Tracing Your Irish Ancestors

An introduction to the key primary and secondary sources of information required to locate Irish (Northern & Southern) family and an opportunity for a hands-on exploration of multiple websites. This course also teaches an organised approach to searching and recording and encourages students to use state and local libraries and genealogical organisations and to be disciplined in file keeping.

This course assumes a basic level of computer and internet literacy. Students are encouraged to bring some ancestor details to use in searches, and to workshop with class members, if they wish.

  • Session 1 – The key primary sources in Northern & Southern Ireland: BDM (civil); BDM (church); National Archives; Dublin city archives; shipping records
  • Session 2 – The key secondary sources: cemetery records; county libraries; blog sites; newspapers

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Have an understanding of the nature of primary sources of information that can be used to build family histories, including Irish Birth Death Marriage sources; Government Archives, Census and Electoral Rolls; shipping records
  2. Have an understanding of other sources that may supplement primary sources, for example cemetery records, newspaper sources and online forums
  3. Have gained the skills to find suitable primary and secondary sources of information relevant to their own background to help build their family history
  4. Have gained some skills to record and save the results of their searches, in both physical files and computer files

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Course testimonials:

  • Lots of information on how to access Irish primary and secondary sources and up-to-date blog sites, which has led to a new impetus to my research.
  • Excellent informative day with expert advice and support.