Friday 11 February 2022

Index to North Irish Roots, the Journal of the NIFHS, published

The North of Ireland Family History Society (NIFHS) has launched an index to the surnames and locations mentioned in articles, features and other material published in 18 recent editions of North Irish Roots, the Society's bi-annual journal. More than 2,000 surnames, 2,100 locations, and 134 resources for follow-up exploration are noted in the 44-page Guide to the Contents of North Irish Roots Journals 2013-2021, which is presented in searchable pdf format.

The project to create the Guide started life with Audrey McKeown, the Society's current Journal Editor. She was convinced a wealth of material of benefit to family historians was held in back issues of North Irish Roots, but she knew it could be difficult for researchers to find.

Together with volunteer members living in Australia and the US, she spent more than six months identifying what information to include and how to present it, and then to complete the indexing.

The resulting members-only publication, launched yesterday, is sure to be a useful reference for all those actively engaged in research.

Following up their finds in the Guide will not be difficult because members have free access to back issues of the Journal via JSTOR; North Irish Roots has long been digitised in a partnership between Queens University Belfast and JSTOR - a digital global library of academic journals, books, and primary sources & and is accessible via JSTOR's Ireland Collection. The latter holds not only copies of North Irish Roots dating from 1984 to 2018, it holds publications from more than 70 other Irish journals from a wide range of societies, groups and associations. See a full list, here.

One of the many benefits NIFHS members receive as part of their subscription is free at-home access to this entire Irish Collection on JSTOR. (Some libraries offer access, too.) Members will now be able to search the new Guide for names, places and terms eg Royal Navy, Graveyard name etc and, if they hit bingo and find a likely match, they can note the Journal edition and page number, and locate the article precisely and quickly on JSTOR.