Tuesday, 21 April 2015

British Army WW1 War Diaries join Ancestry

Ancestry has added two browseable sets of World War One 'War Diaries' to its database.

WW1 War Diaries are not generally very descriptive. They provide only the details on day-to-day movements of individual military units. From them, you can find out where your ancestor was stationed on a particular day, which battles the unit was engaged in, the level of casualties etc.

They rarely give names of individual soldiers but the surviving pages can provide a snapshot of what your ancestor experienced.

The larger of the two record sets is the War Diaries, France, Belgium and Germany, 1914–1920 collection. It covers British and colonial units serving in theatres of operations between 1914 and 1920, including Russia, at home and in the colonies, as well as military missions and Armies of Occupation between 1919 and 1920.

The second of the collection is the WW1 War Diaries, Gallipoli and Dardanelles, 1914–1916.

There may be gaps in coverage within the diaries and, for some regiments or divisions, you'll find nothing. Many diaries did not survive the war.

Among the many regiments included in the collections are the Irish Guards, Princess Victoria's (Royal Irish Regiment), Royal Irish Rifles, Royal Munster Fusiliers, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers and Royal Dublin Fusiliers. There are also a few Irish divisions within 'non-Irish' regiments ie the Army Cycle Corps even had its own 10th (Irish) Division. (You learn something every day!)

The original material is held by The National Archives in Kew, London.

Can you help the Letters of 1916 project on 28 April?

The Letters of 1916 Project is looking for some help. The team has around 600 images of letters waiting to be transcribed before they making their way into the Letters of 1916 database.

The project is the first public humanities project in Ireland and is creating a crowd-sourced digital collection of letters written around the time of the Easter Rising (1 November 1915 to 31 October 1916).

Once transcribed, the 600 letters would ensure the project achieves its goal of 4,000 letters when the Letters of 1916 website launches on 3 November.

If you're available and interested to help, drop in anytime between 3pm and 7pm on Tuesday 28 April to meet the team at the Iontas Building, Maynooth University, Co Kildare. You'll be taught everything you need to know. You'll be able to visit the Humanities Research Institute and get an idea of how a Digital Humanities Crowdsourcing project works. You'll even get refreshments and, if you visit before 5pm, a parking pass (go to first floor to collect).

If the date isn't convenient but you'd still like to offer help with the transcription work, you'll find more details about the Letters of 1916 project here.

NIAH completes survey of County Donegal

'Introductory' book versions of the surveys are
published by Wordwell Books
The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage has recently completed its survey of Donegal and found that the county boasts the greatest concentration and variety of vernacular (thatched) buildings found anywhere in Ireland.

Another highlight of the county is the ecclesiastical heritage of the local architect, the late Liam McCormick, who was responsible for so many strikingly modern churches.

The Inventory was launched by Joe McHugh TD, Minister of State for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht on Friday and will shortly be available at the NIAH website, www.buildingsofireland.ie.

The site holds the survey for each county in the Republic of Ireland and presents an illustrated resume of its architectural highlights. This can be an interesting way to acquaint yourself with your ancestor's county if you are not already familiar with it. Select a county and, on the next page follow the Survey Highlights link.

Alternatively, you might like to purchase An Introduction to the Architectural Heritage of County Donegal, which accompanies the new Donegal survey. It costs €12 and is available in bookshops or online via Wordwell Books. This is the 32nd book to be published in the series, so nearly all of the 26 counties of Ireland have now been covered (only the County Dublin North survey/book remains to be published, as far as I'm aware).

Monday, 20 April 2015

PRONI adds dates for Explore the Archives workshops

Seats for PRONI's Explore the Archives – Practical Workshops have been going like hot cakes since they were introduced as New Year events back in January. Due to the continued level of demand, PRONI has now added a SECOND set of repeat dates. Message has to be that if you want to attend, book immediately.

The Workshops are aimed at beginner family historians who have already collected some information about their ancestors. Participants will get a hands-on introduction to searching archives on the Internet, as well as to searching, ordering and using original documents held at the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland.

Each practical workshop consists of two distinct segments. The first is Introduction to Archives Online at 2pm. This is followed an hour later with an Introduction to Using the Documents (searching for, ordering and viewing original documents).

The new dates are Wednesday 13 May and Wednesday 17 June.

The workshops are held at PRONI's offices in Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. They're free, but you need to reserve your place by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or telephone 028 90534800.

Irish family history & heritage events, 20 Apr – 2 May

Monday 20 April: Irish place names, with Mary Delargy. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: Larne Bowling and Lawn Tennis Club, 112-120 Glenarm Road, Larne, Co Antrim BT40 1DZ. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Monday 20 April: Ernie O'Malley – His life and times, with Cormac O' Malley. Host: Mallow Field Club. Venue: Hibernian Hotel, Davis Street, Mallow, Co. Cork. 8pm. €3.

Tuesday 21 April: Bytes of Dublin - digitising Dublin content in the National Folklore Collection, UCD: samples of audio, visual and manuscript material, with Anna Bale. Host: Dublin City & Irish Folklore series of lunchtime lectures at City Hall. Venue: Council Chamber, Dublin City Hall. 1:05 to 1:50pm. Free. No booking required.

Tuesday 21 April: Panel discussion on Gallipoli campaigh, to mark the centenary of the landings of April 1915. Host: Irish Historical Society. Speakers will be Tom Burke, Dr William Mulligan and Dr David Murphy. Chair: Lar Joye. 7pm in the Seminar Room, Centre for Irish Programmes, Boston College, 43 St Stephen’ s Green, Dublin 2. All welcome. Free.

Wednesday 22 April: Valuation Records, with William McAfee. Part of the Your Family Tree lunchtime lecture series. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Wednesday 22 April: Children's burial grounds (Cilliní) in Ireland, with Dr Eileen Murphy. Host: Mayo Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Roseanne Clear Lecture Theatre (P002), GMIT Mayo, Castlebar, Co Mayo. 8pm. Non-members €6; Students with valid ID €2.

Wednesday 22 April: Explore the Archives Workshop. Host and venue: PRONI, Belfast. Fully Booked.

Thursday 23 April: The Battle for Douglas-Rochestown, a key engagement in the Irish Civil War, with Dr John Borgonovo. Venue: Parish Assembly Room, St Columba's, Douglas, Cork. Free. All welcome. 8pm.

Thursday 23 April: The History of Linen in South Derry, with Bruce Clark. Host: Maghera Historical Society. Venue: Walsh's Hotel, 53 Main Street, Maghera, Co LondonDerry BT46 5BN. 8:00pm. Members free. Non-members £5.

Thursday 23 April: "Johnnies and Mehmets … side by side”: The redemptive afterlife of Gallipoli in Australia, Turkey and Ireland, with Professor Stuart Ward. Host: Boston College (Ireland). Venue: National Library of Ireland, Seminar Room, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. 7pm. No booking is required and all are welcome.

Friday 24 April: Gallipoli 1915 – the first phase, the April landings, with Dr Mark Phelan. Host: Military History Society of Ireland. Venue: Griffith College, South Circular Road, Dublin 8. Non-members welcome. 8pm.

Friday 24 April: Book Launch: City and Cemetery, A history of Mount Saint Lawrence, Limerick, by Dr Matthew Potter. Formalities by Jan O'Sullivan TD, Minister for Education and Skills. Venue: Glazed Street of City Hall, Limerick. 6:30pm. All welcome.

Friday 24 April: 99 years since the 1916 Easter Rising – An Post Museum at the GPO. Free tours at 10am, 12pm and 2pm. Venue: GPO, O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. (An Post Museum will be closing at the end of May.) Book tickets to avoid disappointment, or turn up on the day and take pot luck.

Friday 24 April: Survival in a medieval crisis – the Bruce Invasion and Black Death in medieval Kilkenny, with Fin Dwyer. Host: Medieval Week. Venue: Rothe House & Garden, Parliament Street, Kilkenny. 7pm. €7 (€5 for members of Kilkenny Archaeological Society).

Friday 24 April: Ireland in the 1970s, a History Ireland Hedge School. Venue: Mechanics Institute, Middle Street, Galway. Roundtable discussion with Mary Kenny, Eamonn McCann, Tom Inglis and Sarah-Anne Buckley. 8pm.

Friday 24 April: Spring Online Event: IT & Family History Taster Sessions. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast BT3 9HQ. 10am to Noon. Free, but booking required. The Internet session will be followed by a tour of PRONI's research areas and a workshop on online sources for family history. For more details and to book, email proni@dcalni.gov.uk or telephone (+44) 028 90 534800.

Friday 24 to Sunday 26 April: Gallipoli 100 in Kells. Host: Hay/Kells Festival and RTE Radio 1's History Show. Venue: St Columba's, Cannon Street, Kells, Co Meath. Military genealogists and historians on hand for free tours and consultations. Event also includes lectures and music. Full details on RTE website.

Saturday 25 April: The Story of Grosse Ile, with Anne Renaud. Host: Québec Family History Society. Venue: Briarwood Presbyterian Church Hall, 70 Beaconsfield Blvd, Beaconsfield, Québec, Canada. 10:30am. Lecture followed by light refreshments. Free. Non-members welcome. Details.

Saturday 25 April: Genealogy Jumpstart for the Reluctant Irish. Venue: Irish Railroad Workers Museum, 920 Lemmon Street, Baltimore, MD 21223, USA. A workshop for beginners. $10.00 per person. Details.

Saturday 25 April: Beneath a Turkish Sky: the Royal Dublin Fusiliers and the Assault on Gallipoli, with Philip Lecane. Venue: Dublin City Library and Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Free. 3pm.

Saturday 25 April: ANZAC Day dawn service at 6:30am. Host: Australian Embassy. Venue: Grangegorman Military Cemetery, Blackhorse Avenue, Dublin 7. The service will last approximately 40 minutes. All are welcome and there is no requirement to provide notification of attendance in advance. There is no parking on site, but on-road and off-road parking is available within walking distance of the Cemetery. For more information, contact the Public Affairs Officer at the Australian Embassy on 01 6645312.

