Arbroath (Angus)

Records, sources & information about the Parish & Royal Burgh of Arbroath

Parish number 272

map of Arbroath

More maps of Arbroath

Bailies of Arbroath
Births & baptisms
Birth brieve
Books & articles
Burgess records
Burgh records
Census records
Church Session
Congregational Church Records
Consistorial processes
Craft records
Deans of Guild
Deaths & burials
Electoral rolls
Episcopal Church Records
Estate & family records
Farm horse tax
Heritors' records
Jacobites, 1745
Lists of inhabitants
Marriage contracts
Ministers of the parish
Monumental inscriptions
Notaries' Protocol Books
Old parish registers
Parish Church
Photographs of places and people
Places of interest
Population statistics
Provosts of Arbroath
Sheriff Court
Statistical Accounts
Testaments & wills
Town clerks
Town treasurers
Valuation rolls
War graves
War memorials
Window tax


The small coastal parish of Arbroath, including the town of Arbroath, formerly called Aberbrothick or Aberbrothock, at the mouth of the Brothock Burn, was disjoined from St Vigeans ca. 1585. By the nineteenth century, the town of Arbroath had expanded so that much of it lay in St Vigeans parish. So census records and parish registers of both parishes may need to be checked for people known to have lived in the town.

The 'shires' of Arbroath and Ethie (the latter now united with Inverkeilor parish), together with the lost Adinglas or Achinglas were granted to the Tironensian Abbey of Arbroath by William I "the Lion", who was buried in the abbey in 1214. The abbey came to possess extensive property, mainly held 'in free alms', granted by William and members of the nobility, ranging from the church of Inverness in the north to the church of Haltwhistle in Tynedale, Northumberland in the south. The abbey's importance was enhanced by the fact that Dom Bernard, abbot from 1310 to 1328 in the reign of Robert I "the Bruce" (1306-1329), already held the post of Chancellor of Scotland.

The Rev. Dr William Marshall, in his Historic Scenes in Forfarshire of 1875, wrote:

It was in the Abbey of Arbroath, and in 1320, that Robert Bruce held that Parliament which so nobly declared Scotland's independence, and embodied the declaration in a remonstrance to the Pope, the reading of which is said to have made him tremble. The remonstrance was written by Bernard of Linton, then Chancellor of Scotland and Abbot of Arbroath, he who sung the Battle of Bannockburn in an heroic poem, of which only a fragment has come down to us.

but the identification of Dom Bernard, the abbot and chancellor, with the parson of Mordington, Bernard de Linton, already longstanding when Marshall was writing, has been shown to be without foundation [A.A.M. Duncan, Regesta Regum Scottorum, vol. 5, pp. 198-203].

It seems probable that the idea of tenure of property 'in free regality' (in effect as a state within a state, comparable to the palatinates in England) was formed while the King's Chapel (i.e. chancery) was based at the abbey, the abbey's own lands and other property being erected into a regality - the barony, lordship and regality of Aberbrothock.

The heritable office of bailie of the regality was a position disputed between two of the most powerful families of Angus, the Lindsays and the Ogilvies, causing them to come to blows at the Battle of Arbroath on 23 Jan 1445/6. Their mutual feuding continued into the early 17th century.

With the decline in its function as a religious house, the abbey came to be administered by lay commendators, John lord Hamilton holding that office from 1551 until his forfeiture in 1579, though he was fortunate enough to be granted, in 1597, the temporalities of the lordship of Arbroath, and was created marquis of Hamilton in 1599. In the course of the 17th century, the lordship was acquired by the Maules of Panmure, who held it until the forfeiture of James 4th earl of Panmure in 1716, following the Jacobite rebellion.

seal of Arbroath

The Common Seal of the
Royal Burgh of Arbroath

On 23 Nov 1599, the town of Arbroath was granted a charter under the Great Seal by James VI, to raise it to the status of royal burgh, and sasine was given in 1601 to Thomas Pearson of Lochlands, as senior bailie of the burgh. Until then, Arbroath had been a burgh of regality, though it was believed in 1599 to have previously been erected into a royal burgh but that the evidence had been lost.

Please also visit the page of general information applicable to all of Angus & Kincardineshire.


NLSNational Library of Scotland
NRSNational Records of Scotland, formerly called the National Archives of Scotland [NAS] and, before that, the Scottish Record Office [SRO]
HM General Register House, Edinburgh EH1 3YY (Tel: +44-131-535-1314)
OPROld Parish Registers of Births/baptisms, Banns/marriages & Deaths/burials (pre-1855)


Books & articles

Photo-books - old photographs of Arbroath


Statistical accounts of Arbroath


Maps of Arbroath

John Wood - Plan of the Town of Arbroath from Actual Survey (Edinburgh, ca. 1822).

The Reform Act plan of Arbroath of 1832.

A Town plan of Arbroath in 1858.

A map of Arbroath, including St Vigeans, either monochrome or colour, based on the 1:10560 (6 inches to the mile) Ordnance Survey map of 1859 and reproduced at a scale of ca. 1:6530 can be bought from Heritage Cartography. Not cheap!

Copies of old Ordnance Survey plans of Arbroath (North) & Arbroath (South), dated 1901 & reduced from 25 inches to the mile to about 15 inches to the mile, can be bought from Alan Godfrey Maps. These are not coloured maps.

Map in Directory of 1915

1:25000 Ordnance Survey map - published 1957

1:10560 (Six inch) Ordnance Survey map - surveyed 1859, published 1865

For the full range of maps of Arbroath, see National Library's Maps.

See also ScotlandsPlaces: Arbroath.

map of Arbroath

Above: modern street map of Arbroath (© OpenStreetMap contributors, CC-BY-SA)
Click on the map above to go to OpenStreetMap centred on Arbroath


Photographs of places Arbroath - recent photographs of Arbroath

Aerial photos of Arbroath & neighbourhood

ScotlandsPlaces: Arbroath - recent & old photographs of Arbroath; also maps, plans & other records

Photographs of places and people

Angus Archives has a Photographic collection


Parish church

St Vigeans Kirk served as the parish kirk of Arbroath until the Reformation.

The former parish kirk of Arbroath   Another photo of the former parish kirk of Arbroath

Above: the former post-reformation parish church of Arbroath - "the Old Kirk"

Other churches in Arbroath

Photo of the ruins of the Tironensian Abbey of Arbroath.

Arbroath Abbey Kirk   St Andrew's Church, Arbroath

Above, left: Abbey Church of Scotland, West Abbey Street, Arbroath. Built 1797 as a chapel of ease; extensively altered in 1878.
Above, right: St Andrew's Church of Scotland, Hamilton Green, Arbroath. Built as Hopemount Free Church in 1889.

There are two memorial windows in St Andrew's Church:

  1. To Alexander Reid, who died 1883, and his wife Elizabeth Thomson, d. 1902, gifted by their daughter Jane Hannah Spark, 1926
  2. To the Rev. John Sandison, "minister of this congregation", b. 1803, ordained 1832 (1834?), d. 1871 [He had (allegedly - but see list of ministers of High Street Free Church) been minister to the North Grimsby U.P. Kirk before 1852, when he, and most of his congregation, joined the Free Kirk. The memorial window to this "saintly and revered" minister dates from 1906.]

In the vestibule of St Andrew's Church is a 1914-1918 war memorial, to the following men who were members of the East United Free Church, Arbroath. This roll includes additional information from the Roll of Honour Arbroath & District 1914-1919 and CWGC records.

NameRankUnitDate of deathAge
Stephen FalconerseamanRNVR--
Charles McLeod HendrypteBlack Watch16 Feb 191818
Hendry John Naysmith Kyddlieut.3rd Batt., Prince of Wales Regt13 May 191831
Colin Grant PatersongunnerRGA6 Jun 191838
William Porter, M.M.sgt4/5 Black Watch29 Aug 191724
Andrew Reekiepte8 Black Watch7 Oct 191825
Charles RobertsonpteHLI25 Apr 1918-
George Ritchiepte1 Black Watch25 Sep 191534
David Ritchie [bro. of above]l.-cpl7 East Yorks21 Mar 191828
Charles Stewartl.-cpl7 Black Watch23 Apr 191730
Charles ShelstongunnerRFA19 Oct 191824
Thomas Dall Strachanable seamanRNVR30 Dec 191719

Knox's Church, Arbroath   Arbroath West Kirk

Above, left: Knox's Church, Howard Street, Arbroath (built 1866)
Above, right: Arbroath West Kirk (originally St Margaret's Chapel of Ease, opened 1879), Keptie Street

St Mary's Episcopal Church, Arbroath   St Thomas of Canterbury R.C. Church, Arbroath

Above, left: St Mary's Episcopal Church, Springfield Terrace, Arbroath
Above, right: St Thomas of Canterbury R.C. Church, Dishlandtown Street, Arbroath

United Free Church, Arbroath   St John's Methodist Church, Arbroath

Above, left: United Free Church, (east side of) High Street, Arbroath; it stands on the site of the former St Mary's Episcopal Church that was built in 1806
Above, right: St John's Methodist Church, Ponderlaw Street, Arbroath; built 1772

Further photographs of the former post-reformation parish kirk of Arbroath and several other churches in the town are here.
Photographs, including interior views, and details of the history of Arbroath churches are provided here.


