Tuesday, 1 December 2015

RootsIreland offers half-price annual subscriptions

RootsIreland.ie, the database of the Irish Family History Foundation, is offering a 50% discount on the price of an annual subscription. This reduces the cost to €125 / £90 / US$142.

The database holds some 20million records, more than half of them transcriptions of baptism, marriage and burial records from Roman Catholic, Church of Ireland, Presbyterian, Baptist and other parish registers and, as such, offers by far the most extensive coverage of Irish church records available. In the case of Roman Catholic records, the name-indexed transcriptions link to the corresponding register on the free National Library of Ireland's database of register images.

This promotion runs until 31 December and applies only to the annual subscription package. (Monthly and 6-monthly sub rates are not included.)

Monday, 30 November 2015

Irish family history and heritage events, 30 Nov–12 Dec

Monday 30 November to Friday 4 December, inclusive: Reading Room of the National Archives of Ireland closed for transfer of State Departmental records and annual media preview. No access to the public. Reopens Monday 7 December. Bishop Street, Dublin 8.

Tuesday 1 December: From the labour trench to the board: myth, memory and masculinity in Irish migrant memories of work in the British construction industry, with Dr Barry Hazley. Host: Modern Irish History Seminar Series, School of History, Classics & Archaeology, University of Edinburgh. Venue: Room G13, William Robertson Wing, Old Medical School, Teviot Place, Edinburgh, UK. 6pm. Free. All welcome.

Tuesday 1 December:: From popular culture in the Great War to the Great War in popular culture, a History Ireland Hedge School. Venue: National Library, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. 7pm. Free. No booking required. Panel: Maurice Walsh, John Horne, Angus Mitchell and Jennifer Wellington.

Thursday 3 December: Women’s rights and child welfare in Ireland, 1922-2014, with Sarah-Anne Buckley. Host: Irish Centre for the Histories of Labour & Class. Venue: Room GO11, Hardiman Research Building, NUI Galway. 4pm to 6pm. All welcome.

Thursday 3 December: Blarney Parish Records, an illustrated lecture with Richard Forrest. Host: Blarney & District Historical Society. Venue: Scoil Mhuire Gan Smál (Blarney Secondary School), Blarney, Co. Cork. Enquiries to Brian Gabriel 087 2153216. All welcome. 8pm.

Thursday 3 December: Irish genealogy sessions, with Lisa Walsh Dougherty. Drop-in help session 11am–12pm, followed by Discussion group 12pm–1pm. Host and venue: Clifton Park Library (Local History Room), 475 Moe Road, Clifton Park, NY 12065, USA. Free.

Thursday 3 December: Book launch: Cumann na mBan – County Galway Dimensions. Part of the 1916 Centenary programme for County Galway. With Cllr. Peter Roche and Mary Clancy. Venue: Áras an Chontae, Prospect Hill, Galway. 6pm. Confirm attendance by telephone to 091 509198.

Friday 4 December: Fairy Bullets, Superstitions & Strange Goings On, with David Hume, and Christmas Dinner. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne branch. Venue: Halfway House Hotel, 352 Coast Rd, Ballygalley, Larne, Co Antrim BT40 2RA. Email for details: larne@nifhs.org.

Saturday 5 December: William Niblo — Not Soon Forgotten, with Benjamin Feldman. Host: New York History Roundtable. Venue: McCloskey meeting room, Parish House of the Basilica of St. Patrick’s Old Cathedral, 263 Mulberry Street, Manhattan, New York, USA. 2pm.

Saturday 5 December: Mastering Genealogical Proof, with Barbara Scanlon. A workshop using Dr Thomas W. Jones' book of that name. Host and Venue: Kansas City Irish Center. 30 W Pershing Rd, Lowr, Kansas City, Missouri, USA. 11am–1pm. Details.

Monday 7 December to Friday 11 December: Preservation Week at Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Titanic Quarter, Belfast. Reduced service. Self-service microfilms will be available in the search room but there will be no document production.

Monday 7 December: The Miller Family, with Jim Condren. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: Derry City’s Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Londonderry, BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 8 December Family history and genealogy sessions, with Margaret Bonar and Betty Craven. Donaghmede Library, Donaghmede Shopping Centre, Grange Road, Dublin 13. All are welcome and admission is free. 2:30pm to 4pm. Booking is essential, tel: 085 1444883.

Thursday 10 December: 1534: Silken Thomas and the Siege of Dublin, with Steven Ellis. Milestones of Medieval Dublin monthly lunchtime lectures series hosted by the Friends of Medieval Dublin. Venue: Wood Quay Venue, Dublin City Council Civic Offices, Wood Quay, Dublin 8. 1:05pm–1:45pm. Admission free. NO booking is necessary.

Thursday 10 December : The Ulster Division, with Dr Timothy Bowman. Host: Western Front Association. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast.  7pm. Free. All welcome.

Saturday 12 December: Our lives should not be sweated: Belfast women workers, 1910-1915, with Theresa Moriarty. Host: The Irish Labour History Society. Venue: Linen Hall Library, 17 Donegall Square North, Belfast. 1:30pm. Free. (Visitors may like to take the opportunity to view the Linen Hall Library's current exhibition: “Labor & Dignity: James Connolly In America”. No ticket required. Details.

Friday, 27 November 2015

20% and 30% discount offers from Ancestry DNA

This offer has now ended
There's a lot of heavy discounting going on in family history circles, and here's another good one: Ancestry DNA is offering its dna testing kit with a discount of either 20% or 30%, depending on geography.

Whether you're completely new to genetic genealogy or you've already taken a test and want to narrow down your results by getting another family member tested, you should certainly consider taking advantage of these discounts. They don't come along often!

