Coverage - Scotland's Criminal Database

Scotland's Criminal Database includes an index to all surviving High Court Precognitions and Trial Papers between 1790 and 1917, as well as a variety of prison registers. The High Court index contains the names of all the accused and also details of victims in many of the cases. All in all, the database currently amounts to 178,654 entries. You can find out more about these fascinating records in our Learning Zone.

Search Scotland's Criminal Database

As well as the High Court trial records mentioned above, we have began indexing Sheriff Court Criminal Records, with the help of volunteer indexers. Here is a list of those indexed so far:

Duns Jury Trials 1883-1919

The database also includes 38,872 prison register entries. Many of our ancestors spent a night in jail, some spent longer. The information is truly valuable as the full entries often give places of birth which may not be available anywhere else as well as giving personal details such as eye color!

Find out more about prison registers in our Learning Zone.

Here is a list of the prison registers we have indexed so far. If you can’t see the one you need please consider our crowdfunding project or get in touch with our genealogists, Graham and Emma Maxwell.

Banff Prison 1848-1878
Cromarty Prison 1841-1871
Dumbarton Prison 1828-1840
Dumfries Prison 1841-1865
Edinburgh (Calton Jail) 1841
Edinburgh (Lock-up House) 1826-1828
Glasgow (Duke Street) Prison 1884-1885
Greenlaw Prison 1840-1862
Greenock Prison 1848-1855, 1859-1864
Jedburgh Prison 1811-1841, 1843-1869
Kelso Prison 1844-1862
Kirkcudbright Prison 1841-1848
Maxwelltown Prison 1840-1848
Peebles Prison 1848-1862
Selkirk Prison 1828-1840, 1853-1878
Stranraer Prison 1840-1848

Search Scotland's Criminal Database