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What resources are available on the website and how can I find them?

You can now find information about Scottish places past and present, selected from the holdings of the partner organisations. Manuscript records and printed books from hundreds of thousands of pages in government and private records, including:


Historical Tax Rolls

When the Crown collected taxes, it collected information about its subjects. Most taxation was levied from landowners until the late 18th century when government sought to broaden the tax base by taxing other forms of property. A by-product of this is a useful series of records for historians, listing different types of people in each of Scotland's parishes and burghs.


Ordnance Survey Name Books

The images of the name book volumes are provided as well the place name indexes* for each county. These free indexes list every place name found on the 1st edition Ordnance Survey maps. Each place name links to both the corresponding name book page as well as the map sheet where that place name may be found. Name book volumes and indexes are currently available for the following counties:

*Special thanks to Ian Fleming, former employee of the Ordnance Survey and RCAHMS, who volunteered his time to index the Ordnance Survey place names for each county. 


RCAHMS Archives

RCAHMS (the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland), 1908 to 2015, is responsible for recording, interpreting and collecting information about the built and historic environment. The RCAHMS archival volumes that have been added to the site include:


Burgh registers

Burghs were urban settlements which enjoyed trading privileges from medieval times until 1832 and which regulated their own affairs to a greater or lesser extent (depending on the type of burgh) until 1975. Burghs produced characteristic forms of historical record, such as court books, guild records and registers of deeds.


Official Reports

Official reports by central and local government often contain detailed information about places in Scotland and issues affecting people who live there. Published reports currently available on the site include county medical officer of health reports from the 1890s and the lists of who owned land in Scotland from a parliamentary commission of 1872-1873. Digital volumes within the Official Reports category include:


Published Gazetteers and Atlases

Historical gazetteers and atlases provide a wealth of information about the history of a place and it's evolution including information on early Scottish place names, parishes, and the organisation of the country at that time. Maps and diagrams provide invaluable information on boundary areas. This category contains:


Hydrographic Surveys

Hydrographic surveys focus on the depths and physical characteristics of bodies of water and the surrounding land. This includes the flow of water and studies the biological, chemical, physical and geometrical characteristics of water. Specific areas of hydrographic surveys, namely bathymetric surveys, focus on the impact that water has on the submerged terrain. These surveys result in charts and maps which provide accurate and measurable descriptions of this impact. Historical surveys of this nature provide a great deal of insight into scientific methodologes in hydrographic study and reveal the historical interest in the unknown aspects of the Scottish lochs.


Archaeological and architectural sites, and historical maps and plans

We provide access to thousands of Ordnance Survey maps from the mid-1800s.  Use the links below to access the following series' for each county:


Related records

ScotlandsPlaces also includes hundreds of thousands of the following record types available in the results of your searches:

  • The National Monuments record including archaeological reports on historic and prehistoric sites
  • Maps and plans of counties, parishes, cities, towns, villages, farms, roads, canals, harbours, churches, school, public building, private houses, mines and quarries

Simply type a place name you are interested in into the search box in the top right hand corner or select from our gazetteer A-Z to get started.