Findmypast has New Scottish Crime and Punishment Records

FindMyPast announced that they have a database of more than 28,000 Crown Office Precognitions and High Court Trial Papers from between 1801 and 1917. The collection includes The Fife Kalendar of Convicts, and index to many of the Courts in Fife, Scotland, from 1708 to 1909, as well as the High Court Records.

Crown Office Precognitions are factual statements that have been given by witnesses to both the prosecution and defense before the case goes to trial. It is not the same as a witness statement, which is an account of what the witness has said or seen. A precognition is an account of the witnesses’s evidence.

Do you have Scottish ancestors? If so, it is possible that one of them may have gotten in trouble with the law. Or, they could have been the victim of a crime. Those of you who love listening to True Crime podcasts may be excited to find out that one of your ancestors was involved in a crime, more than 100 years ago. The records might confirm, or debunk, and old family story.

FindMyPast’s Scotland, Court & Criminal Database, is where to search for details about the crime your ancestor was involved in and where the trial was held. You can enter their first and last name into the database, along with their approximate birth year.

Each result will include both a transcript and an image of the original document. Most documents will reveal a combination of the accused’s name, birth year, birth place, address, occupation, the nature of their offense, the date and location of their trial, as well as the sentence they received.

Some records include trial notes, verdict comments, previous convictions and additional comments. Those comments are added by the licensor as opposed to being factual information included or taken from the records.

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