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Monday, 31 October 2016

Tyrone Courier joins British Newspaper Archive

The Tyrone Courier is the latest Northern Ireland title to join the British Newspaper Archive. Eventually the holding for this weekly paper will span 1880 to 1909. For now, only the 1899 and 1903 editions have made it to the database.

Historical newspapers often remind me of Hartley's 'the past is a foreign country' phrase, but the editorial choices of this particular paper seem positively bizarre, even for the period.

It's a curious 'local' paper, with large sections given over to international news, gardening, cooking recipes, sport results (none related to Ireland), the serialisation of a book, and randomly shoe-horned jokes, none of which has survived the passage of time with rib-tickling humour intact.

Taking the 15 January 1903 edition as an example, a huge proportion is given up to what I can only describe as 'oddities' from around the world. These unexpected stories include details of a Spanish toreador who, with only a bruise on his leg to show for his efforts, had made a £12,000 profit in the previous season by killing 133 bulls; the transformation of the Royal Aquarium in Westminster into a Methodist Church House; a row of corn 25 miles long planted in Kansas, and the execution of a murderer, dragged kicking and screaming to the guillotine, in the French city of Lille. The story below – Lunatic's Telepathy – is from the same issue.

Meanwhile, just one line – 'There was a great flood in the Ballinderry River last Tuesday' – is the only mention of an event affecting a local rural community on the Tyrone/Derry border.

At least there are reports of the Quarter Sessions at Dungannon, Cookstown and Moneymore!

Irish genealogy & history events: 31 Oct to 12 Nov

Monday 31 October: Bank holiday in Republic of Ireland only. Halloween island-wide.

Tuesday 1 November: Visit to NIFHS Research Centre. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Belfast Branch. Venue: North of Ireland Family History Society, Unit C4, 67, Valley Business Centre, Church Rd, Newtownabbey, Co Antrim BT36 7LS. 7pm. Email Branch.

Tuesday 1 November: Sisters, Surgeons and Soldiers on the Somme: 144 days of Casualty Management, with Dr Yvonne McEwen. A Decade of Centenaries event. Venue: Randalstown Library, 34 New St, Randalstown, Co Antrim, BT41 3AF 6:30pm. Booking recommended: Email - randalstown.library@librariesni.org.uk. All welcome. Free.

Wednesday 2 November: The love life of Michael Collins and the Irish Civil War, with Marcus Howard. Host: Easter Rising Stories and Brent Culture Service. Venue: Willesden Green Library Centre, 95 High Road, Willesden, London NW10 2SU, UK. 6:30pm–7:45pm. Free but seating limited so booking is recommended. Register.

Wednesday 2 November: WW1 in North Antrim, with Alex Blair. A Decade of Centenaries event. Host: Portrush Library and the Ulster-Scots Agency. Venue: Portrush Libary, 12 Causeway Street, Portrush, Co Antrim BT56 8AB. 2pm–4pm. Free. All welcome. Booking recommended: 028 7082 3718.

Thursday 3 November: Delayed Opening at National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. To facilitate a staff development meeting, all NLI locations and services (including the free Genealogy Service) will be closed until 11am.

Saturday 5 November: Local History Day. Host and venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2. From 9:45am to 4:15pm. All welcome. Free. No booking. Lecture schedule.

Saturday 5 November: The Archaeology of religion in Tipperary, with Richard O'Brien. Host & venue: Tipperary County Museum, Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel, Co Tipperary. 10:30am. €5. All welcome. Seats will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Saturday 5 November: DNA and the Peopling of Europe, with Roy Keys. Host: Fermanagh Genealogy Centre. Venue: Enniskillen Castle, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh. 2pm to 3:30pm. Free, but you need a ticket. Details.

Monday 7 November: How to Start your Family Tree, with Gillian Hunt, Ulster Historical Foundation. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Killyleagh Branch. Venue: Killyleagh Masonic Hall, 50 High Street, Killyleagh, Co Down BT30 9QF. 8pm. All welcome.

Monday 7 November: Derry - The First Million Years: a geological and historical story, with Sean McMahon. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: Derry Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Londonderry, BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 8 November: 'All changed, changed utterly...'? Ireland 1916-1918, a History Ireland Hedge School. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Free. 7pm. No booking required. Details.

Tuesday 8 November: Nurses, Medics and Volunteers of World War I, with Dr Johanne Devlin Trew. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Lisburn Branch. Venue: Bridge Community Centre, 50 Railway Street, Lisburn, BT28 1XP. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 8 November: Tracing Irish Police Ancestors, with Jim Herlihy. Host: Genealogical Society of Ireland. Venue: Dún Laoghaire Further Education Institute, Cumberland Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Donation €3. All welcome. 8pm.

Wednesday 9 November Steelboys, Oakboys and Bad Boys: the troubled County of Armagh, 1750 to 1800, with Dr Eoin Magennis. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place. (Lecture rearranged from 12 October.)

Thursday 10 November: WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience, an exhibition tour. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, 2/3 Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Booking is not required. All welcome. 2pm.

Thursday 10 November: From revival to rebellion, with Roddy Hegarty. Host: Libraries NI. Venue: Lisburn City Library, Linenhall St, Lisburn BT28 1FJ. 6:30pm to 7:30pm. Free. All welcome. Booking recommended: 028 9266 9345 or lisburncity.library@librariesni.org.uk.

Thursday 10 November: Dungannon in WW1, with Robert Butler. Host: Western Front Association. Venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 6:30pm. £4 donation requested. All welcome. No booking.

Thursday 10 November: Starting Irish family history, with Maureen Doyle and Beryl O'Gorman. Host and venue:Genealogical Society of Victoria, Level B1 257 Collins Street, Melbourne, Australia 3000. 10am to 12Noon. Members $30/non-members $60/affiliated groups $45. Need to register. Details.

Thursday 10 November: Forgotten Soldiers: The Irishmen Shot at Dawn, with Stephen Walker. Host: Carrickfergus Museum. Venue: Carrickfergus Town Hall, Joymount, Carrickfergus, Co Antrim, BT37 7DN. 7:30pm. Light refreshments will be served. Free, but you need to book a seat. Email: carrickfergusmuseums@midandeastantrim.gov.uk. Tel: 02893 358241.

Friday 11 November: Reading Room closed in the morning – National Archives of Ireland, Bishop Street, Dublin 8.

Saturday 12 November: A Tale of Two Cemeteries – a poignant story of two forgotten girls, with Harman Scott. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Tyrone Branch. Venue: Omagh Library, Dublin Road, Omagh, BT78 1HL. 10am. All welcome.

Saturday 12 November: The Irish Way of Death. Host: The Center for Irish Studies at the University of St. Thomas. Venue: South Woulfe Alumni Hall, Anderson Student Center, St Paul campus, Minnesota 55105, USA. 1pm–5:30pm. Free and open to the public. Details.

Saturday 12 November: The National Library's History & Heritage, an introduction to the Library's rich architectural history and the Signatories exhibition, plus a guided tour of the Reading Room.  Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Admission free. All welcome. 1pm. No need to book.

Friday, 28 October 2016

The Forgotten Irish: a heartbreaking education for Irish family historians

Published by The History Press Ireland
I'd been looking forward to publication of The Forgotten Irish by Damian Shiels for some time, and it has completely lived up to expectations.

Its 288 pages hold the stories of 35 Irish families who lost loved ones who served in the US military between 1861 and 1910, the majority through the American Civil War. The narratives have been developed from the rich files of the widows' and dependents' pension record collection held at the National Archives in Washington DC (not online), which holds the claims and supporting documentation relating to the families of 1.3million deceased servicemen, many thousands of them Irish. The individual files hold military records, baptismal records, medical reports and affidavits showing the deceased soldier supported the claimant financially, as well as original letters exchanged by the family and serviceman.

The latter provide the most poignant details for each real-life story told by the author, and many of them have been carefully transcribed in the book, capturing the emotions of the writer and the atmosphere of the time.

