Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Updated Wills Calendar includes images

PRONI has launched an updated online version of the Wills Calendar search. It includes nearly 93,500 digitised images of copy wills covering the period 1858-1900, along with over twenty years worth of calendar entries.

It provides a searchable index to wills proved in the Armagh, Belfast and Londonderry district probate registries during the years 1858-1919 and 1922-1943.

Part of 1921 has been added, with remaining entries for 1920-1921 to follow in the near future.

These documents are a valuable and widely-used family and local history resource. Researchers are now able to search the online index, read the will calendar entry and, for many of the entries, view an image of the will.

This release is the latest addition to PRONI’s online resources which also include the Ulster Covenant, Freeholders Records, Street Directories and Name Search. Visit the site at

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Christmas gifts for the family historian

If you need some inspiration to help you choose Christmas gifts for the family historian in your life (even if that's you!), here's a selection of ideas that might just solve your problem:

Published last week, The Father Francis Browne Yeats is a high-quality blend of photography and poetry. Hailed as Ireland's greatest photographer, Father Francis Browne created an unrivalled body of work from 1897 to 1960. This new book reveals 60 previously unpublished images, each matched to a poem by WB Yeats. Visit

Also hot off the press is Dunmanway Historical Society's fourth journal, Doings of Dunmanway. It contains stories past and present of Dunmanway, mostly contributed by local people. More from:

County Sligo Heritage & Genealogy Society has launched a new online shop selling a range of local Sligo history books, many with a genealogical or family history theme, a 'Scenes of Sligo' calendar and a collection of Greeting Cards featuring beautiful Sligo scenes. Go to

Friday, 26 November 2010

Thanksgiving offer from Irish Origins

Grab yourself a 25% discount from Irish Origins with a special offer to celebrate Thanksgiving. 

Origins offers three subscription options, with traditional monthly and annual plans or a useful 72-hours access arrangement. The discount can be applied on any one of these.

Simply enter the code TG2009 in the promotional box at registration or checkout to take advantage of this offer which is available from today until 3rd December at

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Learn about Ulster ancestors at Summer School

If you are interested in finding out more about your Ulster ancestors or wish to explore the history of Ireland's northern province, the Ulster History & Genealogy Summer School 2011 may be just what you're looking for.

Over six days, you'll be guided to carry out research for yourself at Belfast's main archives and libraries, as well as discover the history of Ulster first-hand through excursions to some of the province's most historic sites. The summer school will be held 26 June to 2 July 2011.

More information at

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

National Archives: closure of Reading Room in December

Media preview – 8-10 December 2010
The Reading Room will be closed to the public on Wednesday 8, Thursday 9 and Friday 10 December 2010 to facilitate the annual media preview of the archives of Government Departments which will be opened to the public in January 2011. Only members of the Press will have access to the Reading Room on the these dates.

The Reading Room will re-open to the public at 10.00 on Monday 13 December.

Christmas & New Year
The Reading Room will close at 12.30 on Friday 24 December 2010 and re-open at 10.00 on Tuesday 4 January 2011.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Dublin Graveyards Directory launched online

An online directory of graveyards in Dublin has been launched by Dublin City Library & Archive.

It covers all graveyards in the Dublin area and provides the following information:
  • Graveyard location
  • Contact details
  • Titles of published graveyard transcripts (available in most research libraries)
  • Links to online gravestone transcripts
  • Location of surviving burial records
  • Other information of interest about the graveyard.
Please note that there are no burial records or gravestone transcripts available on the site. However, by following links on the site, you can discover where the information is held.

To search the directory, go to

Plan to commemorate Waterford soldiers

A new website has been launched to honour Waterford soldiers who died in World War One and Two. Among its aims is the creation of a memorial, to be ready before the 2014 anniversary of the start of the Great War.

The initiative is jointly organised with the Waterford County Museum and County Library Service. The latter already has an extensive database of Waterford's War Dead which is an excellent starting point for family historians. The new website will encourage more people to submit information about their relatives for inclusion on the database.

Their views on the proposed memorial will also be sought.

Find out more at

Sunday, 7 November 2010

For Remembrance week: free British military records

If you have ancestors who fought in the British army during World War One, you'll be able to search the following records for free over the next seven days:

British Army Service Records 1914-1920 for those who either died during the war or remained in service until its end.
British Army Pension Records 1914-1920 of those who received injuries and were discharged during the war.
Medal Rolls Index Cards 1914-1920 Learn where the soldier served, from the medals recieved.

The free access coincides with Remembrance Week, and allows you to search and view the original historical documents of Ancestry's three most popular military collections. The offer starts today and finishes on 14 November.


Saturday, 6 November 2010

More November diary dates

Wednesday 10th November: Beara Historical Society lecture: What it was like for emigrants to Britain in the 1930s, 40s and 50s. By Gerdie Harrington, at Twomey's Lounge Bar, Bank Place, Castletownbere. 8.30pm.

Thursday 18th November: Clare Roots Society. Death and disease in 19th century Ireland. By Larry Geary (UCC). Ennis Civic Rooms. 8pm.

Saturday 20th November: Celebrating Laois heritage. Parish Centre, Portlaoise. All day, starting 10.15am. Free, but booking required. Catherine Casey 057 867 4348.

Tuesday 23rd November: Friends of Medieval Dublin. This month's free 40-minute lunchtime lecture in the Tales of Medieval Dublin series is The Wife's Tale. Wood Quay, Civic Offices, Dublin 8. 1.05pm. No need to book.

Wednesday 24th November: PRONI. Using online sources for genealogical research. Stephen Scarth (Head of Public Services). Free. Performance Area of Linenhall Library, Belfast. 1pm. No need to book.