Thursday, 19 July 2018

New book: Children and the Great Hunger in Ireland

New from Cork University Press is Children and the Great Hunger in Ireland, which explores the impact of The Famine on children and young adults, one of the most vulnerable groups in terms of disease and mortality in any sustained period of food hunger.

Published by Cork University Press
Published by Cork University Press
The 328-page paperback is edited by Christine Kinealy, Jason King and Gerard Moran. It takes a multi-disciplinary approach to the subject and includes research contributions from leading scholars on both sides of the Atlantic.

The early chapters demonstrate how government relief, most notably the Poor Law, failed to make special provision or protection for children, treating them as being just as ‘undeserving’ of assistance as adults. A consequence of this approach was exceptionally high child mortality, as the chapter, based on a study of the skeletons in the Kilkenny workhouse grave, shows. Other chapters focus on emigration, the loss of language, the maintaining of an Irish (Catholic) identity, folk memories, children’s literature, and writing a Famine curriculum.

In keeping with its multi-disciplinary approach, Children and the Great Hunger opens and concludes with reflections by award-winning Irish authors, Marita Conlon-McKenna and Michael Collins.

ISBN 9780990468691. Price €25.00 / £21.95.

FindMyPast and Living DNA announce partnership

Family history database provider FindMyPast has announced a new partnership with DNA test supplier Living DNA. DNA tests, which claim to provide twice the detail of other ancestry tests with an ability to identify DNA from 80 world regions (including 21 in Britain and Ireland) are now available to purchase at costing £99; costing US$99. (The kits don't currently appear to be on sale via or

Co-branded kits will be launched when the new integrated FindMyPast and Living DNA service is introduced later in the year.

Wednesday, 18 July 2018

FamilySearch adds C19th Irish & British Family Notices

Family Search has uploaded a collection of  'Family Notices' of births, marriages and deaths reported in a selection of 19th-century publications in the online British Newspaper Archive (BNA). The index to the Notices holds some 5.9million entries.

Click for enlarged view
Click for enlarged view
As far as I can tell, more than 103,000 records relate to people connected with Ireland in some way. The Irish newspaper titles appear to be from Belfast, Cork and Sligo.

Images of the Family Notices can be accessed online only by LDS members or at an LDS Family History Center. Those researchers who are not LDS Members or able to visit an FHC may find the indexed data provides them with good information, even if it doesn't provide source details. See the sample to the right.

The Family Notices record-set joins a sister collection of 1.8million 'Obituaries' printed in newspaper titles held in the BNA.

It joined Family Search in March, and a quick search of the index suggests about 7,000 of the records relate to people with Irish connections. This seems a surprisingly small proportion, so don't take it as certain.

The two collections have been imaged and digitised in a collaborative project with FindMyPast.

FindMyPast removes its new indexes to GRO registers

Both indexes have been removed from FindMyPast
Regular readers of Irish Genealogy News will remember that, back in early March, FindMyPast released their 'enhanced' indexes to the General Register Office's births and marriages registers on

As my original blogpost relates, the collections were launched with limited information about the records they contained, and it was soon clear to most people who used them, that the indexes were not complete. It was Genealogist John Grenham who spent time to work through the indexes in May to find that the records of 58 registration districts were missing - see his blogpost FindMyPast’s unmarked elephant traps.

Around the middle of June I noticed the two indexes had quietly been removed from FindMyPast. I had rather a lot on at the time and I'm sorry to say that I completely forgot to update this blog about it. In fact, it went right out of my head until last weekend. Apologies.

Let's hope that when the indexes return they will be complete, and with a researcher-friendly explanation of their contents.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Glasnevin Trust's online records shop hit by tech issue

Glasnevin Cemetery, Dublin
If you've recently been trying to access online burial records for Glasnevin Cemetery or any of the burial grounds managed by Glasnevin Trust, you may have run into a problem when purchasing credits.

The Trust's online shop is currently unable to process genealogy credit purchases from brand-new customers; it's sign-up form is unavailable.

