Fàilte! (Welcome!)

Fàilte! (Welcome!)
This blog is the result of my ongoing research into the people, places and events that have shaped the Western Isles of Scotland and, in particular, the 'Siamese-twins' of Harris and Lewis.
My interest stems from the fact that my Grandfather was a Stornowegian and, until about four years ago, that was the sum total of my knowledge, both of him and of the land of his birth.
I cannot guarantee the accuracy of everything that I have written (not least because parts are, perhaps, pioneering) but I have done my best to check for any errors.
My family mainly lived along the shore of the Sound of Harris, from An-t-Ob and Srannda to Roghadal, but one family 'moved' to Direcleit in the Baighs...

©Copyright 2011 Peter Kerr All rights reserved

Sunday, 30 May 2010

North Harris Demographics

This is a somewhat crude (but careful!) look at the population of North Harris (as defined for census purposes) from 1881 onwards.

Please not that these are the results of a fairly rough interrogation of a database so the figures are meant for indicative purposes only.

2929 people, 1469 (50%) male, 1463 (50%) female
551Households 447 (81%) male, 104 (19%) female

3120 people, 1479 (47%) male, 1656 (53%) female
555 Households 425 (77%) male, 132 (23%) females

3312 people, 1543 (47%) male, 1788 (53%) female
679 Households 511(75%) male, (25%) 171 female

Three things strike me:

1)The growth in the population of North Harris of 22%.
2)The decline in the proportion of men in the first decade.
3)The increase in the proportion of households headed by women is surely of significance.

It would take a far more detailed analysis to reveal precisely what was taking place over these two decades but clearly 'something' led to the changes that I have described.


  1. Quite a few of the villages of North Harris have become depopulated over the years. Could you find out more about places like Molinginish?

  2. Quite tricky with the spelling variations, but here are some figures: 1841 57, 1861 32, 1881 39, 1891 22.

  3. There were 10 'Heads' of households in 1881 which correlates with the 1882 map: http://www.scotlandsplaces.gov.uk/search_item/index.php?service=RCAHMS&id=133891

    1861 6, 1891 7 - Hope that helps!

  4. Many thanks. It's a pity that comparable data for South Pairc (the two dozen deserted villages) are not available.