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"A parish lying partly in Roxburgh and partly in Selkirkshire. It is about 7 miles long, and 3 broad. The surface is mostly hilly; but they are free of heath to the very top. The soil is light and fertile. There is a moss containing marl, of great extent, and four small lakes, which, with the river Ale, abound with trout. Population in 1801, 511."
From the Gazetteer of Scotland published 1806, Edinburgh.
Articles about Ashkirk have been published in past transactions of the Hawick Archaeological Society:
- "Haunted Ashkirk, or, Murder in the Ale Valley" by Reverand James Reekie, 1939 transactions, pages 49-54.
Selkirkshire Antiquarian Society has published a CD containing transcripts and digital photographs of gravestones in Ashkirk churchyard.
A list of gravestone inscriptions in Ashkirk churchyard may be found in the following volume:
Gravestone inscriptions prior to 1855: Vol 1. Selkirk, Ashkirk and Lindean Old Churchyards
published by Selkirkshire Antiquarian Society, 1969 (listed in the LDS Family History Library catalogue in microfilm format, so hopefully available worldwide in LDS family history centres).
Note: Lindean cemetery lies within what is now Galashiels parish.
A list was also printed in the 1962 volume of the Hawick Archaeological Society's Transactions (it may be an identical list) and a list of the surnames recorded is available online.
Finally, the Scottish Genealogy Society has a list of pre-1855 inscriptions in the parish among its collection of monumental inscription listings. This may be viewed at its library in Edinburgh.
The parish church (Church of Scotland) has registers dating from 1630. 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).
The parish registers available worldwide on microfilm include kirk session minutes and accounts for the years 1711-1735 (in part 781/3 of the microfilm). More information on kirk sessions and their records can be found in the Church Records section of the Roxburghshire page.
The presence of non-conformist churches in the parish is revealed by Rutherfurd's Southern Counties Register and Directory which lists the following in the year 1866:
There may have been other non-conformist churches at different times.
The "Blotter registers" of Ashkirk Free Church for the years 1844-1908 can be consulted around the world in LDS family history centres. The National Records of Scotland holds these records as part of its collection of Miscellaneous Records (MR 59).
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.
Description and Travel
You can see pictures of Ashkirk which are provided by:
The National Records of Scotland holds the following as part of its collection of maps and plans:
- 19th century: Plan of Burnfoot. Scale 1:2800. Size 79x63cm. Grid (map) reference NT4520. NRS reference RHP.3586
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NT471223 (Lat/Lon: 55.491653, -2.838789), Ashkirk which are provided by: