National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future



The shop is located at the main entrance to General Register House.

It is open Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 16:30.

We sell family and local history guides as well as gifts and practical items to help your research.  Some of our own publications, which are listed below, can also be purchased by phone (0131 314 4300 or +44 131 314 4300 if you are outside the United Kingdom).

Tracing Your Scottish Ancestors: the Official Guide

Tracing Your Scottish Ancestors cover

Revised sixth edition, published December 2012

Author: Tristram Clarke
Publisher: Birlinn Ltd, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-78027-022-7
Pages: 256
Cost: GBP 12.99


This official guide to the records in ScotlandsPeople and the National Records of Scotland is indispensable for family historians, historians and biographers, whether visiting in person or researching online. This revised reprint of the sixth edition is packed with up-to-date information about how to trace Scottish genealogy in the unique treasure trove of Scotland's national archives. New features include searching the 1911 census, pre-1841 censuses, valuation rolls and Roman Catholic records, and how to find prison staff and witches. 

Tracing Scottish Local History (not currently available)

Tracing Scottish Local History cover

Author: Cecil J Sinclair
Publisher: HMSO, 1996
ISBN: 0 11 495231 0
Pages: 176
Cost: GBP 7.95


An authoritative survey of the vast range of material in the national archive collections - dealing with houses, streets, estates and farms, administrative divisions of Scotland as well as schools, businesses and recreational activities.

Scottish Handwriting 1500-1700: a self-help pack

Author: Alison Rosie
Publisher: Scottish Records Association and the National Records of Scotland
ISBN: 1 870874 04 8
Pages: 28 plus 13 facsimiles
Cost: GBP 8.00


A step-by-step guide to reading the handwriting of old Scottish documents using facsimiles of documents mainly from the national archive collections.

‘...a valuable asset to those with an interest in researching Scottish History at source.’ - Family Tree Magazine

'A Proper Repository': the building of the General Register House

A Proper Repository coverAuthor: Margaret H B Sanderson
Publisher: HMSO, 1993
ISBN: 1 870874 02 1
Pages: 16
Cost: GBP 2.50


The history of the construction of the first purpose-built record office in Great Britain, designed by one of Scotland's greatest architects, Robert Adam. 

Robert Adam and Scotland: Portrait of an Architect

Robert Adam and Scotland coverAuthor: Margaret H B Sanderson
Publisher: HMSO, 1992
ISBN: 0 11 494205 6
Pages: 153
Cost: GBP 9.95


A fully illustrated account, based on original letters and other papers, which focuses on the architect's relationship with Scotland in the context of his wider career.

' excellent brief biography' 

Treasures of the National Archives

Treasures of the National Archives coverPublisher: HMSO, 2000
ISBN: 1 870874 42 0
Pages: 56
Cost: GBP 9.95


A selection of some of the most important and treasured documents in the national archive collections ranging from the Declaration of Arbroath 1320 to the first Act of the new Scottish Parliament and a schoolboy's jotter written by one of the last inhabitants of St Kilda.

Declaration of Arbroath: colour poster

Declaration of Arbroath posterPublisher: National Records of Scotland
ISBN: 011 495 300 7
Cost: GBP 4.95



Published to coincide with the 675th anniversary, this full colour poster comes complete with a translation and background notes detailling the history behind this important document in Scottish history. Measures 100 x 70 cms (39.5 x 27.5 ins).