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Irish genealogy-Catholic parish registers available online

People researching their Irish ancestry have received a welcome boost today as the Catholic parish registers are now available online.

The registers are considered the single most important resource for researching Irish ancestry.

They had already been freely available on microfilm but researchers had to go the National Library of Ireland (NLI) in Dublin to access them. Now, after the Library took on the mammoth task of transferring all the data on to their website, the registers are available to everyone online.

Irish genealogy-Catholic parish registers available online

With millions of people across the world claiming Irish heritage, it is unsurprising that the records have created a great deal of interest. The internet has already made Irish genealogy more readily available to non-professionals but sketchy records are still hard to manoeuvre and information can still be difficult to uncover.

Some genealogy sites offer some parish records but the Library’s are the most comprehensive and include registers dating back before 1880.

The move has been welcomed by Irish genealogy experts. Last year John Grenham wrote in the Irish Times: “It is almost impossible to overstate the importance of what is about to happen. When the Irish public service gets things right, it can get them spectacularly, gloriously right.”

Journalist and family historian Claire Santry tweeted: “You won’t hear better Irish genealogy news today, tomorrow, this week, this year.”

Ciara Kerrigan from the NLI said: “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 digitization means that, for the first time, anyone who likes will be able to access these registers without having to travel to Dublin.”

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The Catholic Church was ahead of the state in keeping such records so its registers are one of its most important legacies to future generations.

To find out more visit the NLI website


48 thoughts on “Irish genealogy-Catholic parish registers available online

  1. Kathleen Hempel

    My mother Anne Maria Lavin was born in County Mayo. She arrived in the US when she was 16 years old and later married John Brett from County Sligo.

    22/06/2016 at 3:28 pm
  2. shirley McLean

    Looking for Keyes ( keys) family 1850

    11/06/2016 at 2:51 pm
  3. Michele White

    I am looking for any information on my Great Grandfather Joseph Creighton and family. I know he was from County Cork. Thank you!

    11/06/2016 at 7:52 am
  4. Sarah Boyle

    What religion were they Sonya

    10/06/2016 at 9:25 am
  5. Maureen Miller

    I am looking for information on James Kelly born 1811. I’ve been told he was born in Ennistymon, County Clare. I do know he came to the US through Baltimore between 1837-41. His wife was Anna (can’t find last name). They lived in Washington DC. I do have the complete history of his son Thomas’s family. I would appreciate knowing more about James and his family in Ireland but I can’t find anything. Ancestry has nothing about him in Ireland. I did find the Mahoney’s from Dublin and the Scanlan from Limerick

    25/04/2016 at 5:09 am
  6. Sonya Gormley

    Would dearly love some information about my Mother’s parents – I’m 49 now and mum has passed away. She told me her mum was called Ellen McCutcheon and married to John McCutcheon, her mum died when she was 2, her dad left, they lived in Sion Mills, Co.Tyrone and was brought up by her granny – anything at all would be brilliant to plant the seed in our family tree

    19/04/2016 at 7:58 pm
  7. Terri gann

    Looking for some family names……..brothers and sisters of Beatrice Agnes lavin…..any relationship to Nelly Dale.. Born in clair or cork..both immigrated to NY.

    16/04/2016 at 9:43 pm
  8. Terri gann

    Gann….has sometimes been written as gunn….old Gaelic maybe guinn…mcgann….Gannon also listed as perhaps being the same family.. As mc or on..was to identify son and grandson

    16/04/2016 at 9:35 pm
  9. Linda LeMoigne

    looking for information on family: grandparents; James Brennan & Christina Stout Brennan (my mom Philomena Brennan LeMoigne was born in Dublin, Ireland) …relatives etc…..both grandparents…i met my cousins, aunts and uncles would love to know more about my grandparents and their childhood…..

    11/04/2016 at 8:27 pm
  10. Bernadette

    Lots off ferguson here in Ireland a lettle more info might help my mother was ferguson

    10/04/2016 at 2:30 am
  11. Jean McElligott Everson

    Looking for my McElligott family came to the USA around 1900

    08/04/2016 at 6:23 am
  12. Kate Ward

    Try searching under Gunn as it may be a misspelling. Lots of Gunns in Derrylin area of Co. Fermanagh. Good luck

    30/03/2016 at 8:56 am
  13. Kathleen Fleming

    I’m looking for information about my grandfather Michael Dunne born in Southern Ireland 1874 came to Scotland he had one sister

    21/03/2016 at 11:53 am
  14. Denise McCullough

    I am a McCullough would love to learn more about my Irish heritage. The majority of my family was in Philadelphia pa area, south jersey and south Florida. My grandfathers name is Edward McCullough. He had 3 brothers. Joseph, pal, James. Any information would be thrilled. He passed in 1988

    20/03/2016 at 4:50 pm
  15. Kevin M Ferguson

    I’m looking for info on irish surname ferguson rumored to be involved with the IRA or any that lived in Ireland

    18/03/2016 at 9:45 pm
  16. Paet Burcham

    I am looking for info on my greatgrandfather, Patrick DEVER, born about 1865 (+/-5 years). He was born on Achill Island. Left for America in the 1880’s. Settled in Cleveland, Ohio. Married Mary (Maria) ‘Mallet in Cleveland. She was also born in Achill. In Cleveland them Achill
    Folk called themselves the “Achill Sounders”. Any information on his parents would be appreciated. I have hit the brick wall.

