Episode 18 – Irish Genealogy (Part 2)


Welcome to the second part of my chat with Valerie Prince from Ancestry ProGenealogists about all things Irish family history related.

This episode follows on from the previous podcast, where myself and Valerie – who has given her time completely free – discuss the practicalities of tracing Irish ancestors.

We look at hints, tips, tricks, techniques and tools to fill in the gaps in the availability of records – along with what IS available and where you can find it.

Covering lots of ground (and bouncing around topics in my signature style!) we look in this episode at:

  • The great famine
  • Migration
  • Workhouses in the great famine and where to find records
  • Assisted emigration
  • Evolution of Ireland in the 1920s
  • Census substitutes
  • Censuses themselves – and what exactly is available – and the effect of the ‘census black hole’
  • Commonality of names – what to do when you find a common name
  • Dealing with ages that drift between census
  • Why Irish people may have three different names
  • What happens when all you know is ‘Ireland’?

Links and notes for this episode

workhouses.org.uk and search for workhouses in the relevant poor law union

GRONI = General register office of northern Ireland

Before 1922 Antrim Armargh, Derry Down Fermanagh and Tyrone – records are available lso on irishgenealogy.ie

The Public Record Office for Northern Ireland (PRONI) has valuation books, applotment books and other census substitutes

National Archives – the place for censuses (see last time)

Some parishes in County Kilkenny are available at the NLI Genealogical office in Dublin.

Census coverage

Only fragments exist for 1821-1851

1821: parts of counties Armagh, Cavan, Fermanagh, Galway, Meath, and Offaly

1831: Much of County Derry

1841: Killeshandra Civil Parish, County Cavan, originals, and transcriptions for parts of Cork, Fermanagh, Kilkenny, Monaghan, and Waterford.

1851: Parts of Antrim and one townland in Fermanagh, Clonee – plus transcriptions of parts of Monaghan, and heads of households for Dublin City and one ward in Belfast.  (Offline transcriptions for some parishes in Kilkenny are available at the NLI’s Genealogical Office)

1861 & 1871 completely destroyed shortly after being taken – except:

1861 – one parish in Wexford for 1861 (Enniscorthy, Roman Catholic families only), and for

1871 – a transcription of Drumcondra & Loughbracken parish, County Meath.

1881 and 1891 pulped during WWI

No originals or transcriptions for those years survived.

If you have any hints, tips and suggestions for census substitutes that you have unearthed, please get in touch and share your experience.

Thanks for listening!

Recommended drinks to accompany this episode: At the time of writing, supplies may be short. A simple cut of tea will suffice, while we wait for the situation to pass

Recommended biscuits to accompany this episode: For the same reason, whatever you have in the biscuit tin.

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