The book and the stories it tells are arranged into four themes, as Damian explains in his Preface: "The first two sections, 'Wives and Parents', and 'Community and Society', emphasise the lives of soldiers' families... and seek to illustrate how the pension files can be used to examine topics such as family emigration, chain migration, financial dependence and the maintenance of tranatlantic connections, as well as social issues.... The final two sections, 'A Life in Letters' and 'A Death in Letters', are aimed at providing a direct insight into the lives and emotions of some of these emigrant soldiers, using their own correspondence, and also at investigating how their loved ones received news of, and coped with, their deaths."

By their nature, the stories are sad. They are also incredibly rich with detail about the Irish emigrant experience and the lives of those left behind, either in Ireland or in America. I consider this book a must-read for the Irish family historian. It's easily my book of the year.

The Forgotten Irish: Irish Emigrant Experiences in America is now available in good bookshops in Ireland and online (The History Press Ireland, Amazon, Book Depository etc.).

FindMyPast adds Wicklow and Dublin publications

FindMyPast has added a number of publications today relating to Counties Wicklow and Dublin.
  • Corn Growers, Carriers & Traders, County Wicklow, 1788, 1789 & 1790
  • Kilcoole School Registers, 1862
  • Newcastle School Registers, 1864-1948
  • Shillelagh & Ballinacor South Memorial, 1837
  • The People of Wicklow 1798: The Rebellion
  • Booterstown School Registers 1862-1872 & 1891-1939
  • Whitelaw’s Census Street Index Dublin City 1798
  • Petitioners Against Closure of Kill O’ The Grange Cemetery 1864
  • Glasthule, Harold (Boys) School Registers 1904-1948
  • Dalkey, St Patrick’s School Registers 1894-1970
  • Dun Laoghaire, Rathdown Memorial Inscriptions
All originally published by the Genealogical Society of Ireland (GSI), these titles are, as far as I'm aware, making their online debut.

Today's upload additionally includes publication of local indexes and transcriptions of censuses for Counties Cavan, Kilkenny and Dublin. These were compiled by the GSI's volunteers long before the National Archives of Ireland's free Genealogy website made all of Ireland's surviving census returns freely available (and now additionally available on FindMyPast and elsewhere). I have not included these publications in the list here. If you're interested to see them, just follow the links above.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Republic of Ireland: Bank holiday, Monday 31 October

There's a long weekend ahead for the Republic of Ireland, where Monday 31 October will be a bank holiday. Most libraries and archives will be closed on that day.

The major exception is the National Library of Ireland in Dublin. While its exhibitions will be open 12Noon to 5pm, the Reading Rooms in Kildare Street will be closed. It's free Genealogy Service won't be running, either.

Public lending and local studies libraries in Dublin and around the country will be closed on both the Saturday (29th) and the Bank Holiday Monday, returning to regular hours from Tuesday.

This bank holiday does not apply in Northern Ireland where repositories, libraries and commercial enterprises are open for business as normal.

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

More County Armagh records join RootsIreland

RootsIreland.ie has added 1,147 new records to its County Armagh database, as follows:

Derrynoose Tithe Accounts 1785-1787:
This collection holds 850 records of tithe payers by townland.

1821 Census of Armagh: This 1821 Census transcript for some townlands in various County Armagh parishes come from the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (source T636). It is a hand-transcribed record which would most likely have been taken from the original Census return and transcribed pre-1922, when the original records were destroyed in the PRO fire. It is not included in the more mainstream collections of Irish census fragments available at the National Archives of Ireland and elsewhere. A copy of this record can be obtained from Armagh Ancestry.

View a full list of County Armagh sources currently on RootsIreland.

The new Townland Valuation Translator breaks the 'code' used by Griffith's surveyors (1824–1856)

Here's something new and different: the TownlandValuationTranslator.com.

It's been devised by Irish genealogist John Schnelle from Boston, who has combined his interests in maps and the history of rural agriculture with a drive to apply new technology to genealogy research, to unlock the 'code' used by the surveyors in their Field and House books. He aims to translate their findings into digestible information about our ancestors, their land, what they grew, and how they would have worked and managed their land holding, however small.

I checked out how my maternal ancestors near Caher would have fared – the Townland Valuation Translator described their land holding as 'second class wheat land', yielding high quality and quantity of crops with proportionally low investments of time, labour and financial resources.'

By contrast, my paternal ancestors near Clonakilty had a harder time surviving. Their land was 'third class oat land', the 'least valuable class of soil' (which probably explains why they gave up half of it to the sea about 70 years ago!).

The Translator's detailed reports make for interesting reading, not just about what would have been grown and the likely rotation of crops for such a land holding. It also gives an analysis of how my ancestors would have managed and worked their land, whether it was suited to the use of a plough or other tools; how a horse might, or might not, have been loaned occasionally to facilitate the cultivation or harvest; and how the difficulty of working the poorer land might have required community input and a lot of potatoes for dinner! The translator delivers a good spread of detail about how our rural ancestors lived.

The website is still in beta right now, and only the Field Books can be fully interpreted, thus far. Check it out. First up, search for your family in the Valuation Office Books (1824–1856) collection, which is freely available on the National Archives of Ireland's Genealogy website. You'll need to imput some of the information in the books into the Translator search form. Then scroll down the page to read the report.

IGRS publishes 1803 directory of Dublin's Merchants

The Irish Genealogical Research Society (IGRS) has created a free database of the Merchants and Traders listed in Wilson’s Dublin Directory, published in the 1803 edition of The Treble Almanac.

The database holds more than 7,500 entries searachable by individual name of the merchant/trader. You can also search by occupation (here's where to find out how many milliners, for example, were trading in the capital at the start of the 19th century (33)) and by street address (there were 31 businesses – nearly all of them legal firms – trading in French Street, now Mercer Street).

Each entry is also linked to a map from the Statistical Survey of the County Dublin, (Dublin, 1802).

To find out more and to search the Directory, see the IGRS website: IrishAncestors.ie.



Monday, 24 October 2016

National Archives of Ireland: early closing of Reading Room on Wednesday 26 October

The National Archives of Ireland has announced that its Reading Room will close early this Wednesdary (26 October) to facilitate a special event.

The doors will close to the public at 4pm.

Tracing Your Irish Ancestors – Conference 2017

The Ulster Historical Foundation's Tracing your Irish Ancestors Family History Conference 2017 has been announced.

Assisted research for conference delegates from
the Ulster Historical Foundation's experts
Running from 14 to 21 June, the conference has a brand-new programme that will appeal to both the dedicated family historian and those who'd like to spend more time visiting historical sites and enjoying Northern Ireland's spectacular scenery.

It offers a balanced combination of research in the archives (with the Foundation’s experienced genealogists on hand), talks from acknowledged experts and a variety of tours.

Among the highlights are guided tours of both Knowth and Newgrange passage tombs at Bru na Boinne; a tour of south Antrim including a trip to Carrickfergus Castle, one of the best preserved medieval structures in all of Ireland; visits to the rope-bridge at Carrick-a-rede; Barons Court, and the Hill of the O’Neills – the ancient capital of Ulster.

There's an Early Bird Offer available for those who book before end February.

An interesting optional add-on taking place in the days immediately before the conference is an Irish Genealogy Essentials Course, which will be held 12-14 June. Taught by the Foundation’s experts, it offers conference delegates two and a half days of intensive learning, with practical demonstrations using relevant websites and other electronic resources. Additionally, delegates will have full access to the Foundation’s research and newspaper library, and the ready expertise of professional researchers.

25 years of GSI publications join PERSI on FindMyPast

All journals published by the Genealogical Society of Ireland (GSI) (previously the Dun Laoghaire Genealogical Society) since 1991 have been added to the PERiodical Source Index (PERSI), which is currently hosted on FindMyPast. The 600+ articles can be searched here.

More GSI publications will be added over the coming weeks. They will include a range of more than 40 publications published since 1992 and include transcripts of original records, memorial inscriptions, local and surname studies, occupational records and collections of specialist sources and guides. The information dates back to 1798 and covers many counties in Ireland including Cavan, Dublin, Kildare, Kilkenny, Laois, Louth, Offaly and Wicklow.

Irish genealogy, history/heritage events, 24 Oct–6 Nov

Monday 24 October: The Famine in Toomevara 1845-52, with Helen O'Brien. Host: Dunkerrin Parish History Society. Venue: Obama Plaza, Junction 23, M7, Moneygall, Co. Offaly.  8:15pm. All welcome. Members free. Non-members €5.

