Welcome to the website of the Highland Family History Society, which was established in September 1981 to promote the study of genealogy, family history and related subjects in the Highlands of Scotland. We are based in the Highland Archive Centre in Inverness.
Our area covers the old counties of Sutherland, Ross, Inverness, and Nairn (and we retain interest in, and information about, Caithness and northern parishes of Argyll and Perth, though they now have their own local family history groups). We try to fulfil our remit by collecting and publishing information that will help anyone researching their family’s history in the Highlands, and by providing help and advice to those starting their research at home or whilst visiting the Highlands. Our desk in the Archive Centre is usually staffed on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings, or by appointment at other times (for further details, please go to Location). We encourage researchers to join the society and share the fruits of their researches with other members through our monthly talks, our ever-expanding website, and our colourful quarterly journal - see the latest issue pictured here.
NEWS & EVENTS
The society meets to hear speakers on the fourth Wednesday of the month from September to April (excluding December) at 7.30pm. We usually have a table at the SAFHS Conference in April and at the Inverness Highland Games in July. For the current programme please go to Meetings. The society also publishes transcriptions of Free Church and other registers of baptisms & marriages and records of monumental inscriptions from Highland burial grounds - for details of which please see Publications. News of upcoming meetings and recent publications can be found on our Facebook Page.
Statutory registration of births, marriages and deaths began in Scotland in 1855 - and can be accessed via ScotlandsPeople. Before that we are dependent for information about the deaths of our ancestors on newspaper obituaries, testaments and monumental inscriptions - though only a minority of pre-20th century Highlanders could afford a gravestone. The society records and publishes monumental inscriptions from Highland burial grounds. Basic details of every individual mentioned in these inscriptions (name, date of death, age - if recorded - and the name of the cemetery) can be found in our Burials Index.