"YETHOLM, a parish, containing the post-office station of Yetholm and the villages of Kirk-Yetholm and Town-Yetholm, on the north-east border of Roxburghshire. It is bounded on north-east and east by England, and on the other sides by the parishes of Morebattle and Linton. Its length north-westward is 4¾ miles; and its greatest breadth is 2⅔ miles. Bowmont-water bisects it, nearly through the middle, in a direction to the north-north-east."
From the Imperial Gazetteer of Scotland, edited by John Marius Wilson, 1868.
Pigot and Co's Commercial Directory of Scotland published in 1837 lists the following non-conformist churches in the parish:
Original Burghers, at Town Yetholm
United Secession, at Town Yetholm
There may have been other non-conformist churches at different times.
According to Rev. William Ewing's Annals of the Free Church of Scotland (published 1914 in Edinburgh) the Original Secession congregation at Yetholm "entered the Free Church in 1852.". He gives the membership of this congregation in 1859 as 139; by 1900 it was 206.
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).
The parish registers available worldwide on microfilm include kirk session minutes for the years 1758-1788 (in part 811/2 of the microfilm). More information on kirk sessions and their records can be found in the Church Records section of the Roxburghshire page.
Graham and Emma Maxwell have transcribed and indexed the Yetholm Burgher (New Light) Parish Register for 1824-1855.
Yetholm was for many centuries the home of a large number of gypsies. Writings on this topic include:
The Scottish gipsy's advocate: being a short account of the gipsies of Kirk-Yetholm, in connection with a plan proposed to be adopted for the improvement of the gipsy population of Scotland by John Baird (32 pages), published at Edinburgh in 1839
Memoir of the late Rev. John Baird, minister of Yetholm, Roxburghshire: with an account of his labours in reforming the gypsy population of that parish by William Baird (80 pages), published at London in 1862 (includes on pages 74-80 a "List of words used by the gypsies of Yetholm, compared with Grellman's list of the continental gypsy language and the corresponding words in Hindostanee")
The Yetholm history of the gypsies by Joseph Lucas (152 pages), published at Kelso in 1882
The Gypsies of Yetholm: historical, traditional, philological, and humorous by William Brockie (192 pages), published at Kelso in 1884
"Bailie Smith of Kelso's account of the Gypsies of Kirk Yetholm in 1815" by John A. Fairley, printed in the 1907 transactions of the Hawick Archaeological Society, pages 5-10
An article by A.V. Tokely originally printed in the transactions of Hawick Archaeological Society, and reprinted in the June 1996 and October 1996 editions of the Borders Family History Society magazine (covers earliest times to end of 19th century)
"Rev. John Baird, 1799-1861: Friend of the Gypsies" by Donald Whyte, published on pages 2-6 of the October 1994 edition of the Borders Family History Society magazine
In the 1690s a tax was levied by Parliament on every hearth in Scotland. Both landowners and tenants had to pay this tax and are therefore recorded in the records which were kept at the time. A transcript of the hearth tax records for Yetholm parish (NRS reference E69/21/2) is included with the list of monumental inscriptions published by the Borders Family History Society.