Wednesday 26 October: The British Army presence in Dublin, with Henry Fairbrother. Host: Old Dublin Society. Venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. 6pm. All wlecome. Free.

Tuesday 25 October: Remembering Patriarchs and Patriots: When Kilrush Streets Had Two Names, by Eoin Shanahan. Host: Kilrush and District Historical Society. Venue: Teach Ceoil, Grace Street, Kilrush, Co Clare. 8pm. Free to members/€5 non-members. All welcome.

Wednesday 26 October: Remembering past futures: Commemoration and the roads untaken, with Dr Heather Laird. Last of the 'Reconsidering the Rising' Public Lectures series. Host: University College Cork. Venue: Ground Floor Lecture Theatre, Geology & Geography Building, off Donovan Road, UCC, Cork. Free. No booking required. All welcome.

Friday 28 October: Peasants, Prostitutes, King-killers and Rebels: Northside Dublin Histories, magazine launch by Frankie Gaffney. Host: Stoneybatter & Smithfield People's History Project. Venue: Capuchin Day Centre, 29 Bow Street, Dublin 7. 7:30pm. All welcome. Event also marks start of the Street Stories Festival.

Friday 28 October: Vizzards and Collicks, a day seminar exploring Hallowe'en folklore and customs. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2 (Seminar Room). 10am - 4.30pm. All welcome. Free. Details.

Saturday 29 October: Galway, from Medieval Borough to Modern City, with Paul Walsh, followed by launch of Irish Historic Towns Atlas - Galway. Venue: Galway City Museum, Spanish Parade, Galway. 2pm. Tickets are free but booking essential (museum@galwaycity.ie or 091-532460).

Saturday 29 October and Sunday 30 October: Street Stories Festival 2016. Lectures throughout Saturday afternoon at the Cobblestone pub (77 King St North, Dublin 7) and Generator Hostel (Smithfield Square, Dublin 7), music at Cobblestone on Saturday evening, walking tour Working Class History of Smithfield & Stoneybatter with Donal Fallon at 2pm on Sunday (outside Cobblestone). Details.

Monday 31 October: Bank holiday in Republic of Ireland. Halloween island-wide.

Tuesday 1 November: Visit to NIFHS Research Centre. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Belfast Branch. Venue: North of Ireland Family History Society, Unit C4, 67, Valley Business Centre, Church Rd, Newtownabbey, Co Antrim BT36 7LS. 7pm. Email Branch.

Tuesday 1 November: Sisters, Surgeons and Soldiers on the Somme: 144 days of Casualty Management, with Dr Yvonne McEwen. A Decade of Centenaries event. Venue: Randalstown Library, 34 New St, Randalstown, Co Antrim, BT41 3AF 6:30pm. Booking recommended: Email - randalstown.library@librariesni.org.uk. All welcome. Free.

Wednesday 2 November: The love life of Michael Collins and the Irish Civil War, with Marcus Howard. Host: Easter Rising Stories and Brent Culture Service. Venue: Willesden Green Library Centre, 95 High Road, Willesden, London NW10 2SU, UK. 6:30pm–7:45pm. Free but seating limited so booking is recommended. Register.

Wednesday 2 November: WW1 in North Antrim, with Alex Blair. A Decade of Centenaries event. Host: Portrush Library and the Ulster-Scots Agency. Venue: Portrush Libary, 12 Causeway Street, Portrush, Co Antrim BT56 8AB. 2pm–4pm. Free. All welcome. Booking recommended: 028 7082 3718.

Thursday 3 November: Delayed Opening at National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. To facilitate a staff development meeting, all NLI locations and services (including the free Genealogy Service) will be closed until 11am.

Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 November: Cobh Heritage Centre Open Day. Host and venue: Cobh Heritage Centre, Railway Station, Cobh, Co. Cork- Genealogy talks 11am, 1pm and 3pm, one-to-one consultations (bookable) and free exhibition admission. Details.

Saturday 5 November: Local History Day. Host and venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, 138-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2. From 9:45am to 4:15pm. All welcome. Free. No booking. Lecture schedule.

Saturday 5 November: The Archaeology of religion in Tipperary, with Richard O'Brien. Host & venue: Tipperary County Museum, Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel, Co Tipperary. 10:30am. €5. All welcome. Seats will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.




Friday, 21 October 2016

Battle of the Somme exhibition opens at DCL&A

A new exhibition – Dublin Remembers: Stories from the Somme – will open to the public in Dublin City Library and Archive tomorrow, Saturday 22 October.

The Battle of the Somme was a key Allied offensive during World War I. It began on 1 July 1916; when it ended 141 days later more than one million men, including some 3,500 Irish-born soldiers, had been killed or injured. The exhibition focuses on those serving with the Royal Dublin Fusiliers. Some were killed, others injured, and even those who survived unscathed returned to an Ireland which was radically different following the Easter Rising in April 1916.

Officially launched today by Brendan Carr, Lord Mayor of Dublin, the exhibition includes photographs, medals, uniforms, documents and other original artefacts from that period. Audio recordings from selected letters and diaries detail first-hand accounts of life in the trenches of the Somme, while interview footage, courtesy of RTE Archives, provides further eye-witness accounts of the horrors and tragedy of this bloody conflict.

This thought-provoking exhibition also considers public reaction to the Battle of the Somme, and how the battle has been commemorated in Ireland over the past 100 years.

The exhibition will run until Friday 23 December (Mon-Thurs 10am-8pm; Fri-Sat 10am-5pm) and is free. Group tours, led by expert members of the Royal Dublin Fusiliers Association, can be booked here.

The National Archives and National Library welcome increased funding allowances for 2017

Top: The National Archives of Ireland
Below: The National Library of Ireland
Last week's allocation of funds from the Department of Arts, Heritage, Rural, Regional and Gaeltacht Affairs (DAHG) included budget increases for two of the institutions most familiar to Irish genealogy researchers: the National Library (NLI) and the National Archives (NAI). They received additional funding for 2017 of €300,000 and €200,000 respectively.

Speaking today at a seminar for civil and public servants to consider the challenges of preserving electronic records, Director of the National Archives John Mc Donagh said that this almost 20% increase in day-to-day funding would ensure that the NAI's strategies can continue to be actively progressed through the Decade of Centenaries.

"These strategies include advancing the development of the records management plan and a number of digital initiatives. In addition, work is continuing on our major redevelopment plan, which will significantly increase the volume of archival storage on the Bishop Street site in Dublin 8. Researchers will benefit from the recently reopened Reading Room which has been upgraded with new lighting and air-handling facilities to offer a more comfortable environment for those using this facility and to protect the records themselves.

“As we move towards 2022, and the anniversary of the destruction of the Public Records Office of Ireland, we welcome this on-going commitment by the Minister and her Department to the archival record, and the development of new technologies and approaches to ensuring its preservation and continued accessibility in Bishop Street and online."

The National Library also welcomed the increase in the repository's increased budget. Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the National Library, said it would be used to great effect in addressing some of the priorities outlined in the NLI's 2016-2021 Strategy and in the digitisation of key material for the Decade of Centenaries. She said it was a further step in creating an exemplary 21st century National Library for Ireland, following last year's capital investment of €10 million in the Library's buildings.

“Given the National Library’s major engagement with Ireland 2016, we also welcome the announcement of funding of €5 million for implementation of the Culture 2025/ Ireland 2016 Legacy Programme. We look forward to continuing to work closely with the DAHG on this exciting development, and building on the success of this remarkable centenary year.”

More Irish, Canadian and US records join FindMyPast

This week's FindMyPast Friday has delivered the following new or updated collections of Irish interest to the database:

Easter Rising & Ireland Under Martial Law 1916-1921
https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B5-KQnqDiArgUzdnSFFIMnNWckE
Click image for larger view
This collection has been updated with some 48,000 additional previously classified records held by the National Archives in Kew, London. The transcriptions and images record life under martial law in Ireland following the Easter Rising of 1916 and include those who were killed, wounded, arrested, held in internment or tried by court martial.

Some of the records also relate to army and police searches of homes and workplaces for guns, ammunition and seditious material.

Irish Histories & Reference Guides
This collection consists of four 19th-century Irish histories and reference guides: the Album of Ireland, A Little Tour of Ireland, Ireland in Pictures and The Tourist's Picturesque Guide to Ireland.

