Tuesday, 31 March 2015

1916 Commemorative Centre to be built in Moore Street

The Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys TD, has announced that the Government is to acquire the National Monument at Nos. 14-17 Moore Street, Dublin.

The decision will allow for a 1916 Commemorative Centre to be developed at the site.

No. 16 Moore Street was the location of the final council of war of the Leaders of the 1916 Rising and is where the decision to surrender was made.  The house at No. 16, together with the surrounding buildings at Nos. 14, 15 and 17, were declared a national monument in 2007.

Making the announcement, Minister Heather Humphreys said: "[The decision] puts an end to the uncertainty surrounding the future of these buildings and ensures that they will be accessible to all who are interested in the history of the 1916 Rising. I hope that this project will be completed during the Centenary Year as a fitting tribute to the leaders of the Easter Rising.”

She advised that she will shortly bring further proposals to Government outlining plans to safeguard and fully restore the buildings, and to create a 1916 Commemorative Centre on the site. The requisite approval under the National Monuments Acts is already in place for the restoration project and the proposed Commemorative Centre.

Today’s decision means that:
  • the Moore Street national monument will now come into public ownership
  • the long-term future of this historical landmark is secured
  • the 1916 Commemorative Centre to be developed on the site will be run as a public facility with access for citizens and visitors alike
  • the new Commemorative Centre will enhance and complement the 1916 visitor facility currently being developed in the GPO.

Monday, 30 March 2015

Dublin Correspondent joins British Newspaper Archive

The Dublin Correspondent has joined the
British Newspaper Archive's line up. The paper – a moderate pro-British Government title that, for a short time had the largest circulation in Ireland – started publication in 1806 as The Correspondent, only adding the 'Dublin' to its name in 1823.

More than 150 editions of the paper have been uploaded, most dating from that year, with just a handful of issues for 1824 and 1825.

There are now 71 Irish titles in the BNA database. They can be accessed via a BNA subscription or as part of FindMyPast's Ireland and World subscription packages.

This latest addition means there are a total of 400 titles in the British Newspaper Archive offering 10,616,161 pages of historical material.

Irish genealogy & heritage events, 30 March to 12 April

Monday 30 March: Finding Irish and Scots-Irish Roots, a half-day seminar with the Ulster Historical Foundation. Host: Rogue Valley Genealogical Society. Venue: Jackson County Genealogy Library, 3405 So. Pacific Highway, Medford, OR, 97501 USA. 8:30am to noon. Members £30; Non-members $35. Details. Fully booked.

Monday 30 March: Snippets from the Ordnance Survey Memoirs of Ulster, with Johnny Dooher. Host: North of Ireland FHS, Foyle Branch. Venue: Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, LondonDerry BT48 6A. 7–9pm. All welcome.

Monday 30 March: Trim: Fairly typical medieval town, with Mary Hayes. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 31 March: The Police in Ireland & The First World War, with Dr Myles Dungan. Host: Garda Historical Society. Venue: The Palatine Room, Collins Museum, Dublin 7. Space limited, so need to reserve place. Email gardahistoricalsociety@gmail.com.

Tuesday 31 March: Arthur Griffith: his life and times, a History Ireland Hedge School. Host and venue: Cavan County Museum, Virginia Road, Ballyjamesduff, Co. Cavan. The panel will include Dermot McMonagle, Brian Maye, Terence McKenna and Tony Jordan. 7:30pm. Enquiries: +353 49 854 4070.

Tuesday 31 March: An introduction to Irish and Scots-Irish family history research. A half-day seminar with the Ulster Historical Foundation. Host: Rogue Valley Genealogical Society. Venue: Jackson County Genealogy Library, 3405 So. Pacific Highway, Medford, OR, 97501 USA. 8:30am to noon. Members £30; Non-members $35. Booking essential. Details.

Tuesday 31 March: Families associated with the lands west of the River Fergus in "An Leabhar Muimneach" or "The Munster Book", with Dr Cathy Swift. Host: Kilrush and District Historical Society. Venue: Teach Ceoil, Grace Street, Kilrush, Co Clare. 8pm. Admission: KDHS members free/non-members €5. All welcome.