    16/03/2016 at 7:45 pm
  17. John Patrick sullivan (O'Sullivan)

    Two brothers came to America in 1903 one was my great grandfather who was in the wrong line at Ellis island so we are now Sullivan’s. even thou his brother came out of line still a O’Sullivan they were from county Cork. I’m looking for the rest of our family

    15/03/2016 at 8:18 pm
  18. William Madden

    Looking for anyone in Ireland who are related to the following souls who left the green Isle in the 1800’s my Family, here are a few of the forgotten who land in the Continent of North America, their are lot of people who forget their are Three America;s, not one!
    1825….in from Wexford , Sydney Mines, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia..Peter Burchell–& his Wife Susan MacColloch
    1827…sailed in from Donegal ……Francis & Mary Gallagher -sailed into Moncton, New Brunswick…settled Gallagher Ridge, and moved to Irishtown ,NB
    1835…From Ireland….Timithy Madden .landed in Saint John,NB, was a Cordswainer, settled Madden’s Flats in 1835, now called Waterford,New Brunswick.
    1843….William Madden and his wife Ellen (Eleanor Donlan) sailed out of Galway to the Port City of Saint John,NB, with 3 boys and a girl, and another girl came over in 1845, They settled Madden’s Flats. NB . William’s North American Grand Children settled in Minto, Dury Cove, Smiths Creek, Norton,New Brunswick, HRM in Nova Scotia, Lynn ,Mass, Detroit,Walland Lake, Michigan, Virginia, Iowa, Nebraska, Texas, NZ,Germany, Laird,Price Albert,Duck lake,Sask, Thompson &the Paz Manitoba, PEI, Yellowknife,Yukon, Cayman Islands, Slave Lake ,Alberta, Florida, but still not one Cousin from Ireland….

    13/03/2016 at 5:15 pm
  19. Deborah McIntosh Griffiths

    Looking for McIntosh ancestry. My grandfathers name was John Henry McIntosh. We got back as far as 4 generations. Hope you can find others.

    13/03/2016 at 3:49 pm
  20. Mary Theresa Gillespie Smith

    I have been searching for my GGGrandad Timothy Rossiter he lived in Lower Main St Rathdrum Co Wicklow, he was married to Anne need Curran he died approx 1870/s and Anne died 1900 her family lived in the same house until at least 1930ish my mother was born there in 1916.
    I would be so pleased to know exactly when he died so I could obtain a death certificate, many thanks Mary.

    12/03/2016 at 11:25 pm
  21. Thomas Moore

    My Grandfather Edward Moore Came from Laois and he came to New York , from his Tales he had one of 17 Kids. Looking for some Family . Thanks

    12/03/2016 at 2:08 am
  22. Dunphy

    Looking for grandparents,
    Dunphy or Daley

    10/03/2016 at 7:45 pm
  23. Jessica Coarsey

    Don’t know much about past ancestors. Looking for Searcy family

    08/03/2016 at 2:31 pm
  24. William dillon

    Hi just looking for info on my family how far back we go im trying to put together our family tree .thanks ☺from bagnelstown co carlow ireland

    29/02/2016 at 7:59 pm
  25. don

    Looking for marriage record and ancestry of James Kelly and Margaret Crosby, married in Carlow about 1815-1820. Thank you.

    29/02/2016 at 2:05 pm
  26. Tommydalekennedy

    Hi Patricia
    Im from dunmore east but live in Australia now .
    jump on Facebook we have a dunmore east page on there .
    There is also a barony of gaultier(the barony the village sits in) history group as well who might be able to help you .
    Was your granddad from dunmore .
    Its a pretty small village so info should nt be too hard to track down.
    If he was from the village the 1901 and 1911 censuses are online and list everybody in the locality.
    If he was Catholic the local church is killea and the protestant one st andrews

    29/02/2016 at 6:47 am
  27. Maureen McElroy Ulizio

    Looking for living relatives in either Fermanagh and/or Armagh. Grandmother’s maiden name was Theresa McQuaid. Grandfather’s name was John Edward McElroy.