Canada Census 1901
This census was taken on 31 March 1901 and records the details of more than 5million individuals. It was the first Canadian census to ask questions about religion, place of birth, citizenship and date of immigration. Search results include a transcript of the key details in the paper returns, plus a link to a digital image of the corresponding census form held at the Library and Archives Canada website, which will reveal further information about the household.

United States, Transatlantic Migration Indexes
This collection consists of 46 indexes containing more than 312,000 records of migrants from England, Scotland, Western Europe and Ireland between the late 1500s and early 1900s.

In addition, the following collections were added to FindMyPast's United States collection:

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Back To Our Past kicks off tomorrow in Dublin

http://backtoourpast.ie/
Download the show guide from the BTOP website
Back To Our Past (BTOP) returns to the Industries Hall in the RDS, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 tomorrow. It's Ireland's largest genealogy show and runs for three days (21–23 October, 11am–6pm).

In addition to the exhibitors – a mix of commerical suppliers of online records, dna kits and other genealogy products; national archives and institutions; genealogy and history societies; magazine publishers and other genealogy organisations – there is a programme of genealogy lectures running throughout each day. Most of the lectures are aimed at beginners but there are also some Question and Answer sessions for those who have already started their research and need some guidance.

In fact, the Industries Hall will be awash with people ready to give free advice to family historians of all levels. And there will, as always, be plenty of special offers and discounts on products and services of all kinds.

Running in tandem with the main genealogy show is the Genetic Genealogy Ireland conference, which not only presents a line-up of internationally renowned dna specialists as speakers, it also attracts a good number of genetic genealogists from around the world. While many of the lectures are aimed at an advanced audience, the schedule clearly identifies a number of talks as suitable for beginners and inbetweeners.

The schedules for both sets of lectures, as well as a list of exhibitors and a floorplan, can be found in the BTOP show-guide, which you can download from the organiser's site by clicking the image above.

The admission fee per day is €10; as of this morning you can still get half price tickets from the BTOP website.

Ancestry releases RIC Pensions Registers, 1873–1925

Part of the 1922 ledger entry for
RIC pensioner James Connor
Ancestry has added a fabulous collection from the National Archives in Kew, London: the Royal Irish Constabulary Pensions 1873-1925 collection.

It comprises some 130,000 records of pension payments made to retired officers of the mainly Roman Catholic police force. The records are searchable by name, but there's also a browse facility. The image to the right shows a fairly typical entry in the 1922 ledger, when men were noted as being either British enlistments or Irish enlistments, alongside which the payments made during the ledger year were recorded.

When retired officers died, the ledger notes the date of death and also provides names of widows and children, and the amount they were to receive in allowances. In some cases it notes what evidence of death – death certificate or probate, for example – was provided for approval of payments to dependants.

Some entries also note the emigration of a retired officer, and the new, overseas, place of payment.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Shane Wilson launches Registration District Map tool

http://www.swilson.info/regdistmap.php?gregdistid=111
Click to view page
Genealogist Shane Wilson has updated his website with a free widget that maps registration districts across the island.

The Registration District Map Browse tool allows researchers to view a Google map of registration districts with each of its respective dispensing districts highlighted with red markers, as well as its adjacent districts highlighted by yellow markers.

If you click the image to the right, you'll see the Registration District map for Mallow, chosen from a list of 19 districts in County Cork.

The map shows the centred location of the area's six dispensing offices/districts (Buttevant, Doneraile, Killawillin, Liscarroll, Mallow and Shanballymore), and the six Registration Districts surrounding the area (Kilmallock, Mitchelstown, Fermoy, Cork, Macroom and Kanturk). All of the markers are linked to the corresponding map, and, being a Google map, you can zoom in to see more localised placenames, or even switch to satellite view.

"Existing registration district maps usually show just the district borders and sometimes the county, but they don't make it easy to see the towns and settlements within or near the districts," Shane told Irish Genealogy News. "With this browse tool, the list and location of neighbouring districts can be helpful to researchers who may need to widen their search area."

In time, Shane is also hoping to overlay district borders onto his 1867 map of Ireland, and may incorporate it with the Registration District Map search options.

Check out the Registration District Map Browse tool here. It's another handy visual aid for researchers on the swilson.info website, which is continuing to grow at a good pace. Set aside some time, if you can, to explore all the free aids provided.

25 Irish Historic Towns Atlases to be released online

Representative section of Map 2, Tuam, 1839.
 In J.A. Claffey, Irish Historic Towns Atlas, no. 20,
 Tuam. Royal Irish Academy, Dublin, 2009
Here's an exciting development for anyone who loves maps and the history of our built heritage: the Irish Historic Towns Atlas (IHTA) project is to release online, free of charge, 25 of its atlases over the coming months. This decision follows the success of the pilot online release (IHTA Kilkenny) just over a year ago.

In each digital release, the cover, general abbreviations, select bibliography, essay, topographical information, maps 1, 2 and 3 as well as a growth map, will be word searchable and fully accessible to read online or to download.

The Irish Historic Towns Atlas (IHTA) is a research project of the Royal Irish Academy that aims to record the topographical development of a selection of Irish towns both large and small. It has been publishing maps and publications about Ireland's towns and cities since 1986, and is part of a wider European project that explores historical towns according to a fairly rigid formula of detailed enquiry and presentation. The 'formula' allows comparisons across the continent.

The resulting publications examine the topographical development of each town during key periods in their history.

Clues to the town's past religious life, defence and security, local and national government, industry, trade, transport, education and leisure habits are explored within the accompanying maps. Dense and accurate, these atlases reveal fascinating details about the physical environment and communities our ancestors lived in.

The first instalment of digitised atlases to be released are the towns of monastic origins, as below. In each case, the cover, general abbreviations, select bibliography, essay, topographical information, maps 1, 2 and 3 as well as a growth map, are freely available and word searchable to read online or to download.
  • IHTA no.1 Kildare, by J.H. Andrews
  • IHTA no.4 Kells, by Anngret Simms
  • IHTA no.8 Downpatrick, by R.H. Buchanan and Anthony Wilson
  • IHTA no.18 Armagh,by Catherine McCullough and W.H. Crawford
  • IHTA no.20 Tuam, by J.A. Claffey.
In addition, an excerpt on Irish towns of monastic origin from Reading the maps: a guide to the Irish Historic Towns Atlas by Jacinta Prunty and H.B. Clarke (Dublin, Royal Irish Academy, 2011) is also made available, here.

The remaining atlases will be launched online thematically, as follows:

– From mid-Nov 2016: Viking towns (Dublin, part I to 1610 and Limerick)
– From mid-Dec 2016: Anglo-Norman towns I (Carrickfergus, Athlone, Kilkenny and Fethard)
– From mid-Jan 2017: Anglo-Norman towns II (Mullingar, Trim, Carlingford and Sligo)
– From mid-Feb 2017: Towns of early modern and plantation origin (Bandon, Belfast, part I to
   1840, LondonDerry, Longford and Ennis)
– From mid-Mar 2017: Towns in the 18th century (Maynooth, Dundalk, Dublin part II, 1610–1756)
– From mid-Apr 2017: Towns in the 19th century (Bray, Belfast part II, 1840–1900)

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Project launched to mark centenary of Frongoch's 'University of Revolution' internment camp in Wales

http://inspiring-ireland.ie
The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) has announced a new collaborative heritage project – Frongoch and 1916: Recreating a Lost Landscape – to mark the centenary of the Frongoch internment camp in Wales. Following the Easter Rising of 1916, approximately 1,800 Irish prisoners were held there. Among its 'guests' was Michael Collins.

The project is a collaboration between the Digital Repository of Ireland, National Museum of Ireland, National Library of Ireland, National Museum Wales and National Library Wales and will feature a series of new curated exhibitions of digital cultural heritage objects from Irish and Welsh sources, including photographs, letters, official documents, prisoner 'autograph books' and artworks. The historical background to this part of Ireland’s path to independence will be contextualised through expert commentary from historians based in Ireland, England, and Wales.

These thematically-arranged exhibitions will be freely available on the DRI's InspiringIreland website and will be augmented by previously unseen memorabilia from private collections. The latter has been digitised at public memorabilia collection days held in Dublin, London and New York over the last couple of years.

