Irish Family History: Extra Sources of Records - Free UK Genealogy
This Irish Government supported, official web site, is dedicated to helping you in your search for records of family history for past generations. You can use archives to research family history and local history. You can start your research at home as many archives are online, including the General Register Office Northern Ireland (GRONI); Public Record Office of Northern Debt of Honour Register; Other sources of family and local history; More useful links. Further your Irish family tree research by joining an Irish genealogy society or enjoying the company, Irish genealogy societies may have useful resources.
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The organisation specialises in undertaking Irish and Scots-Irish research and runs both study programmes and a membership association called the Ulster Historical and Genealogical Guild.
The Records section of AncestryIreland offers a good number of items of genealogical interest. Among these are detailed civil parish maps and lists of townlands per county, a small selection of ebooks, and a searchable database containing birth, marriage and death records, plus gravestone inscriptions, street directories and much more.
There are also a handful of free to search and view collections. Eddie's Extracts All manner of records can be found within Eddie's Extracts. As its name suggests, it's a collection of records that Eddie Connolly has extracted from a number of sources, principally newspapers. These include notices of births, marriages and deaths; rolls of honour war deadcourt reports, inquests and books. It's particularly strong on Presbyterian records, but really, anyone carrying out genealogy in Northern Ireland ought to take a good look at Eddie's collection.
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And it's all free, too. Emerald Ancestors Great view from the medieval walls of Derry-Londonderry Emerald Ancestors is a subscription-only site specialising in Northern Ireland genealogy records. Its database includes a selection of parish baptism registers covering the period toand parish marriage registers from to for the six counties that now make up Northern Ireland. The death records collection is made up of graveyard inscriptions, burial registers and a comprehensive index from the Irish Wills Calendars for the six counties plus Donegal, Louth and Monaghan.
In addition, it holds extracts from the and Irish census as well as 'church censuses' and school registers. A good overview of its holdings can be found here. Emerald Ancestors is a subscription-only site specialising in Northern Ireland genealogy records. Fortunately, the fee structure is quite bearable. The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland PRONIBelfast This free site offers databases containing details of those who signed the Ulster Covenantrecords of pre Freeholders, street directoriesWill calendersand more than 93, transcribed wills.
If the county of birth of the police recruit is not enough to locate their family, the name of the person who recommended them can be used to narrow your search. This person was usually a landlord, Justice of the Peace, Police Inspector or parish priest or minister. The location of this individual can usually be established using land records or directories or even a newspaper search.
Irish Family History: Extra Sources of Records
The index will identify the service number of the recruit. Searching the service records at Findmypast using a service number is much more practical. The Findmypast collection also includes pension records and directories.
The Irish constabulary also turn up in the Petty Session Court records published at Findmypast, where they took cases against the local population.
A search of these court records can place your police ancestor in a specific jurisdiction at a particular time. Bearing in mind that large number of Irish men that served in the British army in the 19th century, surviving service records document a large portion of the Irish population.
Teachers Another example of valuable occupational records relate to education. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find evidence of children attending school in 19th century Ireland, but teachers are much better documented. The value of this list is that it records the schools where the teacher was taught. As most children attended a National School close to their home, identifying their local school can lead to locating their place of residence or birth.
This list is available in the reading room of the National Archives of Ireland. British Parliamentary Papers In an appendix to a British Parliamentary Commissioners Report on the state of Education in Ireland in is a list of teachers organised by county, barony, parish and then townland.
This list includes hedge school teachers and private school teachers and a description of the school. British Parliamentary Papers can be accessed online at most libraries and archives and the appendix can be searched for a surname or townland or parish.
Archives for family and local history
These are just two examples of the type of occupational records available for research in Ireland. Some of these sources are published, some online but many are only available in archives and repositories in Ireland. Crime and Poverty In recent years Findmypast have published a large collection of surviving court, prison and workhouse registers for Ireland. The mainstay of this collection are the Petty Session Court records.
The Petty Session Court was the lowest court in the country, hearing cases of petty crime. In many instances the crimes were nothing more than being drunk and disorderly, allowing livestock to wander or driving a cart without lights on a public road after dark. Frequently family disputes or feuds with neighbours appear in the Petty Session Court records. This means that these records can identify quite a large number of the population for the areas and time frames for which the records survive.
The defendants were usually recorded with their townland address, making it easy to identify relevant ancestors. More serious crimes were heard in the Quarter Sessions or Assize Courts and the best place for finding evidence of cases in these courts are newspapers.
Irish newspapers reported on the local quarter sessions, often with verbatim transcripts of the cases heard.
Irish family tree research societies and groups
Irish Newspapers Irish newspapers have been published online on two different websites. The British Newspaper Library holds a copy of every Irish newspaper published fromas well as an extensive collection of pre Irish papers. The best means to search these vast collections for relevant reports on your family is to search using their townland address, an almost unique search term, which, when coupled with your family surname, should locate articles relevant to your family.
While it can be fun undertaking broad newspaper searches for any reference to your family, if you wish to undertake a more targeted search for a specific event, such as a court appearance, birth, marriage or death notice it might be sensible to start your search by identifying the newspapers most relevant to where your ancestors came from.
This is not a collection of digitised Irish newspapers, it is a listing of all surviving newspapers for Ireland. It is possible to search the list by town or county of publication. Your ancestor is much more likely to appear in a newspaper published in the area in which they lived.
By identifying relevant newspapers and then determining whether the paper has been digitised and published online you can target your search to a specific publication.
If the newspaper has not been published online it may be necessary to undertake a manual search at the British Library, the National Library of Ireland or at a local library or archive. Transportation and Prison Registers If your ancestors were transported to Australia they should appear in the Transportation Register, a collection created from Irish and Australian records and published on the website of the National Archives of Ireland http: The trial may have been reported in local newspapers which may contain more details of the crime or the origins of the convict.
The CRF, if one exists, can contain letters from the family of the convict pleading for clemency. Surviving Prison Registers held in the National Archives of Ireland have been digitised and published online at www. Although these are far from complete and do not cover the entire country, if a relevant entry is found it can be illuminating. Prison registers often recorded the age, description, religion and birth place of the convict, which can lead to birth or baptismal records and other family information.
For families from Dublin city it is certainly worth exploring this collection. The poverty that the majority of the inhabitants of the city lived in often led to brief spells in the workhouse.
Women used the workhouse for maternity service and the elderly and sick also used the workhouse for medical care.