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Kettle

Description of the parish in 1862

"Kettle parish lies partly in the Howe of Fife and partly on the hills to the south. It is bounded by Falkland, Markinch, Kennoway, Scoonie, Ceres, Cults and Collessie. It is about 8 miles north-west to south-east by about 3 miles broad at its widest. It contains the villages of King’s Kettle, Kettle Bridge, Coaltown of Burnturk, Balmalcolm and Muirhead. For many years the parish was one of the main seats of linen manufacture in Fife, but its importance is declining. Agriculture employs the next biggest number, followed by the coal works at Burnturk and the lime works at Forthar. The present parish church was built in 1832. There is also a UP Church in King’s Kettle and a Free Church at Balmalcolm serving the parishes of Kettle and Cults. " edited from Westwood's Directory for the counties of Fife & Kinross published 1862.

Archives and Libraries

The ScotlandsPlaces website lets users search across national databases by geographical location. It includes, amongst other material,

  • catalogue entries for maps and plans held by the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh; some maps and plans can be viewed
  • photos and details of historical buildings and archaeological sites recorded by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, Edinburgh
  • 17th and 18th century tax rolls
  • Ordnance Survey [place] Name Books
  • an opportunity to transcribe thousands of historic documents

Bibliography

A very good description is to be found in the relevant chapter in History of the County of Fife: From the Earliest Period to the Present Time by John M Leighton, published 1840, online at Google Books.

Cemeteries

There are 2 cemeteries in Kettle parish:

1. Kingskettle Old Churchyard, 30 Main Street, Kingskettle (grid ref. NO 310084, GPS: 56.262095 -3.114753 Google map):

  • The pre-1855 monumental inscriptions are listed in Fifeshire Monumental Inscriptions (pre-1855) vol. 3 The north east parishes by John Fowler Mitchell & Sheila Mitchell, published by the Scottish Genealogy Society. ISBN 0901061999
  • Another listing has been published by the Fife Family History Society in their Publication 16, Monumental Inscriptions.
  • Some stones are recorded in Graveyard Monuments in East, North and Central Fife, John di Folco, published in Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, 1969-70, vol. 102, pages 205-236, which deals largely with stones dated pre-1707. It can be downloaded from ARCHway.
  • A CD with photographs of the stones and transcriptions is available from Scottish Monumental Inscriptions or from The Parish Chest.

2. Kingskettle Cemetery, just off A914 near Kettlebridge (grid ref. NO 314079, GPS: 56.259202 -3.10932 Google map):

  • The current lair registers (dating from 1873 are administered by Fife Council, Bereavement Services East, County Buildings, St Catherine Street, Cupar, KY15 4TA. Tel. 01334 659336. Fax 01334 412896.
  • A CD with photographs of the stones and transcriptions is available from Scottish Monumental Inscriptions or from The Parish Chest.

Census

Parish / district reference number for 1841 - 1901 censuses: 435

The 1841 and 1851 returns can be searched on the FreeCEN website.

The 1851 census has been indexed and published by the Tay Valley Family History Society.

Some census records on microfilm may be consulted in LDS Family Search Centres around the world.

LDS Library Film Numbers:

  1841 1851 1861 1871 1881 1891
Kettle 1042702 1042268 103829 103992 203524 208758
(Data provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)

Further information on the main Fife page.

 

Churches

You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Kettle area that are recorded in the GENUKI church database. This will also help identify other churches in nearby townships and/or parishes. You also have the option to see the location of the churches marked on a map.

Church History

In addition to the parish church (Kettle East), there was also a United Presbyterian Church (Kettle West), and Kettle and Cults Free church at Balmalcolm.

The Old Statistical Account (written in the 1790s) gives this information about Dissenters:

  • There are 2 clergymen in the parish - 1 Established and 1 Relief
  • Members of the Established Church over 8 years of age - 805
  • Separatists from the Established Church over 8 years of age - 587

The New Statistical Account (written in 1836) gives this information:

  • The Dissenters amount to almost one-third of the whole population.

The 1865 Ecclesiastical Directory lists the parish church, the United Presbyterian Church and the Free Church of Kettle & Cults.

Information and pictures of the churches at the Scottish Churches website.

