Kirkden, Angus, Scotland Genealogy

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Scotland Gotoarrow.png Angus Gotoarrow.png Kirkden

Parish #298

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


KIRKDEN, a parish, in the county of Forfar, 5 miles (E. by S.) from Forfar; containing the village of Friockheim. This place, which was anciently called Idvie, from the situation of the glebe lands in that barony, derives its present name from the position of its church in a deep and narrow valley. The parish church, erected in 1825, on the site of the former, is a neat and commodious structure containing 525 sittings; and a church has been built in the village of Friockheim. The members of the Free Church have also 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 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 Kirkden, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

FHL Film Number
Surname Indexes
941.31 X22a no. 300
6086580 (12 fiche)

The 1901 census of Scotland is indexed on 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: 1650-1690 0993443

1735-1854 0993443
Marriages: 1650-1690 0993443

1735-1854 0993443
Deaths: 1749-1752 0993443


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: Births are intermixed with marriages and other matters prior to July 1690. They are blank from the latter date until May 1735, after which intermixed with marriages until July 1752. Mothers' names are seldom recorded before 1809. There is a separate record of births from October 1753.
Marriages: Marriages are intermixed with births and other matters prior to July 1690, and May 1735–July 1752. There is a separate record of marriages from October 1753 and they are blank May 1802–July 1810.
Deaths: There is one entry for 1789 on flyleaf of record.
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 and Accounts 1735–1893
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH2/227

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 Lists.

Friockheim Free Church

The minister and congregation of this “quoad sacra” parish came out in 1843. They were allowed to retain the church until the following year, when a new church was erected. The manse was built in 1850 and the church was enlarged in 1870.
Membership: 1848, 296; 1900, 251.
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.

Minutes 1843–1929
Note: Available at the National Archives of Scotland, Edinburgh, record CH3/860.

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

Kirkden was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of St.Andrews until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Dundee. Probate records for 1513- 1901 are indexed online at 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 St.Andrews.

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.


  1. Lewis, Samuel A., A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland (1846), pp. 499-514. Adapted. Date accessed: 5 June 2014.

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