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"A parish in Berwickshire, situated on the border betwixt Lauderdale and Lammermuir. It extends about 3 miles in length by 2 1/2 in breadth, comprehending an area of 8 miles. The surface consists of an assemblage of hills, rising gradually from the Leader, interspersed with deep mosses, in which are found large trunks of different kinds of trees, which renders it highly probable that the hills and glens, with the circumjacent country, were formerly a part of an immense forest. The soil of the arable land is chiefly a blackish mossy loam, intermixed with sand, and the gravel formed by the mouldering down of the adjacent rocks. It is tolerably fertile, and would be productive of heavy crops, were it not for the disadvantages of an exposed situation and a weeping climate. The hills afford pasture to 3770 sheep, 560 black cattle and 120 horses. Birkhillside, the seat of the family of Shillinglaw, is the only mansion of note. There are 3 ancient towers, one of which is very entire, and affords a striking monument of the taste of our ancestors. Population in 1801, 495." from Gazetteer of Scotland published 1806, Edinburgh.


The Borders Family History Society has published a booklet of monumental inscriptions for Channelkirk and Legerwood.

Pre-1855 inscriptions for the parish are contained in the Scottish Genealogy Society's volume of Berwickshire Monumental Inscriptions (Pre-1855).

Nigel Hardie has transcribed and published Earlston and Ledgerwood burials for 1784-1854.


Graham and Emma Maxwell have transcribed and indexed the 1841 and 1851 census returns for this parish.

Church Records

The parish church (Church of Scotland) has registers dating from 1689. Old Parish Registers (before 1855) are held in the National Records of Scotland in Edinburgh, and copies on microfilm may be consulted in local libraries and in LDS Family History Centres around the world. Later parish registers (after 1855) are often held in the National Records of Scotland as are any records of non-conformist churches in the area (often unfilmed and unindexed, and only available there).

Civil Registration

Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths began in Scotland on 1st January 1855. For further details of this see the National Records of Scotland website.


Ordnance Survey maps covering Legerwood include:

Legerwood is also covered by an old Victorian one-inch to the mile Ordnance Survey map published by Caledonian Maps. The relevant sheet is sheet number 25 "Kelso & Melrose" which also includes Earlston, Galashiels, Gordon, Greenlaw, Lauder, Polwarth, Roxburgh, St Boswells, Selkirk and Westruther.


Here are some figures showing the parish's population through time:

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Page created by Vivienne S Dunstan.
Last updated: 8th March 2007

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