Details of church history:

  • Kettle Church (Kettle East)
    The church of Kettle was anciently known as Lathrisk. It was originally dedicated to St Athernash but there was an additional dedication to St John the Evangelist. The church was granted to the Priory of St Andrews prior to 1181 . Ministry at Kettle is first recorded from 1565 in the person of David Cuke. The parish of Kettle lies in the Presbytery of Cupar (subsequently the Presbytery of St Andrews) and formerly in the Synod of Fife. The present parish church was built in 1832. In 1930, after the union of the United Free Church of Scotland and the Church of Scotland, there was a local union of congregations. Kettle East, this congregation, united with Kettle West (the former Kingskettle United Free Church), and with Balmalcom (formerly Kettle and Cults United Free Church). The new charge took the name Kettle, using the fomer Kettle East church. A further link was formed in 1963 with the congregation of Cults. In 1983 the congregations of Collessie and Ladybank, and Cults and Kettle were united under the name Howe of Fife.
  • Kettle (Kingskettle) United Presbyterian Church (later United Free and Kettle West Church of Scotland)
    The first minister of the congregation of Kettle U.P., which sat within the Presbytery of Cupar, was ordained around the year 1781. In 1900, at the time of the union of the Free Church and the United Presbyterians, Kettle U.P. was renamed Kingskettle Free Church, and the charge of Pitlessie was united with Kingskettle U.F. in 1901. Following the 1929 union between the Church of Scotland and the United Free Church a further name change took place and Kingskettle U.F. became Kettle West Church of Scotland. During the following year Kettle West united with the congregation of Balmalcolm and Kettle East, under the name of Kettle Church of Scotland, and after this local union the former Kettle West Church ceased to be used as a place of worship.
  • Kettle and Cults Free Church / United Free / Balmalcolm Church of Scotland
    Kettle and Cults Free Church was formed at the Disruption by adherents in the two parishes, who built a church on the border between them, about a mile from Kingskettle. It passed successively to the United Free Church and the Church of Scotland, in the latter case as Balmalcolm, which almost immediately united with Kettle East and Kettle West as Kettle in 1930. The United Free Church charge was in the presbytery of Cupar and the synod of Fife and Angus.

Church Records

Data provided by the  Scottish Archive Network (SCAN)

The Parish Church (Established Church, Church of Scotland):

The original Old Parish Registers (of baptisms / births, proclamations / marriages, and deaths / burials) of the Church of Scotland, which cover the years up to 1854, are held in the National Records of Scotland in Edinburgh, and they can all be consulted there at the National Records of Scotland. The baptisms / births, proclamations / marriages and deaths / burials indexes can be searched at the ScotlandsPeople website. Copies of the register entries may be purchased.

Parish reference number: 435

The Old Parish Registers (OPRs) span the following dates (although there are gaps within these ranges):

Kettle OPR Births / baptisms Proclamations / marriages Deaths / burials / mortcloths
435/1 1633-1721 1633-1721  
435/2 1723-1787    
435/3 1787-1819 1723-1819  
435/4     1700-1723
435/5     1719-1819
435/6 1820-1854 1820-1854 1820-1842
Register of Neglected Entries 1843, 1849    
(Data supplied by the National Records of Scotland)
 

The Detailed List of the Old Parochial Registers of Scotland, published 1872, provides this information about the content of the OPRs, including the gaps within them:

B.  and M.  intermixed. B.  Only one entry for 1639. Separate Record of B. till July 1645, and of M. till June 1635. M. blank 1635 - April 1640. B. blank July 1645 - July 1646 after which intermixed with M. Both records blank May 1658 - Feb. 1682. At Feb. 1714 are two leaves containing irregular entries of B. (four families) 1705 - 1826. Records blank Sept. 1717 - June 1719.
B.  blank July 1721 - Jan. 1723, after which a separate Record. Blank Aug. 1748 - Dec. 1752. Exc. May 1682 - Feb. 1699, mothers' names not recorded till Oct. 1731, and sometimes omitted during the period above stated.
M.  blank June 1721 - Jan. 1723, Dec. 1751 - Dec. 1752, and Oct. 1755 - May 1760, after which several leaves imperfect. Leaf at 1794 partially burnt.
D.  (Burials) blank June 1723 - Dec. 1735. Separate Records for West and South Divisions of the Churchyard 1735 - 1799; for East Division, 1735 - 1797, and for Burials in the Church, and in Forther's Burial-place, 1721 - 1791. Record blank (exc. one entry for 1808) Jan. 1799 - Feb. 1817.
[The Old Statistical Account (written in 1790) states "The barrow in Forthar is said to have been a regular place of burial, and to have had a church or chapel near it. But of this no vestiges are now extant."  This would appear to imply a place of antiquity, rather than one until recently used for burials. The "Forther's Burial-place" referred to in the OPR therefore possibly refers to a part of the church or churchyard.]

