Place:Durisdeer, Dumfriesshire, Scotland

Coordinates55.3179°N 3.7837°W
Located inDumfriesshire, Scotland     (1771 - 1975)
See alsoDumfries and Galloway Region, Scotlandregional administration 1975-1996
Dumfries and Galloway, Scotlandunitary Council Area since 1996
source: Family History Library Catalog
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names

Parish code for Durrisdeer: 13

Durisdeer was a parish located in the former county of Dumfriesshire. Both county and parish ceased to exist following the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1974. The parish had an area of 80.3km2 (31 sq. miles) and had 4 neighbouring parishes: Morton, Penpont and Sanquhar and Crawford in Lanarkshire.

The parish included the town of Thornhill and the smaller settlements of Breckonside, Durisdeer Village, Enterkinfoot, and Tibbers. Drumlanrig Castle and its estate were in the parish.

Durisdeer is now located in the Dumfries and Galloway Council Area, some 6 miles (9 km) north of Thornhill and 10 miles (16 km) southeast of Kirkconnel in Dumfries and Galloway.

The earliest records for the parish were the Kirk Session Records of 1771. The parish registers are so lacking as to be called "missing". (See the FamilySearch Wiki.)

For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Durisdeer.


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 Dumfriesshire

  • The FreeCen Project has transcriptions of the whole of Dumfriesshire online for the 1841 through 1871 censuses inclusive.
  • The Durisdeer Parish Registers for the Church of Scotland provide records of baptisms (1758-1854 ), marriages (no records retained) and burials (no records retained). See the FamilySearch Wiki article on Durisdeer for other church denominations.
  • It does not appear that any registers of marriages or of deaths or burials were kept prior to 1855. However, the Statistical Account of Scotland for 1791 states that between 1770 and 1790, 155 couples had been married and 323 persons had died. And in 1833, the average number of marriages per year was 10 and of deaths12. (Source: Key to the Parochial Registers of Scotland, by V. Ben Bloxham, pub. 1970. British Book 941 K23b.) [copied from the FamilySearch Wiki]
  • Minutes of the Kirk Session Records for 1771–1782, 1818–1848, 1855–1903 are available at Scottish National Archives, Edinburgh.

Further Sources of Reference

Please note and respect the copyright warnings on these websites.

  • GENUKI article on Durisdeern. These articles often include a bibliography.
  • The Gazetteer for Scotland article on the parish of Durisdeer. 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 Durisdeer 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.