Wednesday 2 August 2017

IGRS launches 1775 Dublin Directory database

The Irish Genealogical Research Society (IGRS) has launched another online resource. This time it's a database index to Wilson's Dublin Directory, forming part of the 1775 edition of The Treble Almanac.

As the name suggests, The Treble Almanac is comprised of three separate directories:
  • The first is John Watson Stewart's Almanac, which notes a wide variety of information relating to Ireland, encompassing details about mail and stage coach timetables, establishment lists for the army and navy, schools etc.
  • The second is the English Court Registry, listing royalty, nobility, parliamentarians, military and naval lists, the civil establishment and judiciary lists etc;
  • The third, and by far the most useful to genealogists, is Wilson's Dublin Directory. It includes a very comprehensive list of Dublin's barristers, attorneys, medical practitioners, merchants, pawnbrokers, grocers, shoemakers, tanners, upholsters, auctioneers, brewers, painters, ironmongers, drapers, butchers, bakers, tailors etc. It also includes a list of the capital city's streets, lanes and alleyways.
In the new online database, entries include the first name and surname of the individual, their occupation and street address, and provide a link to a map taken from the Statistical Survey of the County Dublin, (Dublin, 1802). There are just over 3,600 entries available to search.

This edition of the Almanac is dated a year before the American Declaration of Independence in 1776; interestingly, the list of attorneys and barristers notes several who had qualified in Ireland but then migrated to the North American colonies. Among them are barristers Thomas Knox Gordon, who qualified in 1755 and by 1775 was the Chief Justice of North Carolina, and Edward Savage, who qualified in 1760 and subsequently became the Second Justice of North Carolina. There are also references to Canada, eg barrister Jonathan Belcher, who qualified in Michaelmas term 1741 and by 1775 was the Chief Justice of Nova Scotia.

In launching the new resource, Steven Smyrl, the Society's chairman, said: "This is yet another valuable resource being added to the IGRS website. Trade directories allow family historians to quickly identify where in a large town their merchant or tradesman ancestor lived and worked, and thus open up other relevant material such as guild records, parish registers, land deeds and freeman rolls.

"I would like to thank Nick Reddan, the Society's webmaster, for his dedication in compiling this valuable database. Nick is based in Australia, proving that distance is no barrier to assisting the Society through volunteer indexing and transcribing." Everyone can access the free-to-all database, which includes each resident’s surname, occupation and address. However, only members can see first names.

The 1775 Dublin Directory can be searched here.