Genealogy Research Guide
When you decide to find your elusive Irish ancestor there are several ways to begin your
research. Your first step is to identify the person or persons who originally
emigrated from Ireland to the USA, Canada, Australia, the UK or anywhere else in the
You will be looking for their names, occupations, possible dates of emigration, dates of
birth, marriage, death, names of parents, siblings, name of close relatives and the
location of their residence in Ireland prior to emigration (county, parish or townland).
You may find some or all of the above. The more you have to begin with, the
more focused a search in Ireland can be.
Talk to your relatives, particularly your older remaining aunts, uncles, cousins etc.
Find out all about your Irish line from these relatives - their names, dates of
birth, marriage, their siblings names, their parents names. Ask them about any
stories of the 'old country' that they made have heard. This information may not be
accurate, but it could lead you in the right direction.
Work backwards with this information from your own birth, through your parents births, to
their parents - right back to the ancestor who came from Ireland.
Keep all the information you have collected in a secure file.
Use your local history and genealogy sources to find any records of your family
in your country. This includes birth, marriages and death certificates, census
returns, Church / Parish records, wills, old newspapers reports, land records etc.
You can find information on these at your local library, your local church (if your family
has been in the area a few generations), the nearest LDS (Church of Later Day Saints /
Mormon Center) or at your regional or national archives.
The Internet can also be a fruitful source of information. There are some online
shipping/emigration lists, Irish land records, family name sites, etc., which your
can check. Use the search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Altavista to find more
specific sites relating to Irish genealogy.
When you have finished your initial research you should have at
least some, or indeed all, of the information below.
* Your ancestors full name
* Your ancestors place of birth or marriage in Ireland
* Your ancestors date of birth/marriage or age at emigration
* Your ancestors parents names
* Your ancestors religious denomination
* Your ancestors occupation
Now it is time to continue the research in Ireland.
However, the Irish records are a bewildering labyrinth to someone who has not been working
with them for years. This is the stage when it is a good idea to contact a
professional Irish genealogist - to get an assessment and advice as to further research,
as well as to commission research if you wish to have your family history completed.
To begin your home research see our Genealogy Research On-Line
Sources for help and information.