Sunday, 21 February 2010

An old but useful Scottish genealogy book

For anybody wishing to get to grips with the whole Scottish church thing (i.e. who's at war with whom, when, why, who's splitting, who's reuniting, who's splitting then reuniting, the Calvinist war cry "Neverrr!", and much more), I can recommend a very old book that I was able to obtain second hand through, but which has taught me a lot of very new things.

The National Index of Parish Registers Volume XII: Sources for Scottish Genealogy and Family History by D. J. Steel was produced in 1970 for the English based Society of Genealogists, and published by Phillimore & Co. Ltd. For its time it is surprisingly easy to digest, and whilst parts are extremely out of date, other parts are invaluable, most notably the considerable section of the book dealing with the nightmare that can be Scottish nonconformity, with such brilliant gems as lists of Scottish episcopalian records known to exist (in 1970!) and more, a detailed account of Scottish Quakerism and Judaism, and more.

I'd recommend checking out your local library for a copy - I don't think you'll be disappointed! :)

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