Tuesday 31 March: Sources for WWI Family History, with Chris Manson. Host: North of Ireland FHS, Coleraine Branch. Venue: Guide Hall, Terrace Row, Coleraine, LondonDerry. 8–10pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 1 April: World War One Ancestors, with Ian Montgomery. 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 1 April to 30 May: The Irish at Gallipoli – an exhibition. Drawing on sources from the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association Archive, the exhibition will give an overview of the campaign and highlight the personal storiesof a number of Irish-born WW1 soldiers who fought in Gallipoli and other 'theatres of war'. Venue: Dublin City Library and Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2.

Thursday 2 April: Understanding the Poor Law and the Workhouse System, with Olwen Purdue. Plus AGM. Host: North of Ireland FHS, Belfast Branch. Venue: Holywood Arches Library, Holywood Road, Belfast, BT4 1NT. All welcome. 7:30pm – 9:30pm.

Friday 3 April: The geoarchaeology of County Down's High Crosses and Round Towers, with Ian Meighan. Host: Monuments and Building Record Public Lectures 2015. Venue: Pat Collins Reading Room, Waterman House, 5-33 Hill Street, Belfast BT1 2LA. Free. No need to book early but limited space so arrive early to secure your seat.

Saturday 4 April: One Million Dubliners - film screening to mark the first anniversary of the death of historian, tour guide and good guy Shane MacThomáis. Host: Stoneybatter & Smithfield People's History Project. Venue: The Elbowroom, 32 Brunswick St N, Dublin 7. 4pm. Free, but there will be a collection of donations to Pieta House.

Monday 6 April: The Road to the Rising, a major bank holiday event in Dublin's O'Connell Street and nearby venues. Host: RTE, An Post and Dublin City Council. Full programme explores Ireland on the eve of Revolution, as well as the ideas, people and the socio-economic forces which would shape the events of Easter Week 1916. Re-enactments, memorabilia roadshow, talks, screenings and family fun. Need to book for some events. Programme.

Tuesday 7 April: Remembering 1916: The Urban Folklore Project, with Críostóir Mac Cárthaigh. First of the 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 7 April: An update and discussion on DNA, with George Gordon. Host: North of Ireland FHS, Omagh Branch. Venue: Omagh Branch: Omagh Library, Dublin Road, Omagh, Co Tyrone. 7:15pm – 9:15pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 7 April: Wicklow Hedge Schools, with Tommy O'Rourke. Host: Kilmacanogue History Society. Venue: The Glenview Hotel, Glen of the Downs, Co Wicklow. 8.30pm. Entry €3 (members €2). All welcome.

Wednesday 8 April: Education Records, with Valerie Adams. 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 8 April: The Mass Rocks of County Cork, with Dr Hilary Bishop. Host: Cork Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Crawford Art Gallery, Cork City. All welcome, no cover charge. 8pm.

Thursday 9 April: Gallipoli 1915 – The 100th annivesary, with John Malcahy. Host: Blarney & District Historical Society. Venue: Scoil Mhuire Gan Smal, Blarney, Co Cork. 8pm. Everone welcome.

Thursday 9 April: Gallipoli, with Michael Lee. Host: Mount Merrion Historical Society. Venue: Community Centre, North Avenue, Mount Merrion, Dublin. 8pm. Members free; non-members €4 (students: €2). All welcome.

Friday 10 April and Saturday 11 April: Irish Women in the First World War era. Host: Women's History Association of Ireland 2015 Conference. Venue: Maynooth University, Co Kildare. Need to book. Details.

Friday 10 April: The command and staff structure of the IRA, 1918–21, with Tom Brace. Host: Military History Society of Ireland. Venue: Griffith College, South Circular Road, Dublin 8. Non-members welcome. 8pm.

