A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, Volume 1
A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, comprising the Several Counties, Islands, Burgh and Market Towns, Parishes and Principal Villages. With Historical and Statistical Descriptions; Embellished with Engravings of the Seals and Arms of the Different Burghs and Universities. Samuel Lewis, 4 volumes (1846) 1233 pages. ISBN: 1-58211-227-4 Every fact of importance that illustrates the local history of Scotland is in this book. Arranged alphabetically by place (village, parish, town, etc.), it has an accurate description of all Scottish localities as they were at the time of publication (1851), showing where a village was located in relation to its parish, or the nearest town or towns, where a parish was located in relation to its nearest district, and the names of villages in it, the number of inhabitants of an area, the main landowners, and chief topographical features. This work enables you to identify a given locality in relation to a parish and thus the identification of the parish records. So, if you know the place of origin of your ancestor--the village or town--this gazetteer will show you, in effect, which parish records to search for births, marriages, and deaths. Modern gazetteers are useless for this purpose. The civil registration of births, marriages, and deaths began in 1855, at which time all the old parish registers were called in. The LDS Church has copied the parish registers of every parish in Scotland, from the earliest up to 1855, and has indexed virtually all of them--all the more reason to know your ancestor's parish.

Lewis, S. (1846). A Topographical Dictionary of Scotland, 1846 (Volumes 1-2). London: Lewis & Co.From the Quintin Publications Collection.