Parish ministers 1560-1946 (Old Kirk)

adm.: admitted, ass.: assistant, bapt.: baptised, contr.: contract, dem.: demitted, dep.: deposed, ind.: inducted, lic.: licensed, mar.: married, min.: minister, ord.: ordained, pres.: presented, rel.: related, res.: resigned, suc.: successor, test.: testament, tr.: translated

Ninian Clement1563-1573min. of St Vigeans; had charge here 1563; burgess of Arbroath 1564; tr. to Forfar 1573
Thomas Lindsay1563former monk of the Abbey; reader and exhorter
John Grainger1579former monk of the Abbey; pres. to the vicarage 1 Mar 1577 on demission of Robert Auchmowtie; reader in 1579; still in office 1597
James Melville{1578 or 1580}-15965th son of John Melville of Dysart (now in Lunan); adm. to Fern bef. 4 Sep 1566; had Menmuir and Kinnell in his charge 1567; tr. to Tannadice ca. 1566; pres. to vicarage of Auchterhouse 29 Jul 1568; tr. to Menmuir 1568; tr. to St Vigeans & adm. 12 Aug 1573 x 6 Mar 1573-4; had Ethie and Kinnell in charge 1574; tr. & adm. 1578? 1580?; d. 29 Aug 1596; mar. Cath. Douglas; issue: Nicolas (mar. Richard Melville of Baldovie), Margaret (mar. John Williamson burgess of Montrose), Barbara (mar. Henry Hamilton?)
Andrew Lamb1596-1600tr. from Burntisland FIF & adm. 1596; tr. to S. Leith MLN 22 Jul 1600
Henry Philip (Henry Philp)1601-1627poss. son of David P.; M.A. St Andrews 1592; adm. to Creich FIF 1594; tr. & adm. 1601; D.D. St Andrews 1616; d. Sep 1627; mar. Isobel Paterson; issue: Mr James, 1st of Almerieclose, bailie of Arbroath (mar. con. 1629 Isabella, dau. of James Ouchterlony of West Seaton); Thos; Marjory; Isobel (mar. [1] John Guthrie of Halkertoun, [2] James Fraser, min. here)
Simeon Durie1628-1653son of John D., min. of Montrose; M.A. St Andrews 1600; adm. to Ferryport FIF 1605; tr. to Forgan FIF & pres. to the vicarage 20 Jun 1609; tr. & adm. 1628; still min. 17 Jul 1653; mar. Christian Maule
James Fraser of Kirktoun & Hospitalfield1653-1669said to be of fam. of Philorth; adm. to Strathmartine bef. 24 Jan 1653; tr. & adm. 21 Jul 1653; suspended 10 Dec 1668 aft. quarrel with Henry Fithie, provost of Arbroath; dem. 21 Apr 1669; d. Dec 1689; mar. 1654 Isobel, dau. of Dr Henry Philp, min. here; issue: James, of Hospitalfield
James Carnegie1669-1686b. ca. 1633, son of Alexander Carnegie of Cookston; M.A. St Andrews 1653; ord. to Kilmarnock AYR 1663; tr. & adm. 7 Oct 1669; d. Apr 1686; also parson of Kilmore and prebendary of Buttergill (at Brechin); mar. Isobel Hay; issue: Alexr; Robt; Anna (mar. Alexr Blair of Inchyra)
William Carnegie1686-1694bro. of above; M.A. St Andrews 1667; tutor to fam. of James earl of Southesk; adm. to Careston 1679; tr. to Hoddam DFS 1681; tr. & adm. 3 Nov 1686; d. bef. 15 Dec 1694; mar. 1682 Jean Carnegy; issue: Chas, James
John Ferguson1699-1737adm. to Roberton SEL 23 Sep 1696; tr. & adm. 20 Apr 1699; d. May 1737, aged ca. 82; mar. (1) 1705 Margaret, dau. of James McDougall of Nunlands; (2) contr. 1724 Bethia, dau. of Sir Alexander Brand of Brandsfield [i.e. Dalry in Edinburgh]
James Purdie1735-1737M.A.; ord. (ass.) 29 Oct 1735; tr. to Guthrie 16 Jun 1737
George Cruickshank1738-1748schoolmaster here; ord. 26 Jan 1738; tr. to Kinnell 10 Mar 1748
William Bell
[not John Bell]
1748-1775b. 1720; ord. to Benholm 11 Jan 1744; adm. 1 Dec 1748; d. 18 Dec 1775; mar. 1746 Bethia, dau. of John Willison, min. of 2nd charge Dundee; issue: James, merchant, Arbroath; Margaret; Isabella
Alexander Mackie1776-1787b. 23 Aug 1732, son of James M., min. of St Cuthberts MLN; ass. here; ord. 16 May 1776; d. 29 Dec 1787; mar. 1776 Mary Pearson
George Gleig1788-1835b. 1757 Brechin, son of Geo. G., blacksmith, Menmuir; M.A. Kings Aberdeen 1777; ass. Garvock; ord. 11 Dec 1788; d. 19 Jan 1835; mar. 1786 Mary, dau. of Alexr Duncan of Wardham, ANS; issue: Jean; Helen; Mary (mar. Peter Brown); Margaret (mar. David Scott of Newton [in St Vigeans]); Anne Forbes (mar. David Louson of Springfield, town-clerk of Arbroath); Jonathan Duncan; Alexandrina; Geo.; Michie, law student
William Stevenson1833-1844ord. (ass. & suc.) 17 Oct 1833; tr. to S. Leith MLN 10 May 1844
William Forbes Irvine1844-1882b. 1814 Langholm DFS, son of Walter L., merchant; M.A. Edinburgh 1835; ord. 12 Dec 1844; d. 14 Jan 1882; mar. 1852 Eliza Mary Jane, dau. of Wm Gray Fearnside, London; issue: Walter Fearnside; Amy Gray (mar. Alexander Gordon of Ashludie); Wm Patterson; Leonora Jane; Irene Eliza Margaret; Geo. Rolland; Archd Louis John; Louis Godfrey, M.D.
James Thomson1882-1898b. 10 Sep 1848 Glenbervie, son of James T.; M.A. Aberdeen 1874; ass. Elchies, Kinneff, Dowally and here; ord. 1 Aug 1882; d. 20 Jul 1898 Crieff PER; mar. 1883 Williamina, only dau. of Capt. John Pirie, Aberdeen; issue: James Wm; Mary Isobel Pirie (mar. Geo. McElroy); Geo. Bridgeford Pirie Leslie, engineer
William Jack Nichol Service1899-1904M.A., B.D.; b. 1873 Inch WIG; ord. 21 Feb 1899; tr. to Greenock West 8 Sep 1904; d. 1945 Glasgow; mar. 1903 Amy M. Angus
James Spence Cuthill1905-1946b. 16 May 1872 Bonnybridge STI, son of Archd C.; M.A. 1894 B.D. 1898 Glasgow; ass. Inversnaid, Dumbarton and Riccarton; locumtenens Balmaghie, Bridge of Allan and Edzell; ord. 28 Feb 1905; dem. 31 Jul 1946; d. 24 Aug 1946; mar. 1915 Jeannie, yr dau. of Thos Webb, Somerset; had issue
G. D. Summers-ass. 7 Feb 1925

Other ministers of the established church

Ministers of Abbey quoad sacra 1797-
The chapel was opened on 17 Sep 1797 and the parish disjoined from Arbroath on 19 Jul 1869

