Islay Family History Society



Ardbeg School, circa 1922

The Islay Family History Society was formed in 1991 to encourage and assist research into Islay local and family history, and to undertake the collection, exchange and publication of information and material relating to Islay.

The Society has no paid employees, and i s run entirely by volunteers who give their time and goodwill to help others interested in researching their family history.

We receive enquiries from around the world, welcome contact with anyone interested in Islay Family HIstory, and look forward to hearing from you.

The Society always welcomes new members and membership is open to anyone on payment of the annual subscription of 10. Annual membership subscriptions should be sent to the Membership Secretary, Miss May Carmichael, at the Society Office.  Click for more information.

From May to September, volunteers man the Society's office at Highfield, High Street, Bowmore, Isle of Islay on Tuesday and Saturday mornings 10:00am to 12 noon and Thursday afternoons 2:00pm to 4:00pm to enable callers to have access to the Society's records.
Whenever possible, we will try to provide access to our records to those visiting the island between October and April but this will depend on a volunteer being available. Please write or e-mail well in advance of your visit if you wish to set up such an arrangement.  Click for more information.

The Society has no paid staff and any searches undertaken in response to postal or e-mail requests are carried out entirely by volunteers. To help with our searches, it is essential that we are given as much information as possible: it is particularly helpful if an enquirer can indicate in which parish, village or locality the person being researched is thought to have lived. We cannot undertake searches for whole family trees or for living relatives.
A minimum fee of 10 (12 overseas) is charged for all enquiries. If we have to consult statutory registers or incur other expenditure on your behalf, we will let you know what the costs are likely to be before we proceed.  Click for more information.

The Society has many items available for research.  The FHS hold all the census records for Islay from 1841 to 1901.   We also have the Old Parish Records on both film and fiche, and the IGI records on fiche.   We have various other bits and pieces e.g. the Hearth Tax of 1684, books on Islay etc.   One of our members has transcribed all the census records plus a good bit of the OPR's for the FHS use.

READING LIST  This page will list several books that should be of general interest to anyone researching their Islay ancestors.  Click for more information.

CONTACT US: Islay Family History Society, Highfield, High Street, Bowmore, Isle of Islay, Argyll PA43 7JE    Or via e-mail: [email protected]