Frongoch provides a fascinating window into 1916 because the Irish prisoners, their Welsh guards and local townspeople created a kinship during this short imprisonment, leading to a fount of stories and an array of artefacts that mark the brief period of the camp’s existence. The camp was emptied in December 1916, but not before becoming known as ‘ollscoil na réabhlóide’, the "University of Revolution" for the discussions and classes that had been a dominant feature of the incarcerated community.

The first exhibitions are expected to become available on InspiringIreland in early December. You can find out more about the Frongoch and 1916 project here.

If you haven't already had a look at this digital heritage platform, I'd recommend you find time to do so. It already includes seven 1916 exhibitions:

Women of the Rising
Communicating the Rising
Rising in the Regions
Leaders of the Rising
1916: The Rising and beyond
Impact of the Rising
Remembering the Rising

Monday, 17 October 2016

Latest updates to Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives

During the first two weeks of October, the Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives website has been updated with the addition of the records and photos detailed below. All entries have been donated by volunteers and are available free of charge on the site:

CAVAN Genealogy Archives
Headstones – Virginia Church of Ireland Graveyard

DUBLIN Genealogy Archives
Cruagh Headstones – Pt. 5, Rockbrook
Mount Jerome Headstones – Pts 139-140
Deansgrange Headstones – Assorted Photos (Partial); St. Mary's Section Pt. 12

MAYO Genealogy Archives
Headstones – New Castlebar Cemetery (Nuns + more)

TIPPERARY Genealogy Archives
Memorial Cards – Memorial Cards (Updated)

WICKLOW Genealogy Archives
Headstones – Greenane, Main Cemetery (Additional 50).

Registry of Deeds Index Project: latest update

http://irishdeedsindex.net/index.html
The Registry of Deeds Index Project, which is managed and run entirely by volunteer contributors, has been updated over the weekend.

It now holds 218,198 index entries extracted from 24,795 memorials of deeds, and they're all free to search.

The Big Houses and Landed Estates of Royal Meath

Lords, Land and Labourers – The Big Houses and Landed Estates of Royal Meath is a collection of articles written by historians and academics and edited by Brian Casey.

The 240-page paperback explores the long history of Meath from Hugh de Lacy’s effective conquest of Meath in the 1170s and the establishment of Anglo-Norman power, through to the early 20th-century demise of the landed aristocracy. It's a history that has been shaped by the struggle for land and the wealth and power that it cnfers.

Published by The History Press, the book will be officially launched tomorrow (18 October, 7:30pm) at Navan Library by Professor P J Duffy, Professor Emeritus of Geography at Maynooth University.

It is available to purchase via the publisher's website (€22.50, includes discount) here.

ISBN: 9781845880873


Ancestry adds several British Military indexes

Ancestry's UK & Ireland collection has seen the addition of indexes to four British military record-sets, as below. In each case, the original material is held by The National Archives in Kew, London.

UK, Military Deserters, 1812-1927: This index comprises nearly 303,000 entries extracted from lists of deserters published in the UK Police Gazette in 44 of the years between 1812 and 1827. Ancestry already holds these publications in a 'browse' collection, so researchers can search this new index for an individual record, note the publication date, and then browse to the full entry in the relevant edition.

UK, Royal Air Force Muster Roll, 1918This index holds some 195,000 records listing individuals by service number. It encompasses the RAF muster roll at the time of its creation on 1 April 1918. Images are available at Fold 3.

Naval and Military Courts Martial Registers, 1806-1930This index of more than 838,000 records contains various UK naval and military courts martial registers, including records from Naval, Field General, Military, District and General Courts covering the years 1806-1930 (see linked page for details of these courts and their registers). While there are inevitably many Irishmen recorded within the collection, the records also include nearly 500 court martials that took place in Ireland. Images are available at Fold 3.

British Army Lists, 1882-1962: This huge index holds nearly 2.5million records of individuals in the British Army. It doesn't include all possible years, but it is complete for the years spanning the 20th century's two World Wars. Images are available at Fold 3.

Irish genealogy & history events, 17–31 October

To end October: #IAMIRISH - Photography Exhibition plus a series of workshops and debates linking those of mixed race heritage to their Irish family ancestry. Host and venue: London Irish Centre, 50-52 Camden Square, London NW1 9XB. Exhibition marks Black History Month. Free. Details.

Monday 17 October: Genealogy information sessions, with Margaret Bonar and Elizabeth Craven. Morning and afternoon sessions. Morning venue: Raheny Library, Howth Rd, Dublin 5 from 10:30am to 11:45am. Afternoons: Donaghmede library, Donaghmede Shopping Centre, Dublin 13 from 2:30pm to 4pm. Free. Bookings to 085 1444883 or impossibleancestors@gmail.com.

Monday 17 October: Diary of a Farmer’s Wife (1796-97), with Jenny Cumming. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: Larne Bowling & Lawn Tennis Club, 112-120 Glenarm Road, Larne, BT40 1DZ. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 18 October: 100 years of division in Kingstown, 1816–1916, with Tom Conlon. Host: Foxrock Local History Club. Venue: Foxrock Parish Pastoral Centre, Foxrock, Co Dublin. Also, Frongoch, with Éanna De Búrca. All welcome. €5.

Tuesday 18 October: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Times: Researching Lisburn and the Great War, with Pat Geary. Host and venue: Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum (Assembly Room), Market Square, Lisburn BT28 1AG. 7pm. Free but booking essential: T: 028 9266 3377, E: ilc.reception@lisburncastlereagh.gov.uk.

Tuesday 18 October: Visiting the ‘Gibraltar of Ireland’: John Lee’s Observations on Cashel and Co. Tipperary in 1806–7, with Dr Angela Byrne. First of this winter's Tipperary People and Places Lecture series. Host: Tipperary Studies. Venue: The Gallery of the Source Library, Cathedral St, Thurles, Co Tipperary. 7:30pm. Free. All welcome.

Wednesday 19 October: Archaeolgical Finds from County Armagh: Evidence of Raiders, Traders or Invaders? with Dr Greer Ramsey. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place.

Wednesday 19 October:
17th-century sources for studying the Ulster Scots, Ulster English and Ulster Irish, with Dr William Roulston. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Armagh Branch. Venue: Bleary Community Centre, 1 Deans Road, Bleary, Craigavon, Co Armagh, BT66 8TD. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 19 October: The Battle of the Somme, with Paul Maguire. Host: Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Parish Centre, Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow. 8pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 20 October: Buried at Canada Farm: Researching Soldiers of the First World War, with Ian Montgomery. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Down and Ards Branch. Venue: 1st Bangor Presbyterian Church Hall, Main Street, Bangor BT20 4AG. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Thursday 20 October: Visit to PRONI. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: PRONI, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Titanic Quarter, Belfast BT3 9HQ. All welcome. Email Branch for details: larne@nifhs.org.

Thursday 20 October: Talking about a Revolution - 6th Galway International Heritage Conference. Talks, music, discussion. Host: Galway City Council. Venue: Harbour Hotel, New Dock Road, Galway City. All welcome. Booking essential: email elaine.coffey@galwaycity.ie.

Thursday 20 October: Research visit to PRONI. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: PRONI, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Titanic Quarter, Belfast BT3 9HQ. All welcome. Email Branch for details: Foyle@nifhs.org.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 October: The Great Canadian Genealogy Summit (CANGEN) at the Courtyard by Marriott, Brampton, Ontario, Canada. The Summit showcases Canadian genealogists who have an expertise in the record sets relating to the early settlers of Canada. Includes Ruth Blair on Irish records. Registration ($) required: Details.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 October: Back To Our Past and the Genetic Genealogy Ireland conference. Ireland's major genealogy exhibition and an international gathering of dna specialists. Venue: RDS, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. 11am to 6pm each day. €10 per day. For 50% discount offer and lecture programmes, see organiser's website: http://backtoourpast.ie/

Monday 24 October: The Famine in Toomevara 1845-52, with Helen O'Brien. Host: Dunkerrin Parish History Society. Venue: Obama Plaza, Junction 23, M7, Moneygall, Co. Offaly.  8:15pm. All welcome. Members free. Non-members €5.

