AncestryIreland, the database arm of the Ulster Historical Foundation, has advised that it has more than 27,000 Church of Ireland burial and marriage records 'nearly' ready to go online. Some of these date right back to the 1660s (Blaris, Lisburn) and the 1680s (Comber).
In addition, this batch of records, all transcribed by Emeritus Research Director Dr Trainor, includes entries from the 1700s from Ardkeen, Carrickfergus, Donaghadee, Down, Dromore, Glenavy and Magheralin parishes. Records will also be added from the parishes of Aghalee, Ballinderry, Ballyclug, Ballyculter, Ballyhalbert, Ballymacarrett, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Ballyphilip, Bangor, Drumballyroney, Finvoy, Larne, Kilkeel and Kilmore.
Many of the burial records include the name of the father or husband of the deceased as well as, sometimes, their age at death and cause of death, particularly if it was unusual. Thomas Lawson, for example, a soldier with the Fife Fencibles was recorded in the burial register as having 'lost his life by intoxication'.
These records will join the nearly 2million-strong AncestryIreland database. It includes almost all pre-1900 Roman Catholic records for parishes in Counties Antrim and Down and more than 50,000 gravestone inscriptions for all six counties in Northern Ireland.