    28/02/2016 at 10:04 pm
  28. Jamie Guinn

    I am looking for parents to George Guinn who married Anna McKenna in 1850 in TENNESSEE…. my family is trying very hard to trace our Guinn roots but we hit a dead end there. It’s possible George came from Ireland in 1850 or its possible he was born in the USA but if you have any info that’d be great thanks!

    28/02/2016 at 9:54 pm
  29. Belinda Tedesco, Bailey, kelley

    Looking for J.A. Kelley died in America at Gettysburgs in the civil war. Has a son John H. Kelley born in Alabama. Any one that could help would be great. Contact me

    12/01/2016 at 12:33 am
  30. Anne Hennon

    I’m looking for family of my biological daddy side,I was told his real last name might of been Diamond,but his named was changed to Presley.

    04/01/2016 at 2:26 am
  31. looking for information about my grandfather married my granny margaret boyle north dublin august or september 1912 that all i know about my mums dad they lived in dunemore east waterford

    04/01/2016 at 2:22 am
  32. Mary Ellen Norton Lyon

    Looking for history of Peter Norton b1820s married Bridgette Concannon b 1829 in Ireland. He became a citizen of U.S.A. in 1860s.

    03/01/2016 at 11:56 pm


    31/12/2015 at 7:21 pm
  34. deborah Fernando

    There are a lot of MacNamaras in Clare ..try the Clare Library site. Also Census 1901and 1911.

    29/12/2015 at 9:03 pm
  35. Ellen Jordan

    Are you talking about the RMS Lusitania? That ship was torpedoed by the Germans and sunk 11km off Old Head of Kinsale on May 7, 1915.

    29/12/2015 at 2:10 pm
  36. Looking for any information on my grandmother Mary Keeley, she arrived in America on the SS Lusitiania around 1918 . Lost track of her around 1930…suspect she might have returned to Ireland after sustaining a head injury in NYC. Any information on her pre 1918 or post 1930 would be greatly appreciated.

    29/12/2015 at 11:06 am
  37. Mike Roberts

    Looking for info on the Antrim name

    29/12/2015 at 10:53 am
  38. Sharon Rojas

    Looking for info. on Crowley or O’Crowley from County Cork. Thank You!

    22/12/2015 at 3:49 pm
  39. Mary Anne Metcalfe King

    Trying to find parents of my Great Grandmother, Mary Frawley Lynch from Wexford. Lived in Dublin. Late 1800’s; early 1900’s.

    05/12/2015 at 11:34 pm
  40. Erin

    My great grandfather was Robert Browne. Looking for any information. He came to America but never wanted to talk about his back ground.

    28/09/2015 at 2:31 pm
  41. toni mc namara

    im looking for any information about my grandfather patrick mac namara .hhe married elenora o.rourke and they lived in newmarket on fergus co clare. his father was thomas.thank you for any information. toni

    23/09/2015 at 1:02 am
  42. Peggy Allesch Barcasky

    i’m looking for info on my great grandfather who was Hugh Murphy and had a brother Frank Murphy

    20/09/2015 at 3:19 am
  43. Mothers name kinahan was in the Golding bridge home for ten years name Bridget and her sister Christina I have no information about my grand perents they may have lived in Gramby lane or summer hill not sure my mam was married in tha tin church in a place called the gloster diamond there was six kids two boys jack &twillaim four girls Cathy Molly plus mam and Chris William was odopted @six months no one seems to know anything about my mother my dads name was Francis Glynn from Dominic St dublin mother lived in summer hill plus we think Gramby lanei would love to know where I came from as my mother never spoke about her childhood please help if you can

    24/07/2015 at 7:19 am
  44. Christina Glynn

    I would love to know my mothers background her name w as Kinahan married to Glynn she was in the golden bridge home for children for ten years her name was bridgite

    24/07/2015 at 12:16 am
  45. Mary McCahill Raymond

    I’m searching my maiden name…McCahill

    20/07/2015 at 10:34 pm
  46. Charles sullivan

    Looking for my grandfather , he was born 04/15/1855 in Ireland , county cork near bantry . John traveled to the United States in 1876 , having a very difficult time following his entrance into Philadelphia . All knowledge would be wonderful . I understand he had family enter the country with him and they went (Colorado?) and John went to the coal region of Pennsylvania ( northeast Pennsylvania .

    20/07/2015 at 9:24 pm
  47. mary

    Do we have a set time or a date for the records to be available?.

    Thanks for all your info that you post all year on the Irish and how to find different sites and just the human interest stories. You really do a great job.

    16/07/2015 at 2:27 pm
  48. Donald Gartlan

    Hopefully the records will be available without having to pay Ancestry who havecontrol over most Irish history

    08/07/2015 at 9:04 pm

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