Existing customers using their registered username and password are not affected by the issue and can purchase credits in the regular way.

The tech team is working on the problem and hopes to resolve it soon.

(Thanks to John Brennan for notifying me of the issue.)

UPDATE, 17 July: It seems the problem may be affecting all customers, even those who are already registered customers.

Monday, 16 July 2018

Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives: mid-July update

Please see below the files and photos contributed to Ireland Genealogy Projects Archives by volunteers in the first half of July. All are free to view.
Holy Trinity Church of Ireland churchyard,
Dromore,Co Tyrone. Photo courtesy of Robyn
Ritchie and IGPArchives. Click for larger view.

FERMANAGH Genealogy Archives - Church Records
Aghadrumsee; Baptisms & Births, Clones Parish, 1836-1843 & 1844-1853

MEATH Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Churchtown Cemetery, Dunderry (transcription added)

MAYO Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Islandeady Graveyard Part 4 (set complete)

TIPPERARY Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Borrisoleigh, Glenkeen Graveyard (PDF)

TIPPERARY Genealogy Archives - Photo
Photo of LADLEY family from Clonmel

TYRONE Genealogy Archives - Headstones
Holy Trinity (CoI) Graveyard, Dromore.

Irish family history and heritage events, 16-29 July

Monday 16 July: NLI Reading Room and Manuscript Room closed. Venue: National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. On-going Monday closures are to facilitate extensive redevelopment of the premises. All other services/exhibitons/cafe, including Genealogy Advisory Service, operate as normal. Details.

Monday 16 July: Delayed opening at the National Archives of Ireland, Bishop Street, Dublin 8. The Reading Room will not open until 11:30am.

Wednesday 18 July: 'Boy with a Squirrel’ – The lives and the genealogy behind the painting, with Bob Frewen. Host: Irish Genealogical Research Society Ireland Branch. Venue: Helen Roe Theatre, Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 63 Merrion Square South, Dublin 2. 6:45pm. All welcome. Members free. Non-members €5. Details

Wednesday 18 July: The Vikings in Kerry: The Archaeology of Cloghermore Cave, with Francesca Callaghan. Hill of Tara Summer lecture series. Host and venue: Hill of Tara Visitor Centre (St Patrick's church), Dunsany, Navan, Co. Meath. 8pm. Free. Seating limited so arrive in good time.

Thursday 19 July: Mother Jones (1837-1930), Cork-born American labour activist, with Dr Rosemary Feurer. Part of the Rebel Women of the 20th Century lecture series. Host and venue: GPO Witness Visitor Centre, GPO, O'Connell Street, Dublin 1. Free. 5:45pm. All welcome but advance booking essential.

Friday 20 July: Coming Home: Art and the Great Hunger, exhibition opens. The exhibition, which features a collection from Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum at Quinnipiac University, Connecticut, USA, will run to 13 October. Venue: Uillin: West Cork Arts Centre, Skibbereen, Co Cork. Open Monday to Saturday, 10am to 4:45pm. Details.

Saturday 21 July: Field Marshall Haig, with Gerry White. Host: Western Front Association (Dublin Branch). Venue: NMI Collins Barracks, Benburb St, Arran Quay, Dublin 7. 2:30pm. Admission €3 on the door. All welcome.

Saturday 21 July: The O’Neill regiments, with Pádraig Lenihan, followed by Inconsequential happenstance—Aughrim’s strategic contexts, with Mike McNally. Host: Aughrim 1691 Remembered. Venue: Aughrim Visitors Centre, Aughrim village, Ballinasloe, Co Galway. All welcome. Admission €10.

Saturday 21 July: Nostalgia, Memory and Debris: the social and historical significance of Ireland's abandoned schoolhouses, with Enda O'Flaherty. Host and Venue: NMI Country Life, Turlough Park, Castlebar, Co Mayo. Free. 2pm. Booking required 084 9031751 or

Wednesday 25 July: Irish family history assistance in the Library. Host: Genealogical Society of Victoria. Venue: GSV Library, Level 6, 85 Queen Street, Melbourne, Australia. Free for members. $20 non-members. 10am to 4pm. Consultations: One-hour appointments with a research consultant also available. See details.