Saturday 11 April: Genealogy workshop, with the Mayo Genealogy Group. Venue: National Museum of Ireland - Country Life, Turlough, Castlebar, Co. Mayo. No need to book. 11am–1pm. Free. New members always welcome.

Saturday 11 April: The social world of the landed class in Tipperary, with Dr Karol Mullaney-Dignam. 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.

Saturday 11 April: Tracing your Irish family history on the Internet, with Chris Paton. (1pm-2:30pm) Part of Unlocking Your Past Family History Day 2015. Host: Cleveland Family History Society. Venue: Holiday Inn, Scotch Corner, Richmond, North Yorkshire, UK. (DL10 6NR, Junction A1M/A66) £15pp includes lunch and refreshments. Details.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Family History Day at DCL&A, Saturday 28 March

Yesterday I picked up the programme for the Family History Day at Dublin City Libary and Archive which is taking place this coming Saturday, 28 March.

  9:30 Registration
  9:50 Welcome
10:00 Francis Smyth & Son, Umbrella manufacturers, Dublin, with Greg Young
10:45 Filling the gaps: Ussher family history, with Joan Sharkey
11:30 Tea/coffee
12:00 Searching Glasnevin Cemetery, with Conor Dodd
12:45 Lunch (not provided)
  2:00 Dynamics with the Yeats family: a family in distress, with Anthony J Jordan
  2:45 Thomas Fitzpatrick: creator and chief cartoonist, the Lepracaun Cartoon Monthly (1860-1912), with James Curry
  3:30 Finish

Admission: The Family History Day is free to attend and there's no need to book. Just turn up.

DCL&A, 138–144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2.

For more information: email or telephone 01 674 4800

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

AncestryIreland adds BMDs for Antrim and Down

The Ulster Historical Foundation (ULF) has added more than 27,000 Church of Ireland records for Counties Antrim and Down to its AncestryIreland database. You can see the details in the table below.

These new baptism, marriage and burial records are from 24 parishes and were transcribed by the ULF's Emeritus Research Director, Dr Brian Trainor. The burial registers contain a wealth of information of use to both the family and local historian and are full of interesting entries. The ULF has provided a useful overview, and the following details:

In Ardkeen's register there was noted the burial entry of Henry Cleland, aged around four months old, in 1823 with a note by the minister that he was “found dead in a field with a letter mentioning his name. Perished from cold and hunger; Coroner's inquest wilful murder.”

Occupations were sometimes recorded, especially if the deceased was in the military or the clergy. Ballyculter burial register occasionally contained the occupation of the deceased, particularly if they were servants. For example, the following men were recorded as :Daniel Kain “Lord Bangor’s man”, William Wilson “gardener to Mr Price” and Roger Wade “steward to Mr Hoey”. This may be the only record of their employment which now exists.

Carrickfergus register contained an entry of the burial in May 1776 of Mr McCracken, “the buckle beggar”. A buckle beggar was someone who performed marriage ceremonies “in a clandestine and irregular manner”.

The history of a local area can also be seen through the Church records. For example one can see in the Blaris (Lisburn) register the arrival of the Duke of Schomberg’s army in September 1689 by the increase of the deceased who were serving in that army. These were not only soldiers, for example in December 1689 John Redbird “master baker to [the] Duke of Schomberg” died and in January 1690 Thomas Mansfield, “one of King William’s bakers” was buried.

The burial records of sailors, fishermen and those who had drowned are found in coastal areas. In Ballyhalbert in January 1864, for example, three men who had been shipwrecked were buried, including John Morrison from Douglas on the Isle of Man. This register also records the burials of two men from the HM Cruiser Bayano which was torpedoed by a German submarine in 1915. Also Donaghadee’s burial register contains an entry for James Conlin, a tide-waiter (customs officer) who was “killed by a fall on the quay” in October 1783.

In the majority of entries the cause of death was not recorded, but unusual incidents were often noted by the minister. For example in Ballyphilip, the death of Patrick Kelly, aged 15 years from Portaferry, in June 1876 is recorded as being from "a fall from a velocipede” (an early bicycle). Carrickfergus CI’s register details the burials of four men in October 1752 who were “killed with the bursting of a cannon” while Magheralin’s records contain an entry for Edward Lunn, an innkeeper who was buried in July 1817; he “died suddenly at Maze races”.