Wednesday 26 October: The British Army presence in Dublin, with Henry Fairbrother. Host: Old Dublin Society. Venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. 6pm. All wlecome. Free.

Tuesday 25 October: Remembering Patriarchs and Patriots: When Kilrush Streets Had Two Names, by Eoin Shanahan. Host: Kilrush and District Historical Society. Venue: Teach Ceoil, Grace Street, Kilrush, Co Clare. 8pm. Free to members/€5 non-members. All welcome.

Wednesday 26 October: Remembering past futures: Commemoration and the roads untaken, with Dr Heather Laird. Last of the 'Reconsidering the Rising' Public Lectures series. Host: University College Cork. Venue: Ground Floor Lecture Theatre, Geology & Geography Building, off Donovan Road, UCC, Cork. Free. No booking required. All welcome.

Friday 28 October: Peasants, Prostitutes, King-killers and Rebels: Northside Dublin Histories, magazine launch by Frankie Gaffney. Host: Stoneybatter & Smithfield People's History Project. Venue: Capuchin Day Centre, 29 Bow Street, Dublin 7. 7:30pm. All welcome. Event also marks start of the Street Stories Festival.

Friday 28 October: Vizzards and Collicks, a day seminar exploring Hallowe'en folklore and customs. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2 (Seminar Room). 10am - 4.30pm. All welcome. Free. Details.

Saturday 29 October: Galway, from Medieval Borough to Modern City, with Paul Walsh, followed by launch of Irish Historic Towns Atlas - Galway. Venue: Galway City Museum, Spanish Parade, Galway. 2pm. Tickets are free but booking essential (museum@galwaycity.ie or 091-532460).

Saturday 29 October and Sunday 30 October: Street Stories Festival 2016. Lectures throughout Saturday afternoon at the Cobblestone pub (77 King St North, Dublin 7) and Generator Hostel (Smithfield Square, Dublin 7), music at Cobblestone on Saturday evening, walking tour Working Class History of Smithfield & Stoneybatter with Donal Fallon at 2pm on Sunday (outside Cobblestone). Details.

Monday 31 October: Bank holiday in Republic of Ireland. Halloween island-wide.


Friday, 14 October 2016

Be quick! 50% off at Irish News Archive until 17 Oct

https://www.irishnewsarchive.com/
Offer has expired
Irish Newspaper Archives is offering a whopping 50% discount to researchers who take out a subscription before the end of the weekend.

That's half-price access to a database of more than 60 national, regional and local newspaper titles spanning 1738 to the present. You can see the list of publications here.

To take advantage of the offer, you just need to select your chosen subscription and quote the coupon/voucher code TWET14OCT when you get to the payment page.

The offer will expire on Sunday 17 October, so don't hang about.

OFFER HAS EXPIRED.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Connections to Co. Carlow? See the new CHAS website

http://carlowhistorical.com/
The Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society (CHAS) has launched a new and much upgraded website: www.carlowhistorical.com/.

CHAS has been in existence since 1946, so it's one of oldest local history groups in Ireland, and this major upgrade shows it's keeping up with the times. As someone partly brought up in Carlow, I'm delighted to see so much historical material being made available on the site, in particular all the back issues of the Society's excellent journal, Carloviana. They're freely accessible right back to 1947 and include topics covering the history of the country from the Neolithic period to the present day. In addition to an issue-by-issue search facility, the entire library of journals has been indexed (pdf format) by topic and author, allowing me to quickly earmark those articles I'm most keen to explore.

Another outstanding innovation is the upload of podcasts of past lectures.

The schedule for the Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society lecture for the 2016-2017 period is also now available. Members and non-members are welcome to attend and admission is free.

Ulster Historical Foundation's book sale runs to 19 Oct

Ulster Historical Foundation
The Ulster Historical Foundation is holding a 'warehouse clearance sale' with 90 titles attracting big discounts. The line-up consists of books on Irish and Scots-Irish history, genealogy and topics of local interest.

You can view the full list of books here.

Bear in mind that postage and packaging costs will be added to your purchase order.

The sale will end on Wednesday 19 October, so don't delay.

UPDATE, 21 October: The UHF has extended the sale until 24 October, and added more titles: Details.

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Presbyterian Historical Society of Ireland: Library and Archive closures

The Presbyterian Historical Society of Ireland's Library and Archive will be closed on Wednesday 12 October and Thursday 13 October. As the Library and Archive does not open on Mondays and Fridays, it will re-open to researchers on Tuesday 18 October.

Monday, 10 October 2016

Irish genealogy and history events, 9-23 October

To end October: #IAMIRISH - Photography Exhibition plus a series of workshops and debates linking those of mixed race heritage to their Irish family ancestry. Host and venue: London Irish Centre, 50-52 Camden Square, London NW1 9XB. Exhibition marks Black History Month. Free. Details.

Monday 10 October: Family Heirlooms and Artefacts Night. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Newtownabbey Branch. Venue: Drama Theatre, Glengormley High School, 134 Ballyclare Road, Newtownabbey, Co Antrim BT36 5HP. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 11 October: Easter 1916 – Rising or Civil War, with Mal Murray. Host: Genealogical Society of Ireland. Venue: Dún Laoghaire Further Education Institute, Cumberland Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Donation €3. All welcome. 8pm.

Tuesday 11 October: The Story of the North Lisburn area, with Chris Scott. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Lisburn Branch. Venue: Bridge Community Centre, 50 Railway Street, Lisburn, BT28 1XP. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 12 October: Steelboys, Oakboys and Bad Boys: the troubled County of Armagh, 1750 to 1800, with Dr Eoin Magennis. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place. Rearranged for 9 November.

Wednesday 12 October Buried in the archives: Funeral undertakers in Dublin 1750–2000, with guest speakers Dr Lisa Marie Griffith and Dr Ciarán Wallace. Host: The Old Dublin Society. Venue: Dublin City Library & Archive, Pearse Street, Dublin 2. All welcome. Free. 6pm.

Thursday 13 October: WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience, an exhibition tour. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, 2/3 Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Booking is not required. All welcome. 2pm.

Thursday 13 October: Irish Round Towers, with Professor Tadhg O’Keeffe. Part of the Red Line Book Festival. Host: South Dublin Libraries Local Studies. Venue: Clondalkin Civic Offices, Ninth Lock Road, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 7pm. Free, but need to book: (0)1 4627477.

Thursday 13 October: The Clogherney Boys in World War 1: A mid-Tyrone story, with Robert Corbett. Host: Western Front Association. Venue: RONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 6:30pm. £4 donation requested. All welcome. No booking.

Friday 14 and Saturday 15 October: Warp and weft – A two day exploration of diasporic links, ancestral entanglements, revolution and war. Hosts: Cavan Ireland 2016 Committee, Cavan Genealogy and the Mellon Centre for Migration Studies Omagh. Venue: Friday 14th: Belturbet, Co Cavan, and Saturday 15th: Mellon Centre, Omagh, Co Tyrone. All welcome. Details of programme, fees and booking.

Friday 14 and Saturday 15 October: A safe place for ships - a 2nd annual Irish maritime heritage conference exploring Ireland's sea-going past. Topics include piracy, fishing communities, smuggling, ports, boat-building, Lusitania, naval warfare etc. Organised by the School of History, University College Cork. Fre. No registration required. Details.

Saturday 15 October: Resources available at the Catholic Archdiocese of Brooklyn, with Joseph Coen. Host: Irish Family History Forum. Venue: Bethpage Library. Meeting starts 10am. 47 Powell Ave, Bethpage, New York, USA. Details.

Saturday 15 October: The Role of Women in 1916 with specific focus on Cumann na mBan - a day conference. Host and venue: Ballinasloe Library, Society Street, Ballinasloe, Co. Galway. 10am to 5pm. Lectures, exhibitions. Free. Need to book. Details and booking (pdf 1.7Mb)

Saturday 15 October: Ireland: Church, Famine & Immigration - a full day seminar. Host: Genealogical Society of Queensland. Venue: Queen Alexandra Conference Centre, Old Cleveland Road, Coorparoo, Queensland, Australia. 8:30am to 3:15pm. Morning tea and lunch included. See society's website for costs and booking details.

