Polmont, Stirlingshire, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #487

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

History[edit | edit source]

POLMONT, a parish, in the county of Stirling, 3½ miles (E. by S.) from Falkirk containing the villages of Bennetstone and Redding, and a part of the late quoad sacra parish of Grangemouth. This place, the name of which is of very uncertain derivation, was originally included within the parish of Falkirk. The parish is bounded on the north by the Frith of Forth, and on the east partly by the river Avon. The old church, erected in 1731, and in many respects inconvenient, has been superseded by a handsome new church, built in the course of the year 1845, and containing about 1000 sittings. There is also occasional service in the village of Bennetstone, in which various dissenting ministers officiate. The members of the Free Church have a place of worship.[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 http://edina.ac.uk/stat-acc-scot/. 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.

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

The 1901 census of Scotland is indexed on www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk. 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 church records.
Here are the pre-1855 records that exist for this parish.

Established Church  Old Parochial Records
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Click here[low quality link] to go to the FamilySearch Catalog entry for the Established Church records for Polmont, covering the years 1729-1854.

Condition of Original Registers
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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: There are only two entries prior January 1732. The records are carefully kept. Duplicate of portions preceding April 1780, and May 1789–1804, including residence of parents omitted prior to 1797. Triplicate of portion October 1783–April 1791.
Marriages: Prior to December 1783, there are only entries of Proclamation money, which are continued until February 1788. Blank 1739–1742. Only Bridegroom’s names are in the entries prior to January 1743. The register of Marriages are blank July 1791–October 1794, and February 1796–March 1806, after which date they are proclamations, the fact of marriage is seldom added to the entries.
Deaths: The records are Mortcloth Dues1737–1788 and are blank 1739–1742. Records are burials October 1783–September 1791 and are blank from the latter date until March 1806, when a record of Mortcloth Dues is resumed.
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 1728–1739, 1742–1792, 1799–1802, 1810–1858
Treasurer’s Accounts 1737–1739, 1742–1792, 1799–1802, 1804, 1806–1838,
Note: Available at the Stirling Council Archives, Stirling, Scotland, record CH2/1134.

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.

Polmont Free Church[edit | edit source]

The minister of the parish did not “came out” in 1843. The people who adhered to the Free Church were organized into a congregation by Robert Cunningham, of Blair Lodge School, who held service in the school classrooms. The charge was sanctioned in 1845. Church built at Brightons 1846–1847.
Membership: 1889, 150; 1900, 218.
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.

Minutes 1843–1893
Marriages 1843–1863
Baptisms 1848–1868
Deacons’ Court Minutes 1846–1862
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/1196.

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]

Polmont was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Ayr until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Stirling. Probate records for 1513- 1901 are indexed online at www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk. 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 Stirling and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Ayr.

The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Stirling. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Stirling 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. 367-388. Adapted. Date accessed: 13 February 2014.

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