Place:Coldstream, Berwickshire, Scotland

Coordinates55.673°N 2.2639°W
Located inBerwickshire, Scotland     (1690 - 1975)
See alsoBorders, Scotlandregional authority 1975-1996
Scottish Borders, Scotlandunitary council area since 1996
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog

Coldstream Parish is situated on the English border in south central Berwickshire. The parish of Swinton and Simprim lay to the north, the English County of Northumberland was to the east and south and the parish of Eccles was to the west. The parish covered an area of 34.7km2 (13.4 sq. miles) and included the town of Coldstream and the hamlet of Lennel.

The Battle of Flodden took place on the English side of the border, but near Coldstream, in September 1513. It was a disastrous battle for the Scots and most of Coldstream's men of the fighting generation died in the conflict.

More description of the history of Coldstream is to be found under the town of Coldstream.


Research Tips

Sources for Old Parish Registers Records, Vital Records and Censuses

  • Scotland's People This is a pay website providing vital statistics and census data for all of Scotland with original images. There is a description at Scotland under Genealogical Resources.

Notes for Berwickshire

  • GENUKI has a list of references for Berwickshire. Some of these may be superseded by more modern material.
  • The Borders Family History Society provides a page of facts and publications for each of the parishes in its area. They have a lot of material. On each parish page is a map of the local area taken from either the Ordnance Survey Quarter-inch to the mile, Scotland, 1921-1923 series or the Ordnance Survey One-inch to the mile, Popular edition, Scotland, 1920-1930 series. These maps are not visible immediately upon opening a page, but worthwhile scrolling down to find.
  • There are no records for Berwickshire in the FreeCen Project.
  • The Coldstream Parish Registers for the Church of Scotland provide information on baptisms (1690-1854), marriages (1693-1855, plus Proclamation Fees 1733-1783 and Irregular Marriages 1731-1849) and burials (1785-1856 plus Mortcloth Dues 1733-1783). See the FamilySearch Wiki article on Coldstream for other church denominations. (Coldstream was a popular marrying spot for eloping couples, just like Gretna Green.)

Further Sources of Reference

Please note and respect the copyright warnings on these websites.

  • GENUKI article on Coldstream. These articles often include a bibliography.
  • Scottish Places article on the parish of Coldstream. The tabs of the right provide more information, and a map of the parish within its surrounding area, with small settlements highlighted and linked to more information.
  • The FamilySearch Wiki article on Coldstream provides direct reference to FamilySearch holdings on many topics with respect to the parish.
  • The National Library of Scotland have a website devoted to maps from the 1600s right up to the present. Comparisons of modern-day and old maps of the same place can be made. From the home page click on "Find by place" and then follow the instructions on the next page. Once you are viewing the place you want, use the slider <----> at the top of the map to compare the layout of roads and the place names of smaller areas, perhaps even farms, with the landscape today. The website takes some getting used to. The One-inch 2nd edition, Scotland, 1898-1904 OS is a series of maps with the parishes delineated. Each of these maps cover an area of 18 x 24 miles and will zoom to comfortable reading size with a couple of mouse clicks on the map itself. Unfortunately, they are not geo-referenced, and it is necessary to go to the OS One Inch 1885-1900 series to locate places by latitude and longitude.
  • The Statistical Accounts for Scotland In the 1790s and again in the 1830s, the ministers of the all the parishes of the Church of Scotland were asked to provide a description of their parish to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. The original account request included 160 questions to be answered. These accounts are available in print in 20 volumes and are also online where it is freely available to browse. The browsing portal is below the viewing area of most computer screens. Scroll down to "For non-subscribers" and click on "Browse scanned pages". This brings you to another page on which one can enter the name of the parish in which you are interested.
  • Excerpts from The Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland: A Survey of Scottish Topography, Statistical, Biographical and Historical, edited by Francis H. Groome and originally published in parts by Thomas C. Jack, Grange Publishing Works, Edinburgh between 1882 and 1885 are provided by Scottish Places. Selections from Groome and other gazetteers from the 19th century are also found on GENUKI.