PERTHSHIRE, east midland county of Scotland, bounded N. by Inverness-shire and Aberdeenshire, E. by Forfarshire, SE. by Fife and Kinross-shire, S. by Clackmannanshire and Stirlingshire, SW. by Stirlingshire and Dumbartonshire, and W. by Argyllshire; greatest length, E. and W., 72 miles; greatest breadth, N. and S., 60 miles; the detached portion (lying along the upper reach of the Firth of Forth, and separated from the main body by a belt of Fife and Clackmannanshire) is 6.25 miles by 4.5 miles; area, 1,617,808; pop. 129,007. Perthshire includes some of the grandest and most beautiful scenery in Scotland, combining features characteristic both of the Highlands and the Lowlands. The ranges of the Ochils and the Sidlaw Hills, which are parted by the estuary of the Tay, occupy the SE.; while the N. and NW. districts, to the extent of more than one-half of the entire county, are occupied with the mountains of the Grampian system, this Highland region being intersected by numerous lochs and glens.
[Bartholemew's Gazetteer of the British Isles, 1887]
There are a number of local libraries and archives which serve Perthshire or have a degree of Perthshire content
The A K Bell Library, Perth including its Local Studies department.
There are some with a narrower focus:
Blair Castle Archive, Blair Atholl, Perthshire, PH18 5TL.
This is a private archive relating the Atholl estates.
Mitchell, J. F. & Mitchell, S., Monumental inscriptions (pre-1855) in North Perthshire and Monumental inscriptions (pre-1855) in South Perthshire (1975 and 1974, Scottish Genealogy Society).
Monumental Inscriptions are being collected by Tay Valley FHS, who are also involved in the Scottish National Burial Index.
A detailed breakdown of the location of burial records held by Perth & Kinross Council.
There has been a census every ten years since 1801, excluding 1941. The earliest for practical purposes is usually 1841 and the latest that is currently available is for 1911. Scottish census returns are held by the Registrar General.
A transcript to 1881 and digital copies to 1891 and 1901 are available and searchable online at Scotland's People.
Old Parish Registers for Church of Scotland congregations are are held by the Registrar General. Microfilm copies are held locally by Tay Valley FHS, the LDS Family History Centre, Dundee, and A K Bell Library, Perth and can also be ordered at LDS Family History Centres around the world.
Kirk Session records (Church of Scotland) are with the National Archives of Scotland, although parts are sometimes on OPR microfilms.
Non-Church of Scotland Registers are more problematic. Some may be found in Perth & Kinross Archive or in the National Archives of Scotland. It is often worth doing a search at the National Register of Archives for specific localities.
For information on records for a particular parish, please see the appropriate parish page.
Sheriff Court Records for Perthshire fall under either Perth or Dunblane and are held by the National Archives of Scotland:
- Perth: Ref. SC.49
- Dunblane: Ref. SC.44
A variety of local court records are held by Perth & Kinross Archive.
Records of sasines, testaments, inventories etc. are held at the National Archives of Scotland.
The Perthshire Tourist Board has a comprehensive guide to the county.
The Perthshire pages at Scottish Towns has individual pages for different parts of the county.
Undiscovered Scotland has a collection of information about the area, including accomodation, local business and places of interest. Click on place names on the map to home in.
The National Trust for Scotland manages these places of interest in Perthshire.
These articles or short essays, on Scots migrants & emigrants and other topics, include people from Perthshire.
These accounts by emigrants to Canada in 1842 include a number by people formerly of Perthshire.
Perth County Pioneers has accounts of former tenants of the Breadalbane estate.
More about Perthshire from The Gazetteer of Scotland by Rev. John Wilson, 1882.
The description of Perthshire from The National Gazetteer (1868). Transcribed by Colin Hinson.
© Copyright Colin Hinson, 1999-2010, &c.
There is a Perthshire mailing list.
Researchers may be interested in Perthshire GenWeb.
Those researching in Highland Perthshire may like to visit Rannoch.Net.
See Regalities and Baronies for more information about Perthshire's history of geographical boundaries.
Historical information about Perthshire from the Perthshire Tourist Board.
The history of the Strathearn area.
The Dundee History Group also covers the Perthshire area.
Most major records relating to land ownership are held nationally, so look at the entry on the main Scotland page.
Perth & Kinross Archive hold a range of different records relating to local property.
Various maps of Perthshire have been put online by the National Library of Scotland.
A wide selection of maps and plans are held by A K Bell Library, Perth.
Present day maps, along with some aerial photographs, are online at Bing maps.
First edition Ordnance Survey maps are available online from the Landmark Information Group.
Back issues of local newspapers are held by A K Bell Library, Perth.
More detailed information about Perthshire towns and parishes.