Snizort, Inverness, Scotland Genealogy
This is a guide to the history and major genealogical records of Scotland as they pertain to the parish of Snizort. To learn more about how to use these records to search for your ancestors, go to the Scotland: Research Strategies.
SNIZORT, a parish, in the island of Skye, county of Inverness, 7 miles (N. N. W.) from Portree; containing part of the late quoad sacra parish of Steinscholl which was within Snizort. The church, situated at the head of Loch Snizort, built about the year 1800, and originally containing only 450 sittings, has been enlarged, and now contains 750 sittings. There is a place of worship for members of the Free Church; also a preaching-station on the south side of the bay of Snizort, in which are 400 sittings; and at Uigg is a place of worship for Baptists.
This parish is bounded on the south, by the parish of Portree; on the south-west and west, by the parishes of Bracadale and Duirinish, and Loch Snizort, an arm of the sea; on the north by the parish of Kilmuir; and on the east, by that of Steinscholl, and the channel which divides Skye from Rasay.
The most remarkable character connected with this parish is Flora Macdonald, a name which will ever be recorded as an ornament to her sex, for the fortitude and heroism which she displayed in favoring the escape of Prince Charles Stuart, after the memorable battle of Culloden. She was the daughter of Macdonald of Milton, in South Uist, of which island she was a native
There are five land-owners in the parish; the principle one is Lord Macdonald.
From the physical quality of its surface, a great part of this parish must remain uncultivated waste. Pastures form the principle employment of the inhabitants. Their cows are more celebrated for their fine symmetry, than for the quantity of their milk.
The church, which is situated at the head of Loch Snizort, near the southern extremity of the parish, was built about forty years ago. It was originally intended to accommodate 450 sitters; but, from the great increase of population, being considered too small, it was lately enlarged by the addition of 300 sittings. The manse, which is situated near the church was built at the same time, and has lately undergone repairs. The minister of the parish preaches also every third Sunday at Uigg, one of the most destitute localities in the Highlands. The Anitpeadobaptists, who are the only Dissenters in the parish, have a meeting-house here, and have been making some converts; but, from recent events, there is reason to believe that their progress is more rapid that lasting. There are not more than thirty members in full communion with their church.
This account was written April 1840.
Source: New Statistical Account of Scotland, for Snizort Family History Library book 941 B4sa, series 2 vol. 14.
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 you are interested in. 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 Snizort, as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:
|Year||Family History Library Film Number||Surname Indexes|
|1851||1042099||6344852 (3 fiche)|
|1881||0203428||6086593 (4 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:||1823-1854||0990672 item 3|
|Marriages:||1823-1854||0990672 item 3|
Condition of Original Registers—
Index: 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. The records may be indexed on FamilySearch Records.
Note: No record prior to 1823.
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:
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.
Snizort Free Church
The minister of Snizort, and almost all his congregation, came out in 1843. Besides the church he had two regular meeting places, one twelve miles distant, the other eight miles distant. For some years the congregation worshipped in the open air. A church and manse and schoolhouse were built at Snizort; and a church at Uig, at the other end of the parish. All were completed in 1847. With the exception of two or three families, all the people were crofters.
Membership: 1855, 1200; 1900, 80.
Source: Annals of the Free Church of Scotland, 1943–1900, ed. Rev. William Ewing, D.D., 2 vols. pub. 1914. Film #918572. More details may be given in the source, including list of ministers.
The extent of records is unknown.
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.
Snizort was under the probate jurisdiction of the Commissary Court of The Isles until 1823, and since then has been under the Sheriff's Court of Inverness. 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 Inverness-shire and the subject of 'Probate records.' Then click on the link to the records of the Commissariat of The Isles.
The library also has some post-1823 probate records for Inverness-shire. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place-names' of Inverness-shire 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: 30 July 2014.
Return to Inverness-shire parish list.