Robert Thomson1797-1826b. 1760; ord. (ass.) 1 Sep 1796; adm. 14 Dec 1797; tr. to Carnock FIF 14 Jul 1826; d. 17 Nov 1826; mar.(1) 1796 Alison Lawson (d. 1808); (2) 1820 Ann Allan (1798-1855); issue: Alexander; John; Robert
James Johnstone Macfarlan1827-1835ass. Shettleston LKS; ord. 15 Jun 1827; dep. 10 Jun 1835 for drunkenness, etc.; mar. 1824 Eliz., eldest dau. of John Anderson, Ratho
James McCosh1835-1839M.A.; ord. 17 Dec 1835; tr. to Brechin 24 Jan 1839
George Weir1839-1843ord. 8 Nov 1839; tr. to Humbie ELN 28 Sep 1843
Joseph Henderson1852-1863ord. 25 Nov 1852; tr. to Greyfriars Aberdeen 16 Apr 1863
James Sym (James Sim)1864-1876b. 1830 London, son of James S., cabinetmaker; ass. Tron Glasgow 1861-3; ord. 21 Jul 1864; d. 22 May 1876 Glasgow, unmar.
Andrew Douglas1875-1918b. 21 Jan 1845, son of Andw D., handrailmaker; M.A. 1867 B.D. 1870 Edinburgh; ass. here; ord. (ass. & suc.) 13 May 1875; d. 3 Nov 1918; mar. 1877 Alice, dau. of Francis Sinclair, Edinburgh; issue: Andrew Richmond, M.D.
Peter Hill Nicoll1919-1923b. 19 Feb 1884, son of James N., min. of Murroes; M.A. 1903 B.D. 1906 St Andrews; ass. St Andrew's Buenos Aires 1914; res. 1916; ass. Paisley Abbey, Holburn Aberdeen and Lowson Memorial Forfar; tr. & adm. 30 Apr 1919; dem. 30 Jan 1923 on appointment to All Saints, New Amsterdam, Br. Guiana; adm. to Dalmarnock 27 Sep 1927; mar. Margie Vivian, dau. of Michael Kenealy
Alexander Clark1923-1931b. 26 Dec 1884 Monimail FIF, son of Robt C., shoemaker; ass. Markinch FIF; ord. to Eddrachillis 27 Mar 1912; tr. to Unst SHI 4 Nov 1912; tr. to Dunnichen 14 Dec 1916; tr. & adm. 6 Jun 1923; tr. to Cortachy 25 Jun 1931; d. 17 Jan 1942; mar. (1) 1912 Mary Maclaren, dau. of Daniel Hamilton, Greenock; had issue; mar. (2) 1941 Helen Stewart, 3rd dau. of Geo. Gordon, Dalkeith
Alfred Patman Muirhead1931-1940b. 10 Jul 1874 Glasgow, son of Thos M.; teacher in Glasgow; M.A. 1903 Glasgow; d. 9 Jan 1940 Arbroath
William Osler Nicoll1940?-1946b. 1903 Dundee; M.A.; dem. 1946 & tr. to Riccarton, Kilmarnock; d. 1982 Dundee; mar. 1938 Mary Shepherd
Archibald Russell1947-1966b. 1908; tr. from Borgue KKD & ind. May 1947; d. 1966 Dundee
Arthur Henry Manson Johnston1967-1975b. 1905 N. Leith, son of James Laughton J.; tr. from Dufftown & ind. Jan 1967; d. 6 Dec 1975 Arbroath; mar. 1946 Anne Legget
Walter Beattie1977?-1988-?

Ministers of Inverbrothock quoad sacra 1829-1970
The chapel was opened on 19 Oct 1828. Inverbrothock parish was disjoined from St Vigeans on 7 Mar 1855

James Melville McCulloch1829-1832M.A.; ord. 25 Feb 1829; tr. to Kelso ROX 27 Sep 1832
Robert Lee1833-1836M.A.; ord. 10 Apr 1833; tr. to Campsie STI 5 May 1836
James Lumsden1836-1838ord. 22 Dec 1836; tr. to Barry 3 May 1838
David Crichton1838-1843b. 1802 Kirkpatrick Irongray, son of Andw C., farmer; teacher Anstruther Easter; English master, Madras College, St Andrews; ord. 6 Dec 1838; joined Free Kirk 1843; min. of Inverbrothock Free Church 1843-88; LL.D. Tusculum 1869; d. 4 Feb 1888; mar. 1832 Margaret Scott Smith; issue: Isabella Smith; Andw, B.A., min. of Chapelshade Free Kirk, Dundee; Margaret Stalker (mar. Geo. Ogilvy Elder, min. of Borgue Free Kirk KKD); James Smith; Jane Bain; David
James Law1846-1860b. 1796 Lesmahagow LKS, son of Peter L.; appointed to Mariners' Chapel, Dundee 3 Mar 1839; joined Free Kirk 1843; re-adm. to Ch. of S.; appointed to Kirriemuir South 24 Apr 1845; ord. to Inverbrothock 29 Jan 1846; adm. first min. of the parish 1855; d. 4 Oct 1860 Arbroath, unmar.
John McCalman1861-1862ord. 16 May 1861; tr. to Inch & Saulseat WIG 19 Jun 1862
Charles Cadell Macdonald1862-1876M.A.; ord. 26 Dec 1862; tr. to New Rothesay 9 Mar 1876; d. 1920 Aberdeen
George Logan1876-1897b. 18 Jun 1839 Glasgow; ord. to Newmains Chapel 6 Aug 1868; tr. & adm. 26 Sep 1876; d. 24 Jul 1897; mar. 1875 Helen, dau. of Wm Russell; issue: Christina Kirkhope Craig; Sarah Caroline; Lt.-col. David Dale, D.S.O.; Geo. Hugh; Wm; Norman Russell; Percy Wm; Helen Percy; Agnes Jeanie
David Graham1898-1903tr. from Bathgate WLN & adm. 9 Feb 1898; tr. to St Gilbert's Glasgow 7 Jul 1903
Thomas Dow Stewart1904-1909b. 10 Aug 1862, son of Robt Paton S., bookseller; ord. to Pictou, Nova Scotia 1888; res. 1899; ass. Kilmacolm RFW; adm. to Stepps 19 Feb 1901; tr. & adm. 18 Feb 1904; d. 3 Jun 1909; mar. Agnes Duncan; no issue
George Hitchcock1909-1945b. 14 May 1873 Garmouth MOR, son of James H.; M.A. 1895 B.D. 1899 Aberdeen; ass. Crieff PER; ord. to Blackford PER 19 Sep 1901; tr. & adm. 30 Dec 1909; dem. 30 Dec 1945; mar. 1903 Margaret Ann, dau. of Alexr Spence; had issue
Peter Innes1946-1948min. in Ceylon; R.A.F. chaplain, Edzell; ind. 10 Jul 1946; res. 25 May 1948; went to charge in S. Africa; mar.
John Henry Dutch1948-1956-?M.A., B.D.; from Hillside; ord. & ind. 17 Nov 1948; d. 1968 Row DNB; mar. 1948 Mary J., dau. of Harry Maiden
Richard Samuel Bishop?-1958-1970b. 1913/4; from Dunfermline North Church; tr. to Guthrie 1970; d. 1984 Arbroath

Ministers of Ladyloan quoad sacra 1837-1941
The chapel was built in 1837 and Ladyloan parish was disjoined from Arbroath and St Vigeans on 19 Jul 1865

James Macbeth1837-1842ord. 17 Oct 1837; tr. to Laurieston Glasgow 20 Jan 1842
Alexander Leslie1842-1843b. 1816 Aberdeen, son of Geo. L., merchant; appointed lecturer, John Knox Church, Aberdeen ca. 1840; ord. 1842; joined Free Kirk 1843; min. of Ladyloan Free Kirk 1843-70; min. Bonaccord Free Kirk Aberdeen 1870-8; d. 11 May 1878; mar. 1846 Isabella Morison
Archibald Buchanan1847-1851ord. Sep 1847; tr. to St Thomas's Leith MLN 13 Feb 1851
James Ewen Macdougall1851-1901b. 13 May 1812 Killin PER, son of Hugh M., min. of Killin; ass. Linton ROX; ord. 4 Jul 1851; adm. first min. of parish 1865; res. 13 Aug 1901; d. 23 Dec 1901 Arbroath; mar. Mary Ann, dau. of David Louson, town clerk of Arbroath; no issue
John McWilliam1901-1941b. 31 Jul 1871 Sorn AYR, son of Thos McW.; M.A. 1891 B.D. 1895 Edinburgh; ass. St George's Glasgow and Bonhill DNB; ord. 20 Dec 1901; dem. 20 Jul 1941; mar. 1912 Eliz. Gloag, dau. of James Battersby, Pollokshields

Ministers of St Margaret's quoad sacra 1879-1923 (West Kirk)
The church was opened 13 Nov 1879 and the parish was disjoined from Inverbrothock, St Vigeans and Arbroath 15 Mar 1886

William Proudfoot1879-1891M.A.; ord. 29 Dec 1879; adm. first min. of parish 1886; tr. to 2nd charge Haddington ELN 26 Nov 1891
Alexander Middleton1892-1899M.A., B.D.; ord. 12 Jul 1892; tr. to Gardner Memorial, Brechin 27 Sep 1899
David Melville Stewart1900-1904tr. from Queensferry WLN & adm. 25 Feb 1900; tr. to Edinburgh St Matthew's 6 Jan 1904
William D'Esterre Roberts Macleod1904-1907b. 28 Oct 1877 Jedburgh ROX, 4th son of Donald M., D.D., min. of Jedburgh; M.A. 1900 B.D. 1902 St Andrews; ass. Edinburgh Tron; ord. 11 May 1904; d. 16 Jul 1907 Kilmallie, unmar.
David Fraser Liddell1907-1916M.A., B.D.; tr. from Tannadice & adm. 26 Dec 1907; tr. to Glasgow Blackfriars 9 May 1916
Robert Smith Mackintosh1916-1923b. 4 Mar 1882 Cupar FIF, son of Alexr M.; journalist; missionary St Matthew's and Kelvinside Glasgow; lic. May 1913; ass. Kelvinside; ord. to Annbank 5 Jun 1913; tr, & adm. 6 Dec 1916; tr. to Girvan AYR 27 Jun 1923; mar. 1917 Ella, dau. of Andw Spalding, Lochee; had issue
William Ewart Gladstone Millar1923-1925-?M.A., B.D.; b. 1896 Glasgow; tr. from Laurieston Glasgow 18 Dec 1923; d. 1954 Montrose; mar. 1920 Dorothy, yr dau. of C.H. Blackwood, S. Shields; had issue

