Céad Míle Fáilte – a hundred thousand welcomes!
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! The day that everyone wishes has Irish ancestry! For those who actually do have Irish ancestry, here are a few links and tips for researching and writing about your Irish roots.
If you’ve started looking into your Irish roots, you may have found that without knowing the home village, it is a bit like looking for a needle in a hay stack. The key to success in Irish research is to first do your research in the United States and Canada or wherever else your Irish ancestors settled after Ireland.
As mentioned in a previous posting, I was fortunate enough to have one ancestor’s village and county spelled out in his obituary. Because of this I was able to travel to County Donegal and visit relatives who still lived in the “home place”. Most of us are not that lucky. My other Irish branch has been challenging. I can find many records in both the United States and Canada. However, the key records to help me pinpoint a location in Ireland have remained elusive. Death records or obituaries seem to be non-existent. As more records are unearthed—some online and others on location—it is important to go back and review your research. Records that I’ve given up on finding have become available.
As you do your research and start work on writing your family story, what can you do if you feel your research isn’t complete? (Trick question! Geno bugs know the research is never done!) It is important to organize the information and write about your ancestors. All that research doesn’t benefit your descendants if it exists in scraps and pages in binders, boxes or even on your computer hard drive. Don’t wait to write your story!
Read more about Ireland to understand what it was like for your ancestors. There is a plethora of books on the subject. I've found these books useful in understand Irish history and immigrant experiences.
For continuing research in Ireland, here are some great resources:
Irish ancestors can be among the most interesting and elusive. The key is to continue to search and write about what you do know and share with family and friends.
Go n-éirí leat! (Good luck!)
With a lifelong passion for genealogy and history, the author enjoys the opportunity to share genealogy tidbits, inspiring others to research and write their family story.