Tag Archives: Overtown

Scotland trip – May 2017 – day 3

I’m aiming to write and post a little bit each day about the family history research I’m doing, and what I find, during a week staying​ in Edinburgh. But for personal privacy, the posting of these travels on AFamilyHistoryBlog will be delayed by a few days, and will not necessarily be in day by day order! Some of these posts may be given later tweaks, with added photos, etc.

Update; You can now see all the posts from my May 2017 Scotland trip, here;
Day 1day 2day 3day 4day 5day 6day 7 – & day 8 & the big family gathering.

On Saturday morning I attended a class at the Scottish Genealogy Society’s family history library in Edinburgh. The subject was “Kirk Session Records”, led by Bruce Bishop. I found this very interesting and informative, and learnt a lot about the Scottish Kirk, how it functioned, what kind of records were (and weren’t) kept, and the limitations of those records. It was very useful in understanding how to make good use of these records in family history research.

During the afternoon I used the Edinburgh Central Library, to look at the OPR microfilm for Kirknewton parish – looking for the WALKER family at Overtown. I made some notes and printed off some images from the records, but I didn’t identify anything particularly new there!

Old WALKER papers – Discharge from Thomas to James Walker – 1766

This is my third blog post in a series about some old papers of the WALKER family, from Kirkliston, West Lothian, Scotland. I will compile a list of these papers HERE.

IMG_7620-edBelow is one of several documents from an envelope labeled “Old Wills etc. of the Walker family”, which is part of a box full of family papers that I received from my aunt at a family gathering in January 2014. The contents of this envelope all date from the 1700’s. This one is the “Discharge” from Thomas Walker to his older brother James. This is in response to the “Disposition” (Will) of their father, William Walker (dated 1763) which I have previously posted -> HERE.

IMG_9490-croppedPlease click on the images to see the scans at full resolution. Transcribed text appears in a Maroon colour below each scanned image. At the bottom I’ve made some notes of my own about the document.

Cover; Discharge_Thomas-to-James-Walker_cover_300dpi

Transcription of cover;

Discharge from
Thomas to
James Walker ___

Inside; Discharge_Thomas-to-James-Walker_page-1-ed_300dpiTranscription of inside;

I Thomas Walker tennent in Overtown and second son of #
William Walker tennent in Hiddelfolds whereas my said #
father by his latter will Dated one thousand seven hundred and #
sixty three years did verbely give to me and put me in possesion #
of the whole stocking Corns Cattle and utincels belonging to the #
said farm of Overtown as also the household plenishing as the whole #
of the above was then possesed by himself and that in Lieu and in #
full of my Receipt Declaration or Discharge for the same and my #
said father and my Brother James Walker Being now [Desir-] #
[-cous] that in Consideration of the premises I should give them the #
Discharge underwritten.

I therefor by these presents Exoner and discharg the said William #
Walker my father and the said James Walker my brother and #
there hairs Executors and successors of all further Claim or Dema- #
nd that is or may be Compelant to me against them or either #
of them Either in my said father’s lifetime or att his Death as #
portion natural Excutor or any other manner of way.

And consents to the Regestration hereof in the Books of #
Council and session or any other juges book Competant therein #
to Remain for preservation and thereto I Constitute —

My […] in witness #
whereof I have written and subscribed ther presents on stamped #
paper att Muristown the fourtenth day of June one thousand seven #
hundred and sixty sis years before these witnesses William Flint #
tennant in Muristown and James Bachon Wiright in Elestermure #

Thomas Walker

William Flint, witness
James Bachon, witness



I’m not sure where Muristown or Elestermure are! The spellings are doubtful! I suspect that the “mure” in each name might actually be “muir” (which is common in the area). “Muristown” might perhaps be “Murieston”, laying south of Livingston, between Mid & West Calder! It anyone can help to decipher these names, please get in touch. Leave a comment below, or use the Contact Page to get in touch.


James Walker (named above) married Janet Flint in May 1766 (one month before the date of the document above). Might the “William Flint”, named as a witness above, be a relation of Thomas Walker’s sister-in-law? (I don’t know!)