|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|
|By Inveresk Parish, from ELDC||By Musselburgh settlement, from ELDC|
|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.
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.