Monday 17 October: Genealogy information sessions, with Margaret Bonar and Elizabeth Craven. Morning and afternoon sessions. Morning venue: Raheny Library, Howth Rd, Dublin 5 from 10:30am to 11:45am. Afternoons: Donaghmede library, Donaghmede Shopping Centre, Dublin 13 from 2:30pm to 4pm. Free. Bookings to 085 1444883 or impossibleancestors@gmail.com.

Monday 17 October: Diary of a Farmer’s Wife (1796-97), with Jenny Cumming. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: Larne Bowling & Lawn Tennis Club, 112-120 Glenarm Road, Larne, BT40 1DZ. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 18 October: 100 years of division in Kingstown, 1816–1916, with Tom Conlon. Host: Foxrock Local History Club. Venue: Foxrock Parish Pastoral Centre, Foxrock, Co Dublin. Also, Frongoch, with Éanna De Búrca. All welcome. €5.

Tuesday 18 October: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Times: Researching Lisburn and the Great War, with Pat Geary. Host and venue: Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum (Assembly Room), Market Square, Lisburn BT28 1AG. 7pm. Free but booking essential: T: 028 9266 3377, E: ilc.reception@lisburncastlereagh.gov.uk.

Tuesday 18 October: Visiting the ‘Gibraltar of Ireland’: John Lee’s Observations on Cashel and Co. Tipperary in 1806–7, with Dr Angela Byrne. First of this winter's Tipperary People and Places Lecture series. Host: Tipperary Studies. Venue: The Gallery of the Source Library, Cathedral St, Thurles, Co Tipperary. 7:30pm. Free. All welcome.

Wednesday 19 October: Archaeolgical Finds from County Armagh: Evidence of Raiders, Traders or Invaders? with Dr Greer Ramsey. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place.

Wednesday 19 October:
17th-century sources for studying the Ulster Scots, Ulster English and Ulster Irish, with Dr William Roulston. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Armagh Branch. Venue: Bleary Community Centre, 1 Deans Road, Bleary, Craigavon, Co Armagh, BT66 8TD. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Wednesday 19 October: The Battle of the Somme, with Paul Maguire. Host: Carlow Historical and Archaeological Society. Venue: Parish Centre, Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow. 8pm. Free. All welcome.

Thursday 20 October: Visit to PRONI. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Larne Branch. Venue: PRONI, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Titanic Quarter, Belfast BT3 9HQ. All welcome. Email Branch for details: larne@nifhs.org.

Thursday 20 October: Talking about a Revolution - 6th Galway International Heritage Conference. Talks, music, discussion. Host: Galway City Council. Venue: Harbour Hotel, New Dock Road, Galway City. All welcome. Booking essential: email elaine.coffey@galwaycity.ie.

Thursday 20 October: Research visit to PRONI. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: PRONI, 2 Titanic Boulevard, Titanic Quarter, Belfast BT3 9HQ. All welcome. Email Branch for details: Foyle@nifhs.org.

Thursday 20 October: Buried at Canada Farm: Researching Soldiers of the First World War, with Ian Montgomery. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, North Down and Ards Branch. Venue: 1st Bangor Presbyterian Church Hall, Main Street, Bangor BT20 4AG. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 October: The Great Canadian Genealogy Summit (CANGEN) at the Courtyard by Marriott, Brampton, Ontario, Canada. The Summit showcases Canadian genealogists who have an expertise in the record sets relating to the early settlers of Canada. Includes Ruth Blair on Irish records. Registration ($) required: Details.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 October: Back To Our Past and the Genetic Genealogy Ireland conference. Ireland's major genealogy exhibition and an international gathering of dna specialists. Venue: RDS, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. 11am to 6pm each day. €10 per day. For 50% discount offer and lecture programmes, see organiser's website: http://backtoourpast.ie/


Friday, 7 October 2016

Free access weekend: Ancestry's Ireland & UK records

http://www.tkqlhce.com/click-5737308-10819001-1408706803000?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ancestry.co.uk%2Fcs%2Ffree-access
Click image for free access
Ancestry UK is offering free access to its entire UK and Ireland collection this weekend. You can see all of the databases included here.

To take advantage of the offer you need a registered account. If you don't already have one, you'll find it's easy enough to set up, and you don't have to give a load of personal information (only your email address, to which a password will be sent). No financial information is requested. Just click the image above to get access to the set up page.

Access to the records in the featured collections will be free until 23:59 IST/BST (that is Dublin and London time) on Sunday 9 October.

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Medical ancestors? Ancestry has six new collections

Ancestry has uploaded six new databases that will be of interest to researchers with medical ancestors. I haven't time this morning for an in-depth exploration of the new records, all of which come from the Wellcome Library, but each collection includes a good number of entries relating to people born in Ireland and/or resident in Ireland.

UK & Ireland, Medical Directories, 1845-1942
Although it was not compulsory for a doctor to be listed, these Medical Directories (of doctors registered with the Royal College of General Practitioners) listed most of the practising and retired doctors in the UK, Ireland and British colonies. While the format of the directories changed over the years, all entries provide details of addresses, qualifications, places of training, places of work and any publications.

UK, Medical and Dental Students Registers, 1882-1937
This set of Registers was compiled by the General Medical Council and record all students of Medicine and Dentistry studying in the United Kingdom and Ireland during the stated years. The information provided includes student names, place and date of preliminary examination to enter medical school, date of registration for study, and the place and date of starting their professional training. Some of the registers comprise only medical students while others include both medical and dental students within the same volume.

UK, The Midwives Roll, 1904-1959
The first Midwives Act of 1902 came into force in 1903 and heralded the establishment of the Central Midwives Board for England and Wales. The Central Midwives Board was responsible for the regulation of the certification and examination of midwives, admission to the Roll of Midwives and annual publication of the Roll and regulation of the practice of midwives. Records include details of the individual's name, address and date of enrollment.

UK, Dentist Registers, 1879-1942
These registers record individuals practicing under the License in Dental Surgery (from 1860) attained from the Royal College of Surgeons. It records the name, dental practice address, date of registration and qualification of every practitioner. (If you can't find your dentist ancestor in these registers, bear in mind that the Dentists' Act of 1921, which made registration mandatory, many dentists practiced unregistered and therefore would not have been included.)

UK, Physiotherapy and Masseuse Registers, 1895–1980
This collection holds a number of registers relating to masseuses, physiotherapists, bio-physical assistants, and medical gymnasts. The records detail the members of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

UK, Roll of the Indian Medical Service, 1615 -1930
The Indian Medical Service traces its roots to individual surgeons aboard ships bound for India from Europe during the 1600s and 1700s. Many of those appearing in the early years of these rolls were not commissioned officers but warrant officers who served as Surgeon's Mates (Assistant Surgeons). Where available, the information provided in the registers for each name include date and place of birth; date of service; date of death; and date and place of burial.

Monday, 3 October 2016

IGRS Early Irish Birth Index doubles in size

In the latest update to its exclusive Birth, Marriage and Death Indexes, the Irish Genealogical Research Society has added some 10,000 new entries to its Birth Index. This index, which draws on entries from lesser-known and underused sources, all pre-dating civil registration of birth, now tots up to 20,000 records.

Among the sources used for this latest update are an Index of Nuns, a 'census' of Roman Catholics in Kirkinriola parish in County Antrim, and emigration records.

While only members of the IGRS can access the full Early Irish Birth Index database, non-members can make a free but restricted 'surname-only' search of the Index.

Full details can be found on the Society's website: IrishAncestors.ie.

National Library of Ireland: delayed opening Thursday 6 October

The National Library of Ireland (NLI) has advised that it will open late on Thursday 6 October in order to facilitate a staff development meeting. Doors will open at 11am.

The delayed opening will apply across all NLI sites and services, including the free Genealogy Advisory Service in Kildare Street.

Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives: latest additions

Byrne family of Bray Head. Photo courtesy 
 of Joyce Tunstead and IGP Archives.
Click for larger view. 
There's a nice mix of records and headstone photos in the latest update from Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives, all added in the second half of September:

DOWN Genealogy Archives - Miscellaneous
Land leases from Bangor Co. Down -1835

DUBLIN Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Mount Jerome Cemetery, Parts 135 - 138

SLIGO Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Sligo Cemetery, Old Part, Section 4
Sligo Cemetery, Middle Part E, section A-J

TIPPERARY Genealogy Archives - Miscellaneous
Evictions - 1849
Licenced for sale of Spirits - 1845

WEXFORD Genealogy Archives - Memorial Cards
Memorial Cards - Updated

WICKLOW Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Little Bray; St. Peter's Old Cemetery, Pt 3

Irish genealogy and history events, 3-16 October

Monday 3 October: The school and the home: boarding schools in Dublin 1800-1860, with Mary Hatfield. What was it like to be a student at boarding school in the early nineteenth-century. What did students study and why? Part of the Dublin Festival of History. Venue: Ballymun Library, Main Street, Ballymun, Dublin 11. Free. 6:30pm. Booking required. Details.

Monday 3 October: History, Memory & the Archives: sources for the Revolutionary period in Military Archives, with Commandant Stephen MacEoin. Part of the Dublin Festival of History 2016 programme. Venue: Auditorium, Guard Room, Cathal Brugha Barracks, Rathmines, Dublin 6. 3pm. Free. Early booking recommended, to militaryarchives@defenceforces.ie.

Monday 3 October: History of Ballyarnett Racecourse, with Thomas Deeney. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Foyle Branch. Venue: Derry Central Library, 35 Foyle Street, Londonderry, BT48 6AL. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 4 October: Visit to Heritage Services, Central Library. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Belfast Branch. Venue: Heritage Services, 2nd Floor, Central Library, Royal Avenue, Belfast, BT1 1EA. 2:30pm. Email Branch: belfast@nifhs.org.

Tuesday 4 October: The Irish soldier in 1916, with Lar Joye. Host and venue: Irish Linen Centre and Lisburn Museum (Assembly Room), Market Square, Lisburn BT28 1AG. 7pm. Free but booking essential: T: 028 9266 3377, E: ilc.reception@lisburncastlereagh.gov.uk.

Wednesday 5 October: Visit to the LDS Family History Centre, with Keith Wright. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Tyrone Branch. Venue: Foyle Northern Ireland FHC, Racecourse Road, LondonDerry, BT48 7RA. 7pm. Email Branch: tyrone@nifhs.org.

Wednesday 5 October: Halloween in Ireland, history and traditions, with Dr Deirdre O'Byrne. Host: Birmingham Irish Heritage Group. Venue: Irish Centre Birmingham, 14-20 High Street, Digbeth, Birmingham, UK B12 0LN. 7–9pm. Details.

Wednesday 5 October: ‘From Jangling steeples to Hill-Rimmed Houses’: the Buildings of County Armagh, with Dr Kevin Mulligan. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place

Wednesday 5 October: Launch of #IAMIRISH - Photography Exhibition. Formalities by Ambassador Dan Mulhall. Launch will also announce a series of workshops and debates linking those of mixed race heritage to their Irish family ancestry. Host and venue: London Irish Centre, 50-52 Camden Square, London NW1 9XB. Exhibition marks Black History Month. 7pm. Free. Details. Exhibition to continue to 31 October.

Thursday 6 October: The archaeological landscape of the War of Independence and The Civil War, with Damian Shiels. Host and Venue: National Museum of Ireland Archaeology. Ceramics Room, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. 1pm to 1:45pm. All welcome. Free but need to book by email to educationarch@museum.ie or telephone to (0)1 648 6334.

Friday 7 October: A history of eating and drinking, with Kim Mawwhinney. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. Free. 1pm. Booking recommended: T: 028 9053 4800, E: proni@communities-ni.gov.uk.

Saturday 8 October: The National Library's History & Heritage, an introduction to the Library's rich architectural history and the Signatories exhibition, plus a guided tour of the Reading Room.  Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Admission free. All welcome. 1pm. No need to book.

Saturday 8 October: Irish Ancestry One-Day Conference, with lectures from Maggie Loughran and Chris Paton. Host: Lancashire Family History and Heraldry Society. Venue: Oswaldtwistle Civic Arts Centre, 155 Union Road, Oswaldtwistle, Lancashire, UK, BB5 3HZ. Tickets £20, includes buffet Lunch. Details.

Saturday 8 October: 19th-century Irish genealogy research: What’s available and how to find it - an Intermediate level workshop with Miles Davenport. Host and venue: McClelland Irish Centre (Norton Room), 1106 North Central Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85004, USA. 10:30am to 12:30pm. Non-Members: $20/Members: $15. Need to register. Details.

Saturday 8 October: Famine and eviction in the Irish Midlands, a morning seminar. Hosts: Offaly Historical Society and Irish Newspaper Archives. Venue: Offaly History Centre, Bury Quay, Tullamore. 9:30am to 1pm. Details (Word doc).

Saturday 8 October: Mayo Heritage & Diaspora Day: From Sackville Street to the Somme. Host: Mayo Genealogy Group. Venue: National Museum of Ireland – Country Life, Turlough, Mayo. Guest speakers from the Jackie Clark Library and GMIT Castlebar will discuss the sources available for Mayo research, and much more. 11am–3:30pm. Free. Need to book by email: educationtph@museum.ie or telephone +353 (0) 94 9031751.

Monday 10 October: Family Heirlooms and Artefacts Night. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Newtownabbey Branch. Venue: Drama Theatre, Glengormley High School, 134 Ballyclare Road, Newtownabbey, Co Antrim BT36 5HP. 7pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 11 October:
The Story of the North Lisburn area, with Chris Scott. Host: North of Ireland Family History Society, Lisburn Branch. Venue: Bridge Community Centre, 50 Railway Street, Lisburn, BT28 1XP. 7:30pm. All welcome.

Tuesday 11 October: Easter 1916 – Rising or Civil War, with Mal Murray. Host: Genealogical Society of Ireland. Venue: Dún Laoghaire Further Education Institute, Cumberland Street, Dún Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. Donation €3. All welcome. 8pm.

Wednesday 12 October Steelboys, Oakboys and Bad Boys: the troubled County of Armagh, 1750 to 1800, with Dr Eoin Magennis. Part of the County Armagh Lecture Series. Host and venue: PRONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 1pm. Free. Booking recommended - email proni@communities-ni.gov.uk to secure your place.

Thursday 13 October: WWI Ireland: Exploring the Irish Experience, an exhibition tour. Host and venue: National Library of Ireland, 2/3 Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Booking is not required. All welcome. 2pm.

Thursday 13 October: Irish Round Towers, with Professor Tadhg O’Keeffe. Part of the Red Line Book Festival. Host: South Dublin Libraries Local Studies. Venue: Clondalkin Civic Offices, Ninth Lock Road, Clondalkin, Co Dublin. 7pm. Free, but need to book: (0)1 4627477.

Thursday 13 October: The Clogherney Boys in World War 1: A mid-Tyrone story, with Robert Corbett. Host: Western Front Association. Venue: RONI, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. 6:30pm. £4 donation requested. All welcome. No booking.

Friday 14 and Saturday 15 October: Warp and weft – A two day exploration of diasporic links, ancestral entanglements, revolution and war. Hosts: Cavan Ireland 2016 Committee, Cavan Genealogy and the Mellon Centre for Migration Studies Omagh. Venue: Friday 14th: Belturbet, Co Cavan, and Saturday 15th: Mellon Centre, Omagh, Co Tyrone. All welcome. Details of programme, fees and booking.

Friday 14 and Saturday 15 October: A safe place for ships - a 2nd annual Irish maritime heritage conference exploring Ireland's sea-going past. Topics include piracy, fishing communities, smuggling, ports, boat-building, Lusitania, naval warfare etc. Organised by the School of History, University College Cork. Fre. No registration required. Details.

Saturday 15 October: Resources available at the Catholic Archdiocese of Brooklyn, with Joseph Coen. Host: Irish Family History Forum. Venue: Bethpage Library. Meeting starts 10am. 47 Powell Ave, Bethpage, New York, USA. Details.

Saturday 15 October: Ireland: Church, Famine & Immigration - a full day seminar. Host: Genealogical Society of Queensland. Venue: Queen Alexandra Conference Centre, Old Cleveland Road, Coorparoo, Queensland, Australia. 8:30am to 3:15pm. Morning tea and lunch included. See society's website for costs and booking details.