Friday 18 November 2022

Researchers with County Kildare ancestors are in for a treat!

Kildare County Archives has released online a trio of collections that will give a lift to any genealogist carrying out research in the county. This is the first tranche of county-held material to be digitised by the County Archives service, and you could hardly have asked for a better selection of collections, as you'll see below. They are all free to view and the digitisation has been done to a high standard.

Kildare County Archivist Karel Keily told Irish Genealogy News that she hopes to add more sources over the next year. Some patience is urged; Karel is a team of one!

Here are the newly digitised collections:

Athy Poor Law Union Indoor Relief registers from 1878 to 1918
Each of the 16 registers contains an alphabetical index. Unfortunately, the majority of them have pages missing and some are in poor condition.

Sample from Athy Workhouse register 1878-9. Click for larger view.
Nonetheless, these registers record admission and discharge details of named individuals, along with their register number; age; marital status; occupation; religion; name of spouse and number of children, if relevant; the nature of any disability; townland of residence; date admitted; condition ie health on admission; and date of death or discharge.

A striking feature of the registers is the high proportion of people being admitted from counties other than Kildare.

One earlier volume, dating from September 1875 to August 1879, is held by Kildare County Archives but has not been digitised due to conservation issues.

Naas Poor Law Union Minute books from 1839 to 1858
This collection holds the Minutes of proceedings at the weekly meeting of the Naas Board of Guardians from April 1839 to June 1859. It contains weekly statistical information on the state of the workhouse eg numbers of inmates , numbers admitted during the week, numbers discharged or died, numbers of lunatics and idiots, etc, plus the numbers provided for by outdoor relief.

Each meeting records certain accounting reports such as the costs of provisions, clothing accounts and a report from the Master of the Workhouse. Other business likely to be reported included staff absences, sick leave, adverts for tenders, and medical expenses for the dispensary districts. Each minute book contains an alphabetical index.

Interment Registers
Digitised registers are now available for 15 burial grounds across the county. These include Ballybracken, Kildangan; Crosspatrick, Kilmeague; Fontstown, Athy; Laraghbryan, Maynooth; St. Conleth's, Newbridge; St. Corban's, Naas; Nicholastown, Athy; and Yewtree, Monasterevin. The span of dates varies from graveyard to graveyard with the earliest dating from 1887.

The Archives hold records for a further five municipal burial grounds.

A number of the registers contain parchment paper pages and are semi-translucent. This results in the text on the underside of some pages being visible and some entries may be difficult to read or indecipherable. Also some registers contain only one or two pages.