Friday, 29 May 2015

Certificate in Local Studies course starts September
Click to download pdf (1Mb) brochure
The Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Local Studies will be offered at Dublin City Library and Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2 on Tuesday evenings (5:30pm to 8pm) from September 2015 until April 2016.

The course, which is led by Dr. Seamas O Maitiu, consists of 85 hours part-time and will equip participants with skills for conducting research in local studies, with an emphasis on the history and heritage of local places, and in the preparation of a dissertation.

Three of the evening sessions will involve visits to archives services to explore source materials at first-hand. In addition, there will be full-day field trips on two Saturdays (dates to be arranged).

The closing date for course applications is 5pm on Friday 4 September. See brochure for full details, fees and application form.

Dublin City Council offers two Bursaries in part-payment of fees for students taking the taking the Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Local Studies; the closing date for bursary applications is 5pm, Friday 28 August 2015.

Access to Ireland and UK mapping services to improve

Access to good maps, both historical and modern, is vital for Irish genealogy research so there's likely to be some worthwhile developments on their way following a new three-party agreement between Ordnance Survey Ireland (OSi), Land and Property Services (LPS) Northern Ireland and Ordnance Survey (GB).

The deal is intended to improve access and availability of mapping services for customers and government users operating across the UK and Ireland. It will enable each of the national mapping organisations, for the first time, to act as a single point of access for customers choosing to view digital mapping from any of the three organisations via their web service platforms.

Exactly how this will work in practice, and how it will benefit family historians, should become clearer when the new service opens later this year.

The Battle of Waterloo: Conference, Belfast, 18 June

The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) is to host a half-day conference to mark the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo.

The Battle of Waterloo: Ireland and Europe in 1815
will be held on Thursday 18 June from 2pm. It will examine various aspects of the Battle and related events, and will focus on the part played by Irishmen as soldiers and statesmen in the conflict.

It will also look at the British army’s presence in Ireland during the eighteenth century.

Although free to attend, you need to book your place to ensure a seat.

Four lectures will be presented during the afternoon, as follows:
  • The Army Barracks of Ireland, 1690-1822, with Dr Ivar McGrath
  • The British Army, Ireland and the Battle of Waterloo, with Dr Tim Bowman
  • Irish Gentry Officers at Waterloo: Embedding a Tradition, with Nicholas Perry
  • 'Entertaining to a degree and perhaps a little dangerous’: Lord Castlereagh, Lady Londonderry, Vienna and the Peace of Europe, with Brett Irwin.

Summer reading from Irish Roots magazine

On newstands, by subscription, and online
My copy of Irish Roots Magazine's Summer issue arrived a couple of days ago and I've been enjoying its wide range of articles. As you'd expect, they're all aimed at helping Irish family historians develop more skills, locate the best genealogy databases, discover niche resources, and keep up to date with latest developments.

Written by experienced genealogists rather than advertisers, these articles promise you the full independent picture of each topic, whether it's suggesting new techniques for overcoming old problems, digging deep into a particular collection or group of records, or exploring an issue of particular relevance to family history research.

In addition to timely heritage news and genealogy comment, a round up of activity among Irish genealogy societies, your letters and an always helpful Q&A service, this edition offers the following features:
  • Locating Living Descendants (final instalment of series), by Nicola Morris MAPGI
  • Irish Churches and Graveyards, by Brian Mitchell MAPGI
  • Tracing your Dublin Ancestors, by Brian Smith and James G Ryan
  • Sharing Genealogical Information Online, by Sean Murphy
  • What's New Review, by Yours Truly
  • Back to Basics: the 1901 and 1911 Census, by Maggie Loughran
  • US Occupational Sources for Tracing Irish Ancestors who became Policemen, by Judith Eccles Wight AG
  • Australian Irish connections: Railways, by Jennifer Harrison
  • Youghal in Co Cork: a goldmine for the family historian, with Graham Seymour
Published in County Wicklow as a printed magazine, Irish Roots is available on newstands – now in Easons and other good newsagents/bookshops, €4.50, £3.35 – and by subscription to your door. You can also purchase digital copies for $3.99 for the current issue, $2.99 for back issues.

Thursday, 28 May 2015

Back To Our Past 2015: dates and venue changed

The organisers of Back To Our Past (BTOP), Ireland's major annual genealogy get-together, have published revised dates for this year's show and a (minor) change of venue.

The show will move forward one week to be held on Friday 9th (Noon to 6pm), Saturday 10th (11am to 6pm) and Sunday 11th October (11 to 6pm).

Speaking to Irish Genealogy News today, Show Director John Lowe said the date swop resulted from concern among some advertisers that the Quarter Finals of the Rugby World Cup, scheduled for the original weekend dates, might cause a clash of interests. (Whether this was a concern about a clash of interest for potential visitors or the exhibitors' staff, I didn't ask.)

Ireland has some chance of being in the quarter finals, apparently.

Because the usual BTOP venue – the Industries Hall at the RDS – is not available for the new dates, Back To Our Past will move to the Serpentine Hall. All the genealogy exhibitors and all the family history and genetic genealogy lectures will be held in the same area, which is a distinct and dedicated venue adjacent to the Main Hall and the Over 50s Show.

The BTOP website is in the process of being amended. The eagle-eyed will note that the daily admission fee has been reduced by 50% to €5.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

RootsIreland adds more parish records for Co Wexford have added Roman Catholic parish register transcriptions to their County Wexford database, as follows:

Parish Baptism Marriage Burial
See also Glenbrien
1804 - 1853
1848 - 1901
1803 - 1851
1848 - 1904
1865 - 1958
(Chapel of ease of Oylgate parish)
1860 - 1880
1860 - 1880
1860 - 1880

It's good to see the Co Wexford holding growing at a reasonable pace. It used to be such a black hole for online records!

Public holiday, 1 June: opening/closing arrangements

Monday 1 June is a public holiday
in the Republic of Ireland
There's a long weekend coming up in the Republic of Ireland. If you were planning on using the time to carry out some research, be aware that most relevant institutions will be operating on public holiday schedules, as below.

The National Archives of Ireland will be closed on Monday 1 June, reopening at 9:15am on Tuesday 2 June.

The Reading Room and the Genealogy Service of the National Library of Ireland will operate to normal weekend hours (Saturday 9:30am to 12:45pm; Sunday closed), but will not open on Monday 1 June.

Exhibitions at the National Library of Ireland will be open on Saturday and Sunday as usual (Kildare Street: Saturday 9.30am–4.30pm; Sunday: 1:00pm–5:00pm. National Photographic Archive in Temple Bar: Saturday 10am–4.45pm; Sunday: 12pm–4.45pm). Bank holiday Monday opening will be from 12pm to 5pm only at both locations.

Dublin City Library & Archive will be closed on Saturday 30 May and Monday 1 June, as will all branch libraries in the Republic.

The General Register Office Research Room at Werburgh Street, Dublin, will not open on Monday 1 June. It will reopen at 9:30am on Tuesday 2 June.

The Research Room of the Representative Church Body Library will be closed on Monday 1 June, reopening at 9:30am on Tuesday 2 June.

NOTE: This bank holiday applies only in the Republic; Northern Ireland institutions will be working to normal hours, having had their early summer holiday the previous week.