Wednesday, 13 March 2013

IGRS launches IrishAncestors with great new records

Some terrific records are making their online debut today at, the new website of the Irish Genealogical Research Society.

Among the free-to-view goodies are:
  • A database of Early (mainly 17th & 18th century) Irish marriages
  • A transcription of the 1871 census fragment for the County Meath parish of Drumcondra & Loughbrackan
  • Details of named Irish in Spanish archives
As a source of guidance, IrishAncestors also has a public section to help beginners (Start Your Research) and, in the Members-Only area, a wiki (Expert Tips) for the more seasoned family historian.

Speaking at the launch of the website, just in time for St Patrick’s Day, IGRS chairman Steven Smyrl said: “With the launch of, access to many of the IGRS's indexes and finding aids will be just a click of a mouse away. We've got a fabulously exciting collection at our disposal, much of which was copied down before the great fire of 1922.

“We've got information from church records, marriage licences, conformity rolls; deeds, mortgages and leases; wills, administrations; chancery and exchequer court bills, pleas, answers and decrees; newspaper birth, death & marriage notices; 17th-century herald's visitation's pedigrees and extensive family histories. We've notes on policeman, customs & excise officers, migrants, clergymen, religious converts, military men, merchants, shopkeepers, farmers, Ulster families, and the Irish in Canada, the West Indies, Spain, South America. And much, much more...”

The IGRS – the "Great Granddaddy of all Irish family history societies" – has been continuously building up these archives since it was founded in 1936. The collection runs to many thousand items, tens of thousands of manuscript pages, and several hundred thousand names.

“Over the coming months, visitors to will see information appear about literally hundreds of thousands of our Irish ancestors,” said Smyrl. “Some of this information will be publicly available. Much more will be for members only, so there really has never been a better time to join the Irish Genealogical Research Society!”