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The Fourth Statistical Account of East Lothian

Population

By parish (burgh), from the General Registrar's office By locality - census - ie Musselburgh itself
1931 20700 (17007) --- (---) --- (---)      
1951 21493 (17010) --- (---) --- (---)      
1961 22152 (17275) 10709M (8281M) 11443F (8994F)      
1971 21489 (16790) 10454M (---) 11035F (---) 19539 9483M 10056F
1981 20771 (18573) 9829M (---) 10942F (---) 19082 8983M 10099F
  By Small Area Statistics - census
1991 22243 10452M 11791F 17992 8388M 9604F
2001 23991 11260M 12731F NO DATA
By Inveresk Parish, from ELDC By Musselburgh settlement, from ELDC
1991 21645 20261
1997 (est.) 23798 11385M 12417F 19924
2001 NO DATA 22112 (ELC)

Population figures are difficult to compare as no two sources extract data in the same way.

After the war the dialect of the fisher folks was hard to understand as it sounded very broad. They seemed to have different words for things eg 'melt' for tongue. They seemed very insular, mostly marrying among themselves, but they were very hard-working.

Margaret Urwin

Musselburgh is by far the most populous town in East Lothian, with about 20,000 inhabitants, almost three times bigger than Haddington. When Inveresk parish was transferred from Midlothian to East Lothian following local government reorganisation in 1974, there were suggestions that Musselburgh should become the county town. In the event, Haddington retained the title, but, even in 2000, many Musselburgh residents find it difficult to believe that they are East Lothian residents. The position is also confused by the fact that the postal address 'Midlothian' is still in use.

Emigration - late 1940s

A cousin of mine had married and was having a struggle as they had small children, so, as the husband was a painter to trade, they took the assisted passage to Australia and lived there without coming home. He was sadly missed, although he had been one of three sons, the other two making their living well enough as painters too.

Margaret Urwin

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