Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Researching your family history in Ireland

 Most researchers be they experienced or beginners know that one has to collect records. These include civil registration, church records and of course what is passed down through the family. I have shown other sources such as land records, newspapers, criminal registers and a host of others. The question now is “when do I know when to give up?” The simple answer is you do not! I do not mean you have to devote all of your spare time researching that one person/line that is giving you such a headache. What I do (and I have a few brick walls) when I have that spare time is to delve into that brick wall and see if there is something that I have missed or if anything new has developed. This can include a new researcher that has posted their tree on line or new records have been published or discovered. What I would advise is to write to local newspapers and ask the editor if he would consider publishing your letter asking for local help. I would also write to county reference libraries for information on local history books. 

The 19th century newspaper "The Freeman's Journal" is available on line (not free - except in certain libraries) and you can search digitally by entering the townland of your ancestors. Using this newspaper I found many reports involving my ancestors and I was really amazed on what I discovered.

 One of the simplest means of finding information is simply googling the surname with the parish/townland. Also add ancestry to it if you might be pleasantly surprised on what you find. Another tip is to search the name and townland/parish within quotation marks...... this will filter out all other "hits." 

 What you might consider is "how much do I spend on this research?" This of course is entirely up to you and how important it is to you? Personally I believe nothing beats travelling to Ireland and visiting the area of your ancestors even if you know the county of your ancestors only. If you are considering visiting Ireland I will always take time on answering any queries you might have and I'll give the best advice I can. You can always consider paying a small amount for someone to search for you though obviously no guarantees come in research. I would again advise you do this one step at a time. It's cheaper and more realistic. If you do have any questions please feel free to contact me directly if you wish. 

All the very best. Email me! click here

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