Tullynessle & Forbes, Aberdeenshire, Scotland GenealogyEdit This Page

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Scotland Gotoarrow.png Aberdeenshire Gotoarrow.png Tullynessle & Forbes

Parish #246

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



TULLYNESSLE and FORBES, a parish, in the district of Alford, county of Aberdeen, 2½ miles (N. by E.) from Alford. The former of these ancient parishes, which were united by act of the General Assembly in 1808, derives its name, in some records Tullynesset, from the Gaelic, signifying either a dwelling on a sloping bank, or a dwelling upon the river Esset, from the situation of its church and manse. The latter parish was named from its proprietors, the ancient family of Forbes. There are no villages; the whole of the population is agricultural, with the exception of a few who are engaged in the various handicraft trades requisite for the wants of the parish. The church is a neat and substantial structure, affording ample accommodation for the parishioners.[1]

Forbes, which was formerly united with the parish of Kearn, was annexed to Tullynessle in 1811.

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

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 Tullyness & Forbes as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

FHL Film Number
Surname Indexes
6086502 (12 fiche)

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

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

Record Type   Years Covered FHL Film Number
Births: 1718-1854 0993303 item 1-2
Marriages: 1718-1774 - Forbes & Kearn 0993303 item 1-2

1760-1777 - Tullynessle 0993303 item 1-2

1806-1808 - Tullynessle 0993303 item 1-2

1808-1854 - Tullynessle & Forbes 0993303 item 1-2
Deaths: 1806, 1814, 1827 0993303 item 1-2


Condition of Original Registers—

Index:  For an index to these records, see the Scottish Church Records Index available on computers at the Family History Library and family history centers.  The records may be indexed in the International Genealogical Index.
Births: Forbes and Kearn births are blank except for a few entries, July 1739–February 1747, and except one entry, November 1756–May 1763.  There is only one entry December 1771–March 1773. After November 1774 record is very irregular, whole families being generally entered together.  For Tullynessle, only one entry November 1777–March 1779, and one for 1796. There is one page of irregular entries 1802–1840, after record of 1819.
Marriages:  Marriages are blank June 1734–August 1737, December 1738–August 1747, and August 1753–July 1763, after which date the entries are recorded among the births. There are only two entries after December 1770.  For Tullynessle, marriages are blank except one entry, June 1777–July 1806. They are also blank November 1818–November 1825.  For Tullynessle, the records are burials and there is only three entries recorded in all, dated 1806, 1827, and 1841. The records from 1808 are for Tullynessle and Forbes.
Source:  Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British Book 941 K23b.

Established Church—Kirk Session Records

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:

Forbes and Kearn

Minutes 1763–1799
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/156.


Minutes 1759–1820, 1831–1866
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/358.

Nonconformist Church Records

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.

No known nonconformist churches.

Civil Registration Records

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

Tyllynessle & Forbes was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Aberdeen until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Aberdeen. 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 Aberdeen and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Aberdeen.

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

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.


  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 20 June 2014.

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  • This page was last modified on 27 June 2015, at 00:24.
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