The National Library of Ireland today officially launches a new web-repository of Catholic parish records, dating from the 1740s to the 1880s.
The new website will be available worldwide from 2pm on 8 July.
Although as a society we focus on England, Scotland, and Wales many of us have ancestors and so this will be of interest – thanks to http://britishgenes.blogspot.com/ for bringing this to my attention.
Note that it says they will not be indexed – so you will probably have to know the parish name, and as my ancestors tended just to say Ireland and not be more specific I wonder how much use they will be to me. I suspect that one of the big online suppliers will come to some arrangement with the NLI to index them.
National Library of Ireland Announces Launch Date for New Online Genealogy Resource
– Almost 400,000 images of Catholic parish register microfilms to be available online for free from 8th July 2015 –
The entire collection of Catholic parish register microfilms held by the National Library of Ireland (NLI) will be made available online – for free – from 8th July 2015 onwards. On that date, a dedicated website will go live, with over 390,000 digital images of the microfilm reels on which the parish registers are recorded.
The NLI has been working to digitise the microfilms for over three years under its most ambitious digitisation programme to date.
The parish register records are considered the single most important source of information on Irish family history prior to the 1901 Census. Dating from the 1740s to the 1880s, they cover 1,091 parishes throughout the island of Ireland, and consist primarily of baptismal and marriage records.
Commenting today, the NLI’s Ciara Kerrigan, who is managing the digitisation of the parish registers, said:
“We announced initial details of this project last December, and received a hugely enthusiastic response from people worldwide with an interest in Irish family history. We are delighted to announce that the project has been progressing well, and we will be able to publish all the digitised records online from 8th July onwards.
“This is the most significant ever genealogy project in the history of the NLI. The microfilms have been available to visitors to the NLI since the 1970s. However, their digitisation means that, for the first time, anyone who likes will be able to access these registers without having to travel to Dublin.”
Typically, the parish registers include information such as the dates of baptisms and marriages, and the names of the key people involved, including godparents or witnesses. The digital images of the registers will be searchable by parish location only, and will not be transcribed or indexed by the NLI.
“The images will be in black and white, and will be of the microfilms of the original registers,” explained Ms. Kerrigan. “There will not be transcripts or indexes for the images. However, the nationwide network of local family history centres holds indexes and transcripts of parish registers for their local areas. So those who access our new online resource will be able to cross-reference the information they uncover, and identify wider links and connections to their ancestral community by also liaising with the relevant local family history centre.”
The NLI is planning an official launch event for the new online resource on 8th July. Further details will be available in the coming weeks.
The National Library of Ireland will make their entire collection of Catholic parish register microfilms freely available on-line by summer 2015.
The records are considered the single most important source of information on Irish family history prior to the 1901 Census. Dating from the 1740s to the 1880s, they cover 1,091 parishes throughout Ireland, and consist primarily of baptismal and marriage records.
I will post more information as it becomes available.
Guided tour of the Refurbished Manchester Central Library (opened March 2014)
11 am Meet in Foyer of the Manchester Central Library,
St Peter’s Square, Manchester, M2 5PD
Tour of the Archives led by Bob Haynes ( Manchester
& Lancashire FHS) and a member of the Library staff.
12.30 pm Chat in the Library coffee lounge or have lunch in the
neighbourhoood (large choice of eating-places and
1.30 pm Reassemble in Library foyer
Guided Tour to places of Catholic interest in Central
Manchester led by Pauline Lloyd, Manchester Green Badge Guide.
Cost £5.00 p.p. (pay on the day)
Please book a place with either
Jean Smith firstname.lastname@example.org 0161 4839 199 or
Maureen Fitzgibbon email@example.com 0161 903 9567
The library reopens on 22 March. The building’s historic features have been sensitively and carefully restored, bringing the building up to the twenty-first century standards fit for a world class city. This major work will ensure the long-term survival of one of our most iconic and much loved buildings.
Of particular interest to family historians is Archives+ which will offer a showcase and repository for archives and family history. This purpose-built centre will help to satisfy a growing demand for accessible community history and personal heritage.
The Bishop of Lancaster has decided that the Talbot Library in Preston, which has been a much-prized repository of Roman Catholic Literature and artefacts for more than 20 years, is to close on December 31st. The loss will be greatly felt by many people researching Catholic history and students fro the nearby University of Central Lancashire. The NW Group of the Catholic Family History Society has held many happy and fruitful meetings there. Because the annual Christmas closure had already been scheduled, the Library will be effectively closed from FRIDAY DECEMBER 13th.
Records of Roman Catholics (Baptisms, Marriages and Burials) in the East India Company are on open access in the Asia, Pacific, and Africa Reading Room at the British Library in St Pancras. Details of how to obtain access are given here.
For more details and other useful records go to the Search our Catalogue Archives and Manuscripts page and enter Catholic Returns in the search box.
The India Office – Family History Search page has details of the records held – these are not specifically about Roman Catholics, but may help anyone researching their Indian ancestors.
The BBC also has a very useful site on researching your Indian Family History.
The Catholic National Library has over 70,000 books, pamphlets and periodicals including theology, spirituality and related subjects, biography, history (including Catholic Family History), and many works not freely available elsewhere. The library has a website where details of services and opening hours can be found. There is a very useful online catalogue.
Of particular interest to family historians is the collection of Mission Register transcripts dating back to 1694. These are typescripts on loan from the Catholic Family History Society. N.B. Some of these have now been published by the CFHS as data disks (see the list here)
The collection started life in 1912 and from 1997 the library (known as the Catholic Central Library) was located in Lancing Street, London and you may see references to this name and location in older books and magazines. When the lease ran out the library was without a home. However thanks to the Abbot of St Michael’s Abbey, Farnborough and the Empress Eugenie Memorial Trust which own the assets of the Abbey, the entire Library is now housed in its precincts under the new name of the Catholic National Library.