages 1-13.

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1775 to 1799. A brief history of Dyke and Moy 1775-1799 including a list of some of the inhabitants, illustrated with facsimile pages of Male Servant Tax as assessed April 1779, Female Servant Tax 1785, Poor List 1790, fatherless children applying for aid under the Vass Mortification 1799 and a hand drawn map of Dyke and Moy about 1800. The Lands and People of Moray, pt. 31, 2008, pages 14-31,

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1800 to 1824.  A brief history  of Dyke and Moy from 1800 to 1824 including a list of some of  the inhabitants, illustrated with facsimile pages of Poor List 1803, and 1810, List of Occasional Supplies to the Needy 1803, and List of the Enrolled Poor 1810. The Lands and People of Moray pt. 31, 2008, pages 32-44. Family History Library Ref. 941.23 H2b

The Parish of Dyke and Moy from 1825 to 1850. A brief history of Dyke and Moy 1825-1850 including a list of some of the inhabitants, illustrated with facsimile pages of Poor List, 1826, page 1 and 2.  The Lands and People of Moray, pt. 31, 2008, pages 45-55, Family History Library Ref. 941.23 H2b

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 Dyke, well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

FHL Film Number
Surname Indexes
6086568 (2 fiche)

The 1841-1911 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 and imaged on this website. It may be easier for you to pay to use the website rather than access the separate indexes through the Family History Library. Also, indexes are available for the census 1841-1901 on pay websites, but free at The Family History Library of www.findmypast.co.uk and www.ancestry.co.uk.

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]

Record Type Years Covered FHL Book andFilm Number
Births: 1635-1761 0990795

1737-1854 0990796
Marriages: 1635-1761 0990795

1737-1854 0990796
Deaths: 1635-1691, 1708-1799, 1803-1840 0990795 and British 941.23 K2b

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. and www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk

Births: There are no entries for March 1641–July 1663 and only two for September 1726–July1737. Births are recorded twice for 1783–1791.
Marriages: There are no entries for March 1641–April 1647, February 1653–July 1663, July 1726–August 1737, and February 1781–January 1784. There are only two birth entries for 1817.
Deaths: Death records are intermixed with births and marriages prior to March 1641, and then there are no death entries until July 1666, from which date to May 1674 there are only a few entries recorded among the births and marriages. There are no entries for December 1691–November 1722 and only two entries for December 1727–November 1788. The deaths are actually Mortcloth Dues after 1722.
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 1663–1689, 1693–1733, 1737–1761, 1788–1894
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/779

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.

Dyke Free Church[edit | edit source]

The minister and most of the congregation left the Established Church in 1843. In December of 1843, a church was built in the village of Kintessock. The congregation found a more central location where they built a manse in 1853 and a church in 1867. Population of the district steadily declined.
Membership: 1848, 160; 1900, 95.
Source: Annals of the Free Church of Scotland, 1843 1900, ed. Rev. William Ewing, D.D., 2 vols. pub. 1914. FHL Film #918572. More details are given in the source.

Extent of the records is unknown.

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.

Land and Property[edit | edit source]

Probate Records
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Dyke was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Moray until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Elgin. Probate records for 1513- 1925 are indexed and imaged 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 Moray and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Moray.  Www.ancestry.co.uk also has indexes to Scottish Probate Records 1858-1966.
The Family History Library also has some post-1823 probate records for Moray. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Moray 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: 27 June 2014.

Return to Moray parish list.