Newburgh, Fife, Scotland Genealogy

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Parish #450

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


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 Newburgh. 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 Newburgh as well as the library numbers for any surname indexes available:

Year Family History Library Film Numbers Surname Indexes
1841      1042703 book 941.33 X22s; films 1145982-3; CD-ROM no. 1075
1851 1042270 941.33 X22f
1861 0103832 CD-ROM no. 2524
1871 0103994 None
1871 0203529 6086574 (8 fiche)
1891 0208765 None

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 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 Family History Library Film Number
Births: 1654-1782 1040338 item 6
1782-1855 1040169items 1-2
Marriages: 1654-1782 1040338item 6
1782-1855 1040169 items 1-2
Deaths: None None

Condition of Original Registers—

Index: For an index to these records, see the Scottish Church Records Index on computer at the Family History Library and family history centers.  The records may be indexed in the International Genealogical index

Births:Births are intermixed with marriages until December 1785. There are no entries July 1690–May 1702, except for one 1692 and seven for 1697–1698. After 1750, occasional entries were made of children baptized by the minister of the Associate Congregation at Abernethy. There are separate records after January 1786.
Marriages:There are no entries July 1690–May 1702, except for two entries of contracts of marriage 1697–1698.
Source:Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. Family History Library British Book

Established Church—Kirk Session Records

The Kirk session was the court of the parish. The session was made up of he 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 1652–1697, 1702–1773, 1849–1923
Accounts 1728–1751, 1812–1731
Treasurer’s Accounts 1832–1847
Note: Available at St. Andrews University Library, St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland, record CH2/277.

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.

The Statistical Account of 1836 states that there were 1008 dissenters in the parish. It also states that out of a population of 2868, about a third belonged to the United Associate congregation. Two hundred and four persons belonged to no religious group.

Newburgh (United) Associate Congregation

In 1740, a number of persons in the parish, who had been waiting for their minister to alien himself with the founders of the Secession church, withdrew from the Established church and, along with several persons resident in the parish of Abdie, formally acceded to the Associate Presbytery and connected themselves with the Secession congregation of Abernethy. In 1785, when an unpopular minister was settled in the parish of Newburgh, a number of parishioners applied for and obtained supply of sermon from the Associate Burgher Presbytery of Perth. This made two separate groups of seceders in Newburgh. The first group continued to worship in Abernethy until the union of the two great branches of the Secession in 1820, when most of them became connected with the congregation of Newburgh and contributed to its increase. A church was built in 1785 and enlarged in 1837 and again in 1850, with seating for 850.
Source: Annals and Statistics of the United Presbyterian Church, by Rev. William MacKelvie, D.D., pub. 1873. Film #477618. More details may be given in the source.

Records—                                                    Family History Library Film Number
Baptisms 1785–1812, 1821–1849                    0304671item 22
Marriages 1785, 1821–1845, 1850–1864           0304671item 22

Newburgh Relief or Second United Presbyterian Church

In 1841, a minority of the members of the Newburgh Associate congregation objected to the use of the church for secular purposes and as a result withdrew themselves and formed a Relief Church congregation. When formally organized in April 1842, there were 102 members. They worshiped in the Town Hall until they built a church in 1850, with seating for 400. In 1847, this congregation united with an Associate congregation to form a second United Presbyterian church in the parish. Then in 1873, when they objected to a proposal to unite with the first United Presbyterian congregation, they became an Independent congregation. They formally joined the Evangelical Union in 1893.
Source: Annals and Statistics of the United Presbyterian Church, by Rev. William MacKelvie, D.D., pub. 1873. Film #477618. More details may be given in the source.

The extent of pre-1855 records is unknown.

Newburgh Congregational Church

A church was formed in Newburgh in 1778. After the death of its minister in 1804, the congregation dissolved. Another church formed in 1841 and lasted until the 1870s. (See also The History of the Relief Church above.)
Source: A History of Scottish Congregationalism, by Harry Escott, pub. 1960. FHL book 941 K2es. The source includes a list of ministers.

The extent of pre-1855 records is unknown. For information write to:
The United Reformed Church, Scottish Synod Office
PO Box 189
240 Cathedral Street
Glasgow G1 2BX

Newburgh Baptist Church

A Scottish Baptist Church was founded in 1808, and while little is known of its early history, it survived and grew and is still in existence today, though it is no longer of the Scottish form.

The extent of pre-1855 records is unknown. For information write to:
The Baptist Union of Scotland
12 Aytoun Road
Glasgow G41 5RT

Newburgh Methodist Church

A Methodist church was formed in Newburgh before 1836, but nothing is known of its history or records. Attendance was always small.

See also Abdie parish.

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

Newburgh 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 Fife at Cupar. 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' of Fife 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 Fife. Look in the library catalog for the 'Place' of Fife and the subjects of 'Probate Records' and 'Probate Records - Indexes.'

Read more about Scotland Probate Records.

[Return to the Fife parish list.]