Ministers of St Ninian's Chapel-of-Ease 1887-1904
Opened 24 Jan 1886

William Grant1887-1889b. 2 Oct 1859 Tullynessle ABD, son of David G.; M.A. 1882, B.D. 1887 Aberdeen; lic. 3 May 1887; ass. St George's Aberdeen and Ellon; ord. 8 Sep 1891 to Drumblade ABD; dem. 14 Oct 1930; d. 14 Feb 1943 Edinburgh; mar. 1902 Amelia Margaret, dau. of Wm Hogg, Arbroath; had issue
Archibald Allan1889-1891b. 14 Feb 1852 Donibristle FIF, son of Alexr A.; M.A. St Andrews 1889; appointed here Oct 1889; ass. Ladhope, Galashiels SEL; ord. to Channelkirk BEW 23 Dec 1891; dem. 1924; d. 29 Oct 1924 Edinburgh; mar. 1897 Jean [an authoress], eldest dau. of Sinclair Christie, Dundee; issue: Jean Mary
W. B. Jack1893-?ord. 29 Oct 1893
James Malcolm Hunt1896-1904b. 23 Feb 1872 Perth, son of James H., clothier; ord. 19 Aug 1896; tr. to Belize 16 Nov 1904; dem. 1914; adm. to Kingston Jamaica, May 1923

Ministers of other denominations

Ministers of North Grimsby (Antiburgher), later Princes Street U.P., later U.F. Church

James Miller1789-1818from Comrie PER; ord. 14 Jul 1789; accused of immorality & loosed from his charge, 7 Oct 1818; went to Putnam, NY, USA; again accused of immorality; dep. 1826; d. ?
Joseph Hay1823-1859b. 4 Jul 1797 Alyth, son of Rev. James H.; ord. 15 Oct 1823; d. Jul 1859 Arbroath
Robert Johnstone1860-1871b. 6 Nov 1832 Biggar LKS, son of Robert J.; LL.B., B.D., D.D.; ord. 4 Dec 1860; tr. to Parliamentary Road, Glasgow 5 Dec 1871; prof. of divinity, U.P. College 1881; d. 26 Sep 1918 Edinburgh; mar. 1862 Janet Brown; issue: Anne Gray; Violet Brown; Mary Janet; Isabel Cranstoun; Marion Gray; Grace W.; Robert W.
Archibald Borland Cameron1873-1882b. 18 Aug 1843 Newmilns AYR, son of James C., cotton manuf.; M.A., B.D. Glasgow; Ferguson Scholarship in Philosophy 1869; ord. 26 Mar 1873; tr. to College Street U.P. Church, Edinburgh 25 Apr 1882; D.D. Glasgow 1893; d. 3 Feb 1935 Edinburgh; mar. 1873 Liverpool, Margaret Wales; issue: Helen, Marion, Mgt W., Elis. Marj., Agnes R., James W., Jessie W.
James Murray1882-1925-?b. ca. 1856 Kilmarnock AYR; ord. 20 Dec 1882; mar. Ann Yeates Oastler; issue: Betsy Yeates Oastler; John

Ministers of Erskine U.P. Church (Burgher), Commerce Street; later United Free Church; closed Oct 1959

William Hannah1822-1829b. ca. 1787; from Wigtown; ord. 15 Aug 1822; d. 23 Mar 1829
Peter Davidson1831-1836from Dundee; ord. 9 Mar 1831; tr. to Stockbridge, Edinburgh 19 Jul 1836
Alexander Sorley1837-1875b. ca. 1810 Falkirk STI; ord. 20 Jun 1837; res. 15 May 1875; d. 23 Jan 1877; mar. Eliza --
Henry Angus1876-1902b. 21 Mar 1834 Aberdeen, son of Rev. Henry Angus; ord. Union Church, Sunderland 2 Mar 1859; adm. colleague & suc. 9 Feb 1876; D.D. Aberdeen 1889; mar. 1862 Mary Jessie Watson; issue: Henry; Marion E.; Annie K.; Wm W.; Ethel M.; Amy M.
Adam Fyfe Findlay1903-1911M.A., D.D., b. 30 May 1869 Benholm; U.F. min. Whithorn WIG in 1901; ind. 12 Oct 1921 to High U.F. Church, Linlithgow; 1924 professor of church history, U.F. Church College, Aberdeen; d. 1962 Aberdeen; mar. 1898 Jeanie Macdonald; issue: Clementine M.
Thomas Ure Paterson1911-1945M.A.; b. 1873 Paisley; 1906 Parkhead U.F. Church; 1906-1911 Lathones U.F. Church, Fife; ind. 6 Dec 1911; d. Feb 1954 Paisley
Andrew M. Russell1946-1959B.D.; chaplain to 8th army; ind. Jul 1946

Ministers of St Paul's Church, Park Street (Relief), later United Free Church

William Allan1831-1871b. ca. 1800; from Tollcross, Glasgow; ord. 20 Dec 1831; d. 22 Oct 1871
James Howat1872-1905-?b. ca. 1844 Muirkirk AYR; ord. 10 Jul 1872

Ministers of Knox's Free, later United Free, Church, Arbroath

James Philip Lilley?-1881-1901-?M.A.; b. 1845 Tweedmouth, son of James L., salmon fisheries overseer; mar. 1875 Margaret Beattie Salmond; issue: Agnes E.

Ministers of East Free Church, later East United Free Church, Arbroath

Alexander Hislop1844-1865b. 1807 Coldstream BEW [according to himself], son of Stephen H., mason; bro. of Stephen Hislop; schoolmaster Wick CAI; ord. 8 Aug 1844; d. 13 Mar 1865; mar. 1831 Jane Pearson; issue: Margaret E.; Eliz. A.; Agnes; Jane Pearson; Frances Cath.; Alexander
John Robertson?-1863[?]-1883b. ca. 1836 Clunie PER; M.A.; tr. 1883 to Pendleton, Lancs; d. 15 Dec 1889 Pendleton, Lancs; mar. 1866 Frances Cath., dau. of the above Rev. Alexr Hislop; issue: James Leslie; Alice Jane; Alexr Hislop; Wm John; Frances C.; John; Herbert, M.C.; Gertrude; Stewart
Thomas Stark Anderson?-1887-1923b. ca. 1856 St Nicholas, Aberdeen; d. 1 Jan 1925 Arbroath; mar. 1890 Jane C. C. --; issue: Muriel K. D.

Ministers of High Street Free Church, later United Free Church

John Sandison1852[?]-1861-1871b. ca. 1803 Thurso CAI; ord. 1832 or 1834; in 1851, & probably already by 1841, min. of Original Secession Church, Arbroath - possibly North Grimsby Church; d. 1871; mar. 1835 Eliza Grigor; issue: Alexr; Jean; John; Robt; Emelia; Eliza; Wm
Alexander Morris Stewart?-1901-?b. ca. 1865 Islington, Middx, son of Patk S., clothier; in Bournemouth in 1911; mar. Margaret Mary --; issue: Wm Gordon; Eliz. Alison
James Howat?-1915-1922d. 1922
John Alexander Tweedie1908-1924b. 1867 Edinburgh, son of Thomas T., draper; tr. from Wormit; dem. 12 Oct 1924; d. 1953 Edinburgh

Ministers of St Ninian's United Free Church
St Ninian's was formed from the union of High Street and East U.F. Churches in 1923

Thomas Stark Anderson1923-1924[?]see above list of ministers of East Free Kirk
Evan M. Campbell1925-?ind. 3 Feb 1925

Ministers of Inverbrothock Free Church; subsequently congregation moved to Hopemount Free Church (built 1889), later U.F., renamed 1959 St Andrew's Church, Arbroath

