Where to Start
The single most useful (and enjoyable) source of information on your ancestors is your family itself. Old letters, bibles, newspaper cuttings, testimonials from clergymen, family tradition - any of these may provide the vital link with a specific locality in Ireland. It is vital to try and establish which county in Ireland your ancestors came from before initiating contact with genealogy centres in Ireland. Commence with one's Irish born emigrant ancestor and try to establish this emigrant's father's name and mother's pre-marriage name. In some countries, including the USA this information is contained on death records. Some of these details are also contained in marriage records.
Please select country of residence below for more information on sources that could be checked before initiating contact with us.
Spellings of surnames in records will vary greatly and no significance can be attached to the spelling as found in any particular record.
Details of age in marriage, census or other records cannot be taken seriously. People did not know their age, and had no reason to be concerned about what age they were. For a people largely illiterate and without calendars etc., age was easily forgotten.
It is important to be aware of these two points in the course of ancestral research and not to restrict research to a particular spelling of a surname or to a given time frame as a consequence of the age or spelling as recorded on a particular record.