Copies of the registers on microfilm may be consulted in some local libraries and at LDS Family Search Centres around the world. The indexes to baptisms / births and proclamations / marriages can also be searched on the LDS Family Search website or on the IGI on microfiche in local libraries.

LDS Library Film Numbers:

1040114 Items 2 - 4 Session book (includes baptisms, marriage proclamations), 1636-1658; Baptisms, 1633-1646, 1682-1797; Marriages, 1633-1635, 1682-1721.
1040336 Baptisms (listed by family), 1773-1819; Baptisms, 1797-1854; Marriages, 1723-1854; Session book (includes Marriages, 1701-1705 and Mortcloth dues [burial records]), 1700-1723; Burials, 1719-1722, 1734-1793 (years repeat), 1793-1799, 1808, 1817-1842; Neglected entries (2 baptisms), 1843, 1849.
(Data provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)

Deaths / burials are listed on Fife Family History Society's  Pre-1855 Fife Deaths CD.

Some of the OPR entries can be searched on the FreeREG site.

Further information on the main Fife page.

Kirk Session records are held at the Special Collections Dept. of St Andrews University Library and at the National Records of Scotland. Some Kirk Session material is to be found in the OPR records (435/1 and 435/4).

Heritors' Records (HR81) are at the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh.

At the Special Collections Dept. of St Andrews University Library, with digital copies of the earlier volumes at the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh:

  • CH2/207
    Kettle Kirk Session
    Minutes, 1682-1731, 1742-1778; Register of testimonials, 1648-1660; Roll of adherents, 1890-1930; Miscellaneous documents, undated; Accounts, 1731-1843; Minutes, 1881-1930; Communion roll, 1888-1902 and 1925-1939; Stipend, 1782-1840; Cash book, 1778-1788; Deas bequest minutes and accounts, 1861-1897; Baptismal register, 1878-1930.

Included in the Old Parochial Registers on microfilm and at the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh but not online:

  • Kettle Kirk Session
    • 435/1
      Minutes, 1633-1658; Minutes and Collections, 1691-1694.
    • 435/4
      Accounts, 1699-1722.

At the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh:

  • HR/81
    Kettle parish heritors' records
    Minutes, 1732-1928; Cash book, 1854-1930; Papers relating to transference of property to Church of Scotland, 1927-1928; Correspondence, 1709-1930; Plan of manse, undated.
Other Churches :

At the National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh:

  • CH3/188
    Kettle (Kingskettle) United Presbyterian Church (later United Free and West Church of Scotland)
    Session minutes, 1832-1930 [some deaths etc. noted on back cover of volume for 1832-1868]; Communion roll, 1874-1915; Manager's minutes, 1819-1952; Accounts, 1789-1854; Manager's and congregational minutes, 1855-1893; Manse committee minutes, 1878-1884; Accounts relative to building of church, 1851-1853; Ledger, 1854-1893; Manager's and congregational minutes and accounts, 1893-1930; Communion roll,1915-1930.
    The LDS have filmed the following records which may be consulted at LDS Family History Centres.
    1886226 Kettle United Presbyterian Church Session minutes, 1832-1868. Original source: CH3/188 National Records of Scotland
    (Data provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints)
  • CH3/1066
    Kettle and Cults Free church / United Free / Balmalcolm Church of Scotland
    Minutes, 1843-1930; Deacons' court: minutes, 1879-1930, accounts, 1858-1930; Collections, 1908-1930; Communion roll, 1893-1930; Cash book, 1914-1930.

The Kettle page of the LDS Family Search Research Wiki has more information about church history and records.

Civil Registration

Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths began in Scotland on 1st January 1855. Full information on the main Fife page.

Registration districts covering this parish:

Registration district number start date end date
Kettle 435 1855 1967
Cupar 420 1968 1971
Cupar 417 1972 2002
Fife 417 2003  

Registration districts did not necessarily coincide exactly with parishes. In the 20th century especially, there were frequent changes in registration districts.

Court Records

Prior to 1824, wills, testaments & inventories of residents of Kettle may be found in either the St Andrews Commissariot (CC20) or the Edinburgh Commissariot (CC8) records. From 1824, commissary business has been conducted by the Sheriff Court of Fife at Cupar (SC20).

Indexes and finding aids are given on the main Fife page.

Description and Travel

Kingskettle town centre Ordnance Survey Grid Reference GPS Post code Lat. 56°15'42"N
NO 310084 56.263060
-3.115503
KY15 7PL Lon. 3°6'55"W

Surrounding parishes: Kennoway, Markinch, Falkland, Strathmiglo, Cults, Collessie, Scoonie.

