Our Archive and Search Room is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 10am to 4pm; and by appointment only on Mondays from 6pm to 8pm and on Fridays from 10am to 4pm.
From March to October, we're open without appointment on Mondays from 6pm to 8pm and on Fridays from 10am to 4pm.
The Parish of Melrose based on the historic Burgh of the same name is situated in the north east of Roxburghshire being bordered on the north by the Parish of Lauder, on the east by the parishes of Legerwood, Earlston and Mertoun all in the County of Berwickshire, on the south by the Parishes of St. Boswells, and Bowden and on the east by the Parishes of Galashiels and Caddonfoot both in the County of Selkirkshire and Stow in the County of Midlothian.
The town of Melrose grew up around Melrose Abbey, one of the four great medieval abbeys in the Borders. Melrose is also the home of Seven-a-Side Rugby which was first played here in 1883. Melrose and Bowden have now been combined into a single parish. The War Memorial is on the green in front of the parish church. There's also a war memorial at Darnick
Old Parish Records cover the periods:
|Melrose Parish Church|
(see our sales list for full details and cost of postage)
Please note that the heading Author includes persons who have compiled or transcribed records; and that the topics indexed, and the synopses are subjective opinions.
See the Sales List to buy copies of the magazines containing articles in which you're interested.
|Title||Synopsis||Size Description||Issue No||Author|
|Life in Melrose--150 years ago||This is the account of family life in Melrose in the first half of last century, from an autobiography of Catherine Helen Spence.||3 pages or more||11||Colin Wood|
|The Boston Family of Gattonside||A tale of hand loom weavers from Gattonside who decided to visit a sister in Canada. How they eventually decided to emigrate over to Canada and they walked from New York to Upper Canada. Most of the family are buried in Melrose Church Yard.||2 pages or more||39||M.C.Lawson|
|The Case of Agnes Gray||Taken from the Session Minutes of Melrose Parish Registers (1723-1741). A sad tale of a young girl who was cited to present herself before the Kirk Session.||1 page or more||19|
|My dig into the Past||How a birthday party of Melrose Bridge led to a very interesting tale of one man's family search.||2 pages or more||33||Mr Turner|
|Melrose Apprenticeships||A report on the compilation by Society member Dr. Vivienne Dunstan on masters and apprentices in Melrose Parish between 1743 and 1804.||less than 1 page||83||Vivienne Dunstan|
|Langshaw Mill Decree of 1608||Extract Decree relating to Langshaw Mill. The Decree is interesting for genealogists because of the very considerable number of people mentioned in it.||1 page or more||59||Gregory Lauder-Frost|
|Cousin Fred from Hawick||Problems tracing the history of a Dickson family who had lived in the Lauder area from the 17th century,||3 pages or more||65||Jim Dickson|
|A 'Scot' Moves to South Africa||Biography of Archibald Little, born Melrose, 11th Jan 1829, died 13 Dec 1921, Johannesburg. Brief notes on his occupations, and service in the Basuto War.||2 pages or more||44||Tony Little|
|Blind Jamie Donaldson||Account of James Donaldson, whose tombstone is in Melrose Abbey churchyard.||1 page or more||47||Margaret Lawson|
|McKenzie's around the River Ale||An account of McKenzies in and around the Borders.||4 pages or more||49||W E McKenzie|
|The Cairncross family - an example of a 16th-17th century family of feuars||This is the text of the authors' talk to the Society on 18th September 2005 titled 'Cairncross, a Border Family'. Outline of a typical noted old family in the Lauderdale/Melrose/Galashiels district, with descriptions of some of the local areas and ownership.||12 pages or more||59||Gregory Lauder-Frost|
