West Lothian (Linlithgowshire), Scotland Genealogy

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Guide to West Lothian (Linlithgowshire) County ancestry, family history and genealogy: birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, parish registers, and military records.

West Lothian (Linlithgowshire) County

History[edit | edit source]

West Lothian (or Linlithgowshire until 1921) is a county in the south of Scotland, bounded on the north by the Firth of Forth, on the east and south-east by the county of Edinburgh, on the south-west by Lanarkshire, and on the west by the county of Stirling. It is about 21 miles in length and 12 miles in extreme breadth, comprising an area of 112 square miles or 71,680 acres. It is the western division of the ancient province of Lothian and since 1974 has been part of the region of Lothian.

After the departure of the Romans, great numbers of the emigrants from the Irish coast, who had established themselves in Cantyre, removed to these parts. After the union of the kingdoms of the Picts and Scots under Kenneth II (about the year 971), they became identified with the Scots.

There are twelve parishes. Linlithgow is the county-town and a royal burgh where all the courts are held. There are also the royal burgh of Queensferry, the burgh-of-barony of Bathgate, and the burgh-of-regality of Borrowstounness, with some smaller towns and populous villages.

The population in 1851 was 26,872.[1][2]

ScotlandsPeople: An Important Online Source[edit | edit source]

ScotlandsPeople is one of the largest online sources of original genealogical information. If you are researching UK genealogy, your Scottish ancestry or building your Scottish family tree, they have more than 100 million records to look through.

The comprehensive choice of Scottish records includes:

  • Statutory Registers
  • Old Parish Registers
  • Catholic Parish Registers
  • CPR Others
  • Census
  • Valuation Rolls
  • Soldiers’ Wills
  • Wills & Testaments
  • Coats of Arms

For more detail on record availability, see Guides. For the content guide to what records are on the site, see Guides A-Z. More information on the site, its contents, and instructions for using it can be found in the ScotlandsPeople Wiki article. Indexes may be searched for free, and there is a pay per view fee to see the digitized record.

Census[edit | edit source]

Many census records have been indexed by surname. Some indexes cover one parish (and will be listed in the Wiki on the parish page) and some indexes are for the county as a whole. The Family History Library has county-wide census placename indexes for West Lothian (Linlithgowshire) for 1881.  Click here for other census indexes available at the library.

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Civil Registration or Statutory Registers[edit | edit source]

For details on information found in statutory registers and other methods of searching them, see Scotland Statutory Registers - Vital Records.

Refer to the ScotlandsPeople Wiki article.
Images and Indexes Available at ScotlandsPeople Website ($)
Births 1855-1910 ◊ScotlandsPeople Website has indexes to 2012.
Marriages 1855-1935
Deaths 1855-1960

Parishes[edit | edit source]

Some of the West Lothian-shire parish records are indexed in West Lothian, Scotland, Extracted Parish Records.
This database is a collection of historical parish registers from the county of West Lothian in the country of Scotland. The records in this collection can range in date from the early 1500s to the mid- to late-1800s. The records include baptisms/christenings, burials, marriages, tombstone inscriptions, obituaries, tax lists, wills, and other miscellaneous types of records. Also included are some records from non-conformist churches. You will find interesting phonetic spelling. Some of the records may be in Latin or even a Welsh or Scottish dialect. Due to the nature of the records and because the records were originally compiled by a third party, it is difficult to absolutely verify the completeness and validity of the data.

Here is a list of historic parishes for the county of West Lothian (or Linlithgowshire) with their parish numbers.  Click on a parish name to see information about records. Click on this link for an outline map of the parishes of West Lothian.

Parish No.
Abercorn 661
Bathgate 662
Borrowstounness 663
Carriden 664
Dalmeny 665
Ecclesmachen 666
Kirkliston 667
Linlithgow 668
Livingstone 669
Queensferry 670
Torphichen 671
Uphall 672
Whitburn 673

Maps[edit | edit source]

Poorhouse Records[edit | edit source]

NOTE: Workhouses in Scotland were commonly known as poorhouses. For more information on Scottish poorhouses, go to the Scotland Poorhouses, Poor Law, Etc page.

There was one workhouse in this county:

A description with drawings and photos of the workhouse today along with databases of those living there from the 1881 Census are provided on the link above located on the site entitled The Workhouse: The story of an institution... which is owned and operated by Peter Higginbotham.

Societies[edit | edit source]

[genuki.org.uk/Societies/Scotland Secretary]
West Lothian Family History Society
21 Willowpark
West Lothian
EH47 9HN

The Lothians Family History Society
Jen Mortensen
Phone: 001 909 8090453
E-mail: parishchest@gmail.com

Websites[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Samuel Lewis. Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, (London, England: S. Lewis and Co., 1846), 3 v.: 651, [FHL book 941 E5]. Digitized by FamilySearch International, FamilySearch.org, https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/216925 (accessed June 20, 2016).
  2. Samuel Lewis. "Leven - Lochlee," in A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, (London, 1846), 175-197. British History Online, http://www.british-history.ac.uk/topographical-dict/scotland/pp175-197 (accessed June 7, 2020).