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About us

The Scottish Archives for Schools website is run by the National Records of Scotland as our separate education website for schools and colleges. It aims to promote a greater knowledge and understanding of Scottish history and to provide learners with access to original sources.

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Image shows the strapline for the National Records of Scotland logo: Preserving the Past, Recording the Present, Informing the Future.

Preserving the Past
The National Records of Scotland aims to preserve, protect and promote the nation's records; to provide the best possible inclusive and accessible archive that educates, informs and engages the people of Scotland and the world. We are a department of the Scottish Government, headed by the Registrar General and Keeper of the Records of Scotland. We hold historical records dating from the 12th to the 21st centuries that have been created by buinesses, landed estates, families, churches, government, the courts and other corporate bodies. They include medieval charters, seals, wills, letters, diaries, business records, official reports, records of crime, photographs, maps and plans. We advise other bodies on the care of archives, and maintain the National Register of Archives for Scotland, which keeps track of archives in private hands.

Recording the Present
At local registration offices you may register births, deaths, stillbirths, marriages and civil partnerships. National Records of Scotland is also responsible for maintaining centrally a register of divorces, a register of adoptions and the National Health Service Central Register. We advise a wide range of public bodies on the care and management of the records they create. The National Records of Scotland also administers the Scottish Register of Tartans, which was established by act of the Scottish Parliament to promote and preserve information about registered tartans, to be a focal point for tartan research and to provide the tartan industry in Scotland with a platform to promote its expertise and the quality and value of its products.

Informing the Future
We are responsible for running Scotland's Census. We collect, analyse and publish official demographic statistics, drawn from the Census and other sources, to inform government policy on everything from health to housing and education. We provide research facilities, both in Edinburgh and online, for identifying records from public bodies such as Scottish Government, the courts and the Scottish Parliament which are of permanent historical value and ensuring that these are added to the nation's archives.

Find out more about the National Records of Scotland.



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