David Crichton1843-1888See above list of ministers of Inverbrothock Q.S.
Alexander Rust?-1883-1925b. ca. 1850 Aberdeen; M.A.; d. 5 Aug 1925; mar. Louisa Ann --; issue: Margaret; Emmaline B.; Alexr S.; Louisa S.; James H.; Wm R. N.
David Chalmers Wiseman1925-1932b. 1883 Gamrie; M.A.; formerly min. Kirkurd U.F. Church; ind. 29 Apr 1925; d. 14 Aug 1932; mar. 1911 Margaret Stewart Ross
John M. Rose?-1934-1937M.A.; tr. to Blantyre, Nyasaland 1937; mar.; issue: a son
Alexander (Alec) William Abel1937-1947-?M.A.; b. 1909 Dundee, son of rev. Arthur C.A., minister, Dudhope; ass. St Mary's, Dundee; ord. & ind. 16 Aug 1934 at Logie Pert Old Church; tr. & ind. Nov 1937; tr. to Kemnay; tr. to Kinglassie by 1956; d. 1959 Crieff; mar. 1934 Elizabeth M.K. Macleish
Robert Kennedy Williamson?-1940-1941-?b. 1902 Alloa; in Kenya 1927-1934; locum tenens here while Mr Abel was a services chaplain; min. of Birse from 1948
William White Macleod Bell1950-1958b. 8 Oct 1916 Coatbridge; M.A., B.D.(1940 Edinburgh); ind. 17 May 1950; tr. to Arthurlie Church, Barrhead 1958; d. 28 Jul 2005 Newton Stewart; mar. 1947 Margaret M. McCormack
W. Martin Fair1992-b. 1964; ord. 1992

Ministers of Ladyloan Free Kirk, later United Free Church

Alexander Leslie1843-1870see above list of ministers of Ladyloan Q.S.
John Chalmers?-1871-1873-?b. 27 Dec 1843 Blairgowrie PER, son of Geo. C.; in Stirling by 1881
James Moffat Scott?-1881-1910b. 31 Mar 1848 Campsie STI, son of John S.; ord. 23 Apr 1873; d. 1910 Alloa; mar. 1886 Marjory J.M. Balfour, dau. of Alexr Balfour of Inchock; issue: James Moffat of Inchock
James Cameron?-1915-1929-?

Ministers of the United Original Secession Church in Arbroath

Alexander Dickson Stirling?-1881-1901-?b. ca. 1841 Kirkintilloch DNB; d. 1910 Arbroath; mar. Isabella --; issue: Sophia; James; Alexr D.; Jane F. Chas McK.; John; Margaret B.
W. S. Waters Reid?-1915-?

Ministers of the Relief Church, Gravesend

William Allan?-1837-?

Ministers of the Evangelical Union, Keptie Street, Arbroath

Gilbert Paterson?-1870-1871-?b. ca. 1837 Tollcross LKS; min. of St James E.U. Church, Dundee in 1881; mar. (1) 1871 Margaret Penicuik Archer; issue: John Maurice; mar. (2) Eliz. --; issue: Jeannie A.
Robert Rae?-1894-?
Gordon Lee Maclachlan?-1900went to America 1900
Andrew Burnett Halliday1900-?b. 22 Feb 1868 Wishaw LKS, son of Wm H., min. of E.U.; d. 3 Jun 1939 Glasgow; mar. 1894 Ada C. G. Smith

Ministers of the Baptist Church in Arbroath

A. Dorward?-1837-?
John Spence?-1893res. 29 Jan 1893
George Menzies1893-1901-?b. ca. 1867 Perth, son of Alexr M., tailor; ind. 1 Oct 1893
Thomas Holehouse?-1914[?]
A. E. Mileman?-1923-?

Ministers of the Congregational Church, Queen Steet, Arbroath

Udney Anderson?-1826-?
John Gillies?-1851-1862-?b. ca. 1815 Kilsyth STI; mar. Cath. --
James Wylie1890-?ind. 6 Jul 1890
John Miller?-1898-1900
George Kydd Cuthbert1900-?b. 9 Jun 1873 Forfar, son of Wm C., baker; d. 24 Jun 1950 Sheffield; mar. Sarah Helena ---
James Hume?-1915-1924tr. to Thornhill DFS 1924
Thomas Shanks1924-?tr. from Forres MOR; ind. 24 Jun 1924

See also Congregational ministers in Arbroath.

Ministers of St John's Wesleyan Methodist Church, Arbroath

C. L. Adshead?-1826-?
John Drake?-1861-?b. ca. 1810 England; in Montrose in 1851; mar. ca. 1874 Eliz. ---; issue: Alice E.; Johanna F.
Edward Crump?-1901-?b. ca. 1833 England; d. 31 Dec 1917 Southport, Lancs; mar. Mary Ann ---; issue: Edward C.; Anna E.; Esther S.; Sam. F.; Florence C.
Cecil Marler Weeks?-1911-?b. ca. 1876 Torquay Devon; d. 14 Feb 1948 Hampstead, London; founded the Brotherhood movement in Arbroath
Lewis A. Brown?-1915-?
W. H. Baker?-1923-1924
Thomas J. Bellis1924-?from Carlisle
John Hunt?-1929-?

Ministers of St Mary's Episcopal Church, Arbroath

Benjamin Bailey?-1826-?
William Henderson1828-1879b. 1805 Brechin; M.A.; incumbent here for 51 years; d. 8 Sep 1879 Arbroath; mar. 1834 Eliz. Sessions Page; issue: Edward Ramsay; Agnes; John; Wm D.; Eliz.; Chas; Mary Anne; Andrew Alexr
Edward Sugden?-1880b. ca. 1850 England; priest
George Durno?-1882-1891-?b. ca. 1837 Fyvie ABD
F. H. Petrie?-1900curate
Augustus E. Crowder?-1901-1904-?B.A.; b. ca. 1858 Duns BEW, son of Aug. E. C., incumbent of Christ Church, Duns; d. 3 Nov 1942 Wilts; mar. Nora ---; issue: Harold V.
C. E. Little?-?d. 10 Mar 1925
Edward William Millar1911-1929B.A.(Oxon); b. 1877 Montrose, son of Edward Millar of Rossie; rector, Montrose 1943; d. 1963 Banchory; mar. 1911 Margaret A.A., dau. of Alexr R. Duncan of Parkhill; issue: Rev. Basil E.R.; son


Monumental inscriptions / Burials / Cemeteries

There are three burial grounds in Arbroath:

Arbroath people may also have been buried in St Vigeans Churchyard.

Monuments in the Kirkyard of the ruined Arbroath Abbey (ca. 1450 stones), and in the Western Cemetery of Arbroath (ca. 30 stones; i.e. a tiny fraction of the monuments in the cemetery), bearing pre-1855 information are listed in Alison Mitchell (ed.), "Pre-1855 Monumental Inscriptions in Angus, Vol. 2: Seacoast" (Edinburgh: Scottish Genealogy Soc., 1996), which can be bought from the Scottish Genealogy Society. (It's listed as "Angus MI - Vol. 2. Pre-1855 Sea-coast" in their online shop.)

For Arbroath Abbey Kirkyard, there are the following recorded monumental inscriptions. (It's not clear whether these two sets of records aren't actually the same information.):

Online access to burial records for the Eastern and Western Cemeteries (but NOT the Abbey) is at Deceased Online - payment required to see actual records

See also information below under Births, Marriages & Deaths.

Philp monument

Above: The arms of James Philp, 2nd of Almerieclose, and his spouse Margaret Graham, dau. of Walter Graham of Duntrune, on the Philp monument in the Abbey kirkyard. The arms are flanked by the initials IP MG and the year 1674, and by MIP IC for Mr James Philp, 3rd of Almerieclose, author of the Grameid, and his spouse Jean Corbit. The Philp motto is Non dormit qui custodit.

The following monuments are in the Western Cemetery.

In loving memory of our dear father GEORGE DICK McMILLAN died Dec. 4th 1910 aged 77 years. Also our dear mother ELIZABETH WHITE died Nov. 6th 1912 aged 75 years. Also our brother WILLIAM McMILLAN husband of ALICE MELDRUM died 23rd Nov. 1915 aged 36 years GEORGE DICK McMILLAN beloved husband of MARGARET ROBERTSON died 17th Dec. 1929 aged 54 years Also our sister ISABELLA WHITE McMILLAN died 15th Jan. 1938 aged 69 years. MARY DICK McMILLAN died 2nd July 1941 aged 78 years. ELIZABETH WHITE McMILLAN died 14th May 1955 aged 82 years. Also MARGARET ROBERTSON McMILLAN* died 16th Aug. 1968 aged 82 years.
[* i.e. Margaret Robertson]

M Erected by JAMES McMILLAN in loving memory of his wife WILLIAMINA ADAM who died 31st March 1944 aged 77 years. The above JAMES McMILLAN died 19th June 1949, aged 84 years

[face 1] Erected by FLORA CORSAR in memory of her husband ANDREW WATSON SOUTAR merchant, Manchester, who died 17th April 1883, aged 43. The above FLORA CORSAR died at Ngaruawahia, New Zealand, 3rd Septemebr 1913, aged 67 years. Their son WILLIAM CORSAR died at Parramatta, New South Wales, 14th February 1927, aged 55 years. Buried at Salvation Army Northern Suburbs Cemetery, North Sydney, Australia. Their daughter GRACE SOUTAR died at Ngaruawahia, New Zealand, 17th October 1932 Buried at the Ngaruawahia Cemetery.
[face 2] In loving memory of MAY, daughter of FLORA CORSAR and the late ANDREW W. SOUTAR, who died at Aberbrothock, Ngaruawahia New Zealand, 14th December 1907, in the 24th year of her age. Also of CATHERINE WATSON, their second daughter, who died at Ngaruawahia, New Zealand 12th July 1911, aged 35 years. And of their daughter ELIZABETH NORBURY, wife of WILLIAM HALSEY, who died at (Wainkee), New Zealand 1st March 1920.

C In memory of CHARLES WEBSTER CORSAR, manufacturer, Seaforth, Arbroath Born 26th January 1835, died 29th November 1900. His infant daughter died 7th July 1875 and his daughter AGNES LYON, dearly loved wife of CHARLES LEIGH YEOMAN, Calcutta. Born 12th March 1874, died 17th November 1906. WILLIAM HANNAY CORSAR, born 11th July 1865, died 14th March 1942. Also of AGNES JOHNSON LYON, wife of the above CHARLES WEBSTER CORSAR, who died 22nd February 1913, aged 77. "Where I am, there shall also my servant be."

In memory of MORAG LYON CORSAR wife of JOHN SHERRIFFS who died 27th March 1936 aged 28 years. Also her son JOSEPH ANTHONY LYON SHERRIFFS who died in Mexico 10th September 1967 aged 34 years.

In memory of GEORGE SHERRIFFS manufacturer, Arbroath beloved husband of MARY CARR, who died 9th September 1940, in his 75th year. MARY CARR died 27th July 1942. Also their eldest son JAMES DOUGLAS who died at Ayr on 9th March 1956, aged 56 years. Also their son JOHN who died at Killin on 30th September 1958 aged 55 years husband of MELISSA GLENDINNING. Also their son ROBERT STEWART who died in Surrey on 26th December 1960 aged 54 years husband of ELMA GREENWOOD.

Erected by ALEXANDER PATERSON, in memory of his wife ISABELLA CAIRD, who died 22nd October 1909, aged 54 years. Also their children WILLIAM, and JOHN, who died in infancy. Gnr. COLIN G. PATERSON, R.G.A. killed in France 6th June 1918, aged 38 years. The above ALEXANDER PATERSON, died 21st February 1921, aged 68 years. WILLIAMINA PATERSON, daughter of the above ALEXANDER PATERSON died 23rd January 1955. PATERSON

[shield, leaning against previous] In loving memory of our dear mother who died 22nd Oct. 1909. Also, our dear father who died 21st Feb. 1921 from their loving daughter and son-in-law CHRISSIE and ALEX. SCOTT ... India

Erected by Capt. ALEXANDER CAIRD, and ELIZABETH MEEK his wife, in memory of the daughter MARJORY OLIVER who died 15 April 1874, aged 11 years. And their nephew PETER LAING, who died 3 Feb. 1876, aged 8½ years. The above ELIZABETH MEEK, died June 1890, aged 65. The above ALEXANDER CAIRD, died 1 July 1903, aged 75 years. Also their son-in-law RICHARD LANDSCROWN MEFFAN who died 18th Oct. 1907, aged 47 years and of his wife HARRIET CAIRD MEFFAN who died 9th April 1916, aged 51 years. After life's fitful fever, they sleep well.

The following inscription to a John Geren (most likely John Gairne; perhaps Gardyne or even Green), who died on the first Monday after New Year's day 1563 (i.e., on the Scottish date Monday 4 January 1562/3 or, just possibly, Monday 29 March 1563) is in SS Peter & Paul's kirk in Haynau (now Chojnów, in Poland):

Im Jhar Chri 1563 Montag nach dem Neuenjharstag ist in Got verschiden der erbar erentfeste HANS GEREN von Arbrod in Schotland. Dem Got gnedig sei.

[Loosely: "Here lies an honest honourable man JOHN GAIRNE from Arbroath in Scotland. He departed this life upon the Monday after New Year's Day, A.D. 1563. May God be merciful to him."]


Arbroath war memorials

See also the memorial inside St Andrew's Church.

Arbroath war graves

CWGC - Arbroath - 105 men


Births, Marriages & Deaths, 1855 to present

Indexes and actual records for Statutory Registers of Births, Marriages & Deaths, beginning 1 Jan 1855, are available online, following registration and the purchase of credits, at the official web-site, ScotlandsPeople.

Births, Marriages & Deaths, before 1855

Indexes and actual records for all extant Old Parish Registers (OPRs) (pre-1855) of the Established Church of Scotland are available online, following registration and the purchase of credits, at the official web-site, ScotlandsPeople.


Birth brieve

An example of 1655, for James, David, Adam & Henry Lyells (sons of Patrick Lyell, bailie of Arbroath, & Euphemia Simpson), who emigrated to Sweden, is at Leijel. That page has a copy made in Sweden of the Latin text of the brieve. The witnesses are John Ouchterlony, provost of Arbroath; J. Ramsay and David Ouchterlony, bailies; James[?] P[i]erson, town clerk [although the initial in the copy looks like an 'F']; and, apparently, the minister, whose name is not in the Latin text. (A badly typed translation into English, with peculiar references to the "city" of Arbroath, is provided.)

There is no guarantee that this copy is of a genuine original issued at Arbroath. The coats of arms on the document are possibly all spurious, e.g. the arms labelled "Broun" are the arms of Brown of Colstoun in East Lothian, to which James Brown, merchant in Arbroath had no right.


Marriage contracts

DateTypePartiesNRS ref.
2 Jun 1668antenuptialMr David Peirsoune*, minister at Kilbarchane [AYR]
Anna Hamiltoune, dau. of Major Alexander Hamiltoune of Foirhous of Kilbarchane
25 Jul 1668antenuptialJames Dewar, bailie of Bruntyland [FIF]
Agnes Peirson, only dau. of dec. Mr David Peirson of Lochlands
19 Oct 1727antenuptialAlexander Ochterlony, son of George Ouchterlony, late provost of Arbroath
Agnes Wallace, daughter of William Wallace, late bailie of Arbroath

* only son of Mr Thomas Pearson, min. at Forfar, who was 2nd son of Thomas Pearson of Lochlands, bailie of Arbroath


Consistorial processes and decreets at Edinburgh [NRS CC8]

Ref.: Francis J. Grant (ed.), The Commissariot of Edinburgh: Consistorial Processes and Decreets, 1658-1800, Scottish Record Soc., Edinburgh, 1909

1221704Process of AdherenceMargaret Ritchie, lawful spouse to Walter Cruickshanks, shoemaker in Aberbrothwick, against the said Walter Cruickshanks1704
5781771Process of AdherenceJean Chaplain, mantua maker in Arbroath, dau. of the dec. James Chaplain of Colliston, and spouse of William Jameson, barber, sometime residing in Montrose, against the said William Jameson, mar. Dec 1761XII 5 Jun 1771
6031773Process of DivorceJean Chaplin, mantua maker in Arbroath, spouse of William Jameson, barber, sometime residing in Montrose, dau. to the dec. James Chaplin of Colliestoun, against the said William Jameson, mar. 1761XIII 18 Jun 1773
6441775Process of Declarator of Marriage and Adherence Helen Kinney, spouse to Robert Dunbar, sometime mariner in Aberbrothick, mar. 17 Aug 1762, and had issue a dau. in May 1763XIV 24 Mar 1775
8111784Process of Separation and Aliment and of Nullity of Marriage Elizabeth Robertson, alleged spouse to Harry Gardner, merchant in Leith, against said Harry Gardner, et e contra mar. 20 Nov 1769 at Arbroath. Action for nullity at said Harry Gardner's instance dismissed1784
11651799Process of DivorceJames Muat, Junior, late teacher in Edinburgh, now in Arbroath, against Charlotte Angus, dau. of the dec. --- Angus, maltman in Dundee, mar. 3 Oct 1791Decree 13 Aug & 6 Sep 1799


Church Session Records of Arbroath Old Kirk

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. CH2/1415/...
Minutes & accounts1732-17351
Abstract enumeration of inhabitantsJun 18314
Cash book1837-185910
Stipend book1789-179811
Account of victual paid to min.1800-180411
Loose items from vol. 131955-196714
Scroll minutes1754-177215
Scroll minutes182716
Scroll minutes1827-182917
Scroll minutes1834-184018
Scroll minutes1840-184619
Scroll minutes1860-187320
Loose items from vol. 201754-177221
Scroll minutes1886-190322
Treasurer's accounts, incl. mortcloths1804-182323
Ledgers1888-194424 to 26
Cash books1903-193828 to 29
Stipend books1807-184530 to 32
Baptisms (Arbroath & St Ninian's Chapel)1902-193733
Finance committee minutes1905-191335
Arnott mortification minutes & accounts1885-189936
Extract process & decrees in petition by Rev. W.J. Irvine186937
Notes on the records of Arbroath kirk session187037
Misc. legal docs, incl. feu charters, sasines, etc.1630-192438
Accounts of fees for proclamations & baptisms1827-183239

Church Session Records of Ladyloan quoad sacra

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. CH2/608/...
Managers' minutes1837-18433
Congregational Board minutes1941-19506
Cash book1837-184410
Roll of young persons1904-196013
Communion roll1938-194114

Church Session Records of Inverbrothock quoad sacra

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. CH2/903/...
St Vigeans Destitute Sick Society accounts1838-18885
Congregational Board minutes1948-19779 to 12
Communion roll1930-196416 to 21
Congregational register, A-P197122
do, R-Z197123
Property register1954-197724 to 25
Women's Guild minutes1961-197726
Misc. papers1854-197727

Church Session Records of North Grimsby Church
originally First United Associate congregation - antiburgher; later, Princes Street United Presbyterian Church, then U.F., etc.

