Newbattle, Midlothian, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #695

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

History[edit | edit source]

NEWBATTLE, a parish, in the county of Edinburgh; containing the villages of Easthouses and Newton-Grange, 2033 inhabitants, 1 mile (S.) from Dalkeith. This place, which forms a kind of suburb to the town of Dalkeith, originated in the foundation of a monastery by David I. in 1140. The church, situated not far from the river, near the principal lodge of Newbattle Abbey, was erected in 1727, and is a plain structure containing 400 sittings. There is also a regular minister at Stobhill, where a church was raised in the 19th century.[1]

     The parish was once divided into two, Newbattle and Maisterton.  When they were united is uncertain.  There is an abundance of both animal and plant fossils.  The parish registers have been keep since1616,  Some records have been kept regularly and some have blanks in them.  In 1793 the population was 1295 with 1017 in the Established Church and 278 of the Secession.  In 1831 the population was 1882.  The land is primarily used for grains, with a few sheep, horses, cattle, potatoes, turnips,cabbage,hay, and pasture grass.  Dalkeith is the nearest town.  The number of people attending the Established church is 1562 and those in the Secession Church is 265.

This account was written in 1839.

Source: New Statistical Account of Scotland (FHL book 941 B4sa, series 2 vol.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 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 Newbattle, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available.

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
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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]

Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1618-1768 - baptisms 1067785 items 3-4

1772-1855 - baptisms 1067786 items 1-3
Marriages: 1642-1854 1067786 items 1-3
Deaths: 1696-1819, 1838-1854 - burials 1067786 items 1-3
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: There are no entries July 1623–July 1627 or September 1628–July 1641. After the record for April 1689 is a register of the children baptized in the meetinghouse at Newbattle, October 1687–April 1705, followed by a register of children baptized, not being within the parish of Newbattle, November 1689–November 1703. The regular record for the parish is resumed at May 1705. After November 1758 is one page of irregular entries, 1751–62. Mothers’ names are not recorded July 1641–May 1666, except January 1659–November 1660.
Marriages: There are no entries August 1649–June 1650 or November 1651–February 1654; one for September 1654–October 1655, and one for September 1663–March 1666. After January 1669 there is a record of proclamations from December 1648, which is blank June 1650–March 1659 and July 1670–June 1674. The fact of marriage is usually added to the entries after November 1691. There are no entries, except transcribed entries of proclamation fees, June 1704–May 1705 and May 1720–May 1735. There are no entries December 1769–April 1783 or October 1804–February 1806. There is a record of testimonials in order to marriages, 1689–1702.
Deaths: Prior to March 1710, there are only Mortcloth Dues, after which deaths and burials are recorded. There are no entries January 1718–January 1740. There are, however, entries of Mortcloth Dues for July 1723–1740. After February 1766, except for nine entries of death and burials of the Marquis of Lothian’s family, 1767–1833, there are only entries of Mortcloth Dues until 1819. Then there are no entries until 1838.
Source: Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British Book 941 K23b.

Established Church—Kirk Session Records
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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 1616–1628, 1643–1702, 1722–1895
Cash Books 1693–1903
Communion Roll 1835–1863
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/276.

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.

There are none.

In 1839, there were said to be 265 dissenters within the parish but there were no places of worship. Therefore, they would have worshiped in neighboring parishes.

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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Newbattle was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Edinburgh until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Edinburgh. 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 Midlothian 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 Midlothian. Look in the library catalog  for the 'Place-names' of Midlothian 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. 298-309. Adapted. Date accessed: 11 April 2014.

Return to the Midlothian parish list.