|Memorials to the late Rev Thomas Williamson||Detail of a book on the Rev Thomas Williamson. minister of Melrose Secession Church for 30 years.||less than 1 page||90|
|My dig into the past||Peebleshire family and from other parts of the Borders, an interesting tale. Also history of various bridges over the Tweed.||3 pages or more||34||A. Turner|
|Melrose to Melbourne - The Story of one Wallace family||Interesting account of the author's Wallace research, ancestral emigration from Melrose to Sydney, Australia, farming, and the army. Two interesting photographs, too.||3 pages or more||67||Richard Balsillie|
|Escape from Dingleton||Some of the inmates of Dingleton Asylum, Melrose tried to escape. A few entries from the Register of escapes are listed here.||3 pages or more||74||Peter Munro|
|The Fairholme Memorial (Holy Trinity Churchyard, Melrose)||An article on the memorial in Holy Trinity Churchyard, Melrose to James Walter Fairholme, RN who perished with the Franklin expedition of 1845 to discover the North West Passage and an account of the expedition itself.||89||John Wood|
|A Berwickshire Schoolmaster||Jean Smithers has contributed this "nugget" from her investigations into the history of one of the strands of her ancestry.||1 page or more||11||Jean Smithers|
|Cavers & District||Talk given in February 2007 about the history of the kirk and parish of Cavers, and its links with Melrose, St Cuthbert, and other famous people.||6 pages or more||64||Jean Muir|
|Kelso's Ragged school||Case histories and fate of children in the 1800s who went to a Ragged School. These three names from the excellent book that Audrey has written will make you want to purchase this book.||2 pages or more||9||Audrey Mitchell|
|A Border Lady of the Old School||Interview with Mrs Jane Henderson Thomson Bell aged 83 in 1910 about her life. Written in Scots.||4 pages or more||20|
|Celtic v Pick of the Borders||An account of a football match between Glasgow Celtic and 'Pick of the Borders' in 1906.||1 page or more||88||Kenny McLean|
|William Dick (1849 - 1932)||Account of William Dick, a blacksmith in Fountainhall and his family||4 pages or more||63||Margaret Dick|
|The Days of Our Youth - Memories of Melrose||This article has been extracted from a much longer memoir that John Dick wrote when he retired around 1950. He was born in 1889, the second son of William Dick, an ironmonger in Melrose and his wife Isobella Lauder. He emigrated to Canada as a young man where he eventually became the Chief Cost Accountant for Sun Life Assurance Company. John served in the Canadian Expeditionary Force in World War I as a quarter-master sergeant. Although he was twice married he had no children.||7 pages or more||67||John Dick|
|Melrose: Past and Present||A story of Melrose from 3000 years B.C. to the Greenyards in 1992.||2 pages or more||22||Mr. T Little|
|Dingleton Hospital, Melrose||Some notes on Dingleton Hospital, Melrose and how to access information of those having a connection.||1 page or more||87|
The 20 most common on gravestones recorded by us in the Melrose Abbey monumental inscriptions volume are (number of gravestones in brackets): SCOTT (34), PRINGLE (21), SMITH (16), MILNE (15), RUTHERFORD (13), TAIT (12), MERCER (12), BROWN (12), ELLIOT (11), THOMSON (11), TURNBULL (10), DICKSON (9), STEVENSON (8), BELL (8), DAVIDSON (8), DODDS (8), TOD (8), ANDERSON (8), BUNYAN (8), BOSTON (7).
The 20 most common on gravestones recorded by us in the Melrose - Weirhill and High Cross Cemeteries monumental inscriptions volume are (number of gravestones in brackets): SCOTT (36), BROWN (23), HENDERSON (16), RUTHERFORD (16), WILSON (16), STEWART (12), MURRAY (12), THOMSON (12), RIDDELL (12), TURNBULL (12), DOUGLAS (11), HALL (11), REDPATH (10), HARDIE (10), GRAHAM (10), SMITH (9), ANDERSON (9), BUNYAN (9), LOCKIE (9), WOOD (9).
