Talk given at the Guild Conference 2013

The Retours of Services of Heirs - Inquisitionum ad Capellam Domini Regis Retornatarum, quae in Publicis Archivis Scotiae Adhuc Servantur - represent possibly the greatest unused resource for Scottish genealogy and land history. Essentially, they are abbreviated abstracts of the records of inheritance, the continuity of heritable possession of land and certain associated rights and responsibilities. However they are not widely available and thus are largely unknown. The original Retours themselves are often long and complicated, and mostly in Latin, but they were indexed and abbreviated in the 1800s, and collected in digest form. The first series concerned Retours from 1544 to 1699 and the second Retours from 1700-1859.

As a list of names – and associated places and inheritance links – they are invaluable to one-namers, local and social historians and genealogists. To get the most out of these records, it is important to understand how they were structured, the laws of inheritance up to the 1860s and the best way to extract the relevant information. And then there’s the Latin...

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Lorna Kinnaird

About the Speaker
Lorna Kinnaird, BSc Honours Health & Social Care (Open University), Diploma in Psychology (Rutland College) - has been researching her own family history for over 16 years and is the Guilds Regional Representative for Scotland-South acting as the 2nd SAFHS Rep for the Guild in Scotland. She has registered her own maiden surname of MUAT with variants MOUAT/MUATT and this is an on-going world-wide ONS.

Currently she takes members meetings in Edinburgh and Glasgow, but Perth and Oban are planned over the next year making it 6 meetings a year. New to the genealogy scene, she runs her own professional genealogy business called DunEdin Links Genealogy (website almost ready) taking on small to large commissions from clients both within the UK and around the world. She is a student with the Institute of Heraldic & Genealogical Studies (IHGS) in Canterbury working towards a Higher Certificate then the Diploma in Genealogy. She is keen to become a full member with ASGRA (Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives) to achieve the highest possible standard of genealogical research for her clients.

Her first presentation on genealogy was at the Guild’s Conference in Cardiff in April 2013, which has encouraged her to do other talks around Scotland for different groups on a range of topics, such as "Odds & Sods in Scottish Records", "Benefits of Membership with the Guild", and "Scottish Gems in Scotland". She is keen to give talks about the valuable work of the Guild and to inspire other researchers to start ONS for themselves.

Interested in becoming a Guild Speaker? Contact our Education Liaison Officer to discuss.

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