Researching in Ireland

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

Today, it seems only appropriate to share resources for finding your family in Ireland. Unless you have been able to make the jump over the pond to an ancestral town, or at least county, the task might be a bit daunting.

Your first stop must be, a relatively new site, complete with a welcome from the Irish Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.  You can search for your ancestor by name for free. I entered a name, Thomas Treacy, born about 1856, and look what came up:

Looking for Thomas Treacy

Not only did a list of databases appear, there was also a notice at the very bottom of the screen about all the possible spelling variations in the records.  I clicked on the first database, Church Records and a list of possibilities came up. This isn’t my person – I just chose this entry to see what would happen next.

Thomas Treacy of Cork

Right underneath this entry, in small font, there is yet another option – View the church register page containing this record.

IrishRes4 copy
Entry for Thomas Treacy

How great is that? And, did I mention that this is FREE? Notice, too, there are a number of other databases in which I can search – everything from vital records to military to Ellis Island to Australia. Granted, some of these databases are only indexes, but this is a fabulous resource. Also, most of these sites are a combination of free searches, but paid access to actual records.

Here are a few other sites:

The National Archives of Ireland

Genealogical Society of Ireland

Irish Ancestors by The Irish Times

The Irish Genealogical Research Society

Find My Past


Family Search – Ireland Genealogy Websites

As the Irish say to their friends:

Wishing you a rainbow
For sunlight after showers—
Miles and miles of Irish smiles
For golden happy hours—
Shamrocks at your doorway
For luck and laughter too,
And a host of friends that never ends
Each day your whole life through!
Source: Old Irish blessing

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