1841 census: Danielton, Darnick Village, Huntlyburn, Pavilion, Bridgend, Lowood, Abbotsford, Kaeside, Sunnyside, Coatgreen, Broomilees, Peashill, Old Melrose, Ravenswood, Broomhill, Newstead Village, Eildon Village, Newtown Village, White Hill, Greenwells, Friarshall, Gattonside Village, Gateside, Kittyfield ,Leaderfoot, Drygrange, Sorrowlessfield, Craigsford, Blainslie, Broadwoodshiel, Calfhill, Colmslee, Threepwood, Langshaw, Allanshaws/ Uplaw, Hawksnest, East Langlee, West Langlee, Old Gala Bridge, Langhaugh, Ladhope, Plumtree, Buckholm, Whitlaw, Williamlaw, Comely Bank, Chingle, Sime Pl., Bridge St., Wilderhaugh.
1851 census Melrose, Darnick, St. Helens, Darnick Vale, Chiefswood, Huntlyburn, Broomlees, Cotgreen, Sunnyside, Kaeside, Abbotsford Moss, Abbotslee, Abbotsford, Lochend, Tweedbank, Bridgend, Lowood, Berryhall, Gattonside, Abbotsmeadow, Allery, Friarshall, Newstead, Millmount, Gattonside Haugh, Eildon Mains, Eildonhall, Eildon, Peasehill, Langlands, Newtown, Newtown Mill, Hawkslee, Whitehill, Point field, Whitelee, Glenburnie, Greenwells, Eildonhall, Carolside Mains, Clackmae, Leadervale, Craigsford, Sorrowlessfield, Drygrange, Leaderfoot, Kittyfield, Ravenswood, Broomhill, Old Melrose, Wineburgh, Jeanfield, Blue Cairn, Newhouses, Threepwood, Upper Blainslie, Middle Blainslie, Blainslie, South Blainslie, Roan, New Blainslie, Broadwoodshiels, Cuddy Hall, Wooplaw, Allanshaws, Cobleheugh, Pavilion, Westhouses, Gateside, West Housebyres, East Housebyres, Mosshouses, Langshaw, Langshaw Mill, Comslie Hill, Hawksnest, Ladhope Muir, Comslie, Glendarg, Langlee Hill, Charlies Cairn, Langlee Main, Back o' the Hill, East Langlee, Whitlaw Bar, Whitlee, Whitlaw, Hawk Burn, Williamlaw, The Whin, Torwoodlee, Buckholm, Buckholm Mill, New Bristol, Plumtreehall, High Buckholm, Damhead Bar, Murray's Gate, Appletreeleaves, Ladhope, Langhaugh, Wester Langlee, Joppa, Galashiels, Darling's Park, Wilderhaugh, Low Buckholmside, Comleybank, High Buckholmside, Ladhope Bank, Dingleton Mains, St. Mary's, Mavisbank, Rose bank, St. Dunstan's, Booklaws, Bloombank, Weirhill, Bleachfield, Weirbank, St. Cuthbert's, The Priory, Cloisters, Viewfield.
1861 census: Melrose, Weirhill, Trinity, High Cross, Wellbank, Bleachfield, Dingleton Mains, St. Helens, Darnlee, Lowood, Bridgend, Tweedbank, Lochend, Abbotsford, Abbotslee, Abbotsmoss, Huntlyburn, Chiefswood, Berryhall, Kaeside, Sunnyside, Cotgreen, Broomilees, Darnick, Darnick Vale, Westhouses, Pavilion, Cobleheugh, Chainbridge, Gattonside Haugh, Millmount, Gattonside, Newstead, Broomhill, Ravenswood, Old Melrose, Peashill, Eildon, Nortonhall, Eildon Bank, Glenbournie, Greenwells, Eildonhall, Eildon Mains, Oakendean, Newtown, Hawkslee, Whitehill, Whitlee, Langlands, Gattonside Mains, West Housebyres, Easter Housebyres, Mosshouses, Cairney Mount, Clackmae, Leadervale, Glenburnie, Craigsford, Sorrowlessfield, Drygrange, Leaderfoot, Kittyfield, Fairshall, Allerly, Craigsford, Longshaw, Colmsliehill, Threepwood, Newhouses, Blainslie, Mid Blainslie, Nether Blainslie, New Roan, Old Roan, Winburg, Cuddyhall, Broadwoodshiels, Jeaniefield, Bluecairn, Old Bluecairn, Longshaw.
The population has been recorded as follows: