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Friday, 29 May 2015

Certificate in Local Studies course starts September

http://www.dublincity.ie/sites/default/files/content/RecreationandCulture/libraries/Heritage%20and%20History/Documents/Cert-Local-Studies-2015-2016.pdf
Click to download pdf (1Mb) brochure
The Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Local Studies will be offered at Dublin City Library and Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2 on Tuesday evenings (5:30pm to 8pm) from September 2015 until April 2016.

The course, which is led by Dr. Seamas O Maitiu, consists of 85 hours part-time and will equip participants with skills for conducting research in local studies, with an emphasis on the history and heritage of local places, and in the preparation of a dissertation.

Three of the evening sessions will involve visits to archives services to explore source materials at first-hand. In addition, there will be full-day field trips on two Saturdays (dates to be arranged).

The closing date for course applications is 5pm on Friday 4 September. See brochure for full details, fees and application form.

Dublin City Council offers two Bursaries in part-payment of fees for students taking the taking the Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Local Studies; the closing date for bursary applications is 5pm, Friday 28 August 2015.

Access to Ireland and UK mapping services to improve

Access to good maps, both historical and modern, is vital for Irish genealogy research so there's likely to be some worthwhile developments on their way following a new three-party agreement between Ordnance Survey Ireland (OSi), Land and Property Services (LPS) Northern Ireland and Ordnance Survey (GB).

The deal is intended to improve access and availability of mapping services for customers and government users operating across the UK and Ireland. It will enable each of the national mapping organisations, for the first time, to act as a single point of access for customers choosing to view digital mapping from any of the three organisations via their web service platforms.

Exactly how this will work in practice, and how it will benefit family historians, should become clearer when the new service opens later this year.

The Battle of Waterloo: Conference, Belfast, 18 June

The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) is to host a half-day conference to mark the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo.

The Battle of Waterloo: Ireland and Europe in 1815
will be held on Thursday 18 June from 2pm. It will examine various aspects of the Battle and related events, and will focus on the part played by Irishmen as soldiers and statesmen in the conflict.

It will also look at the British army’s presence in Ireland during the eighteenth century.

Although free to attend, you need to book your place to ensure a seat.

Four lectures will be presented during the afternoon, as follows:
  • The Army Barracks of Ireland, 1690-1822, with Dr Ivar McGrath
  • The British Army, Ireland and the Battle of Waterloo, with Dr Tim Bowman
  • Irish Gentry Officers at Waterloo: Embedding a Tradition, with Nicholas Perry
  • 'Entertaining to a degree and perhaps a little dangerous’: Lord Castlereagh, Lady Londonderry, Vienna and the Peace of Europe, with Brett Irwin.


Summer reading from Irish Roots magazine

On newsstands, by subscription, and online
My copy of Irish Roots Magazine's Summer issue arrived a couple of days ago and I've been enjoying its wide range of articles. As you'd expect, they're all aimed at helping Irish family historians develop more skills, locate the best genealogy databases, discover niche resources, and keep up to date with latest developments.

Written by experienced genealogists rather than advertisers, these articles promise you the full independent picture of each topic, whether it's suggesting new techniques for overcoming old problems, digging deep into a particular collection or group of records, or exploring an issue of particular relevance to family history research.

In addition to timely heritage news and genealogy comment, a round up of activity among Irish genealogy societies, your letters and an always helpful Q&A service, this edition offers the following features:
  • Locating Living Descendants (final instalment of series), by Nicola Morris MAPGI
  • Irish Churches and Graveyards, by Brian Mitchell MAPGI
  • Tracing your Dublin Ancestors, by Brian Smith and James G Ryan
  • Sharing Genealogical Information Online, by Sean Murphy
  • What's New Review, by Yours Truly
  • Back to Basics: the 1901 and 1911 Census, by Maggie Loughran
  • US Occupational Sources for Tracing Irish Ancestors who became Policemen, by Judith Eccles Wight AG
  • Australian Irish connections: Railways, by Jennifer Harrison
  • Youghal in Co Cork: a goldmine for the family historian, with Graham Seymour
Published in County Wicklow as a printed magazine, Irish Roots is available on newstands – now in Easons and other good newsagents/bookshops, €4.50, £3.35 – and by subscription to your door. You can also purchase digital copies for $3.99 for the current issue, $2.99 for back issues.


Thursday, 28 May 2015

Back To Our Past 2015: dates and venue changed

The organisers of Back To Our Past (BTOP), Ireland's major annual genealogy get-together, have published revised dates for this year's show and a (minor) change of venue.

The show will move forward one week to be held on Friday 9th (Noon to 6pm), Saturday 10th (11am to 6pm) and Sunday 11th October (11 to 6pm).

Speaking to Irish Genealogy News today, Show Director John Lowe said the date swop resulted from concern among some advertisers that the Quarter Finals of the Rugby World Cup, scheduled for the original weekend dates, might cause a clash of interests. (Whether this was a concern about a clash of interest for potential visitors or the exhibitors' staff, I didn't ask.)

Ireland has some chance of being in the quarter finals, apparently.

Because the usual BTOP venue – the Industries Hall at the RDS – is not available for the new dates, Back To Our Past will move to the Serpentine Hall. All the genealogy exhibitors and all the family history and genetic genealogy lectures will be held in the same area, which is a distinct and dedicated venue adjacent to the Main Hall and the Over 50s Show.

The BTOP website is in the process of being amended. The eagle-eyed will note that the daily admission fee has been reduced by 50% to €5.

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

RootsIreland adds more parish records for Co Wexford

RootsIreland.ie have added Roman Catholic parish register transcriptions to their County Wexford database, as follows:

Parish Baptism Marriage Burial
Oylegate
See also Glenbrien
1804 - 1853
1848 - 1901
1803 - 1851
1848 - 1904
1865 - 1958
Glenbrien
(Chapel of ease of Oylgate parish)
1860 - 1880
1860 - 1880
1860 - 1880

It's good to see the Co Wexford holding growing at a reasonable pace. It used to be such a black hole for online records!



Public holiday, 1 June: opening/closing arrangements

Monday 1 June is a public holiday
in the Republic of Ireland
There's a long weekend coming up in the Republic of Ireland. If you were planning on using the time to carry out some research, be aware that most relevant institutions will be operating on public holiday schedules, as below.

The National Archives of Ireland will be closed on Monday 1 June, reopening at 9:15am on Tuesday 2 June.

The Reading Room and the Genealogy Service of the National Library of Ireland will operate to normal weekend hours (Saturday 9:30am to 12:45pm; Sunday closed), but will not open on Monday 1 June.

Exhibitions at the National Library of Ireland will be open on Saturday and Sunday as usual (Kildare Street: Saturday 9.30am–4.30pm; Sunday: 1:00pm–5:00pm. National Photographic Archive in Temple Bar: Saturday 10am–4.45pm; Sunday: 12pm–4.45pm). Bank holiday Monday opening will be from 12pm to 5pm only at both locations.

Dublin City Library & Archive will be closed on Saturday 30 May and Monday 1 June, as will all branch libraries in the Republic.

The General Register Office Research Room at Werburgh Street, Dublin, will not open on Monday 1 June. It will reopen at 9:30am on Tuesday 2 June.

The Research Room of the Representative Church Body Library will be closed on Monday 1 June, reopening at 9:30am on Tuesday 2 June.

NOTE: This bank holiday applies only in the Republic; Northern Ireland institutions will be working to normal hours, having had their early summer holiday the previous week.


GENUKI inititiates major overhaul of 20-year-old site

http://www.genuki.org.uk/index.php
The vast and free website GENUKI, which describes itself as a virtual reference library of information on UK & Ireland genealogy, is undergoing a major site-wide update. It's the first major overhaul in the 20 years the service has been running, and coincides with the availability of much improved and much less technically challenging Content Management Systems for maintaining websites.

By removing much of the need for computer expertise, the switch to the Drupal platform will not only ease the task of current GENUKI maintainers, it will also make it easier to recruit more volunteers to maintain the pages.

While the team is attempting to retain much of the previous 'look and feel' of the system, at least initially, there will be some minor changes as part of the process. As the transition progresses, additional ways of viewing GENUKI's data will become available.

Unsurprisingly given its size (142,000 files/6047 Mbytes at the last count), the GENUKI site will be converted in stages, starting at the top. Many of the County pages, for example, are currently being worked on in the background but it may be some months before those pages are converted and made live.

One update that can already be seen is a login facility on the home page. Don't be concerned. This is just for the maintenance team. Access to GENUKI is and will remain as open and free as ever.

It is a non-commercial service, maintained by a charitable trust and a group of volunteers in co-operation with the Federation of Family History Societies.

(With thanks to JC.)

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Kilmurry Ibrickane RC baptisms for 1839 transcribed

County Clare Library has added another interesting set of transcribed baptism records, this time from Kilmurry Ibrickane parish register. The 219 records cover all of 1839 and were transcribed and donated by Marie Crowley of Derry working from LDS microfilm.

Each of the entries includes the child's name and date of baptism, the father's name and surname, the mother's name, and the name of sponsors. The mother's maiden surname and the parent's townland is also presented in all but a handful of cases.

In a separate Notes column are a number of instances where the baptism is recorded as 'conditional'. I've not come across this before, and I'm sure many others haven't either, so I asked a highly experienced genealogist for an explanation. He tells me this probably means the child had been already been baptised in something of a hurry, typically because the the infant was not expected to survive long; in these circumstances, the RC church allows (then and now) a baptism to be performed by anyone, not just a priest. So in these 1839 instances, the parish priest might subsequently have performed formal baptisms just in case (ie Conditionally) the first baptisms had not been carried out correctly.






Monday, 25 May 2015

National Library of Ireland appoints new director

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) has announced the appointment of Dr Sandra Collins to the role of Director.

Dr Collins joins the National Library of Ireland from her role as the Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) in the Royal Irish Academy where she established and led an ambitious national research centre developing both policy and e-infrastructure for digital preservation of cultural and social data.

Her career has included leadership roles in research, industry and public service, with earlier positions at Science Foundation Ireland, Ericsson telecommunications, and Dublin City University.

She is originally a mathematician and received her PhD in 1996 from UCD in the area of nonlinear fluid dynamics.

Announcing the appointment, NLI board member Paul Shovlin said: 'We are very pleased that Sandra is joining the National Library as Director. Her experience and interest in digital preservation in particular is of huge importance as the Library is particularly engaged in the digitisation of records.

'The board and staff of the NLI look forward to working closely with her over the coming years. With the decade of commemoration now underway and with 1916 commemorations just around the corner, her leadership, expertise and skills will be hugely valuable,' he added.

Speaking about the important role of the National Library of Ireland, Dr Collins said: 'I am delighted and honoured to take up this post. The National Library of Ireland has such a recognised place in Irish society, culture and learning. I look forward to working together with the staff and Board to build upon the trusted services and grow the research and digital innovation that the National Library delivers, both here in Ireland and across the world with online access.'

Having been appointed for a period of five years, Dr Collins will take up her new position on 31 July 2015.

Irish family history & heritage events, 25 May to 6 June

Monday 25 May: The Last Voyage of the RMS Lusitania, with James Scannell. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 26 May: William Bald and the making of the Antrim Coast Road, 1832 to 1840, with Desmond McCabe. Part of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Tuesday 26 May: Women in the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection – A reassessment and new sources, with Cecile Gordon. First of the Military Archives MSPC Lunchtime Lecture Series. Host and Venue: Rathmines Library, 157 Rathmines Road Lower, Dublin 6. 1pm–2pm. Admission free. Booking essential at the library or online.

Wednesday 27 May: Open Genealogy Consultation, with Lisa Dougherty. Host and Venue: Irish American Heritage Museum, 370 Broadway, Albany, New York 12207, USA. 11am to 2pm EDT.

Wednesday 27 May: Edward Bruce in Ulster, 1315, with William Roulston. Part of the Ulster Scots Connections; People, Place and Practice series. Hosts: PRONI, MAG-Ulster Scots Academy, Ulster Scots Community Network and Ulster Scots Agency. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free.

Wednesday 27 May: Researching Ancestors in the Army in India – Free Workshop, with Valmay Young. Host: Families of British India Venue: British Library (St Pancras), 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB, UK. Booking required; email hrs-training@bl.uk. 2pm.

Thursday 28 May: Rolling heads: Medieval battle injuries in Ireland, with Kathryn Power. Host: Ballygarvan & District Local History Society. Venue: Park Hotel by Radisson, Cork Airport, Cork. 8pm. €5 for non-members.

Wednesday 28 May: Mary Martin: Legacy from Loss, with Isabelle Smyth. Last of the 'WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience' lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. 1:05pm. Booking not required

Thursday 28 May: Genealogy and its uses, with Lorna Moloney. Host: Ballygarvan and District Local History Society. Venue: Cork Airport Hotel, Cork. Free to members. Non-members €5 on the door. 8pm. Admission to lectures are free to members. €5 on the night for non-members.

Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. All welcome. Free, but
booking required: proni@dcalni.gov.uk or 028 90534800.
Thursday 28 May: Letters of 1916, Belfast launch. Bring your family letters written 1 November 1915 to 31 October 1916 to digitize and add to the Letters 1916 archive.
5:30pm to 6:30pm: Open Session: Demonstrations, Meet the Team, Transcribe and Digitise.
6.30pm to 7:45pm: A year in a life: a series of talks exploring life in Ireland a century ago, highlighting letters from PRONI’S collection, with Prof Susan Schreibman, Stephen Scarth, Ian Montgomery and Jason Burke.
7:45pm to 8:30pm: Reception.

Tuesday 2 June: Iron and Stone: the Earls of Antrim as Victorian industrialists, with Ian Montgomery. Last of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Tuesday 2 June: The Importance of the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection - Understanding revolutionary Ireland and beyond. Second of the Military Archives MSPC Lunchtime Lecture Series. Host and Venue: Rathmines Library, 157 Rathmines Road Lower, Dublin 6. 1pm–2pm. Admission free. Booking essential at the library or online.

Wednesday 3 June: Ulster Scots Language, with Gary Blair. Part of the Ulster Scots Connections; People, Place and Practice series. Hosts: PRONI, MAG-Ulster Scots Academy, Ulster Scots Community Network and Ulster Scots Agency. Venue: Discover Ulster Scots Centre, The Corn Exchange, 31 Gordon Street, Belfast, BT1 2LG. 1pm. Free.

Wednesday 3 June to Saturday 6 June: Women and the Great Hunger in Ireland conference. Host and venue: Quinnipiac University, Hamden, Connecticut, USA. Speakers include: Jason King, Ciarán Reilly and Margaret Ward. Full programme and registration details.

Thursday 4 June: Common Currency: The Shared Inheritance of Ulster and North America, a one-day conference hosted by the Ulster Historical Foundation. Venue: Discover Irish-Scots Centre, The Corn Exchange Building, Victoria Street, Belfast. 9am to 4pm. Free. Lunch and refreshments provided. Need to book. Programme and booking.

Friday 5 June: Putting a price on the War of Independence, with Nuala O'Connor and Diarmaid Ferriter. Host: Visual Carlow. Venue: Borris House, Borris, Co Carlow. 6pm. Tickets €12.50. Booking.

Saturday 6 June: The larger houses of County Tipperary, with Barry O'Reilly. Penultimate session of The Big House in County Tipperary lecture series. 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 6 June: Ireland's other great war – Ireland and the Napoleonic Wars, a one-day conference to commemorate the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo. Host and venue: Department of History, Renehan Hall, Maynooth University, Co Kildare. €25 or €15 for concessions, includes tea/coffee and light lunch. Details.

Saturday 6 June: Guns and Hoses: the story of the Dublin Fire Brigade during 1916 and the revolutionary years 1913-1922, with Las Fallon. Host: Stoneybatter & Smithfield People's History Project. Venue: The Cobblestone, 77 North King Street, Smithfield, Dublin 7. 4:30pm. All welcome.

Saturday 6 June: WW1 Roadshow – East Belfast and the Great War. Venue: East Belfast Network Centre, Templemore Avenue School, 55 Templemore Avenue, Belfast BT5 4FP. 10am to 3pm. Free event. Living Legacies team providing advice on preserving artefacts; 10:30am launch of Row on Row: East Belfast Remembers 2015; 11am lecture: The Shipyard and the Home Front during WW1, with Philip Orr; 1:30pm lecture: Researching East Belfast and the Great War, with Jason Burke; 2:45pm Playing of the Last Post by The Hounds of Ulster. In addition, Nigel Henderson will be providing family history and WW1 research advice.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Monday 25 May: public holiday in Northern Ireland

Monday 25 May is a bank holiday in Northern Ireland so all public libraries (local and county) and main repositories will be closed.
  • The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) will close at 4:45pm on Friday 22 May, reopening on Tuesday 26 May at 9am.
  • The Linen Hall Library will be open normal hours on Saturday 23 May (9:30am to 4pm), closed on Monday. Reopening Tuesday 26 May at 9:30am.
  • The General Register Office of Northern Ireland (GRONI) will close at 4pm on Friday 22 May, reopening on Tuesday 26 May at 9:30am.
This bank holiday does not apply to the Republic of Ireland where the late Spring/early Summer public holiday is held a week later (1 June).

Kilmainham Gaol's autograph books to go online

Built in 1796, Kilmainham Gaol is one of Ireland's
top tourist attractions.
Kilmainham Gaol is to launch a new website to showcase its prisoner autograph book collection dating from the 1916–1923 period.

A Request For Tender (RFT) has been issued by the Office of Public Works, which manages the Gaol where many Irish revolutionaries, including the leaders of the 1916 Easter Rising, were imprisoned and executed.

The project will involve the digitisation of some 2,500 pages from 14 autograph books dating from 1916 to 1918; textual and visual information about the signatory will accompany around 10% of these pages. Additional content on the site will explore the process of imprisonment and the origin of the books as well as providing historical context.

Website visitors will be able to enlarge the online book pages and explore them in greater detail, as well as search the site by prisoner name and prison.

The website will be launched at the end of March 2016 and will subsequently be expanded to include some 8,000 additional pages from autograph books and more information about Kilmainham Gaol Archives.

Access to the autograph books collection is currently restricted, partly on account of their physical condition but also because the Gaol does not have suitable research or exhibition facilities.

The RFT is available on eTenders.

RootsIreland adds more Co Monaghan parish records

RootsIreland has had a terrific update of Monaghan parish register records. Not only is it a good-sized update of 40,000 records, it has a great mix, with additions showing up for Roman Catholic, Church of Ireland and Presbyterian congregations.

The list below details all the new records. Bear in mind that RootsIreland already had some records for many of these parishes. For example, marriage records for the Roman Catholic parish of Muckno (Castleblaney) were already indexed in the database; the list below shows only the brand-new Baptisms for this parish.

Denomination Baptism Marriage Burial
Roman Catholic Kilmore Drumsnat
1875-1883
Roman Catholic Muckno (Castleblayney)
1835-1880
Roman Catholic Muckno (Oram)
1835-1881
Church of Ireland Aughnamullen (Crossduff)
1845-1909
Church of Ireland Ballybay
1813-1836-1866
Ballybay
1822-1914
Church of Ireland Currin (Scotshouse)
1812-1904
Currin (Scotshouse)
1812-1910
Currin (Scotshouse)
1816-1913
Church of Ireland Donagh (St. Salvators)
1736-1736 & 1796-1897
Donagh (St. Salvators)
1796-1913
Donagh (St. Salvators)
1796-1913
Church of Ireland Drummully
1845-1911
Church of Ireland Drumsnat
1803-1913
Church of Ireland Ematris (St. John's & Kilcrow)
1753-1799 & 1811-1844
1845-1881 &1882-1914
Church of Ireland Errigal Shanco
1845-1912
Church of Ireland Errigal Truagh
1672-1673
1719-1729 & 1801-1913
Church of Ireland Killeevan (Newbliss)
1841-1914
Church of Ireland Magheracloone
1845-1911
Church of Ireland Monaghan
1845-1884 & 1884-1912
Church of Ireland Tehallan (Tyholland)
1836-1914
Tehallan (Tyholland)
1723-1913
Presbyterian Aughnamullen (Crieve)
1845-1914
Presbyterian Ballybay (Second Ballybay)
1845-1906
Presbyterian Clones (Smithborough)
1833-1837
Presbyterian Clontibret (Second Clontibret)
1845-1911
Presbyterian Emyvale
1846-1892
Presbyterian Monaghan (First Monaghan)
1845-1914
Presbyterian Tullycorbet (Cahans)
1767-1787


RootsIreland adds Antrim, Down & Belfast records

RootsIreland has added 27,000 Church of Ireland (CI) parish register records covering Counties Antrim and Down, most of them marriages and burials, plus just under 9,000 Roman Catholic (RC) baptismal records for three Belfast parishes.

Parish Location 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
Sacred Heart RC Belfast Baptisms 1890 - 1929
St Mary's RC Belfast Baptisms 1901 - 1930
St Vincent de Paul RC Belfast Baptisms 1896 - 1929





Wednesday, 20 May 2015

New TV series explores the story of Irish women emigrants to Australia during the 19th century

Filmed in Australia and Ireland, the programmes
set the colonial project in context.
I've only just come across this: Mná Díbeartha (Banished Women), a four-part documentary series in Irish and English currently being broadcast on TG4.

Through a mixture of interviews, re-enactment, presentation of documentary evidence and narration, the 50-minute episodes fuse history, genealogy and drama to reveal the stories of Irish women and their experiences in the strange and harsh new world of Colonial Australia between 1787 to 1853.

The women include those transported as punishment for crimes, the Orphan Girls sent from workhouses under the Earl Grey Scheme between 1848 and 1850, as well as 'free' colonists.

The characters of the programme – single, widowed and married women of various ages – come from a variety of counties in Ireland including counties Down, Limerick, Carlow, Tyrone, Roscommon, Clare, Dublin, Cork, Galway and Tipperary, allowing us to understand the local, as well as the general, social, political and economic conditions and the situation of women at different points in the transportation era. The experience of women who were already economic migrants to England are also included.

Two episodes have already been shown. They will remain available for viewing on the TG4 Player for at least another three weeks so there's plenty of time to catch up.

The third episode will screen tonight at 9:30pm, the fourth and last will be broadcast next Wednesday at 9:30pm. Again, they will be on the Player for several weeks.

As far as I'm aware, this series is free to view internationally on the TG4player.

The Byrnes and the O'Byrnes: Volume 4 published

http://www.byrnehistory.comThe fourth and final volume of  The Byrnes and the O'Byrnes by Daniel Byrne-Rothwell has been published by House of Lochar.

The historical series examines the origins of persons bearing the surnames of Byrne/Burns/Beirne and other variants such as Byron, Bryan, Brien, Breen, Birn, etc...
It covers the histories of the Byrnes/Burns, their family memoirs, pedigrees, a DNA study of 400 Byrnes, and songs and poems about the Byrnes. All 32 Irish Counties are covered, as well as places from Scotland to Argentina where Byrnes/Burns are found.

If you are a Byrne/Burns and curious about your family surname origins, this series provide a comprehensive answer to all your questions.

All four volumes can be purchased from www.byrnehistory.com, where you can find more information about the series.

(The Byrne DNA Projectremains open to new participants.)



IGRS Early Irish Marriage Index update

The Irish Genealogical Research Society's Early Irish Marriage Index has been updated with an additional 5,000 entries. This latest update means there are now just over 70,000 marriages in the index, comprising about 155,000 names of brides and grooms and other relatives.

Roz McCutcheon, who created and manages the Marriage Index on behalf of the IGRS told Irish Genealogy News that this most recent update includes an unusually large number of references from the Registry of Deeds. "This is thanks not only to regular contributors to the Registry of Deeds Indexing Project database, but also to the happy three days of hunting I spent at Henrietta Street, Dublin, a couple of months ago.

"The newest additions also include licence bonds from various dioceses, including Elphin, Cork & Ross, Dublin, Cloyne & Meath, and I am also working steadily through the Chancery & Exchequer Bonds in the Swanzy Abstracts held by the Society."

You can find out more about the Swanzy Abstracts and their value to Irish genealogy research on the IGRS website, IrishAncestors.ie.

The IGRS Early Irish Marriage Index contains details of pre-1864 marriages only and is a free-to-access resource.


Monday, 18 May 2015

Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives: latest updates

See below for the items added to the Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives in the first half of this month.

As always, IGP Archives is completely free to access.

DERRY-LONDONDERRY Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Bovevagh Old Church Graveyard (partial)
Bovevagh Presbyterian Church Headstones (partial)

DUBLIN Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Deansgrange Cemetery, St. Patrick's Section, pt 22
Mount Jerome Cemetery, Dublin - Part 95 (additional photos), Part 101 and Part 102

FERMANAGH Genealogy Archives - Church Records
Grogey; Methodist Circuit Marriages 1868-1937
Maguiresbridge Primitive Wesleyan Meth. Baptisms 1872-1925
Maguiresbridge Primitive Wesleyan Meth. Marriages 1873-1936

SLIGO Genealogy Archives
Headstones – Ballintrillick, Keelogues (updated) and Kilmactranny Graveyard (partial)
Church Extracts – Birth, Marriage & Death extracts 1804-1920 - GOREVAN
Photos – Drumcliffe Church Photo - Aerial View

Irish family history and heritage events, 18–30 May

Monday 18 May: Family history and genealogy sessions. Find out how to trace your family tree, with Margaret Bonar and Betty Craven. Venue: Raheny Library, Howth Road, Dublin 5. Free advice sessions. From 10:15am to Noon. Book your slot by telephone: 085 1444883 or contact the library by email: rahenylibrary@dublincity.ie.

Tuesday 19 May: Gallipoli – 100 years, with Comdt Tony Roe. Host: Foxrock Local History Club. Venue: Foxrock Pastoral Centre, J Kill Lane and Bray Road, Foxrock, Dublin. Members free. Non-members €5. All welcome. 8pm.

Wednesday 20 May: The Border Reivers, with Kevin Johnston. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Armagh Branch. Venue: Portadown Town Hall, 15-17 Edward Street, Portadown BT62 3LX. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 20 May: Argyll to Antrim, with Cormac McSparron. First of the Ulster Scots Connections; People, Place and Practice series. Hosts: PRONI, MAG-Ulster Scots Academy, Ulster Scots Community Network and Ulster Scots Agency. Venue: Discover Ulster Scots Centre, The Corn Exchange, 31 Gordon Street, Belfast BT1 2LG. 1pm. Free.

Wednesday 20 May: The Ulster Plantation, with Dr William Roulston. First in the 'Milestones in Irish History: Aspects of our Shared Inheritance' programme. Venue: Doagh Primary School, 20 Main Street, Doagh, Co. Antrim, BT39 0QL. 7:30pm. Admission £2, includes refreshments.

Wednesday 20 May: Genealogy Workshop: ​Trace your family history using Ancestry.com and the library's online resources, with Natassia Reilly. Host and Venue: Dungiven Library, 107 Main Street, Dungiven, Co LondonDerry, BT47 4LE. 2:30pm to 4:30pm. Places are limited so booking is essential. Tel: 028 777 41475 or email Dungiven.library@librariesni.org.uk

Thursday 21 May: Lady Augusta Dillon and the Women's War Effort in Galway, Emma Lyons discusses the war effort of women at home. Third of the 'WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience' lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. 1:05pm. Booking not required.

Thursday 21 May: Ballintoy's hidden history project, with Robert Corbett. Third of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Thursday 21 May: RMS Lusitania, the Arklow Lightship, and RMS Leinster – legitimate targets or World War One war crimes?, with Jim Scannell. Host: Bray Cualann Historical Society. Venue: Bray Chamber of Commerce House, 10 Prince of Wales Terrace, Quinsboro Rd, Bray, Co Wicklow. 8pm. Admission €4. All Welcome

Thursday 21 May: Doctoring in the Dark: William Wilde and Medicine in the 19th century, with Dr Brian Cleary. Host: Old Tuam Society. Venue: Tuam Library, High Street, Tuam, Co Galway. 8pm. Free.

Thursday 21 May: Tracing your Irish ancestors online, with John Grenham. Host: Clondalkin Library family history group. Venue: Clondalkin Library, Monastery Road, Clondalkin, Dublin 22. 6:30pm. All welcome. No booking.

Friday 22 May: The history of Midleton Workhouse, with Sean Horgan. Host: Carrigtwohill & District Historical Society. Venue: MyPlace Youth Centre (the old fire station), Midleton, Co Cork. 7:30pm. Visit to hospital and paupers' graveyard follows, subject to weather and time. €5 at the door.

Saturday 23 May: IGRS Open Day. Host: Irish Genealogical Research Society. Venue: Dublin City Library and Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Three lectures (free, no need to book, all welcome). The lectures will be followed by Research Help sessions – free one-to-one consultations, which need to be booked. See IrishAncestors.ie for details.

Saturday 23 May: Keeping our history alive, an afternoon of lectures. Hosts: Dublin Dock Workers Preservation Society and Irish Labour History Society. Lectures: The formation of the Irish Citizen Army, with Padraig Yeates; Dr. Kathleen Lynn 1912–1920, Philanthropist, politician and leader of women, with Ann Matthews; and The 1915 Steampacket Strike and its place in James Connolly’s overall strategy, with D R O’ Connor Lysaght. Venue: Chq Building, Custom House Quay, Dublin 1. 3pm–5pm. Free.

Monday 25 May: The Last Voyage of the RMS Lusitania, with James Scannell. Host: Clondalkin History Society. Venue: Arás Chronáin Irish Cultural Centre, Watery Lane, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 8pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 26 May: William Bald and the making of the Antrim Coast Road, 1832 to 1840, with Desmond McCabe. Part of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Tuesday 26 May: Women in the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection – A reassessment and new sources, with Cecile Gordon. First of the Military Archives MSPC Lunchtime Lecture Series. Host and Venue: Rathmines Library, 157 Rathmines Road Lower, Dublin 6. 1pm–2pm. Admission free. Booking essential at the library or online.

Wednesday 27 May: Open Genealogy Consultation, with Lisa Dougherty. Host and Venue: Irish American Heritage Museum, 370 Broadway, Albany, New York 12207, USA. 11am to 2pm EDT.

Wednesday 27 May: Edward Bruce in Ulster, 1315, with William Roulston. Part of the Ulster Scots Connections; People, Place and Practice series. Hosts: PRONI, MAG-Ulster Scots Academy, Ulster Scots Community Network and Ulster Scots Agency. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free.

Wednesday 27 May: Researching Ancestors in the Army in India – Free Workshop, with Valmay Young. Host: Families of British India Venue: British Library (St Pancras), 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB, UK. Booking required; email hrs-training@bl.uk. 2pm.

Thursday 28 May: Rolling heads: Medieval battle injuries in Ireland, with Kathryn Power. Host: Ballygarvan & District Local History Society. Venue: Park Hotel by Radisson, Cork Airport, Cork. 8pm. €5 for non-members.

Wednesday 28 May: Mary Martin: Legacy from Loss, with Isabelle Smyth. Last of the 'WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience' lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. 1:05pm. Booking not required

Thursday 28 May: Genealogy and its uses, with Lorna Moloney. Host: Ballygarvan and District Local History Society. Venue: Cork Airport Hotel, Cork. Free to members. Non-members €5 on the door. 8pm. Admission to lectures are free to members. €5 on the night for non-members.

Thursday 28 May:
Letters of 1916, Belfast launch. Bring in your family letters written 1 November 1915 to 31 October 1916 to digitize and add to the Letters 1916 archive. From 5:30pm to 6:30pm: Open Session: Demonstrations, Meet the Team, Transcribe and Digitise. From 6.30pm to 7:45pm - A year in the life: a series of talks exploring life in Ireland a century ago, highlighting letters from PRONI’S collection, with Professor Susan Schreibman, Stephen Scarth, Ian Montgomery and Jason Burke. 7:45pm to 8:30pm: Reception. Hosts and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. All welcome. Free, but booking required by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or telephone to 028 90534800.

Friday, 15 May 2015

'Shared inheritance – Ulster & N America': 4 June

Common Currency: The Shared Inheritance of Ulster and North America is a one-day conference to be held on Thursday 4 June in Belfast.

Hosted by the Ulster Historical Foundation and the Ministerial Advisory Group (MAG) Ulster-Scots Academy, the event will run from 9am to 4:30pm and will explore the connections between Ulster and North America across a broad range of themes including history, music, religion, commerce and the migration experience.

In addition to music, there's a great schedule of talks designed to demonstrate the contribution of Ulster migrants to the development of North American society.

Here's the line-up:
  • Ulster and the American South – A driven impulse, 1800–50, with Dr Francis Costello
  • Aghadowey, 1718 and the beginning of emigration; In 2018, should we celebrate or commemorate? with Dr Linde Lunney
  • Ancestral homes and family history: the case of the Mellons of Tyrone and Pennsylvania, with Dr Brian Lambkin
  • ‘The gentle and thoughtful Scotch Irish’ – their contribution to civilisation rather than bloody Empire creation, with Alister McReynolds
  • ‘How Sweet The Sound’ – Hymns and hymnwriters from Ulster and North America, with Mark Thompson
  • Whose Diaspora? Whose migration? Northern Ireland’s overseas connections since the 1920s, with Dr Johanne Devlin Trew
  • Ulster and America – making family history connections, with Gillian Hunt
  • ‘An American Dream’ – a song of Emigration to the New World, with Colin Magee
  • The Enduring connection – Ulster migration to British North America and the emergence of Toronto, the Belfast of Canada, with Prof William J Smyth
The conference is free of charge and includes light refreshments and lunch. Places are limited so registration is essential. See the full programme for further details about the speakers and how to register.

Venue: Discover Ulster-Scots Centre, Corn Exchange Building, 1–9 Victoria Street, Belfast

Kells School Roll Books join Co Clare Library line-up

Clare Library's Local Studies department has added records from Kells National School to its free website.

The School Roll Books for both boy and girl pupils date from 1873, two years before the purpose-built school house was opened, to 1940. They can be searched by surname and by date. There's also a separate listing of teachers at the school from 1909 to 1990, when the school doors closed for the last time.

In total, the records number 900. They were donated by Linda Hogan & Frances O’Halloran who also wrote a short history of the school.


Irish Directories Database continues to grow

http://www.swilson.info
The website has a new mobile version, too
The Irish Directories Database has been updated with a further 15 entries identified from WorldVitalRecords.com.

The database, which is hosted on Shane Wilson's extremely useful website (swilson.info) and now has a new mobile version for those of you with mod cons, has been developed in collaboration with Joe Buggy of TownlandOfOrigin.com fame.

Including the recent additions, there are now 873 directories listed in the database, each one linked to an online source.

Some of the directories are within commercial sites, so can be viewed only with a subscription, but many are available without charge on the websites of archives, libraries and other online repositories.

FindMyPast adds to worldwide collections

FindMyPast is today officially launching its collection of Dublin Workhouses records.

Regular readers of Irish Genealogy News will know these outstanding records have been available for 10 days (see 5th May blogpost) and many of you have been finding unexpected details about your ancestors among the Admission/Discharge registers and Board of Guardians Minute Books.

It seems there's a total of 2.4million indexed entries across the two record sets. You can also browse through the Minute Books.

If your Irish ancestors headed for England or Australia, you may also be interested in the following new collections:

Nottinghamshire Baptisms 1538 and 1980
Nottinghamshire Burials 1539 to 1905
Northern Territory Birth Index 1870-1918
Northern Territory Marriage Index 1870-1913
Northern Territory Death Index 1870-1913

Thursday, 14 May 2015

New from Irish Ancestors: birthplace+surname maps

Driscoll births 1864 to 1913, by registration district
Irish Ancestors, the genealogy package created by John Grenham and hosted on the Irish Times website, has recently seen a couple of really useful updates within the Surname section.

First up was a mapping-by-surname facility that's linked to civil registration districts across the island. It delivers a neat visual representation of where a surname is recorded in the civil registration birth indexes between 1864 and 1913. See the image to the right for the result for the surname Driscoll (and click it if you want to visit the page).

Now, on its own that's a pretty handy free tool, but there's more.

To the left hand of the map is a list of all the corresponding registration districts, along with the precise number of births recorded in each one. If you click on the district of interest, you find yourself transported* to the relevant birth index records on the free Irishgenealogy.ie website.

From there, you can browse through the records for details of individual births and note the corresponding registration index references needed to obtain copies of birth certificates.


* Unfortunately, IrishGenealogy.ie won't let you in unless you go through the nonsense of captcha and providing a name (any old name, or even any old initials, will do) in the pretence of making an official application to view the records. It's irritating; count to three and do it.

Irish News Archives adds 1960s Cork Examiner editions

https://www.irishnewsarchive.com/
The Irish Newspaper Archive has added editions covering 1960 to 1969 with no gaps to its collection of the Cork Examiner.

They join the existing holding for this national title which runs from 30 August 1841 to 31 December 1949.

Previously known as the Irish Examiner, the Cork Examiner joined the Irish Newspaper Archive in November and the collection will soon feature all editions right up the present, including the currently missing 1950 to 1959.

Cavan and the American Civil War: two days of lectures

Cavan Libraries will be commemorating the American Civil War in August.

The event will be held at Johnston Central Library, Farnham Centre, Farnham Street, Cavan, on Wednesday 5 August and Thursday 6 August, and will include the following selection of lectures:
  • Keynote Lecture presented by Dr Patrick Fitzgerald from the The Mellon Centre for Migration Studies in Omagh.
  • Causes and issues of the Civil War, with Ian Kenneally
  • The Irish in the American Civil War, with Damian Shiels*
  • Famous battles, including Gettysburg and Fredericksburg, with Dr David Murphy
  • Civil War photographer Matthew Brady (reputed to be Cavan born), with Aidan O'Hara
  • Cavan people in the Civil War, with Dr Brendan Scott
  • ‘Fighting Irish’, with Matthew Gilsenan (Celtic Tenors) and Dr Myles Dungan
The programme, which is not yet finalised, will include musical entertainment. Save the dates or find out more from Johnston Central Library on +353 (0)49 4378500.


* Last weekend, I attended the Irish Genealogical Research Society's Open Day in London where Damian was presenting a lecture about the Irish in the Civil War. It was absolutely fascinating, from a historical perspective as much as from a genealogical perspective. Any researcher with a missing ancestral link from the mid-19th century will find Damian's presentation opens up a completely fresh avenue of exploration. I heartily recommend it. Don't miss it.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Buy a Brick to help UHF's development plans

The Corn Exchange, Belfast
Later this year or early next, the Ulster Historical Foundation (UHF) will be moving to offices in the Corn Exchange, a striking historic building in what is now Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter.

Built in 1851 and completely renovated in recent years, the Corn Exchange became a hub for several Ulster-Scots organisations last November and houses an exhibition area, shop and office space. The UHF has a broader focus than Ulster Scots, of course, and the move will make the Foundation's expertise and resources more accessible to the local community and to visitors to the city.

The Foundation plans to take over the first floor of the building. It's currently just a shell. The aim is to create a modern and user-friendly open-plan office layout, with public consultation areas, adequate storage space and private offices.

The plan doesn't come cheaply, though, and the UHF needs to raise £30,000 to achive all its objectives for the new premises. It has already secured pledges from third parties for £15,000 towards the total, but it is now asking for help to secure the remaining sum in match funding in order to draw down those pledges. It has, therefore, launched a 'Buy a Brick' campaign.

Each brick has a value of £25. The names of those who buy a brick will be added to a commemorative plaque to be erected in the new offices. In addition, the name will be added to the 'virtual' wall acknowledging donors on the UHF website.

The Foundation's Gillian Hunt told Irish Genealogy News that after more than five years in the current Malone Road premises, she's looking forward to being back in the city centre. "The Corn Exchange will be more convenient and more accessible for visitors," she says. "It's just across the bridge, about a 15-minute walk, from the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland."


Registry of Deeds Index Project: latest update

The latest update from the Registry of Deeds Index Project shows there are now 177,253 indexed entries available to search, absolutely free. The entries cover names recorded in 20,734 memorials of deeds.

The Index is the product of volunteers who using both microfilms of the memorial volumes obtained through the LDS Family History Library and actual volumes at the Registry of Deeds in Henrietta Street, Dublin.

Memorials of deeds can be a rich source of genealogical information. They include marriage settlements, land transactions and many other types of sales or transfers of ownership, sometimes of quite modest value.

While this inevitably means that the majority of memorials relate to the gentry and middle classes, these records are not the exclusive reserve of the toffs. Occasionally, deeds deign to mention the tenants/occupiers of the land involved, and it was sometimes pertinent for people of much more modest means, including merchants and traders, to register deeds for security or inheritance reasons.

Free for one day: Irish Newspaper Archives

https://www.irishnewsarchive.com/
For one day only, the Irish Newspaper Archive is offering free access to its entire database of more than 50 national, regional and local titles.

This is a great opportunity to check out those newspapers. It's a delightfully easy process, too, with no registration required, no credit card details to be supplied, and no need to remember to cancel an account. All you have to do is log-in at the top right-hand corner of the Home Page and use these codes:

User Name: Freebie
Password: Freebie

You've got to be quick, though. The free access offer runs from 10:00am to 4:00pm Irish Summer Time (GMT+1).

Enjoy yourselves!

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

National Archives publishes Strategic Plan 2015–17

The National Archives of Ireland has published its Strategic Plan 2015-2017.

I was hoping this might reveal some detail about future collection releases, over and above those we already know are in the pipe, but it doesn't.

In fact, there's very little detail of any type. It's more of a mission statement set in the context of current major issues such as working in 'a building that is not completely fit for purpose', heavily reduced staffing levels, and the demands of the Decade of Centenaries.

For me, this is the most telling line:

'We are operating with only 75% of our sanctioned numbers and this is a major obstacle to meeting our statutory requirements with regard to accepting annual accessions, dealing with backlogs and providing services to government bodies.'

You can download the six-page Strategic Plan here.

NAI catalogues Post-Truce files for Carlow & Donegal

The National Archives of Ireland has added more Post-Truce (Damage to Property (Compensation) Act 1923) files to its online catalogue. This time, it's the turn of Counties Carlow and Donegal.

The files deal with claims for compensation for loss of or damage to property that occurred as a result of military action between July 1921 and March 1923, under the Damage to Property (Compensation) Act, 1923. They record the claimant's name and address and include a brief explanation of the incident that led to the loss of their property, which is also briefly described.

While unlikely to help your research in a genealogical sense, these files can add to your understanding of your family's experiences, and those of their neighbours, in the early 1920s.

County Carlow
To explore the Carlow files, visit the NAI site and enter FIN/COMP/2/1/ in the Simple Search box There are 197 entries.

A couple of examples:
  • Margaret Maher, Bridge Hotel, Tullow: Claimant was compelled to provide board and lodging for Irregular forces at Tullow from 12 to 15 July 1923.
  • Lizzie Wright, Newtown, Bagenalstown: Claimant was a domestic servant at The Cottage, Newtown, Bagenalstown when it was destroyed by fire on 22 March 1923. She claimed for her personal property.
County Donegal
To explore the Donegal files, visit the NAI site and enter FIN/COMP/2/5/ in the Simple Search box. There are 840 entries.

What struck me with the Donegal files was the high proportion of claims for 'commandering', 'seizure' or 'damage' to motor vehicles. It rather amused me because the Cork files, especially around and about the rural area where my father was brought up, showed a similar high proportion of claims for hi-jacked bicycles. Just an observation!

A couple of examples:
  • Tomas McLaughlin of Strabane, Co Tyrone: Seizure of motor car at Drumbuoy by Irregular forces on 15 June 1922. By time of claim, Mr McLaughlin had moved to Shanagolden, Co Limerick.
  • Thomas McDowell, Baylett, Inch: Seizure and destruction of horse trap and harness at same address by armed and masked men on 18 July 1922.

Ongoing listing work
With these latest additions, there are now ten counties, plus Cork City, included in the Finance Compensation files catalogue, so not quite at the half-way point, yet. The good news is that the NAI has received specific funding for the listing work from the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, so all the estimated 20,000 files in the collection will eventually be added to the online catalogue.

To search the listings of other catalogued counties, use the NAI catalogue references below:

Cork City (FIN/COMP/2/27)
County Cork (FIN/COMP/2/4)
County Kerry (FIN/COMP/2/8)
County Limerick (FIN/COMP/2/13)
County Longford (FIN/COMP/2/14)
County Louth (FIN/COMP/2/15)
County Leitrim (FIN/COMP/2/11)
County Mayo (FIN/COMP/2/16)
County Sligo (FIN/COMP/2/21)


Monday, 11 May 2015

Irish genealogy, history & heritage events, 11–24 May

Monday 11 May: Dr Raphael Armattoe - Derry's West African Writer/Physician/Scientist, with Philippa Robinson. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Derry BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome.

Monday 11 May: Why DNA? How I used DNA to fill in gaps in my family tree, with Martin McDowell. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Newtownabbey brance. Venue: Drama Theatre, Glengormley High School, 134 Ballyclare Road, Newtownabbey, BT36 5HP. 7pm. New members welcome.

Monday 11 and Tuesday 12 May: Women and the Country House, the focus of topics at the 13th Annual Conference of the Centre for the Study of Historic Irish Houses & Estates. Venue: National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Co Kildare. Conference registration fee is €100 per person. Details.

Tuesday 12 May: What's in a name? with William Bell. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Lisburn Branch. Venue: Bridge Community Centre, 50 Railway Street, Lisburn BT28 1XP. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 12 May: Book launch – The Belfast Blitz; The City in the War Years, by Brian Bardon. Host: Ulster Historical Foundation. Venue: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Belfast BT3 9HQ. 2pm for 2:30pm. Free but booking essential by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or by telephone to (+44) 028 90 534800.

Tuesday 12 May: Book launch – A city in civil war, by Padraig Yeates. Host: Gill & Macmillan. Venue: Books Upstairs, D'Olier St, Dublin 2. Book to be launched by Catriona Crowe, Head of Special Projcts, NAI. Dr Katherine O'Donnell will also speak at the event. Starts 6pm. RSPV by email to padraigyeates@gmail.com by Friday 8 May.

Tuesday 12 May: The collections of the Irish Air Corps Museum, with Michael Whelan. Venue: County Library, Tallaght, Co Dublin. 7pm.

Tuesday 12 May: Genealogy resources, with staff from North Tipperary Genealogical Centre and Tipperary Library Local Studies Department. Venue: Nenagh Library, O'Rahilly Street, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary. Free event as part of Bealtaine programme. 2:30pm. All welcome. No need to book. Tel: 067 34404 for further information.

Wednesday 13 May: GRONI, with Emma Elliott. Last 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 13 May: Times of Conflict for County Galway Families during the Great War, with William Henry. Host: Western Family History Society. Venue: Lackagh Parish Centre, Lackagh, Co. Galway. 8:15pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 13 May: Explore the Archives – Practical Workshop, aimed at those who have just started their Irish family history. Two segments. 2pm: Explore Archives Online; 3pm: Using the Documents (searching for, ordering and viewing original documents). Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Free but booking essential. Reserve your place by email to proni@dcalni.gov.uk or telephone 028 90534800.

Wednesday 13 May: Meeting Michael O'Leary, with exhibition curator Nikki Ralston. Second of the 'WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish experience' lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. 1:05pm. Booking not required.

Wednesday 13 May to Saturday 16 May: Crossroads of America, the National Genealogical Society 2015 Family History Conference. Venue: St Charles Convention Center, Missouri, USA. Full programme. Includes four dedicated 'Irish genealogy' lectures; A methodology for Irish emigration to N America, with David Rencher on 14th; Navigating the best online sources for Irish research, and Unpuzzling Ireland's church records, both with Donna Moughty on 15th; and Scots-Irish Research, with Robert McLaren on the 15th.

Thursday 14 May: How to trace your family tree, with Tom French. Host: Meath County Libraries. Venue: Oldcastle Library, Millbrook Road, Oldcastle, Co Meath. 7pm. Free but need to book by telephone: 049 8542084.

Friday 15 May: Late night opening at the Representative Church Body Library, Braemor Park, Churchtown, Dublin 14. Closes 7pm.

Saturday 16 May: War and peace – the Northwest during World War II, a History Ireland Hedge School. Venue: The Guildhall, Derry. The panel will include Michael Kennedy, Emmet O'Connor, Pauline Mitchell and Joe O’Loughlin. 3pm.

Saturday 16 May: Medieval Dublin Symposium. Hosts: Friends of Medieval Dublin. Venue: Robert Emmet Theatre, Room 2037 Arts Building, Trinity College Dublin. Eight presentations from 9:30am to 5pm.. Tea/coffee & refreshments. Admission free. All welcome. No booking required.

Saturday 16 May:
Genealogy Help session, with Kathleen McGee. Host: Irish Family History Forum. Venue: Bethpage Public Library, 47 Powell Avenue, Bethpage, NY, 11714 USA. 10am. Free. Open to members and non-members (the latter on a one-off basis).

Monday 18 May: Family history and genealogy sessions. Find out how to trace your family tree, with Margaret Bonar and Betty Craven. Venue: Raheny Library, Howth Road, Dublin 5. Free advice sessions. From 10:15am to Noon. Book your slot by telephone: 085 1444883 or contact the library by email: rahenylibrary@dublincity.ie.

Tuesday 19 May: Gallipoli – 100 years, with Comdt Tony Roe. Host: Foxrock Local History Club. Venue: Foxrock Pastoral Centre, J Kill Lane and Bray Road, Foxrock, Dublin. Members free. Non-members €5. All welcome. 8pm.

Wednesday 20 May: The Border Reivers, with Kevin Johnston. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Armagh Branch. Venue: Portadown Town Hall, 15-17 Edward Street, Portadown BT62 3LX. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 20 May: Argyll to Antrim, with Cormac McSparron. First of the Ulster Scots Connections; People, Place and Practice series. Hosts: PRONI, MAG-Ulster Scots Academy, Ulster Scots Community Network and Ulster Scots Agency. Venue: Discover Ulster Scots Centre, Belfast. 1pm. Free.

Wednesday 20 May: Genealogy Workshop: ​Trace your family history using Ancestry.com and the library's online resources, with Natassia Reilly. Host and Venue: Dungiven Library, 107 Main Street, Dungiven, Co LondonDerry, BT47 4LE. 2:30pm to 4:30pm. Places are limited so booking is essential. Tel: 028 777 41475 or email Dungiven.library@librariesni.org.uk

Wednesday 21 May: Lady Augusta Dillon and the Women's War Effort in Galway, Emma Lyons discusses the war effort of women at home. Third of the 'WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience' lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. 1:05pm. Booking not required.

Thursday 21 May: The Ballintoy Project: how to organise a Local History Group, with Robert Corbett. Third of the Antrim Coast in the Age of Industry, 1750 to 1890, lunchtime lecture series. Host and Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Starts at 1pm. Free but need to book at proni@dcalni.gov.uk or (+44) 028 90 534800.

Thursday 21 May: Doctoring in the Dark: William Wilde and Medicine in the 19th century, with Dr Brian Cleary. Host: Old Tuam Society. Venue: Tuam Library, High Street, Tuam, Co Galway. 8pm. Free.

Saturday 23 May: IGRS Open Day. Host: Irish Genealogical Research Society. Venue: Dublin City Library and Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. Three lectures (free, no need to book, all welcome) followed by Research Help session – free one-to-one consultations, which need to be booked. See IrishAncestors.ie for details.



Friday, 8 May 2015

FindMyPast adds Irish collection from BillionGraves

http://www.awin1.com/cread.php?awinmid=5947&awinaffid=123532&clickref=&p=http%3A%2F%2Fsearch.findmypast.ie%2Fsearch-world-records%2Fireland-billion-graves-cemetery-index FindMyPast has uploaded some 500,000 cemetery records from BillionGraves to its database.

The records consist of transcriptions and links to the relevant entries on the BillionGraves site.

Most of the collection relates to gravestones and memorials in England, Scotland and Wales.

The Ireland collection is small, with just 4,129 entries; more than half are from South Tipperary, and there are no entries for counties Kerry, Leitrim, Longford, Monaghan, Offaly, Roscommon and Westmeath.

FindMyPast say the index will be regularly updated throughout the year. 


Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Military Service Pensions Collection lecture series

http://www.militaryarchives.ieArchivists from Military Archives will be presenting a series of three lunchtime lectures on the Military Service Pensions Collection (MSPC), starting on Tuesday 26 May.

The MSPC is being released in phases on MilitaryArchives.ie and has already revealed fascinatingly detailed information about the ordinary people caught up in the Independence struggle and about life in early 20th-century Ireland.

The lectures are:

Tuesday 26 May: Women in the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection – A Reassessment and New Sources, with Cecile Gordon

Tuesday 2 June
: The Importance of the Military Service (1916-1923) Pensions Collection - Understanding revolutionary Ireland and beyond, with Michael Keane

Tuesday 9 June: Establishing the Free State in conflict, 1922–1924, with Robert McEvoy

Each lecture will start at 1pm and will be held at Rathmines Library, 157 Rathmines Road Lower, Dublin 6. Although they are free to attend, booking is essential.

See the series programme for more about the content of each lecture.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Dublin workhouse records make online debut

FindMyPast has added the Dublin Workhouse Admission and Discharge Registers, 1840–1919 to its database, placing online for the first time what appears to be some 1.5million records.

I say 'what appears to be' as there has been no official announcement to mark the arrival or provide details of this collection*.

Registers for
  • North Dublin Union Workhouse (557,000 records)
  • South Dublin Union Workhouse (746,000 records), and
  • Rathdown Union Workhouse (229,000 records)
are covered and they hold some great information.

In addition to the date of admission, name, age and sex, you'll find the name of a spouse (or sometimes a next of kin), a home address from just before the admission (assuming the individual was not a vagrant), and even the person's pre-admission occupation.

Here is a terrific example, discovered on a random search:  On 23 March 1846, 69-year-old Bridget Crawley was admitted to North Dublin Union Workhouse 'in good health'. She was a Roman Catholic widow, previously of 22 Church Street, who'd been working as a 'huxter' (a street seller of ale, I believe). Her next of kin was James and she had three children and was a 'native of Charlestown, Co Louth' She was discharged on 24 August 1846.

Now if that level of detail doesn't get you excited, I don't know what will!

Such an example also makes clear that these records include people who originated from outside the County Dublin area. There are plenty of them. For those born locally, the exact street address is frequently recorded. See image below.

The Registers join the Dublin Poor Law Unions Boards of Guardians minute books for North Dublin, South Dublin, Rathdown and Balrothery on FindMyPast. I'm not sure exactly when this collection was uploaded; it may have been a couple of weeks ago but again, there's been no official announcement.

As you'd expect from minute books, the pages are full of the workings and decisions of the Board of Guardians (BoG). Individuals living in the workhouse are sometimes identified ie on 11 December 1918, 'an artificial leg (an ordinary pin leg) (wooden)' was approved for 56-year-old William Cooney by Balrothery BoG, but you're more likely to find details of staff or suppliers than inmates. However, the minute book pages have been indexed to make finding names easier. Just bear in mind that while ocr systems have become reasonably sophisticated, reading and understanding 19th-century handwriting is demanding at best.

Both collections (the registers and the minute books) can be accessed on FindMyPast with either an Ireland or a World subscription.

The original Admission/Discharge registers and the BoG minute books are held by the National Archives of Ireland.

You can find out more about each of the workhouses at Peter Higginbottom's excellent site: North Dublin; South Dublin; Balrothery; Rathdown.


*Many thanks to all those who emailed me after 'stumbling across' these new collections.

Irish emigration to Australia: PRONI lunchtime talks

PRONI is to host a one-off event this coming Friday (8th) that will be of interest to any family historians keen to learn more about Irish emigration to Australia since the late 18th century. Two of Australia's best known historians and genealogists will be delivering two talks from 1pm, as follows:

Dr Perry McIntyre
:
A decent set of girls – the emigration of Irish workhouse orphans to Australia, 1848-1850
During the Great Famine more than 4,100 young Irish womenvolunteered to emigrate from workhouses all over Ireland to thecolonies of New South Wales and South Australia. Many were from the north of Ireland and, indeed, the most notorious of the orphan ships, the Earl Grey in 1848, took girls to Sydney from Belfast, Dungannon, Armagh, Antrim and Banbridge workhouses. Australia’s national Famine Memorial in Sydney commemorates the story of the Famine orphansand this presentation will outline current research on this major emigration story

Dr Richard Reid:
Ned Kelly and all that – the story of the Irish in Australia, 1788-the present
The Irish who went to Australia are among the best documented emigrants in the world and they are the only ones so far to have had a major exhibition in a national museum – the National Museum of Australia – to tell their story. Records brought from Ireland for this exhibition range from a colonial governor’s day uniform to the magnificent gold cup presented to the 1848 rebel leader William Smith O’Brien by his countrymen in the colony of Victoria.

Venue: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Titantic Quarter, Belfast.

Admission is free, and booking is recommended. Please contact PRONI to secure your place. Email: proni@dcalni.gov.uk. Telephone 028 90534800.



Monday, 4 May 2015

NLI amends opening hours of Readers' Ticket Office

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) has amended the opening hours of its Readers' Ticket Office.

Previously available across the full opening hours of the Library, the Office will in future be open only as follows:

Mondays: 10:30–12.30; 2pm–4pm; and 5pm–7:45pm.

Tuesdays to Fridays: 10:30-12.30; 2pm–4pm.

Saturdays: 9:30–12:45.

A Reader’s Ticket is valid for three years and gives researchers access to all NLI collections.

Researchers must bring their ticket when using the reading rooms as original material is not issued without it. However, a Reader's Ticket is not required to access newspapers, the Genealogy Advisory Service or the Roman Catholic parish register microfilm collection.

How to obtain a Reader's Ticket.

Researching your ancestors in Co. Tyrone: Book review

As reported last month (see blogpost), the North of Ireland Family History Society has published the third in its Researching your ancestors in the North of Ireland series, this time focussing on County Tyrone, the largest county in Northern Ireland.

As with the previous books covering County Monaghan (published 2013) and County Cavan (published 2014), the 54-page County Tyrone book delivers a comprehensive listing of available genealogy records and resources. The various materials are briefly described along with details of where they can be accessed online or offline.

The resources are presented in topics ranging from Land Records to Graveyard Inscriptions, and there's a four-page listing of 17th, 18th and 19th century 'census substitutes' to help those who have already made some headway in their research. There's also a one-page summary guide to the Ulster Plantation, a 50-item-strong bibliography of print publications, and a good list of local, national and family websites.

But the largest section, and perhaps the book's most valuable, is the 21-page table of Church Records. The presentation may be dense, but the information about the records of each parish of each denomination in the county is complete. It goes beyound the dates of surviving baptism, marriage and burial registers and includes vestry/session/committee minutes, communion rolls, pew rents, Sunday School attendances, stipend books and pretty much anything else that's survived from the various parishes.

If you have ancestors from County Tyrone, you need this book on your family history shelves. It's a book you'll reach out for on a regular basis, and it's absolutely up to date, with news of one particular resource that occured only ten days before the book launched.

At only £7.50, it's also very good value. Post and packing is included for UK addresses; £2.50 for the Republic and elsewhere in Europe; £4.00 for the Rest of the World. You can buy it from the NIFHS.org Publications page.