| You can carry out some research at
the National Records of Scotland (NRS) remotely, either by using
this website, or by making enquiries by post, e-mail, telephone or
fax. You can also use this website to make better use of your time
in the NRS search rooms.
What can I do online?
• search the NRS
online catalogue and other catalogues and indexes
• download guides
about types of records and popular research topics
• read about the kinds
of historical records held by the NRS
Alternatively, in the NRS
search rooms you can carry out research into any records which
are open to public access and you can benefit from our full range
of research facilities, including advice from staff.
What records are available online?
On the ScotlandsPeople website you can carry out research on indexed digital copies of census returns (1841-1911), wills and testaments (1500-1901) and the 1915 valuation roll.
On the ScotlandsPlaces website NRS has begun making digital copies of tax rolls, Ordnance Survey name books, maps and plans available.
The SCAN website has digital copies of several records from the NRS
and other Scottish archives, including the Highlands and Islands Emigration
Society passenger lists. The
last few years have seen a proliferation of websites offering online
access to digital copies, electronic indexes and transcripts of records.
It is beyond our resources to keep an up-to-date list of links to
these. The SCAN website has a short list of major sites which make
Scottish historical records available online and portals which link
to online records. For more details look in the SCAN website's Directory.
How do I make an enquiry
by e-mail, post, telephone or fax?
Can I get someone to do research for me?
There are many firms and individuals (usually known as record agents
or professional researchers) who undertake paid family history, legal
and other searches on behalf of remote researchers. Some of them have
asked for the NRS to make their websites known to researchers and
their websites are listed under 'Other websites' on the left side
of this page. We must point out, however, that if you hire a record
agent you will be entering into a private contract and will be responsible
for paying the fees of the record agent or professional researcher.
The National Records of Scotland accepts no responsibility for the
quality or quantity of the work produced by a record agent or professional
researcher. In cases where the NRS has agreed to include a link to
the website of a record agent or researcher it is the responsibility
of the record agent or researcher to notify the NRS of any change
in the relevant website address: website links on the NRS website
are checked periodically and redundant links are deleted. To view a list of researchers and record agents please go to the NRS website's paying for research page.