Wednesday 25 July: Early Irish crosses, with Peter Harbison. Host: Hill of Tara Lecture Series/OPW. Venue: Hill of Tara Visitor Centre, St Patrick's Church, Dunsany, Navan, Co. Meath. All welcome. 8pm. Free. Limited seating so arrive in good time.

Thursday 26 July: Using family and local history resources online, a two-hour workshop. Host and venue: Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, Titanic Boulevard, Belfast. The workshop starts with an orientation tour of PRONI, followed by an introduction to searching resources online. 11am to 1pm. Free but registration required. These events usually book up very quickly.

Thursday 26 July: The Great Famine, a historical walking tour of Skibereen, with Philip O'Regan. Host: Skibbereen Heritage Centre. Meet at the Courthouse in North Street, Skibbereen, Co Cork, at 1830 and finish at Skibbereen Heritage Centre at 2000. The talk is free of charge but places are limited so booking is essential. Tel: 028 40900. Details.

Thursday 26 July: Skibbereen's Soup Kitchen, a new exhibition. Venue: Exterior of the Steam Mill Building in Ilen Street, Skibbereen, County Cork. Formal launch by the Mayor of Cork, Patrick Gerard Murphy. All welcome to the launch. Sample 'Soyer's Soup'. No booking required. 8pm. Free.

Friday, 13 July 2018

Registry of Deeds to partially reopen on 16 July

Public access to the Registry of Deeds in Dublin has been severely restricted over the past three weeks due to essential maintenance work being carried out on the building. It was expected to fully re-open on Monday 16 July.

There's some good news and some not so good news.

While the Transcribing Room, which contains transcripts from 1708-1832 will reopen on Monday, the Transcribing Room Vault, which contains transcripts from 1896 to 1910, will remain closed until further notice.

The Genealogy Event, Adare, Co Limerick, 31 Aug-1 Sept, an online magazine aimed at Irish-Americans, has acquired The Genealogy Event, an annual 2-day Irish family history and DNA conference held in Adare in County Limerick. It will be held on Friday 31 August and Saturday 1 September.

Presentations include researching religious ancestors, Irish placenames, photo history, an overview on DNA, the Ordnance Survey of Ireland, emigration records, visiting key research repositories in Ireland, using Roots Ireland, researching common surnames, and researching across Irish government bodies.

The Friday will offer a level one DNA bootcamp ideally suited to those that have just received their DNA results and are ready to learn how to use them; Saturday sees a level two DNA bootcamp suited to those seeking advanced research techniques and result analytics.

One-to-one consultations will also be available.

The conference was founded and run by BBNY Group and has been held each summer since 2014. Under its new management, this year’s event returns to the Fitzgerald's Woodlands House Hotel in Adare. As previously, special events are held on the eve of the conference and on the Friday and Saturday evenings, providing opportunities for delegates to connect with other researchers in a more relaxed, social atmosphere.

Sponsors include Ireland of the Welcomes and The Irish Family History Foundation. The latter organisation, which manages a network of heritage centres across the island, will have three representatives presenting talks.

You can download the 2018 conference and social programme from, while tickets for the special events, conference days + lunch, DNA bootcamps, and consultations can be purchased at EventBrite.

Heatwave reveals Late Neolithic henge in County Meath

The entrance to the passage and chamber at
nearby Newgrange, which was built 3,200 years
ago by Stone Age farmers and is aligned with
the sun at the Winter Solstice.
After several weeks of rare heatwave, Ireland's nearly scorched landscape has revealed the outline of a c2,500BC henge close to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Newgrange in County Meath.

It was discovered by a drone taking aerial images of fields in the Boyne Valley and has been described as 'a very significant find' by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

It was also a timely find; with the weather expected to see a more typical summer mix in the next week, all visual evidence of the discovery will soon be lost.

Learn more about the discovery, and view the drone footage, in this news report from RTÉ, Ireland's national public service broadcaster.