BIFHSGO January Meeting

This Saturday, 8 January, BIFHSGO offers a full online program, a 9 a.m. “education” talk and 10 a.m. main presentation.

Kirk Session Records for Family Historians at  9 a.m.

The Kirk Sessions of the Established Church of Scotland were responsible for the administration of their parish; they looked after the welfare of their parishioners as well as their discipline—in both spiritual and moral matters. The members of the Session—the minister and the elders—met regularly and their deliberations were recorded, often in great detail. So, whether your ancestor was a clergyman, a church elder, a poor man or woman seeking financial assistance or a woman with an illegitimate child there is a chance they will appear in the minutes and these can often provide information on ancestors that cannot be found anywhere else.

Branching Out at 10 a.m.

We often focus our research on what we believe to be the “key” people in our direct line of ancestors; those who have a “story to tell,” or who take our research back even further. As a result, we can miss out on some fascinating information about our extended family. This talk will look at members of one family whose histories were overlooked in the initial research. Their stories add depth and breadth to our understanding of this family and its history, of the wider context in which they lived and of their impact, if any, on society at the time.

Both talks will be given by Kate Keter BSc MSc QG. Kate has been researching family trees for over 30 years. What started as a hobby, soon became an obsession and ultimately led her to complete an MSc in Genealogical, Palaeographic and Heraldic Studies from the University of Strathclyde in 2016. Since then, she has worked as a professional genealogist based in Linlithgow, a small town to the west of Edinburgh, and is also a tutor on the Post-Graduate Genealogy and the Family History short courses at Strathclyde University. She is a member of the Register of Qualified Genealogists (RQG) and the Association of Scottish Genealogists and Researchers in Archives (ASGRA).

To attend, it’s free, you must register at

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