"The most remarkable antiquity which the parish contains is that of the Castle of Threaves, which is still standing. It is situated upon an island, several acres in extent, formed by the river Dee. The walls are very thick and strong, and bear the marks of great antiquity. It was formerly the residence of the Douglases...
The staple employment is agriculture, and by far the greater number of families is engaged in its pursuits. Upon these, of course, the artisans and shop-keepers are depending for their support.

Galloway cattle are reared over the whole parish, and for them the farmers in general have a decided preference over all the other breeds...

Castle Douglas, in the parish of Kelton, is the nearest market-town, and is situated at the distance of about six miles from the centre of Balmaghie...

There are two parochial schools, one of which is situated in the village of Laurieston, and the other at Glenlochar...

...To the eastward it is separated from the parishes of Kelton, Crossmichael, and Parton, by the river Dee; to the northward, from Kells, by the Black water of Dee; on the west, it is bounded by the parish of Girthon; and on the south, by those of Twynholm and Tongland. The greatest length, from south-east to north-west, is about nine miles, and the greatest breadth from east to west, about seven."

Rev Alex. Gibson, Minister, New Statistical Account, Blackwood.



History, Kirkcudbright. The New Statistical Account of Scotland, 2nd Series, W Blackwood, 1845.



The Church Yard of Balmaghie has had pre-1855 monumental inscriptions transcribed and indexed. The index and transcribed inscriptions are included in a series of volumes that cover all of Kirkcudbrightshire. Balmaghie is in volume 1. Refer to the county page for additional details.



Presbyterian / Unitarian
Balmaghie, Church of Scotland

Church History

"The church, which was built in 1794, and is in a good state of repair, is situated upon the Dee, and consquently at one side of the parish. It is seated for nearly four hundred persons...

There are about 112 individuals professing to adhere to the Church of Rome, and 22 Episcopalians. There are 11 persons connected with the Reformed Synod, and three families with the United Associate Synod."

Rev. Alex. Gibson, Minister, New Statistical Account, Blackwood.


Church Records

Church of Scotland records are held at the General Register Office in Edinburgh. Copies of the pairsh register on microfilm may be consulted in LDS Family History Centres around the world. Refer to the county page for additional details.

Records AvailableBaptismMarriageBurialReference
Church of Scotland1768-18551805-1854 OPR 857
Free Church   CH3/1246

Kirk Session Notes: Balmaghie kirk session minutes start in 1768 and continue till 1938, but many years are missing in this time frame. (CH2 27) Refer to the county page for additional details.


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Balmaghie which are provided by:





You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NX674651 (Lat/Lon: 54.96312, -4.072207), Balmaghie which are provided by:




Note: The decrease in population in 1841 is due to the migration of Labourers.