Farnell, Angus, Scotland Genealogy
This is a guide to the history and major genealogical records of Scotland as they pertain to the parish of Farnell. To learn more about how to use these records to search for your ancestors, go to the Scotland: Research Strategies.
FARNELL, a parish, in the county of Forfar, 4 miles (S. E.) from Brechin. This place derives its name, of Gaelic origin, from its having been anciently the resort of swans. The church is a handsome edifice in the early English style of architecture, with a finely-vaulted roof, and is adapted for a congregation of about 330 persons.
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.
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 Farnell, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:
||FHL Film Number|| Surname Indexes|
|| 6086580 (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.
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:||1699-1823||0993428 item 1|
||1820-1854||0993428 item 1|
|Marriages:||1716-1854||0993428 item 1|
|Deaths:||1752-1795||0993428 item 1|
Condition of Original Registers—
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 no entries August 1714–November 1716, after which, until 1801, the marriage entries for each year are recorded before the entries of birth for the same year. There is a duplicate of the portion 1716–1760, also 1784–1801. Mothers' names are not recorded until 1716 and there are three entries, 1824–1825, recorded after the deaths of 1793.
Marriages: From November 1716–1801 the entries of marriages for each year are recorded before the entries of birth for the same year. There is a duplicate of the portion from 1716–1760 and separate records for marriages beginning January 1784.
Deaths: Records are transcribed Mortcloth Dues 1752–1795, and burials October 1783–March 1793.
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:
Minutes 1716–1719, 1743–1750, 1796–1846
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/575
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 groups.
Civil Registration Reords
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.
Farnell was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of Brechin until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Dundee. 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 Angus and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of Brechin.
The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Angus. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Angus and the subjects of 'Probate Records' and 'Probate Records - Indexes.'
Read more about Scotland Probate Records.
- Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 5 June 2014.
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