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1911 Census - Sunday 2nd April
This website will not be updated after 30 September 2014. Please go to the National Records of Scotland website.
Information to be found on the 1911 Census
The 1911 census was the twelfth census to be taken in Scotland and was conducted on the night of Sunday 2 April 1911. The census was taken under the provisions of the Census (Great Britain) Act of 1910. For the first time the fertility of marriage was recorded under the ‘Particulars as to Marriage’ and the fields of enquiry were extended under the ‘Profession or Occupation’. The original census schedules were destroyed and only the enumeration books have survived, which are best viewed on size A3 prints.
The census was carried out under the direction of the Registrar General for Scotland, James Patten-MacDougall, supported by his Superintendent of Statistics, James C Dunlop. Patten-MacDougall himself concluded that the machines helped make the results more accurate and speeded up processing.
The 1911 census entered had additional headings that made the information clearer and perhaps of greater benefit to the family historian. The following can be found in the 1911 census (with changes from earlier censuses noted in italics):
— Number of schedule
— Road, street and number or name of house
— Uninhabited or building
— Rooms with one or more windows
— Name and surname of each person
— Number of persons in house
— Relation to head of family
— Age (last birthday) and sex
— Gaelic speaking or Gaelic and English speaking
— Particulars as to marriage
— single, married, widower or widow
— duration of marriage
— children born alive
— children still living
— Profession or occupation
— Personal occupation
— Industry or service with which worker is connected
— Employer, worker or on own account
— If working at home
— Nationality if born in a foreign country
— Whether 1. Totally deaf or deaf and dumb 2. Totally blind 3. Lunatic 4. Imbecile or feeble minded
Street Index Books for 1911
The street index books for the main towns and cities in Scotland have been digitised. To view the books simply click on the town or city which are listed below.
These books make it easy to find the registration district and enumeration book details for an address. The streets are arranged alphabetically and the bookmarks allow you to navigate your way through the book.
For example, if you are searching for 11, Picardy Place in Edinburgh, where Arthur Conan Doyle had previously resided in 1861, open up the street index for Edinburgh and use the bookmark to waypoint to Parsons Green. From there you can scroll down to Picardy Place and it states that for numbers 5-11 (odd) the registration district is 685 2 and enumeration book number 19.
Go to the browse the books function on the Centre network and select 1911, then Edinburgh City as the County/City and All Districts. Select ‘search’ and the system will reveal all results. Search for RD No. 685 2 and ED No. 19. The preliminary entry provides a description of the enumeration district and the entry will show the census pages. Picardy Place is detailed on page 3.
If you cannot find an address, the street may not have existed in 1911.
Bothkenner, Grangemouth and Polmont
Bothwell, Holytown and Bellshill
East & West Calder
— Greenock, Gourock and Port Glasgow
Kirkcaldy & Dysart
Lewis & Harris
— New Monkland
— Old Kilpatrick
— Paisley, Johnstone and Elderslie
— St Ninians
1911 Census OccupationsThe occupations of the people in Scotland detailed on the 1911 census were summarised across two pages and 403 categories. The two page summary can be viewed here. These occupations were used to provide statistics for the published census reports. On the 1911 census registers, within the columns that list the 'profession or occupation', are a variety of numbers that bear no correlation to the 403 occupation categories. We believe that these numbers relate to the inputting of the information into the Hollerith machines, which were used to produce the statistical results for the published census reports.
Accuracy of Information
The 1911 census took place on 2 April 1911.
At the time of the census the population of Scotland was 4,759,445 an increase of 287,342 from 1901. There were 2.3 million males and 2.4 million females.
This was the first time that the fertility of marriage was recorded in terms of the number of children produced by the marriage and the number still living at the time of the census.
This was the first census to use Hollerith machines to assist with the speed and accuracy of results.
The images available are taken from the enumeration books. Unlike previous censuses, there are no plans at the present to transfer the books to New Register House in Edinburgh due to the amount of space needed to accommodate the books. The enumeration books require 73.5 metres of shelving to accommodate books that measure 34 cm long and 43 cm high.
Suffragettes were active and thus some women may have not have been enumerated but the fine of £5 deterred many from taking such action. In Dundee some women gathered in their offices and in Edinburgh some gathered in a restaurant to avoid being counted in their homes.
In Dalziel in Motherwell 2000 people were absent on census night as 3 April 1911 was a holiday.
This was the last census taken prior to World War 1 so for many Scottish soldiers, sailors and airmen it was their last census. There was also a major migration of Scots between 1911 and 1921 which means that this will be the last time that many of these individuals will be enumerated as well.
The police were used to take the census of the vagrants and people in barns, sheds, caravans, tents, etc., or in the open air.
This is the first census that is available in full colour.