Finding relatives (or old friends) in the Burntisland area - If your main aim is to find relatives (or old friends) in the area, you could look for people with the same surname via the BT Phone Book service. Enter the surname only, plus KY3 (for the Burntisland/Kinghorn/Aberdour area) in the postcode box. There's a better directory service (because it includes information from electoral registers) at 192.com - although you have to pay for detailed searches. You might consider a 'Letter to the Editor' of the Fife Free Press. The FFP accepts letters by e-mail. Use the e-mail address in the 'Reporters' column on my FFP page. Try to make your letter interesting and relevant, but not too long; and remember to include your e-mail and snail mail addresses. The Editor of Burntisland's community newspaper, the Burgh Buzz, might consider publishing a message from you. You could also add a message to the Guestbook on this website. The website's search engine indexes the Guestbook entries, and your message will show up if someone does a search for a name contained in your message.
Please note that many of the links on the Data Sources page will be useful.
In general, most of the advice which relates to researching family history in Scotland applies equally well to Burntisland. The usual way to research a family is via birth and death certificates, and census returns. It's recommended that you first of all gather together as much information as you can from your own family members. After that, there's a fair amount of information available on the Internet. The following web sites are recommended:
Genuki - Comprehensive information on researching your family history in the U.K and Ireland, with Scotland getting appropriate individual attention.
Family Search - One of the international favourites, again with excellent Scottish resources. The International Genealogical Index contains compehensive data on births and marriages (but not deaths) in Burntisland up to the latter part of the nineteenth century. There is also a very useful search facility on Hugh Wallis's Genealogical Web Sites, which allows you to search for all instances of a particular surname within the IGI batches for a particular parish.
Ancestry - A subscription service, which describes itself as 'the world's largest family history website'. It also now hosts the old (and still free) favourites, RootsWeb and Cyndi's List.
Scotland's People - The official births, deaths, marriages and censuses website for Scotland; also has indexes to Scottish wills. For reasons of confidentiality, there are cut-off dates for the records which can be accessed online, but later records can be accessed by personal visit to the General Register Office for Scotland (or by a researcher acting on your behalf).
Fife Family History Society - A wide selection of useful information.
The Fife Post - Tommy Manson's impressive contribution to Fife online genealogy.
Fife Council Genealogy Service - A genealogy service based in Dunfermline and St Andrews.
Deaths and burials - The Scotland's People website (see above) has comprehensive information on deaths from 1855. The Fife Family History Society have published a 'Fife Family History Society Fife Death Index' on CD (select 'Publications' from their main menu) - this indexes many Burntisland deaths up to 1854, including those from the Mitchells' transcriptions (see below). The Fife Council Burial Office (located at Kirkcaldy Crematorium) has records of burials in Burntisland's main cemetery in Kinghorn Road (opened about 1885). Burntisland Parish Church were, and still are, responsible for the records of burials in the churchyards in Church Street (closed in 1936) and East Leven Street. The National Archives of Scotland hold the Parish Church's churchyard burial registers for the periods 1873 to 1877 and 1875 to 1935; and Burntisland Heritage Trust have a copy of the one for 1875 to 1935. Around 1970, John and Sheila Mitchell transcribed the inscriptions relating to deaths from headstones in the Church Street (all) and East Leven Street (up to 1854) churchyards, and details of the publications containing these can be seen on the Genuki Fife page (scroll down to 'Cemeteries'). The Find A Grave In Scotland website has over 4,000 names from Burntisland's Kinghorn Road cemetery, plus thumbnail photos of the headstones (you have to pay for additional information and higher resolution copies of the photos). Scottish Monumental Inscriptions (select 'Fife' from their main menu) have published two comprehensive CDs with photos and transcriptions from (1) Burntisland St Columba's [East Leven Street] and Kirkton [Church Street] Churchyards; and (2) Burntisland Cemetery [Kinghorn Road]. Finally, South Ayrshire Council have a published a helpful guide to Scotland's often quirky legislation on burials - please click here.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Family History Centres - It's also quite likely you'll have a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Family History Centre within travelling distance, where you would be able to access many records. They are open to everyone, not just Church members. There is a great deal of genealogical information available, and there is normally no charge for using the resources held locally. The Centres also have access to information held elsewhere, and the volunteer staff are happy to order microfilms etc for you to view at your local Centre; charges for this service are very reasonable. The Church has a Family History Centre adjoining their Church in Kirkcaldy.
Webpage by Iain Sommerville;
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