Many of the burial records also contain the name of the father, husband or next of kin of the deceased, providing additional information on each family. Some also record ages at death and, occasionally, occupations.

Name of Church County Type of record Years covered
Aghalee CI Antrim Marriages 1811 – 1844
Ardkeen CI Down Burials 1746 – 1875
Ballinderry CI Antrim Marriages 1840 – 1845
Ballyclug CI Antrim Marriages 1841 – 1844
Ballyculter CI Down Burials 1812 – 1871
Ballyhalbert CI Down Burials 1855 – 1922
Ballymacarrett CI Down Marriages 1827 – 1844
Ballymoney CI Antrim Marriages 1807 – 1844
Ballyphilip CI Down Burials 1831 – 1883
Bangor CI Down Burials 1814 – 1829, 1841 – 1846
Blaris (Lisburn) CI Antrim Burials 1661 – 1720
Blaris (Lisburn) CI Antrim Marriages 1663 – 1735
Carrickfergus CI Antrim Burials 1740 – 1870
Comber CI Down Burials 1683 – 1881 (with gaps)
Comber CI Down Marriages 1683 – 1845
Donaghadee CI Down Burials 1771 – 1786, 1817, 1818, 1820 – 1841
Down CI Down Burials 1752 – 1785, 1795 – 1829, 1837 – 1871
Dromore CI Down Marriages 1784 – 1845
Drumballyroney CI Down Burials 1839 – 1873
Finvoy CI Antrim Marriages 1812 – 1845
Glenavy CI Antrim Marriages 1708 – 1845 (with gaps)
Inver (Larne) CI Antrim Baptisms 1806 – 1826, 1836 – 1864
Inver (Larne) CI Antrim Marriages 1817 – 1845
Kilkeel CI Down Burials 1816 – 1884
Kilmore CI Down Burials 1822 – 1856
Kirkinriola (Ballymena) CI Antrim Marriages 1807, 1809, 1819, 1822, 1823 – 1841
Magheralin CI Down Burials 1783 – 1865
Magheralin CI Down Marriages 1783 – 1845

Saint Patrick’s Cathedral launches app

Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin is launching an app which will allow visitors to access multimedia information on key features of the Cathedral through their mobile devices.

The app uses innovative iBeacon technology, which will automatically illuminate key points of interest on visitors’ mobile devices as they self-guide through the Cathedral. iBeacons are small transmitters, which have been installed at strategic locations within the Cathedral.

Saint Patrick’s Cathedral will be the first fully iBeacon enabled visitor attraction in Ireland and the app has been especially developed for the Cathedral in a partnership with appybeacons.

At the launch later today, Dean Victor Stacey will be joined by Minister of State for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring TD, for a tour of the Cathedral using the new app. Both will be equipped with iPads and big headphones and will navigate between key features of the Cathedral including the famous Saint Patrick statue, the Cathedral’s impressive organ and Jonathan Swift’s grave.

The app provides details of service times, a brief history of the historic building, an audio guide for the buildings, "Cathedral Tales", and videos about Saint Patrick's cathedral. Download the app.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Early C14th manuscript returns to Dublin after 400 years

An important early 14th-century manuscript produced at St Mary’s Abbey in Dublin has been returned to its city of origin, after 400 years, courtesy of Trinity College Library (TCL).

Lost to the world of scholarship since the 18th century, it has not been in Ireland since the 16th century, and it is the first Irish medieval manuscript to be offered for public sale in over 100 years. TCL is thought to have paid about a quarter of a million euros to secure the purchase.

St Mary's was the wealthiest monastic house in medieval Ireland and important enough to host parliament on many occasions.

TCL intend to digitise the manuscript, as well as use it to promote research and scholarship and popular interest. You can find out more in the 5-minute video below.