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. CH3/964/...
Minutes1783-1806, 1823-18391
Congregational (managers') minutes1786-182310
Roll of members183914
Communion roll1865-187616
Managers' minutes1923-196420
Private register kept by the Rev. Joseph Hay1823-185921
Library cash book1823-185922
List of books in libraryn.d.22
Act of the General Associate Synod (printed)179923
Managers' correspondence & related papersca. 1925-193824
Loose papers19th-20th C.25
Communion rolls1924-195526 to 30

Church Session Records of Erskine United Presbyterian Church
originally Second United Associate congregation - burgher; later, Erskine U.P. Church, then U.F., etc.

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. CH3/963/...
Managers' minutes1853-18755
Communion rollca. 1854-18727
Managers' minutes1910-194512
Seat letting book(1925)-194214
Communion roll (by districts)1946-195316
Index to no. 16-18


Arbroath Heritors' records

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref. HR670/...
Minute book1846-19211


Congregational Church Records

Records of Queen Street Congregational Church, 1849-1968 are in Dundee City Archives


Episcopal Church Records

Various records for St Mary's Episcopal Church are among the Brechin Diocesan Library Manuscripts at Dundee University Archives [ref. BrMS 6]. These include:


Farmers / Tenants

See under St Vigeans.



The records of Arbroath and St Vigeans Parochial Board and its successors, 1846-1930, are held by Angus Archives, ref. ACC 9/3.

Information, maps & photographs of Arbroath & St Vigeans Combination Poorhouse.


Census records

Records of the official censuses of the parish in 1841, 1851, 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901, 1911 and 1921 are held in Register House, Edinburgh and are open to the public on payment of a fee.

Indexes to all the original census records, and the records themselves, can be accessed online at modest charge at ScotlandsPeople.

Microfilm copies are also widely available in libraries. The 1881 census is available on CD-ROM.

The early censuses of 1801-31 do not name individuals.


Lists of inhabitants


Population statistics

The numbers under the head 'in landward part' are that part of the total population of the parish of Arbroath who are not living within the burgh of Arbroath. Note that part of the burgh lay in the parish of St Vigeans, so the figures below do not give the total population of the burgh.

Yearmalefemaletotalin landward partref.
17552098Dr Alexander Webster
17924676131Old Statistical Account
1801205728864943180Excludes seamen

The following data are for the united civil parish of Arbroath & St Vigeans



Estate & family records

David Clarke papers, 1795-1799 [Angus Archives ref. MS 65]

Dorward family of Arbroath, 1803-1871 [Angus Archives ref. MS 72]


Street and trade directories

Some directories covering Arbroath, Carnoustie, Friockheim and surrounding districts are available online.


Testaments & wills

Arbroath was in the Commissariot of St Andrews.

List of pre-1801 testaments for Arbroath people

Indexes to all extant pre-1926 testamentary records (wills & inventories of moveable property) can be searched free of charge at ScotlandsPeople. Digital (and paper) copies of the documents can be purchased at that site. See further the introduction to Angus & Kincardineshire at Testaments.


Royal burgh of Arbroath: burgh records in the NRS [ref. B4/...]

Nature of recordDatesNRS ref.
Register of sasines, 1st series (all except vol. 2 have an index)1693-1809B4/2/1 to B4/2/15
Register of sasines, 2nd series1809-1941B4/3/1 to B4/3/148
Minute books of 2nd series of register of sasines1809-1941B4/4/1 to B4/4/19
Presentment books1919-1941B4/5/1 to B4/5/5
Indexes to 2nd series of register of sasines1809-1941B4/6/1 to B4/6/9
Register of deeds, protests, etc. (old series)1679-1809B4/7/1 to B4/7/8
Register of deeds, protests, etc. (new series)1809-1916B4/8/1 to B4/8/5
Register of decreets1728-1766B4/9/1 to B4/9/5
Index & minute book1921-1941B4/10

Royal burgh of Arbroath: burgh records in Angus Archives

Angus Archives' page Catalogs - Burgh Records provides this file listing burgh records of Arbroath held by Angus Archives. Earliest document is dated 1530 (but should be 1491?).

Surname indexes to Arbroath Court Book, 1565-1575 and 1618-1704 [Angus Archives ref. 18:352]


Notaries' protocol books


Provosts of Arbroath, 1651-1974
There do not appear to have been provosts until 50 years after Arbroath became a royal burgh.

NameIn officeBornDiedInfo
Patrick Wallace?-1651-?
John Ochterlony (Ouchterlony)?-1655-?, ?-1661-?
Henry Fithie of Peebles (in St Vigeans)by 1667ca. 1623-1630aft. 1695
John Aikman of Cairnie?-1670-1672-?16131693
Patrick Wallace?-1673-1675-?, 1681-1681Nov 1681
John Kyd1687ca. 164014 May 1694
David Wallace?-1687-?
Patrick Steven1685-?, 1689-1695, 1698-?bef. 5 Mar 1707
--- Ochterlony1695-?
John Hutchison/Hutcheon, alias Hamilton1702-?bef. 21 Dec 177421 Dec 1774 is the date of the confirmation of the executry of his son John, of Campvere
David Ramsay?
--- Dicksonca. 1710
John Wallace?-1718-?
Patrick Wallace, elderbef. 18 Feb 1719
George Ochterlonybef. 1727bef. 21 May 1731
John Lamb1724-1726
John Wallace1726-1728, 1732-1735, 1738-1741
William Wallace1728-1729
Patrick Wallace1729-1732, 1741-1744
John Gellatly1735-1738, 1747-1748
John Mann1744-1747, 1748-1750
John Gardner1750-1753, 1756-1758partner in Wallace, Gardyne & Co.
John Wallace?-1754-?, ?-1762[?]-?, ?-1766-?
Mr Alexander Keith1753-1756, 1758-1761bef. 9 Mar 1774
Alexander Ochterlony1761-1764bef. 1712son of above Geo. O.
John Mudie1764-1766
James Butchart1766-1769bef. 10 Jan 1806
David Mudie1769-1772
Alexander Keith1772-1775
David Greig1775-1777, 1780-1783, 1786-1788, 1791-1793bef. 22 Jul 1803
John Ochterlony1777-178017412 Dec 1804
Charles Allan of Lochlands1783-1786, 1788-1791buried 21 Nov 1803 Arbroath
Alexander Aberdein1793-1796
David Balfour1796-17995 Aug 1817 Arbroath
William Mill1799-180222 Nov 1825
James Johnston1802-180529 Oct 1806
Alexander Hay of Haysfield & Letham Grange1805-180815/16 Jul 1817 Arbroath
John Airth, junior1808-1811ca. 176919 Nov 1817
John Andson, né Anderson1811-1814ca. 176726 Jul 1814Founder of village of Friockheim
Andrew Duncan1814-1817, 1826-1829ca. 17592 Dec 1840
William Kid1817-1820bef. 4 May 1852banker
James Marnie of Deuchar1820-182212 Mar 1849
James Goodall of Rennyhill1822-18251 May 1779 Arbirlot28 Oct 1846banker in Arbroath; later, farmer at Peasiehill, Arbirlot; Portrait
William Renny1825-1826ca. 17851 Feb 1841
James Kay of Woodside1829-1832ca. 177117 Jan 1845
William Andson1832-1836ca. 1782 Arbroath2 Aug 1862merchant, shipowner
Robert Allan1836-18399 Mar 1841 Arbroathmerchant
Alexander Mann1839-1843ca. 1781 St Vigeans12 Sep 1852merchant, flax spinner & manufacturer; resided at Cliffburn
James Gibson1843-1846-1849ca. 1792 Montrose18 Mar 1866tenant farmer in Downieken, Monikie
William Johnston1849-1852ca. 1784 Arbroath1861x1864banker; resided at Annesley; Portrait
Robert Lyon1852-185520 Apr 1800 Arbroath13 Sep 1856solicitor; resided at Seaforth House
John Lumgair, junior1855-1858, 1861-1864-186728 Oct 1806 Arbroath13 Oct 1890 Edinburghlinen merchant & manufacturer
James Anderson Dickson of Woodville1858-186128 Apr 1818 Rescobie24 Apr 1901 St Vigeansbanker; councillor for 42 years; son-in-law of David Louson, town clerk
David Corsar of the Elms1867-1869ca. 1830 Arbroath18 Dec 1904 Arbroathflaxspinner & manufacturer; Portrait
James Muir1869-1870- 1873-1876ca. 1820 Arbroath16 Mar 1903merchant & banker, Abbey Bank
George Shield1876-187930 Oct 1819 Inverkeilor28 Sep 1880chemist & druggist; senior baillie in 1871
Alexander Reid1879-1883ca. 1815 Kirriemuir27 Jul 1883 Banchory Ternantobacco manufacturer
George Thornton1883-1886ca. 1833 Forfar3 Jan 1911 Forfardraper; resided at Hillside House, Arbroath; later at Jeanfield, Forfar
Alexander David Anderson1886-188910 Dec 1838 Arbroath9 Nov 1914solicitor, sheriff-clerk depute
George Keith1889-189523 Sep 1822 Arbroath21 Jul 1912 Arbroathplumber; Portrait
Colin Grant1895-19047 Dec 1838 Rescobie6 Aug 1929 Arbroathboot manufacturer; Portrait
William Alexander1904-1913ca. 1837 Arbroath2 Oct 1921solicitor & bank agent; Portrait
George Rutherford Thomson, O.B.E.1913-191925 Jan 1857 Arbroath10 Mar 1939auctioneer; Portrait; Advertisement
Archibald Craig Anderson of Fernlea1919-19254 Dec 1868 Arbroath15 Jul 1929 ArbroathPortrait; son of above Alexr D. Anderson
Alexander McLaren Robertson1925-19282 Apr 1860 Kenmore PER22 Jun 1932 Arbroathaerated water manufacturer; Portrait; Photo
Sir William Chapel Corsar Chapel1928-194324 Nov 1870 Arbroath5 Oct 1950 Broughty FerryPortrait
John Lamb1943-19491882 Montrose17 Dec 1951Portrait
John Ford Webster1949-19521875 Monifieth1974 Montrose Portrait
James Kydd Moir, C.B.E.1952-1957ca. 18829 May 1962Portrait
David A. Gardner1957-19641977teacher, Arbroath High School; Portrait
Robert Ritchie Spink, O.B.E.1964-19731912
David Chapel, M.B.E., T.D.1973-197427 Jun 1905 St Vigeans23 Feb 1982 Arbroath


