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Search Scottish censuses on

5 October, 2011

You can now search the 1841 and 1851 censuses for Scotland on

We have freshly transcribed these records to bring you full and detailed information about your Scottish ancestors, so if you haven’t been able to find who you’re looking for in the past, it’s well worth another try now.’s transcription accuracy is well over 98% and we think you’ll find our transcriptions more accurate than any other online family history company.

Find out the crucial details about your ancestors by viewing our high-quality transcriptions. Due to the General Register Office for Scotland’s licensing regulations, it is not possible to view the original census images on

The release of the 1841 and 1851 Scottish censuses marks the first step of our ongoing project to bring you closer to your Scottish ancestors. We will publish the rest of the Scottish censuses as we transcribe them, so you can expect to see regular releases in the coming months.

Search the Scottish censuses now

Search Scottish censuses on

  • yvonne menzies

    Wonderful news……
    Will the images be available :)

  • Rosemary

    Have you any idea when the Scottish BMD’s from 1855 could possibly be available?

  • Yvonne

    Yes, like Rosemary, I really wish the BDM Indexes were accessible. I have never understood why Scotland charges like a wounded bull for access the view the indexes.
    I really resent this. I would like to purchase the certificates I need, but it is such a mission and a real gamble to work around the minimum costs necessary to locate the most likely entry.

  • Alex

    Wonderful and a great help to gain access to the Scottish census returns for 1841 and 1851 and I hope the others will follow. Just one quibble: why do the transcribers never seem to have even a basic knowledge of the place names in any county? I have been researching the county of Sutherland and keep finding the village of Scourie misrepresented as Sconie! There are other examples too numerous to report.

    • janet

      place names are often mistranscribed because the transcribing is outsourced to foreign countries- cheap labour!

  • george hitchell

    looking for for HITCHELL or HAIGHLE

  • Simon

    My guess is because the census transcription is contracted overseas so those people doing the transcription have no knowledge of even larger places in the UK. This was certainly the case with the 1911 transcription where I’ve encountered some very poor interpretation of place names.

  • Alex

    Just wondering what comedians did the transcribing after finding three transcription errors for one household in the 1851 census for Sutherland! “Statch Big” is surely Strathbeg, Aehriskle should be Achriesgill and Strochan should be Strachan. Mind you the IGI used to be under the impression when they did the 1881 census that Sutherland was the same as Sunderland so I suppose we should be grateful for small mercies.

    Why oh why do transcribers not familiarise themselves with names by looking at a map for a few minutes before they start? Does nobody check for obvious blunders? Even worse, we cannot see the originals so must repy on out own commonsense and local knowledge.

  • Roderick V Lyons

    Dear Sirs, I’m looking for any available information of my great great grandfather William Lyons who sailed from Cardiff to Montevideo in 1869 on board “Bessie Stanton” (official number 43698 Mercantile Navy)that was lossed in position 6 S 31 W at the entrance of the River Plate on 27/09/1869. According to Lloyd’s list 15/11/1869, the crew was saved and went ashore safely.
    I will most appreciate any possible information regarding William Lyons family, origin, and what happened to him after he arrived to Uruguay in 1869.
    Thanks / Best Regards,
    Roderick V Lyons
    Buenos Aires – Argentina.