This weekend's discounts expire on Monday 30 November at 11:59pm (GMT / ET / AEDT).

If you're based in Ireland or the UK, the discounted price of the DNA kit is £69. Postage is £20 extra. To take advantage of the offer, follow this link to Ancestry UK to find out more and place your order.

If you're in the USA you should follow this link to Ancestry.com to claim your discount and pay just $69 plus shipping and applicable taxes.

If you're in Canada, the discount offered is 20% (still a decent saving), and brings the price down to $119, plus postage and any applicable taxes. Click here for Ancestry.ca.

If you're in Australia there's a 20% saving available, bringing the price down to $119. Postage and applicable taxes are extra. Click here for Ancestry.com.au.

Diary note: Early closing at National Library, 7 Dec

The National Library of Ireland in Dublin has advised that it'll be closing at 4pm (normal hours 7:45pm) on Monday 7 December.

The early closing is to facilitate a reception to launch the Library's 2016 programme of events.

All premises and services of the Library – the Photographic Archive in Temple Bar, the Genealogy Advisory Service, Cafe Joly, all exhibition spaces in Kildare Street, the Manuscript Room and the Main Reading Room – will be closing early, 

New at Dúchas.ie: County Monaghan, maps and more

Areas with Schools Collection material on Dúchas.ie
Only one week on from adding the material for County Laois, it's County Monaghan that's the new kid in the Schools Collection at Dúchas.ie. Approximately 140 schools across County Monaghan took part in the scheme and 32 large volumes of material were compiled.

The Schools’ Collection is an important component of the National Folklore Collection, which is held at University College Dublin (UCD). It contains the folklore material – more than half a million pages – recorded by some 50,000 primary school pupils in the 26 counties between 1937 and 1939.

The entire collection of manuscripts, whether written in English or Irish, will be available on the free-to-view Duchas.ie by the end of next year.

In the meantime, the upload of the Monaghan material marks the half-way point of the project, with 13 counties now searchable on the site: Donegal, Dublin, Galway, Kildare, Kerry, Laois, Leitrim, Limerick, Mayo, Monaghan, Sligo, Tipperary, and Waterford.

In another new site development, stories from the Collection that included details of named locations/sites are now linked to a map and to Logainm.ie, the Placename Database of Ireland, where additional information about the place may be available. As an example, see the story about a graveyard in Adare, Co Limerick.

Dúchas.ie is the result of a partnership, established in 2012, between the National Folklore Collection (UCD), Fiontar (DCU) and the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht. The site will be of interest to a great many Irish people and to the Irish diaspora. For specialist researchers in the fields of folkloristics, local history, archaeology, genealogy, linguistics, and a range of other disciplines, dúchas.ie offers considerable research potential. The site can currently be searched by place or by person, and a search facility according to topic will be made available in the near future.

Limerick and Clare men in the Bombay Army

Brian Hodkinson, acting curator of Limerick Museum, has advised Irish Genealogy News of another research aid he's recently created and uploaded to the growing Local History Resources section of Limerick.ie.

It's a list of the Limerick and Clare soldiers who fought in the Bombay Army of the East India Company, 1739–1860. With information gleaned from the FIBIS database, The list comprises around 850 men and may include such details as residence in Ireland, prior occupation, date joined up, rank and regiment, types of injury, where and when of death, if pensioned off, and details of a family member beneficiary to the soldiern's will.

The alphabetically arranged list explains that different levels of information were recorded at different times, so while a town or townland of origin may be noted in later entries, only a county of residence was initially recorded. Similarly, former occupations were not recorded in the early days.

Brian stresses that the list is intended as a search aid and not every bit of information available at FIBIS is included. For example, in the case of soldiers who left a will, the name of the beneficiary is included in the list only if he/she was a family member.

You can download this list from the Research Aids page.

Irish Roots magazine unveils two great new series

Irish Roots magagazine has published its final issue of 2015, and it's a cracker, not just with its striking front cover image but also with the arrival of two brand-new series.

The sculpture on the cover is of Ériu, the sovereignty Goddess of Ireland from whom we get the Irish name for the island. It is found on County Westmeath's Hill of Uisneach, the mythological centre of Ireland, and the launch feature for the magazine's new 'Sacred Sites' series which aims to enlighten us on the history and folklore of such special places across Ireland.

The second new series comes from renowned genealogy tutor Sean J Murphy. He'll be exploring the family histories of the 1916 Easter Rising leaders and in this first feature, he examines the background of Patrick and Willie Pearse, James Connolly and Tom Clarke.

While two new feature series begin in this edition, one ends: the 'Back To Basics' series by Maggie Loughran. In this last outing, Maggie provides some strategies for researchers who don't know their ancestors' place of origin.

For those with family connections outside Ireland there are two helpful articles. One explores the resources available for researching ancestors who worked on the railroads of the United States, while the other looks to Australia's Earl Grey's convict 'exiles' and the Irish orphan girls.

Additionally there's a piece about sibling stonecutters from Ballynastockan in County Wicklow who settled in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a story about how a Wicklow soldier's lost WW1 medals were finally returned to his present-day descendents, a feature setting out a variety of sources available to those with ancestors from County Roscommon, and news of a highly unusual research project that's fusing genealogy with geology,

There's also news and views from a selection of Irish genealogy societies and organisations, my own What's New? Review of the last quarter's crop of recently launched resources and other developments, and details of next year's genealogy and celtic studies summer schools.

Add in 'Letters to the Editor', 'Genealogy Queries Answered', 'Events' and details of new Irish history books, and what you've got is a great edition.

Irish Roots magazine is available in both print and digital format, on subscription or by individual edition. See all the options at the publication's website: www.irishrootsmedia.com.