Humbie, East Lothian, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #710

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

History[edit | edit source]

KEITH and HUMBIE, a parish, in the county of Haddington, eight miles (S. W. by S.) from Haddington. This parish was formed, subsequently to the Reformation, by the union of the two parishes of Keith-Symmars and Keith-Hundeley. The church, situated nearly in the centre of the parish, was built in 1800; it is a plain substantial edifice adapted to a congregation of 400 persons. A place of worship has been erected for members of the Free Church.[1]

The First Statistical Account of Scotland (pub. 1791-99) and The New Statistical Account of Scotland (pub. 1834-45) offer 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 your parish of interest. Also available at the Family History Library.

The author of theFirst Statistical Account reported that the parish contained 676 people, most of whom were engaged in agriculture. Most residents were members of the Established Church but there were 3 Seceders and 1 Episcopal family. The inhabitants were described as industrious and satisfied with their condition. The oldest parish inhabitant could not recall that anyone had ever been punished for a crime.

Census Records[edit | edit source]

A census record is a count and description of the population, taken by the government, arranged by locality and by household. Read more about Scotland Census Records.

Here is a list of the Family History Library microfilm numbers for the census records of Humbie as well as the library numbers for any surname indexesavailable.

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 the separate 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 Registersters[edit | edit source]


Event Type Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1648-1854 1067849 item 2-4
Marriages: 1643-1854 1067849 item 2-4
Deaths: 1645-1650 1067849 item 2-4
Condition of Original Registers—[edit | edit source]

Indexed: For an index to these records, see the Scottish church Records Index on computer at the Family History Library and family history centers.  Some records may also be indexed in other FamilySearch collections for Scotland. 
Births: Records are blank April 1655–November 1661, May 1663–May 1665, June 1666–July 1667, August 1679–January 1682, and excluding one entry, August 1691–November 1693; also November 1696–January 1700, December 1700–September 1702, June 1703–January 1706, December 1715–December 1716, and October 1717–October 1718. The portion 1718–1732 is in the form of a small note book. The record is also blank December 1732–April 1734.
Marriages: Marriage records are blank August 1658–May 1662, August 1685–December 1886, November 1688–June 1693, July 1703–August 1709, May 1711–May 1717, December 1717–1721, and February 1733–May 1735. The portion 1721–1733, is in the form of a small note book.
Deaths: There is only a record of “Mortcloth Dues,” contained on a single leave.
Source: Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British Book 941 K23b.
Note: The New Statistical Account of Scotland for Humbie 1835 states: “In former times, the parochial registers were very ill kept, some of them having been entirely lost or destroyed.”

Established Church—Kirk Session Records
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The Kirk session was the court of the parish. The Kirk 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 1643–1616, 1715–1750, 1755–1775, 1791–1838
Heritors’ Minutes 1750–1791 - with gaps
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/389.

Nonconformist Church Records
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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.

The New Statistical Account of Scotland for Humbie 1835 states that there were at that time 15 Dissenter families and two Episcopalian families within the parish.

Humbie and Fala Free Church
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James S. Dodds, minister of the parish, “came out” in 1843. A church was built on a site secured at Upper Keith, temporary accommodation being found in a barn. With the decrease of the population the congregation declined, and from 1884 to 1888 it was conducted as a preaching station.
Membership: 1848, 190; 1900, 81.
Source: Annals of the Free Church of Scotland, 1843–1900, ed. Rev. William Ewing, D.D., 2 vols. pub. 1914. Film #918572. More details may be given in the source including a list of ministers.

                                                         FHL Film Number
Minutes                     1845–1918 .        1484620 item 4–7
Marriages                  1845–1889          1484620 item 4–7
Baptisms                   1844–1902          1484620 item 4–7
Communion Roll         1844–1912          1484620 item 4–7

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]

Humbie was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Edinburg until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Haddington. 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 East Lothian and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Edinburgh.

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

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.

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  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 1-22. Adapted. Date accessed: 04 April 2014.

Return to the East Lothian parish list.