Tuesday 1 July 2014

Church of Ireland releases Parish Registers list online

As promised last month, the Representative Church Body Library (RCBLibrary), the main repository for the written heritage of the Church of Ireland (CofI), has released an updated list of CofI parish registers. The new list has been painstakingly prepared in an extensive project by amending and cross-checking the lists of baptism, marriage and burial registers across the island and has been achieved through collaboration with the National Archives of Ireland.

The new list, which can be downloaded, free of charge, from the Archive section of the Church of Ireland website is arranged alphabetically by parish name (with additionally parishes within the main cities alphabetically listed under the name of each city). Furthermore, the list has been colour–coded as far as records in the Republic of Ireland are concerned for the first time, making it easier to see at a glance what has been transferred to the RCB Library; the small number of collections available in the National Archives of Ireland; what was destroyed; and finally what collections continue to be held in local custody.

It may be considered to be definitive as far as registers in the Republic of Ireland are concerned. The RCBLibrary will continue to work with the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (PRONI) in Belfast to account for materials available in microfilm and in original format available through that repository for parishes in the nine counties comprising Ulster.

The electronic list will now be maintained, amended and updated on a regular basis by the RCBLibrary and will be permanently available on the Church of Ireland website where it will be extensively consulted by Irish family historians.

Many thanks to all concerned for this work. The list will be a great boon to genealogists.