You can see pictures of Kettle which are provided by:

Directories

The parish entry in Pigot's National Commercial Directory for the whole of Scotland, 1837, is online at Google Books.

Westwood's Parochial Directory for the Counties of Fife and Kinross for 1862 and 1866 are online at Google Books. On the Records pages of the Fife Family History Society website there is a transcription of the 1862 edition.

Gazetteers

There is a list of places in Kettle parish, with links to online historical and modern maps.

Several old gazetteers are available. They all contain descriptions of the parish and many are also worth searching for entries of places within the parish.

  • David Webster's Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, published 1819, online at Google Books.
  • Samuel Lewis's Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, published 1846, online at British History Online.
  • Barbieri's Descriptive and Historical Gazetteer of the Counties of Fife, Kinross and Clackmannan, published 1857, is at Google Books.
  • Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland (1882-4) and John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles (1887), are on A Vision of Britain (click on "Historical places and writing").
  • Frances Groome's Ordnance Gazetteer of Scotland(1892-6) on Electric Scotland

Historical Geography

A Vision of Britain provides historical descriptions, population & housing statistics, historic boundaries and maps.

You can see the administrative areas in which Kettle has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.

Land and Property

Details of historic buildings and archaeological sites in this parish held by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland, Edinburgh, are catalogued at ScotlandsPlaces. In the results, click RCAHMS. Unfortunately, not all entries have digital images.

Maps

Historic maps:

Present-day maps:

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NO310084 (Lat/Lon: 56.263112, -3.115516), Kettle which are provided by:

Names, Geographical

There is an index to the Ordnance Survey Object Name Books for this parish here.

Obituaries

Andrew Campbell has produced Fife Deaths from Newspapers 1822-1854 - a compilation of deaths recorded in local newspapers. Copies of this index are held by the Fife libraries and the Family History Societies.

Fife Deaths Abroad 1855-1900 - a compilation of overseas deaths recorded in Fife newspapers - has been produced by Andrew Campbell of Fife Family History Society. The Society have re-published it in their Publications Series, 28.

Occupations

The parish is included in Andrew Campbell's compilation of Fife Shopkeepers and Traders 1820-1870 taken from newspapers and directories. It is available in most Fife reference libraries, in the libraries of the family history societies, and at the Manuscript Department of the Special Collections Department of St Andrews University Library. It is also available as Fife Traders and Shopkeepers on CD from Fife Family History Society.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

The relief of paupers after 1845 was carried out by the Parochial Board and later by the Parish Council. Their records are at the Fife Council Archive Centre. See Public Records below.

Population

Year Population
1755 1621
1801 1889
1851 2601
1901 1759
1951 1603

There is a page with census statistics from 1755 to 1961 here.

See also A Vision of Britain and Histpop for population statistics.

Probate Records

Probate records are 'Confirmations' in Scotland.

Prior to 1824, wills, testaments & inventories of residents of Kettle may be found in either the St Andrews Commissariot (CC20) or the Edinburgh Commissariot (CC8) records. From 1824, commissary business has been conducted by the Sheriff Court of Fife at Cupar (SC20).

Indexes and finding aids are given on the main Fife page.

Local sources worth searching for deeds include St Andrews Commissary Court and Cupar Sheriff Court.

Public Records

Parochial Boards and their successors, Parish Councils, administered many local functions including poor relief.

At the Fife Council Archive Centre, Kirkcaldy:

  • FCC/6/32
    Kettle Parochial Board / Parish Council
    Minute books, 1867-1936.

Schools

School Board Records and / or school logbooks are held at the Fife Council Archive Centre.Kettle records:

At the Fife Council Archive Centre, Kirkcaldy:

  • Kettle School / Kingskettle Public School
    Log books, 1875-1949; Admissions Registers, 1875-1969, 1939-1988; School Board Minutes 1873-1919.

Entries less than 50 years old may contain sensitive personal information and are not on open access. If you are a former pupil you are entitled to see your own entry. Please contact the Archivist for further details.

Education statistics for Fife schools in 1891-2 list the following board schools in the parish:

School Board School Accommodation for scholars Average attendance
Kettle Kettle 400 253

Statistics

"Statistical accounts" giving fascinating insights into the local topography and history, social and economic conditions, and even the daily lives of people, were written by the parish ministers in the 1790s and the 1840s. For more information see the main Fife pages

Taxation

The hearth tax, clock & watch tax, male servants tax, female servants tax, and farm horse tax are all on ScotlandsPlaces.

See also the Early Taxation Records page.