Here are some links you may find useful if your ancestors came from the Scottish Highlands. The Highlands is a big area, for this page I’m including Caithness, Inverness-shire, Nairn, the Outer Hebrides, Ross and Cromarty, Sutherland and parts of Argyll. All links open in a new window.
Archives and Museums
- Highland Folk Museum – “we give our visitors a flavour of how Highland people lived and worked from the 1700s up until the 1950s”. At Newtonmore, between Perth and Inveness.
- Highland Museum of Childhood – in Strathpeffer, about 20 miles west of Inverness.
- Other museums in the Highlands. Examples:
- Highland Archive Centre – in Inverness. With ScotlandsPeople and Family History Centre.
- The Nuclear and Caithness Archive – in Wick.
- Lochaber Archive Centre – Fort William.
Maps and places
- Get your bearings with outline maps of the historical counties and parishes in each county, and links to the relevant Statistical account. Another set here too.
- Try the Gazetteer for Scotland for place names, historical and more modern information. Or Groome’s Gazetteer from the 1880s.
- Use the online maps at National Library of Scotland to find where your forebears lived. The Boundaries viewer is very useful for seeing areas in relation to each other.
- Caithness Family History Society
- Clan Gunn Heritage Centre, Latheron, Caithness
- County Sutherland Family History – with sections for each parish
- The Genuki pages for each county
- Hebridean Connections – Lewis, Berneray, North Uist
- Hebrides People – genealogy of the outer Hebrides (Lewis, Harris, North Uist, Benbecula, South Uist and Barra mainly).
- Highland Family History Society – includes a burials index and lots of links.
- Highland Memorial Inscriptions – includes some graveyards in Moray and Nairn too.
- Ross & Cromarty Roots – family and local history, includes a database of gravestone photographs.
- Skye Gravestones
- The Statistical Accounts, one for each parish, in the 1790s and 1830s/40s. Don’t let the title put you off, useful for background and more. What they contain.
People and photos
- Am Baile – Highland History and Culture – photographs, newspaper index, interviews and lots more.
- Caithness.org – huge range of information including family history (don’t be put off by the not very recent dates on the main page), a forum and a Caithness A-Z.
- The Johnston Collection – over 40,000 photographs online showing life in Caithness 1863-1975
- The Scottish Highlander Photo Archive – a searchable database of photographic portraits, mainly the work of Andrew Paterson and Hector G.N. Paterson who operated their Inverness studio https://www.ambaile.org.uk/1895-1980.
- Ross & Cromarty Heritage, with sections for communities (eg Alness, Torridon & Kinlochewe)
- Thurso Heritage Society’s Thurso Interactive
- Many communities have their own website, often with sections for family or local history, accommodation, what’s on etc. Some examples: Alness Ross & Cromarty; Assynt, Sutherland; Drumnadrochit, Inverness-shire. Try a Google search and check Facebook too.
- Am Faclair Beag – Gaelic/English and English/Gaelic dictionary
- Accommodation, travel etc eg Undiscovered Scotland; VisitScotland;
- Last but not least Culloden – National Trust for Scotland
I am not responsible for the content of these links and inclusion does not mean endorsement.