"ORMISTON, a parish, containing the post-office village of Ormiston, and the village of House of Muir, in the midle of the western verge of Haddingtonshire. It is bounded on the west by Edinburghshire, and on other sides by the parishes of Tranent, Pencaitland, and Humbie. Its length, from north to south, is 4 1/4 miles; its breadth, owing to deep indentations and projections on its east side, is exceedingly changeful ... On the lands of Paiston anciently stood a village of about 1/2 a mile in length; and between that village and Templehall there were anciently a burying-ground and probably a church. The parish is well provided with roads; but the nearest railway is at Tranent. Population in 1831, 838; in 1861, 915." [From the Imperial Gazetteer of Scotland, edited by John Marius Wilson, 1868]
A lengthier description is available.
The Scottish Genealogy Society holds a list of gravestones in this parish (138 in total) in its library in Edinburgh. Similar lists may be available elsewhere, for example in the East Lothian District Library's Local History Centre at Newton Port in Haddington.
A copy can be viewed at the village newsagents, H & E Hart.
|West Byres Cemetery, Ormiston, Cemetery|
|Ormiston Parish Church, Ormiston, Church of Scotland|
|St Giles, Ormiston, Church of Scotland|
|West Byres Church, Ormiston, Church of Scotland|
|St Johns Free Church, Ormiston, Free Church of Scotland|
Reverend Whitehead's history of the parish includes a chapter all about the history of the church. See the History section above.
The parish church (Church of Scotland) has registers dating from 1637. Old Parish Registers (before 1855) are held in the General Register Office for 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 Scottish Record Office as are any records of non-conformist churches in the area (often unfilmed and unindexed, and only available there).
In his entry for the Statistical Account of Scotland (compiled 1790s, see the Statistics section of the East Lothian page for more details) the Rev. Alexander Colvill made the following comment about deficiencies in the registration of births in the parish of Ormiston in the late 18th century:
"In general, throughout Scotland, it is not a register of births that is kept by the clerk of the parish, but a register of baptisms. On this account, children who are not baptised (as several are not) are not registered. Children also, whose parents are unable or unwilling to pay the dues to the clerk, are generally not registered; so that from these, and various other circumstances, I am far from thinking that the register of baptisms in Scotland is to be depended upon, for bringing out an exact state of the population of our country."
Registers for the Pathhead and Ormiston Free Church are available in LDS family history centres around the world. These include christenings for 1843-1862.
Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths began in Scotland on 1st January 1855. For details of these and other records held at the General Register Office in Edinburgh, see the GRO tutorial .
A leaflet on the village may be obtained from the village newsagents, H & E Hart. (Please confirm if this is still available!)
Extracts for this parish from the 1868 National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland are available.
- Ask for a calculation of the distance from Ormiston to another place.
You can see the administrative areas in which Ormiston has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.
See "History of Ormiston" by Rev. W. Y. Whitehead, published at Haddington in 1937 (148 pages).
This map shows the location of the parish in the county.
You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NT427667 (Lat/Lon: 55.890376, -2.91806), Ormiston which are provided by:
- Google Maps
- StreetMap (Current Ordnance Survey maps)
- Bing (was Multimap)
- OldMaps (Old Ordnance Survey maps.)
- Old Maps Online (Other old maps.)
- National Library of Scotland (Old Ordnance Survey maps)
- Vision of Britain (Click "Historical units & statistics" for administrative areas.)
- Magic (Geographic information) (Click + on map if it doesn't show)
- GeoHack (Links to on-line maps and location specific services.)
The names here have been transcribed from the Ormiston village war memorial. A number have been linked to the details in the Commonwealth War Graves records.
Alex Scott Beattie
John Augustus Devine
Peter Fergusson MM
Robert G Gibson
David Steel McIvor MM
Wm Donaldson Smith
Here are some figures showing the parish's population through time:
For a social and economic record of the parishes of East Lothian together with considerable statistical material, see Sir John Sinclair's Statistical Account of Scotland, which was compiled in the 1790s. Follow-up works to this were the New Statistical Account (also known as the Second Statistical Account) which was prepared in the 1830s and 1840s; and more recently the Third Statistical Account which has been prepared since the Second World War.
Thanks to a joint venture between the Universities of Glasgow and Edinburgh the First and Second Statistical Accounts can now be accessed on-line at The Statistical Accounts of Scotland, 1791-1799 and 1845.