Scottish Church Records Index
All known surviving Church of Scotland (Established Presbyterian) records of births-baptisms and marriages are included in this index, which makes it a tremendous help for searching for Scottish ancestors.
While it is helpful to know where your pre-1855 Scottish ancestor came from, it is not entirely necessary to know it in order to find him. With the use of the Scottish Church Records index, you may be able to find your ancestor regardless of his place of origin. The index contains information extracted from the records of the Established Church of Scotland available on microfilm at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. Not all records survive, but all known birth/baptism and marriage records have been indexed. Relatively few burial or death records were kept or survive, and those that do were not indexed.
The index is available in a number ways. First, it is available at the Family History Library and at many of the 4000+ family history centers around the world as a computer database in DOS format. Second, many of the names found in the index are also included in the International Genealogical Index which is available for free at www.familysearch.org. Third, the index is available at www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk, but this is a fee-based web site.
Use of the index does not guarantee that you will find or identify your ancestor. Keep in mind that many names are very common. Your difficulty may lie in deciding which of several choices is your ancestor. Or, your ancestor's record may not survive or may not have been recorded in the first place. But in spite of these possible difficulties, the Scottish Church Records Index is the place to start looking for your pre-1855 Scottish ancestors.
Be sure to also search any other record types, such as census or probate, that exist for the time period your ancestor lived.