Sunday 26 April: Annual Service of Remembrance for the Gallipoli landings. Host: New Zealand Ireland Association & Dean and Chapter of Christchurch Cathedral. Venue: Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin 8. 3.30pm. The commemorative nature of the service includes Irish soldiers who served at Gallipoli as well as New Zealand and Australian casualties from World War One and other military operations. The event is open to the public. Free.

Sunday 26 April: The sinking of the Lusitania: Unravelling the mysteries, with Paddy Sullivan. Host: The Cobh Lusitania Lecture Series. Venue: Commodore Hotel, Cobh, Co. Cork. Free. 3pm. All welcome.

Monday 27 April: Mount Jerome – A Protestant Cemetery, with Henry Fairbrother. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 28 April: Grand dwellings and intimate settings: Stories of urban living, with Kelly Fitzgerald. Host: Dublin City & Irish Folklore series of lunchtime lectures at City Hall. Venue: Council Chamber, Dublin City Hall. 1:05 to 1:50pm. Free. No booking required.

Tuesday 28 April: The industrial heritage of the Antrim Glens, with Fred Hamond. First of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Wednesday 29 April: Landed Estate Records, with Stephen Scarth. Part of the Your Family Tree lunchtime lecture series. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Wednesday 29 April: Open Genealogy Consultation, with Lisa Dougherty. Host and Venue: Irish American Heritage Museum, 370 Broadway, Albany, New York 12207, USA. 11am to 2pm EDT.

Thursday 30 April: Ireland and Gallipoli Conference. Host: PRONI and Antrim and Down Western Front Association branch. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. This conferences seeks to examine this campaign 100 years on with special focus on the experience and role of Ireland and Irish people. 10am to 4pm. Free. Book your place by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or telephone 028 9053 4800.

Thursday 30 April: Holy wells: patterns and rituals, with Dr Shane Lehane. Host: Ballygarvan & District Local History Society. Venue: Park Hotel by Radisson, Cork Airport, Cork. 8pm. €5 for non-members.

Thursday 30 April: Mount Jerome – a Protestant cemetery, with Henry Fairbrother. Host: Rathmines, Ranelagh and Rathgar Historical Society. Venue: Town Hall, Rathmines, Dublin 6, at 8pm. Non-Members: €3.00. all welcome.

Saturday 2 May: The Big House - handling/interactive session, with Dr Mellisa Shiels. Venue: Tipperary County Museum, Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel, Co Tipperary. 10am to Noon, with refreshments provided. €5 per session. Bookings: julia.walsh@tipperarycoco.ie or 076 106 5564.

Duchas crowdsources transcriptions for Schools Collection

Manuscripts from the Schools' Collection for counties Kerry and Leitrim have been added to the dúchas.ie database. The online collection now includes the pages written by schoolchildren in Counties Donegal, Donegal, Galway, Kerry, Kildare, Leitrim, Mayo and Waterford.

The Schools Collection is being digitised by the National Folklore Commission (NFC) and consists of some 740,000 pages of folklore and local tradition written by pupils in 5,000 schools in the Irish Free State between 1937 and 1939.

The school children recorded material from their parents, grandparents and neighbours on subjects ranging from oral history, topographical information, folktales and legends, riddles and proverbs, games and pastimes, trades and crafts.

I notice from the updated website that a crowdsourcing project – Meitheal Dúchas.ie – has been started. The NFC is inviting users of the site to transcribe, on a voluntary basis, the Irish-language stories among the Schools' Collection.

The hope is that crowdsourcing will increase community participation in the project and, at the same time, promote the Irish-language material from the Collection. The resulting transcriptions would make these texts available in a fully searchable format.

Further details of the Meitheal Dúchas.ie

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Latest updates to Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives

St Senan's Kilmacrow parish, Kilkenny
Photo courtesy Candi Zizek/Rich Venezia
Below are the records added to IGP Archives during the first two weeks of April:

FERMANAGH Genealogy Archives – Church Records
Newtownbutler Methodist Births, 1873-1942
Newtownbutler Methodist Marriages, 1869-1935
Upper Erne Methodist Circuit Marriages, 1887-1935

KILKENNY Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Kilmacow Cemetery (part)
Slieverue Cemetery (part)
St. James Cemetery, Glenmore (part)

LEITRIM Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Mullies (R.C.) Cemetery (part)

SLIGO Genealogy Archives – Headstones
Keelogues Cemetery, Ballintrillick (part)

TIPPERARY Genealogy Archives – Newspapers
Vindicator 18th Sept. 1847 (Tenant Farmers Meeting)

WATERFORD Genealogy Archives – Census Substitutes
1826 Freeholders Tramore Area
A list of Tramore leases in the County of Waterford, 1831
Freeholders who voted for Marshal Sir William Beresford, 1812
Lord Doneraile’s Rentals in Tramore, 1848-49
Persons under licence in Tramore Town, 1831
Return of Tenants on Hill Quarter of Tramore, 1830’s
Tenants Polled for & against Lord G A Beresford on Lord Doneraile's Estate, 1830

WEXFORD Genealogy Archives – Memorial Cards
NAGLE - O'TOOLE (Additional)