St. Patrick’s Day and a Few Irish Genealogy Lists and Indexes

Happy St. Patrick’s Day.  It is hard to stay gloomy on such a day–even if you are not sure you’re Irish!  So here I am with a brandnew computer because a sudden, quick power-outage fried my motherboard.  A new typeface.  A whole new operating system, still unfamiliar to me.  No printer.  And I have no idea where my Outlook email account is.  However, my Genealogy News Sheet is up and running and here I am to share some wonderful Irish research tools you may not yet have discovered!  The Belfast Newsletter was established in 1737 and is still published today.  Its contents included emigration lists and letters of thanks for safe arrival printed in the paper for the folks back home.  It also published marriage and death notices.  This everyname, online index includes some 300,000 entries, 1737-1800.  About 1/4 of the issues survive before 1754, and from 1754-1800 there is almost a complete run.  The original bound copies are in the Linen Hall Library, Belfast.  Microfilm copies of the newsletter are available at University of Southwestern Louisiana, Fort Worth TX Public Library, and Illinois University at Bloomington, IL.   Descriptions online tell how to search the database and how to interpret the entries. 

For questions contact John C. Greene, Department of English, Univeristy of Southwestern Louisiana, Lafayette LA 70504 email   Professor Greene makes a plea for us to publicize the sponsoring institution so that additional monies will be made available to index other early Irish papers.

The Belfast Newsletter:  Notices of Marriages, Births, Deaths, Jan 1947-June 1959.  J.H.M. Woods, editor.  Manuscript filmed at the Linen Hall Library, 3 reels.  Family History Library #0258787-789.  

Transcripts of Marriages, 1754-99, Belfast Parish Church.  FH Library film #1701991, item 2.

Irish Genealogical Abstracts:  Londonderry Journal Index, 1772-1784.  Donald M. Schlegel, editor.   Original files of his newspaper, 1772-1887 are located in the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland.  The index includes births, marriages, deaths, probate  notices and appointments of admin. and exec, saliing notices of ships outbound from Irish ports, debt clearances, and much more.  Londonderry was a very busy port.  [A careful examination of any good map of Ireland shows the numerous seaside towns and villages from which saling craft of all sorts came and went.  What of the people leaving from these coastal places?]

Londonderry Journal, A Local Index.  Vol I:  1772-75.  Colin Hughes, editor.  Derry:  Northern Ireland Northwestern Centre for Learning, 1987.

If you recall a cardinal rule of successful research to prove your ancestry–if there are several versions of the same evidence, check them all.   And once you have checked the printed/compiled versions, zero in on your pertinent entries in the original records.   The survival of the data you need is a thing of chance.  Search what survives.

An excellent finding tool for specific parts of Ireland are the Lists of Freeholders in Ireland, 1760-1788.  MS 442, microfilmed at the Genealogical Office of Ireland, Dublin.   Family History Library film 0100181, item1.  Includes Donegal, Fermanagh, Meath, Roscommon, Tipperary.  This is a critical time period for Irish who emigrated to America right after the Revolutionary War ended.  A little emigration occurred during the War.  Then a flood occurred right after–this is when many Irish come to Philadelphia, Baltimore, Charleston, Savannah, New Orleans.  Very important lists.

I have some very special postings planned for the next two weeks–be sure to tune in to all the episodes!  One of the reasons you miss the right entries for your ancestors–you search the wrong dates and overlook significant periods of time.  In honor of the many New Years’ Days we can celebrate in any given year, I promise you at least one or two new facts you do not know!   Watch!  Your favorite genealogy expert, Arlene Eakle. 

P.S.  When you decide to solve your difficult genealogy research problems–remember me.  I do research several hours every day somewhere.  And I always have a special offer available upon request.   If you email me, please include your postal address, since most of my stuff is not yet online. 

In Memoriam:  Virginia Lee Archer  passed away in Draper UT, 9 March 2007.  She was a professional genealogist in Salt Lake City for many years.  She taught an entire generation of beginners how to find their ancestors.  And we will miss her.

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