Bailies (Magistrates) of Arbroath, to 1974

In office1st2nd3rd
1616-1617Thomas Peirson of LochlandsMr John Grainger
1634-1635James CarnegieMr John Grainger
1635-1636John WallacePatrick Lyell, notary
1670-1671John RamsayJames Martin
1795-1796John Airth sen.William Miln
1796-1797William SouterJohn Airth jun.
1825-1826William FinlaysonJohn Louson
1831-1832W. AndsonA. Sturrock
1845-1846J. AndersonAlexander Macdonald
1846-1847Alexander MacdonaldJohn Lumgair, jun.
1890-1891J.M. Dorward (ca. 1823-1893)W.F. MackintoshJohn Herald
1897-1898James Cargill (d. 1898)
1898William AlexanderRobert Melvin-- Henderson
1898-1899William AlexanderRobert MelvinJohn Duncan
1900-1901William AlexanderRobert MelvinJohn Duncan
1914-1915Archibald Craig AndersonAlexander Mann DundasDavid T. Wilson
1922-1923William ChapelCharles MilneAndrew Beatt
1924-1925William ChapelCharles MilneAndrew Beatt

Minute of Arbroath burgh court appointing John Wallace and Patrick Lyell as bailies, 5 Oct 1635 [NRS GD45/12/412]


Town treasurers of Arbroath, to 1974

NameIn officeBornDiedInfo
Robert Lyell1610-1611
John Johnston1670-1671
David Paterson1796-1797
John Anderson?-1802-?
George Gibson1825-1826
William Bower1831-1832
William Cargill1845-1846
William Johnston1846-1847
Thomas Forbes?-?ca. 18056 Feb 1890draper
John Munro?-?ca. 182616 Jan 1890
James C. Gibson?-?ca. 18271 Mar 1890
David Jarvis1890-1891
Robert Mollison1898-1899
Robert Forbes1900-1901
George Rutherford Thomson?-1913became Provost 1913
John Duncan1914-1915


Deans of Guild of Arbroath, to 1974

NameIn officeBornDiedInfo
George Gow1796-1797
Thomas Leslie1825-1826
John Stewart1831-1832
William Renny1845-1846
James Seaton1846-1847
John Strachan?-?ca. 184525 Mar 1890
David Corsar, jun.1890-1891
John Duncan?-1898thereafter, 3rd bailie
David Corsar, jun.1900-1901
Rollo S. Black1914-1915
David R. Macdonald1922-1923
David R. Macdonald1924-1925


Town clerks of Arbroath

NameIn officeBornDiedInfo
David Lyell?-1575-1588-?bef. 1620
Alexander Pierson1585?-1617-?
James Pierson?-1620-1655-?
John Ochterlony?-1698-?
George Adam?bef. 8 Jun 1720
Patrick Alexander1727-17351735
David Mudie1735-1764
Alexander Mudie1764-1784grandson of above
John Colville1784-1812ca. 175326 Oct 1812
David Louson of Springfield1812-1858[?]6 Aug 1781 Arbroath11 Dec 1858 Arbroathappointed for life in 1812
John Macdonald1854-18683 Apr 1795 Arbroath9 May 1868 Arbroatht/c depute by 1837
William Kid Macdonald1868-191923 Jul 1838 Arbroath19 Apr 1919 Arbroathson of above; Portrait
Robert Finlayson1919-1941Mar 1951
David Littlejohn1941-1944Interim t/c
J. B. Halliday1944-1945Interim t/c
William D. Smith1945-1958-?formerly depute town clerk, Clydebank
Robert Robertson1966-1975191815 Nov 1975


Arbroath burgess records

Index of Arbroath Burgesses, 1790-1975 [Arbroath Library]


Arbroath craft records

Index of Officers of the Arbroath Brewers Fraternity, 1805-1861 [Angus Archives ref. 18:641.873]

Papers of Arbroath Glovers Friendly Society, 1802-1834 [Angus Archives ref. MS 94]

Surname index of Arbroath Glovers Incorporation, 1653-1938 [Angus Archives ref. 18:941]

Surname index of Arbroath Shoemakers Incorporation, 1738-1937 [Angus Archives ref. 18:941]

Papers of Arbroath Tailors Incorporation, 1658-1845 [Angus Archives ref. MS 606]

Surname index of Arbroath Weavers Incorporation, 1693-1899 [Angus Archives ref. 18:941]


Arbroath Traders Index, 1839-1843 [Angus Archives ref. 18:941] - surname index of merchants and shop keepers, often listing their business address


Arbroath Sheriff Court records, 1827-1984

See the Summary of the Records of Arbroath Sheriff Court on the page for court records.


Valuation rolls

Valuation rolls of properties in the County of Angus, 1856-57; 1890-91; 1908; 1919-20; 1922-27, are held in Arbroath Library

Valuation rolls of properties in the County of Angus, for the years 1855, 1865, 1875, 1885, 1895, 1905, 1915, 1920, 1925 and 1930 only, can be seen at ScotlandsPeople.


Jacobite rebels - 1745 rebellion
From: A List of Persons concerned in the Rebellion (Edinburgh, Scottish History Soc., vol. 8, 1890)

NamesDesignationsAbodeActs of rebellion
& circumstances
Where at present
James AbbotdysterArbroath
William Archertailordo
David Barclaybrewerdo
James Coupar-do
Alexander Crighton, senr-do
James Crightonshoemakerdo
Thomas Crightonmasondo
Thomas Crightonmasondo
David Dorwood [Dorward]land labourerdo
John Dorwood [Dorward]weaverdo
Alexander Duncantacksman of the customsdo
John Duncanbrewerdo
James Essie, senrweaverdo
William Fergusondischarged excise officerdo
Robert Ferrierfarmerdo
James Fordue [Fordice?]wrightdo
William Gillespiesailordo
James Grantbrewerdo
David Graybrewerdo
Alexander Kerriesailordo
John Kerriemerchantdo
John Keytailordo
John Loupersmithdo
Alexander Mackie-do
James Niccoltailordo
John Peddiemerchantdo
Alexander Piersonship masterdo
Alexander Ritchiethread makerdo
David Scotttailordo
David Shanksweaverdo
John Shanksweaverdo
Alexander Smithbarberdo
William Smiththread makerdo
James Stouterbrewerdo
Patrick Wallaceprovostdo
John Watsonbrewerdo
Thomas Watsonmerchantdo
Andrew Websterwrightdo
John WebsterChelsea pensionerdo
Thomas Wilkie-do
David Wilsonbrewerdo


Farm horse tax, 1797-8

Images of the original records for Arbroath:


Window tax records

For the royal burgh of Arbroath, 1753-1798 [NRS ref. E326/1/133]




A gift to the burgh by David Corsar of The Elms; opened June 1898: Article

Arbroath Library


Places of interest



This page updated 17 Nov 2022