Monday, 6 August 2018

Breaking Down those Brickwalls: Scottish Death Certificates

New Register House, Edinburgh

As is the case with birth and marriage certificates, 1855 is a great year from a genealogist's point of view.

In this first year of registration Scottish death certificates included the following information:

Date, time and place of death, usual residence, deceased's name, sex, marital status, age and occupation, the deceased's place of birth, spouse's name, both parents' names (including the mother’s maiden surname) and whether deceased, occupations and whether they were deceased, the names and ages of children (or age and year of death if the child pre-deceased the parent), cause of death, duration of last illness, doctor's name, when the doctor last saw the deceased alive, place of burial, the name of the undertaker and details of the informant.

Much of the bounty of information recorded in 1855 was sadly not continued after that year. From 1856-1860 you can expect to find the name, marital status, occupation, date, time and place of death and usual residence, full names of both parents and whether deceased, cause of death, duration of disease and doctor's name, place of burial and undertaker's name, and details of the informant.

Did you know?

By looking at your ancestor's death certificate between 1855 and 1860, or even that of a close relative such as a sibling, you may get a clue as to where the rest of the family were buried. If it was a family plot you may then be able to trace your ancestors using transcriptions of the gravestone, if it has survived. It’s not unusual to find three generations recorded on one gravestone!

Find out more about Scottish civil registration on our website:

1 comment: