Review - Scottish Genealogy: The Basics & Beyond by David Dobson

What’s it about? Genealogical.com State:


This work identifies the major sources and repositories for those just getting started on their research, and it also focuses on the other, less commonly used, sources that exist, which will allow more advanced researchers to put the basic facts they have gathered into context. With an emphasis on publications, manuscript sources, and archival records, David Dobson highlights ways to trace Scottish ancestors using alternative sources, primarily those covering the years between 1550 and 1850.


For each research topic--including statutory registers, church records, tax records, sasines and land registers, court records, military and maritime sources, burgh and estate records, emigration records, and much more--Mr. Dobson has compiled an extensive list of the publications and archival records that will enable family historians to advance their research. Another unique feature is the inclusion of numerous excerpts from publications and archival records, which will help lead researchers to the sources most applicable to their research.



Our Review


As a Scottish Genealogist I was delighted to be asked to review this book!

I was not disappointed! This is an amazing book suitable for not only the Beginner to Scottish Genealogy Research but for those who have been researching for a while & want to advance their research to the next level.


Chapter 1 is for the beginner & provides detail on how to access Statutory Birth, Marriage & Death records as well as Old Parish Records online. There is a section on Scottish surnames & the origins of these…something in my opinion most beginners should take the time to understand. The remainder of the chapter lists out Scottish National & Local Archives & Libraries as well as some useful websites to assist your research.


Chapter 2 lists out major record sources & goes into Birth, Marriage & Death Records & Old Parish Records in more detail & gives examples of what you might find within these records.


Chapter 3 focuses on Church & Religious Records & gives background on each of the Churches with details of publications & websites that can be consulted for each.



In Chapter 4 the Author lists out Secondary Sources that can be consulted, these include Monumental Inscriptions, Statistical Accounts, Heritor Records, Tax & Land Records & Court Records. There is also an amazing amount of information provided in relation to Maritime Records. The end of this chapter concentrates on Craftsmen, Merchants, Militia, Regiments, Schools, Prison, Jacobites, Poor Law & Health Records.


Chapter 5 concentrates on Emigration. I know from client research that this is something that many overseas researchers struggle with, they perhaps know that their Ancestors came from Scotland but are unable to find records of their passage or detail of where in Scotland they originated. This chapter does not disappoint & provides historical background on when/why the Scots Emigrated to certain areas. It includes sections on a lot of the Countries in Europe as well as Australasia, America, Africa, Asia & The West Indies.


I really enjoyed this book; it is straight to the point without bogging the reader down with too much detail. There are some amazing examples & lots of hints & tips on where to check for further information including publications & websites.


This book is available in the UK & Abroad via Genealogical via this link

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